How Not Having Sex Made Our Marriage Stronger

not having sex

Back in 2015, beloved Brooklyn Nine-Nine actor Terry Crews spoke up about a “90 Day Sex Fast” he participated in with his wife. After breaking his addiction to pornography, Crews wanted to love his wife in non-sexual ways, so the Crewses didn’t have any sexual contact for 90 days straight.

As reported by the Huffington Post:

“90 days—no sex, all relationship, all talk, all cuddle,” he recounted. “I found that at the end of that 90 days … I knew who she was, and it wasn’t about ‘Let’s go out because I know I’m gonna get some sex later.’ It was like, ‘Let’s go because I want to talk to you. I want to know you.’”

Personally, I know that the “Terry Crews Challenge” can do wonders for a relationship. Like the Crewses, my husband and I came to see each other in a new light when we took on the challenge.

Fasting from sex meant my husband and I talked more about our passions, we had extra energy for personal projects (which we share with one another), and we both learned to love the other as someone we do not expect nor demand sex from. Sex became more intimate and meaningful—and not just because it had been so long that it felt great. The strong bond we now share with each other means there is now a greater emotional satisfaction in making love with each other too.

Here are a few ways to start your own your own “sex fast”:

  1. Get your Significant Other (SO) on board

If your SO is not interested or supportive of a sex fast, then a sex fast won’t bear much fruit other than bitterness or frustration. Share Terry Crews’s own story to show the benefits. If your SO is initially not interested, try to find some middle ground. Discuss an acceptable time period for the fast, discuss what you will do instead of sex, et cetera.

  1. Study up on SPICE

Once your SO is on board and you both know how long it will last, familiarize yourself with SPICE. It stands for: Spiritual, Physical, Intellectual, Communicative/Creative, and Emotional love. It is a system meant to convey the many different, non-sexual ways affection and love can be shown to a partner. Implementing this system into your fast will help you both in learning new ways to express your love. You can learn more here.

  1. Set down an agreed upon and definite time period for your fast

You don’t have to abstain as long as the Crewses did. Just a few days or a week might be your goal. But make it a realistic goal and write it down on a calendar. You might even make a countdown if you want to lighten things up. Don’t be discouraged if you both cave in and have sex anyway: The point is to find ways to express non-sexual love as a couple, not to prove how resistant to sex you are.


The “Terry Crews Challenge” is called a challenge for a reason. It pushes you to rethink the role sex plays in your relationship.While it’s not always easy, my husband and I can attest that our “sex fasts” have helped us shape the strong marriage that has pulled us through life’s ups and downs.

Having an active sex life is great for a loving couple. But for some couples, a sex fast may be just the thing they need to challenge themselves to share and receive love beyond the bed.

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