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Responsive Desire

What science can tell us about sex.
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Responsive Desire

Post by Deleted User 499 »

Many times here it has been mentioned that often women have responsive desire.  For those who would relate to this, what does it look like?  Do you have little or no desire for sex until activities begin?
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SeekingChange
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Re: Responsive Desire

Post by SeekingChange »

It can vary what it looks like.  There are the rarer times where there is sexual desire before starting, which makes the mental thing easier, but there will likely still be foreplay required. (This is often what women are looking for in order to say "yes".)  But, there are times where I have zero desire, and probably what we could call "negative desire",  where it may feel like too much and there's a dread of it. The dread isn't usually a personal thing against my husband, it's more about the energy and time it will take. If I get to the uncommon place that if it feels like too much that I am to the point of tears at the thought, (and I am not a crier), I have started telling my husband I just can't, and I might offer an alternative or give him the freedom to take care of himself. (In the beginning of my change, I just did it anyway, I did no kind of refusal.)

For me, there is a certain thing my husband can do that will "neutralize" my thinking (a massage).  It often can move me from "negative to neutral" or maybe even "neutral to positive".  Once I am there, I initiate the move to PIV and the responsive desire can kick in fairly quickly once we actually start our sexual activity.

What I have found, is I need to have a willingness to try.  I need to keep my bad thoughts and attitude tethered and out of it.  I try to just relax and make it welcoming for my husband, no matter how I feel.  After that, my desire often kicks in and I enjoy, but there are times I am too distracted or too exhausted that it becomes obvious that desire isn't going to kick in, and it really becomes about him, and we still had a form of connection.
God can change what people do, behavioral patterns that have been in play for decades. He can change what we do to cope, to find comfort, to survive conflict, to count. Rahab had done a same old thing for years... and then she did something new.
Deleted User 499

Re: Responsive Desire

Post by Deleted User 499 »

I give DW a massage every time we come together for sexual connection. She craves it so I figure it’s one area where I can give. I know it helps her transition as well but I can get a notice that it’s not happening before and after a massage. She seems to tie it to the point of time in her cycle, but I have seen her enjoy sex during this time in her cycle several times before, even if it isn’t very common ( in the days leading up to her period ).
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Re: Responsive Desire

Post by SeekingChange »

There is something to the cycle and hormones, but we can't really use that as an excuse, men or women. Hormones aren't an excuse for sin or wrong behavior, whether it's a woman's PMS or a man's high or low testosterone. Keeping a healthy sexual life (even if actual intercourse is not possible) is about a right and willing heart.

It's really about the heart, but a proper balance of hormones might sure make living out that heart easier.
God can change what people do, behavioral patterns that have been in play for decades. He can change what we do to cope, to find comfort, to survive conflict, to count. Rahab had done a same old thing for years... and then she did something new.
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Re: Responsive Desire

Post by Olorin »

A husband here. To echo what Seeking Change said, the heart has a big part to play when it comes to this kind of issue. My DW is a responsive desire type, and rarely if ever does she initiate love making. Because she knows sex is important to me, we schedule sex and most of the time when we begin she starts without really feeling any desire for PIV.  My DW loves our foreplay, which consists of cuddling, or me giving her a back massage. But in order for PIV sex to happen, she has to at some point use her vibrator to get herself 'going'. She does get pleasure and orgasms from this (most of the time), but the main reason she has learned how to pleasure herself is because she knows that her having orgasms is important to my enjoyment of our marriage bed. The key factor is a willingness on the part of both spouses to understand each others  sexual needs and take whatever steps are necessary to arrive at a reasonable compromise.
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Re: Responsive Desire

Post by one_woman_man »

@Tracker, I agree that hormones, health and heart (3 H's) are key factors. It seems to me that education/learning is really important too. Without informed understanding of one another through education/learning at sites like this, or about one another within a marriage, the 3 H's you mentioned might still leave one lacking.

Over the years I have marveled at how many people have been helped by the things they learn here. But, one of their challenges always is, how do they help their spouse learn new things too?
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Re: Responsive Desire

Post by Jpops »

“How do they help their spouse learn new things too?”

This. A thousand times this. I try to explain how men feel loved and connected through sex, and I still get the response that I put too much emphasis on sex. I tell her I am lonely and need to feel pursued and she tells me to plan more dates. I try to explain responsive desire and she says she hates the advice from older women saying “just do it and your desire will catch up”.

I’m sorry, I’m just yelling at windmills.
one_woman_man
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Re: Responsive Desire

Post by one_woman_man »

Many people don't like learning - not even new things. (and that doesn't make sense to some of us!) Some need to hurt enough to want to learn. Or must first see their need clearly enough to start learning. Some need to grow enough to be open to learning. Some need to come face to face with the stark reality of their situation before they are willing to put the effort into learning. And often, they need to change enough over time or through experiences to be open to learning. And if I may add one more, an "other" focus is needed to want to learn - especially how sex is to be a gift we share generously and selflessly with our spouse. Self absorption or living in their own bubble, can hinder this too.

In our case, which was quit similar to what you are sharing, it took years. I prayed. Even when the two of us prayed together, with my hand on her, I would pray that we could enjoy all that God had planned for us and that she would be given sexual freedom to enjoy her sexuality to the fullest. (I usually did that on my own, but sometimes with her too.) I read and studied all I could so that I understood better both myself, her and married sexuality better. And little by little a few of the things I shared with her - in as nonthreatening or non-demanding ways  I could come up with - began to get through to her. These and other factors, including peri-menopause, that finally led to her awakening and a new chapter in our married life and our  marriage bed.
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Re: Responsive Desire

Post by Brynna »

I think someone should make this question a thread of its own.
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Re: Responsive Desire

Post by Link+Zelda »

I can certainly type up the "how" Zelda and I got to where we are (i.e. a joint account, even if I do the majority of the commenting, we read and discuss quite a few things together). Might be of some help, though our situation is a bit unique and we started with a vibrant sex life that dwindled away over time, which is quite unlike those who never had an engaged and responsive DW.

Can't do this now (at work), but maybe later and would be nice if a new thread.

-Scott
-Link+Zelda
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