7 Tips for the High Drive Spouse
Updated: Oct 5
Part 1 in a 2 part series for the high drive spouse and the low drive spouse. Part 1 is "How to Improve Sexual Intimacy in Your Marriage For the High Drive Spouse." Part 2 will be "How to Improve Sexual Intimacy in your Marriage For the Low Drive Spouse."
Sex drives are a complicated thing. More often than not, in marriages, the spouses DO NOT have matching sex drives.
Do you fight over sex? Argue over how long it's been since the last time? Do you want to ask your spouse for intimacy but also fear asking? Are you masturbating and hiding that from your spouse, hoping to control your wants/needs?
If you have answered yes to these questions, then you are NORMAL. Unfortunately, normal in this situation doesn't mean "right." Whether you are the husband or the wife that is the high sex drive spouse makes no difference. The feelings are pretty mutual across the board.
So how do you, as the high drive spouse, help improve sexual intimacy in your marriage? There is no foolproof solution because every marriage, couple, and individual is different, but here are some things to think about and work towards change.
Now don't forget this vital tidbit……
You can only change yourself!
(Now, with that out of the way)
Here we go.
As the high drive
1. Try not to take the "no" personally.
Your spouse is not trying to tell you that they don't love you anymore, that you aren't attractive anymore, that they are upset with you, or that you didn't "help enough today." They are simply stating that they are not in the mood to be getting their sexy on. There is probably not another thought past that.
2. Communicate about what would need to change for them to be "ready" for sexual intimacy
The low drive spouse's brain often works differently than yours. They (most times) can not go from where they are mentally and jump to sex in 3.5 nanoseconds. Ask your spouse what helps them to get more mentally excited to be together. It could be holding hands watching t.v. together, or maybe they need you to put the kids to bed while they go "spruce up" a little bit; perhaps it's a shower, a make-out session, a back rub. There is an endless amount of options because everyone is different. DO NOT expect your low drive spouse to hyperdrive from point A to SEX!
3. Laying on a guilt trip and pushing will only backfire
If you, as the high drive spouse, are always nagging or guilting your low drive spouse, they will refuse and reject even louder and more demanding. Pressuring someone into wanting to do something does not work, nor should it. You might get I don't want to fight or argue any more sexual activity, but that isn't healthy for either of you.
4. PAY ATTENTION: Show that you can have intimate moments without expecting sex
For most low-drive spouses, it isn't that the sexual attraction completely disappears or that they don't want any sexual attention at all. This is not an all-or-nothing scenario. Typically it is the opposite. Low drive spouses wish to have intimate moments, but they want to know that there is no expectation attached. Snuggle together and then fall asleep (without getting handsy, unless the low drive initiates), make out, be playfully smacking butts and stealing kisses, but do it all without expecting sex. The low-drive wants to know that you treat them special and want non-sexual intimacy because you love them, not just because you want them in their pants. (This change will go a long way)
5. Have a conversation about masturbation
If you feel that you have wants/needs that aren't being met, which is causing a problem in your marriage, talk to your spouse about masturbation. Are they ok if you take care of yourself on occasion? Are they ok with it but only if you invite them to be there with you? Are they ok with it as long as you tell them and don't keep secrets? What does this form of sexual intimacy look like for the two of you? ( Pornography of any kind is, of course, 100% discouraged)
6. Your low drive spouse may not be "in the mood" but may want to be with you anyway as an expression of love- let them
There is a lot of talk about "obligatory" sex. No one wants that. However, having a low drive spouse offer to either have sex, manually/orally stimulate you, or ask you to treat them in some way (if they know you like to) because they want to and want to show you how much they love you, then except that gift and say thank you. There are times that you didn't feel like doing something but wanted to do it anyway, to show your love; this is no different. Be thankful that you have a spouse who knows themselves and wants to please you regardless of their sexual mood.
7. Be Honest
Honesty is crucial in any one of the scenarios above. You may feel that your spouse is tired of hearing your feelings on the subject and annoyed that your emotions are always negative. That may be the case, but typically won't be if you are sincere and vulnerable. Are you sharing the actual hurt, the pain, the rejection, or are you just showing the anger and frustration. These feelings are not all the same.
Explain the disconnect that you feel, the sadness, the loneliness. Talk about how hearing "no" over and over again is damaging. If you want a chance for real change, then it will make sharing those honest feelings. Share in a way that is beneficial to you both. Share when rejection hasn't just taken place. Share in a neutral space, in a neutral conversation, but share.
Spouses, there is a real pain. There is a real pain for the high drive spouse and the low drive spouse (that post later). It's not easy working through intimacy issues, but it is possible. Don't give up hope, don't settle for married life with no sexual intimacy, don't wait until there is so much damage that you feel completely broken.
As believers, we know that sex is part of God's beautiful, beautiful creation. He made us whole, and a part of that wholeness is with sexual desire.
Song of Solomon 1:2 says, "Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth! For your love is better than wine…." God created sexual intimacy, and it is good!
God knew there would be high drive and low drive spouses, and he also knew that he gave us great direction in how to love one another, how Christ loved the church. Differing sex drives is a marital struggle, yes, but it does not have to be a marriage destroyer. Work on yourself with the things that you can change. Let the Lord work on your spouse and the two of you as a couple. There is hope and great joy in a life full of marital sexual intimacy that God has designed.