Friday night is typically sex night for us. It’s not guaranteed, but it’s something we look forward to.
You know, kick off Sabbath with some rest from the world and enjoy each other’s safeness, if that makes sense.
Last night it didn’t happen though. It could have. It almost did. Kids were all asleep. We were naked in bed. Ready to go. Except my wife wasn’t there. I mean, she was physically there, but mentally, she wasn’t. She wanted to be and had spent the day trying to gear up for sex. But, she had too much stuff going on in her head that needed to be addressed.
So, what do you do?
We could have had sex. I mean we could have pushed through that, gotten her to switch gears and made the best of it.
Instead, we talked for the next two hours. I’m not going to say it felt better than sex because that would be a lie. It wasn’t a fun time. There were a lot of tears and hugs and silences. It wasn’t fun, but it was good. Really good, you know?
Because, as much as we both love sex, sex is ultimately an expression of intimacy. It’s not intimacy itself. Sex can build intimacy and intimacy can lead to sex, but don’t confuse the two. Just because you’re having sex, doesn’t mean you’re intimate.
Well, last night we were intimate and that was something special. Something that you can’t manufacture or plan. When those moments come up, you have to grab them. It just so happened ours came up right as we were about to have sex.
And you know what? Not so long ago, I would have missed it. I probably would have pushed for mediocre sex because I wouldn’t have recognized the opportunity.
It’s only sex
You know what? It’s only sex. I know, that’s nearly sacrilegious to some of my readers.
I once had a high-school teacher say “Sex isn’t that good” and I remember thinking “You must not be doing it right…” and I still disagree with his statement. Sex is that good. But intimacy is better. I’m not sure I can explain how. But there’s something … amazing about knowing someone that deeply and being known. Of being willing to be present when someone is that open and being that open yourself. It’s uncomfortable and it can hurt to go through it. But it’s worth it.
Compared to intimacy, sex isn’t that good (Sex is still really good though, don’t get me wrong).
But, I think it takes time to recognize that. I think most of us (myself included) couldn’t see that earlier in our marriages. You may not be able to see it now. I’m sure some of my readers are thinking “You’re an idiot for giving up sex.” That’s okay. Many of us have been there.
In fact, some of members of our secret Facebook group mentioned this week that they started following the site back when it was called Sex Within Marriage. They weren’t sure if they would have even spared Uncovering Intimacy a second glance because what they wanted was more sex, not more intimacy. They’ve now realized that intimacy is the greater goal.
And you know what? Intimacy leads to more and better sex. But, you have to be willing to risk sex in order to get it a lot of the time.
So, I know a lot of you are here looking for answers about your sex life. You want to know how to have more sex. You want to know why your spouse wants sex all the time. You want to know how to quit porn or help your spouse quit porn. A lot of you are here to find the answer to better sex. And I’m going to continue answering those questions. I think they’re important.
But ultimately, I want you to reach for something better: intimacy. Because if you focus too much on sex, you might miss it. So, in order to get what you want (more and/or better sex), you will probably need to be willing to risk not having sex sometimes.
I hope that makes sense.
P.S. If you want to join us in these discussions in our secret Facebook group, check here for information on how to join it.