Last Saturday I was invited to be a guest commentator on Joy Fm’s “Home Affairs” programme, hosted by Araba Koomson. The topic was “why do people use sex as a tool in marriage?”
One of my opening gambits was that for the majority of women, sex is not enjoyable; research such as that documented in the Shere Hite Report has indicated that 70% of women generally do not orgasm during sex. If you follow that logic this means a lot of women are having sex purely to please their husbands/partners/lovers so if for any reason your husband/partner/lover upsets you then your reaction is “No sex, until you have done x, y, or z”. If women were having earth shattering sex with their partners it is highly unlikely that they are going to say “No sex”.
Of course there are a whole host of other reasons why women will not want to have sex with their partners. They may be feeling emotionally disconnected from their partner; they may not want to get pregnant; in a traditional patriarchal relationship, sex may be the only bargaining chip they have; they may just not want to have sex…
What I really want to discuss in this post is a question posed by a caller who called into the show and I paraphrase her below:
Caller: I don’t enjoy sex with my husband, I have told him several times but he doesn’t change, I only orgasm when I masturbate
Now this was a hard question in some ways and an easy one in other ways. The hard bit is my initial advice to anyone having sexual problems with their husband/partner would be to communicate with their partner. She has already done this with no luck.
The other angle is to look at this situation from the perspective of the man. In a context where men have not been brought up to see women as sexual beings with a right to sexual pleasure and orgasms it can be a challenge for the man to recognise the needs of his wife/girlfriend/lover. In a context where men believe they are sex gods, it can be really hard for them to believe that they are soooooo far from being sex gods, in a context where men believe thrusting alone can give women multiple orgasms it can be so hard for them to believe that all it leaves you with is a sore vagina.
What would you advice be to this caller?