One day I finally broke down. My husband had just come home from work and he could tell I had a long day. I just couldn’t hold it in anymore and sat down on the kitchen floor and began to cry. And then he did one of the most loving things I can remember and got down on the floor with me, put my head in his lap and caressed my tear-stained cheek until I was able to finally speak. I began by telling him I doubted the type of mother I was, the type of woman I was, how I so often wondered why he’d want to be with me, how I struggled to believe he was happy he chose me to be his wife, as well as other worries. He held me tight, told me there was no one else he’d rather be with and spoke words of confidence in me.
I realize now that that moment was the turning point for us, not just in getting back to communicating, but also in our sexual relationship. As we kept talking over the next few weeks we started getting to the root of our issues and we both began to see that these were the very issues that were keeping us from having a less than fulfilling sex life.
I came to realize and confess to him that because I doubted his love I unintentionally was holding back from him. I admitted that in the bedroom I was scared of showing him when I had pleasure because I thought it would be too revealing of me and I worried I’d be embarrassed, so I had been holding that part of myself back. I was terrified of being vulnerable with him.
Yet, when we made love, that part of me was one of the things he wanted most. He wanted to see that I enjoyed it, that I enjoyed him, and that he was capable of pleasing me. We also dove into our other wounds, wounds from our childhood, past relationships and from our own relationship. We knew of them before, but as I particularly shared with a deeper honesty and greater trust in his love, we began to connect the dots to see how they played a part in the bigger picture of our sexual intimacy and overall marriage.
We also read the books “28 Days to Spice Up Your Marriage” and “Holy Sex.” In the latter, we discovered what it means to become “infallible lovers,” meaning everything we do throughout the day spills over into the bedroom: our emotional connection fuels our physical connection. The book included couples quizzes on various topics that helped us communicate more about our hopes and struggles in our marriage and sex life.
I wish I could say that after a few weeks of growing in emotional intimacy we figured everything out in the bedroom, but that wasn’t the case. While very quickly we found that our marriage was better than it had ever been, it still took some time and lots of talking for me to grow in trust of my husband’s love for me and to trust him with my whole heart. Thankfully, marriage provided me a safe place to work through these emotional and physical issues. I knew my husband was committed to me and our marriage, and so when I struggled with doubting his love, I was able to fall back on this commitment to give me the courage to keep moving forward.
Finally, about five months after that moment on the kitchen floor, I realized I was in a place where I did want to show my husband vulnerability in the bedroom. I wanted to give him the gift of my trust and vulnerability, and was excited to do so. That night we made love and I orgasmed for the first time. A huge weight lifted from both our shoulders and I cried from the joy and relief of it all.
Since that time my husband and I have remarked often to each other that while our sex lives brought us a lot of pain in the early years of our marriage, we are so thankful we were given that trial. By sharing my doubts and insecurities, we were able to grow in intimacy in all aspects of our marriage. If things would have “worked” right from the beginning we doubt our marriage be as strong and happy as it is today. Our sex life wouldn’t be as vibrant either.
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