Believe it or not, sex is considered to be one of the most important components of marriage. It’s a means and also an end to get pleasure, passion, physiological bond, relief and satisfaction.
For today’s breaking the taboo topic, I want to discuses sex in marriage. How important is sex truly in marriage; how does it affect spousal union ? Anonymous ten married couples and a psychotherapist named Hanna Tekel-eysue share us their opinion and experience. Even if a handful of couples is a little too few as to represent the life style of our community their experience can help others have a peek in to this marital union fraught with a lot of pitfalls.
Married couples have varied sexual prioritization; for some it is one of the most important element of their marriage life, for others this component is rated as having medium to less importance. Most of the couples in this sample agreed that in theory sex is one crucial component of marriage, for securing and maintaining family ties. Sex is equally vital as securing and sustaining their family, building their career, maintaining their home and spirituality. However in practical terms sex could not hold its significant stake compared to obligations of maintaining balance in marriage life and the sacred task of taking care of children.
One fact that all agreed on, when asked about physical intercourse and the language of sex is the fact that our culture and value system don’t encourage talking about sexual issues particularly between married couples. Most of the married women and few men I tried to interview were highly reserved on sharing their experience and beliefs about bed time experiences. They made an intriguing certainty that , whether happy or otherwise they had nothing to share.
On the contrary most of the men, and few women I interviewed were comfortable on sharing their experience as to whether or not their experiences were successful. Men claimed they sometimes can’t communicate their needs fully since their partners fail in entertaining their needs.
When asked if they were happy about their physical union with their spouse, most of them were okay with having different ranges of experiences and some were not as happy. Most of them pointed out that the most important elements for having a happy physical union are love, passion, trust, openness, respect, soundness in health and patience.
When I ask if it is possible to measure these encounters qualitatively and quantitatively, most of the married couples agreed on the fact that quality truly mattered and that this quality totally depended on the degree of intensity of the bond, passion and satisfaction. But quantifying sexual experience was like asking a woman her age or the salary of a random pedestrian. Quantifying their sexual experience stunned and often caused some married couples a few minutes of humiliation before sharing their experience. In numbers the sexual encounters ranged from a minimum of nil to twice a week to a maximum of four to five a week.
On either side of the spectrum there are very interesting things to observe; it could be a concern for spouses if they are having it a few times which might lead to a cold marital relationship and on the other end of the spectrum, if they are having it too often they risk tiring out their other self.
When asked if their marriage can survive without a healthy physical union, few said their marriage did not depend on it and that they can survive without it while the majority of men and few of the women said it would be very difficult maintaining their marriage without regular and healthy physical connection.
Enjoy an excerpt with psychotherapist Hanna Tekel Eyesues interview with E-Green life:
How important is physical union in marriage?
Sex is as important and crucial as other components of Marriage. The importance of it may depend on the stage of the relationship, need of the individuals and other variables. Sometimes it’s very important, sometimes it’s less important compared to the other elements of marriage.
However, it’s has a unique characteristic when compared to other elements such as a spouse's career development, family maintenance, and child raising. Sexual union is a sentimental and exclusive experience you can have with your spouse (taking the real definition of it). It is not something to be shared with others and it furnishes fulfillment, stronger bond, satisfaction and happiness.
We make known to our partner a lot of things through this process; our freedom, happiness, and physical needs are most poignantly expressed through it. Discussing it openly may verge on sounding risqué but it’s something we as humans is part of our core existence.
Is it common in our culture to talk about sex and related problems between married couple?
I suppose not. It is difficult to admit sex related problems exit or better yet it could be that such specific problems could be deliberately attributed to some other issue or problem; this leads to the lack of understanding and patience between couples further leading couples to blame one another for the day to day life challenges they are facing. It requires a great deal of spirit to take responsibility and accept the problem as is. Communication of bed life problems isn’t common in our culture. It’s considered a taboo although recently there are some salutary changes. One problem is the fact that spouses don’t share their needs and demand fulfilment of their needs from each other. A party might be afraid of hurting the feelings of the other party or even a party might think its needs are not proper enough to be reciprocated by the other party. As a result communication with each other or with other people around them becomes a tad difficult.
These problems and other gaps having their roots in lack of communication grow to yield tangible physical differences and incompatibility.
Can a marriage survive without a healthy sexual life?
It depends on the quality of the marriage and demands of spouses. Seeing our culture a few decades back, it has been a common experience to have extra marital affair and kids out of wedlock; yet marriages lasted for almost a life time. It’s difficult to conclude the success of marriages based solely on length of time the marriage stands. It is very subjective measuring the wellness of a marriage without understanding and responding to the needs of a spouse in any union since every union has its own quality standards.
However marriage can survive without a healthy sexual life. Yet, this could have serious challenges. Spouses in such situations may be thrown into emotional turmoil and discomfort. Saving a marriage without a healthy physical union could be massively risky. Human beings always search for maximizing their pleasure and gratification. Usually, when there is such a complication in bed, one party may start to search the pleasure it has been denied elsewhere. This may bring about emotional as well as physical detachments that lead to resentment between couples. Marriage as a system could still be salvaged or let to continue functioning but it won’t be as full of union as it’s expected to be.
Is it possible to measure physical union interms of Quality and quantity?
It’s not something you can qualify and quantify, it’s highly subjective. However if we have to see the quality aspect of it, much can depend on enjoyment, and satisfaction. But the quantitative aspect depends on individual needs, readiness, fitness and healthiness aspects.
How much does a strong physical bond contribute to a successful and long lasting marriage life?
It is a big plus to have a strong physical bond although it can't ensure the working of the system without the keeping up of other responsibilities and a full commitment. Marriages could still fail even if spouses have a very strong physical bond due to other disparate reasons. It is finding the right balance and harmony that sustains a marriage life. If couples owe each other love, respect, patience, and possess similar life goals and support each other’s life goals they can succeed in maintaining successful marriages.
Do we have a support system in place for married couples seeking help?
Yes, there are psychotherapy services in different places. That’s one solution couples have after acknowledging the problem should they search for a solution. That is as far as professional therapy goes; married couples can even ask their close friends advice that could play a significant role in alleviating the problem, but we have to exercise caution when selecting anyone we deem worthy of divulging our experiences to.