When you help someone up a hill, you get that much closer to the top yourself. -Anonymous
Question #22176 posted on 01/18/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

What are some suggestions the married ones of you have on how to get more sexually excited/stimulated? This is not meant to be gross; I've been married for 2 years and it seems to come so naturally to my husband but not to me. We've read Tim LaHaye's book "The Act of Marriage" but are looking for more tips besides that. If it's too explicit and you can't answer, I understand.

- Sad The Church Doesn't Help Prepare Members For What Comes After You Can Actually Have Sex

A: Dear I know what you mean,

Okay, big disclaimer time. I also don't want to be "gross" or inappropriate in this response, and I will do my best to be discreet and not offend anyone. If you are offended...well, I'm sorry.

To tell you the truth, Mr. Nike and I have been married for a year and a half and the answer to this question has changed for us multiple times in that short time span. Sometimes behind-closed-doors-only clothing works; sometimes music helps; soft lighting like candles (especially ones that smell good) has done the trick; and sometimes just being good-lookin' has done a lot for one or both of us. :-) I understand your pain, though - it really does seem to come naturally to men, seeing as how they seem to think about this topic quite a bit (although I'm only speaking from personal experience).

If external things like that don't work for you, you may want to consider why it is that you're having trouble. Are you afraid of the act of intimacy? Are you holding feelings of guilt from the years you were trained to avoid intimacy at all costs? Are you self-conscious about your body or his? Do you just not want to have sex? These kinds of questions might be important in assessing the source of your struggle and if you can resolve them, you might answer your own question.

Lastly, seek the wisdom of Heavenly Father. Seriously. I had some trouble when we first got married with the issue of intimacy and for a long time, I prayed for Heavenly Father to help me get past my problem. It isn't entirely solved yet (and I don't think any of us are experts on this at the point we currently occupy), but He has helped me feel so much better and has slowly shown me the solution to my problem. It's one of the most sacred things that we as humans can do in our lifetimes, so I'm absolutely positive that Heavenly Father would love to help you in any way that you ask.

I hope this helps. If I knew you personally, I might (might) be able to give you other ideas, but this is the best I could think of. Good luck, and know that although it may take time, Heavenly Father will help you with anything you need.

And that's the way the cookie crumbles (not even gonna touch this one),
A: Dear You're Right,

As being a male, I thought it might be a good differing perspective on the subject. Both of your observations about the male additude towards sex is correct, and it seems to be easier for us to have that desire. If you haven't read the book, "Becoming One" by Julie G Grover, Robert F. Stahmann and Wayne R Young, I would highly recommend it. You can find it in the Bookstore or any Mormon bookstore. My wife and I read it before we were married, and it helped to explain things quite well. I thought it did an excellent job of explaining the two different approaches to sex that males and females experience and adds it all to a LDS perspective. With this, it explains the ways that women and men get aroused. Obviously, men are much more visual and women are much more emotional. One of the most interesting points that the book makes is that arousal for women starts long before getting anywhere near the bedroom. Things like a thoughtful date or act by your husband, a massage, or even just holding hands is a good start. I think from your question you were looking for kind of "movie-sex" type answers. I really think that true arousal is much more personal and emotional. It's not so much what he does, but WHY he does it.

As a husband, I've realized that if my wife isn't happy, then I'm really not happy. This is even more true with regards to this subject. I don't mean this as an accusation towards your husband, but have you talked to him about what he can do for you? Maybe you feel that if he has the desire, and you don't, then it's your responsibility to get to that same point independently of him. I don't think that's the case. The main thing is respect, not just for the wishes of each party, but for your desire to make him happy (and vice versa). This doesn't mean that you always do what he wants, but that you have a comfortable arrangement between the two of you.

I hope that helps out. I would just say that if you haven't focused on the emotional and bonding element of sex (which is much more general than the act itself), that you start there.

- A friend