Keeping Sex Alive in Marriage: The Problem

July 15, 2013 by Gary Davis  
Published in Marriage

There is a Japanese saying that declares if a couple puts a bean in a jar their first year of marriage every time they have sex, despite removing a bean every time during the rest of their marriage, they will have beans left at the end of the marriage. Is this true? If so, why?

We live in an age of enlightenment, yet, I think we are affected by many old myths and taboos. Two old myths, for example, say that as people get older they aren’t interested in intimacy, and, additionally, that marriage is destined to bring boredom.

There is something I learned early in my marriage. When my wife and I were in bed together, nature took its course, frequently. If a man and woman are in love, it is natural to want to express that love physically. It was when we didn’t go to bed together, or, we let other pressures interfere, that we began to have problems.

There is an old Japanese saying, that if a newly married couple places a bean in a jar every time they make love their first year, they will never empty that jar during all the rest of their married life. Well, I don’t know if that is literally correct, but, the illustration is correct. As time goes by, anything and everything gets in the way of a married couple having intimacy. Pressures of life, children, and, plain old fatigue play a role in not being able to pay as much time to one another as was historically possible.

What are the specific problems, and, what are the solutions?

It is hard to maintain privacy when you have children. Not only do they demand attention and take massive amounts of energy, but, as they get older the couple must become more and more careful and quiet. If you’re unlucky enough to be without a lock on your bedroom door, as my wife and I were, there is always the fear that some sick or terrified child is going to burst into the room.

Another problem is the stress of life. Debts; ups and downs at work, extended family crisis, children who are ill and, the million other things that occur during the course of a marriage, diminish not only the opportunity, but the desire for sex. It is difficult to give each other the proper attention if you’re extremely tired.

We often begin to take each other for granted. We barely speak to one another during the day and then expect there to be a smoldering sexual desire at night. What usually happens is that there is an interlude of perfunctory sex which leaves both people less than satisfied, and, in some cases, resentful.

Finally, we don’t take care of our appearance like we once did. When we dated, and even when were first married, we were very concerned about our appearance. As time goes by, sadly, we tend to care less about how we look, and, this sends a very bad but very real message.

Those are the problems. My next article on this topic will give some solutions.

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