Dr. Wall continues his series on living as roommates vs. living as husband and wife (This is the seventh.  Click here for the others.) by exposing the hurt, misunderstanding, selfishness and cavalier attitudes roommates have about sexuality.

Adam knew his wife Eve.

Genesis 4:1

Nearly all of my clients have hurt around sexuality. You’d think with all the openness about sexuality in our culture that this would be a source of strength for modern couples. You’d think. The problem is that there is too much openness about sexuality. Sexuality doesn’t thrive in openness. It thrives behind closed doors between a husband and wife, who love each other and protect their sacred vows from every form of perversion and protect their individual hearts from temptation outside the marriage. Roommates squabble about sexuality. Roommates are selfish about sexuality. Roommates hurt each other, sometimes intentionally, around sexuality. Roommates withhold sexuality to make points. Roommates demand, pout, scold, guilt trip and get mean about sexuality. Husbands and wives have figured it out. It might be a work in progress, but they’ve figured it out.

Here’s some sure-fire ways that roommates kick their sexuality (and their marriages) to the curb, or if they really try, the gutter:

The quickest way to ruin sexuality in marriage is to live together prior to marriage. To ruin it even quicker, don’t be engaged or get married in a month or two. Just live together, the longer the better. Here’s what’ll happen (I’m not making this stuff up. I see it in my office over and over.). When a couple first gets together, everything is new and fresh and exciting, including, for many, sexuality. The couple rips each other’s clothes off, just like in the movies! We must be in LOVE!!! This lasts 6 months tops, whether you are married or not. It might last a year if you are married and don’t have too much stress, like an early pregnancy or grad school. The newness wears off. THIS IS NORMAL. If you are married, this is a kick in the butt, but you hang in there and over time, you figure it out and it’s fine. If you are living together you think, “What kind of CRAP?” You must not love each other. Sex is always supposed to be this R rated-think-about-you-every-minute-attack-me-about-the-head-and-shoulders continual feast of orgasmic pleasure and when it isn’t, for the cohabiting couple, doubts begin to surface. There must be something wrong with us. Good thing I found out about that NOW! I could have married this person and sexuality went to the crapper? I am so lucky. Many of these couples break up and do the whole thing over again with someone else. And someone else and someone else. If they ever do get married, how are they supposed to have a normal sex life now after all of that?

Here’s another sure-fire way to kick marital sexuality in the butt: If you are the partner who wants sexual involvement more than your spouse (This could easily be the wife! Yes, there are wives who want it more than their husbands. It’s pretty common, actually.), try as hard as you can to get things your way. Complain a lot. Act all superior and hurt because you aren’t “getting any.” This will let your wife know that this sexual stuff is absolutely NOT about her and is all about you. This is what YOU need and YOU need it NOW. What a great deal for YOU! Throw in some anger and resentment and sarcasm and hurtful comments while you are at it. Guilt trips work well, too. If you are the wife and want it more, accuse him of being gay. What a sucker punch! Or that he’s having an affair, ‘cuz all the boyz do it, right? And if he isn’t with you, he must be doing it with someone else. That’s it. Accuse her of having an affair. She used to like it with you before? So who’s she doing it with now? Get all insecure and possessive and act all needy. Throw in some serious nagging. If you just can’t seem to get her motor running, insist she watch porn. Then she can wonder who it is you are really thinking about when you are sexual with her and she can feel like an object and that sex is just an act, it’s nothing about connection and love. You want her just to want to get off, right? Or you can introduce her to the balloon inflated, liposuctioned robots on the screen and she can compare herself to them and see how far she falls short and she can get all insecure and self-conscious and if you are really lucky she’ll eat herself into oblivion as a way of coping with all these conflicting feelings in her soul and as an unconscious way of convincing you to leave her alone. Or tell her maybe we ought to shake this deal up and get another woman in our bed or maybe you just need to try it with another woman, ‘cuz, ya know, I don’t seem to be what you need, and maybe if you discovered sex with a woman you could do it with me, you know.

Here’s another really good way to ruin sexuality and toss it into the sewer and your marriage along with it: Insist that you are ONLY sexual with your spouse WHEN YOU FEEL LIKE IT. And if you don’t feel like it, then forget it. This will put you in ABSOLUTE CONTROL and take your spouse’s vote away entirely. Use all the excuses you can to convey that your spouse’s desires or longings have ABSOLUTELY NO BEARRING UPON YOU! You cannot be swayed. You cannot be flirted with. You cannot be teased. If he teases you, he’s insulting you. Don’t ever bring up the topic of sex. Don’t ever pat his butt or convey that you have any interest in him sexually AT ALL. Make like sex is bad and stuff. And dirty. Use excuses like you were sexually abused or raped or whatever. Find something. And if your husband has any interest in connecting with you sexually tell him he’s a perv and that’s all he ever thinks about and it’s all about sex and he doesn’t really love you and you are just an object and I need to be close to you and how come you never talk to me and you’re never home and when you are all you do is watch TV or play those stupid games on the internet and why would I want to be sexual with you when we fight all them time and the only time you talk to me is when you want something. You’ve ALWAYS got a reason. Keep them close to your heart. Don’t initiate or respond to affection.  You don’t want to give him any ideas.  Act all putout and hurt if he tries anything. Sigh a lot. If he gets mad at your ABSOLUTE INDIFFERENCE accuse him of being a control freak and that he needs anger management training. If somehow he does get you into bed don’t move. Just lie there like a rabbit hiding from the coyote. Still. Look at the ceiling (not in his eyes!). Don’t touch him. At all. No involvement. Turn your head away when he tries to kiss you. Convey, convey, convey, CONVEY, that you will NOT be aroused and that he CANNOT influence you AT ALL. This behavior on your part will train your husband to ignore you, not want to talk to you, not be interested in you, be mad at you, argue with you, not help you, and hold grudges, just like you! WoW! You are really in this together!

If you are the husband, who wants sex less than your wife, re-read the last paragraph with the roles reversed and apply daily. Train your wife that you do NOT find her attractive or becoming at all. In fact, not being sexual with her will help her see that she’s ugly and overweight and a burden to you. Mix it up by NOT talking to her either. HA! A double whammy! NO SEX and NO TALK. Hey, we can destroy this relationship in NO time without even trying.

That’s it. Without even trying: The mantra of 21st Century American marriages.

You don’t want to be sexual with your roommate. That’d just be creepy.


The first six articles in this series on living as roommates instead of husband and wife are:

Part One: Living As Roommates: Easy Ways to Destroy Your Marriage

Dr. Wall takes a sarcastic look at what it’s like to be married, living as roommates. Since this isn’t satisfying, people divorce in spades. Maybe they should have tried living as husbands and wives instead.

Part Two: Living As Roommates: Contrasting Living as Roommates to Living As Husband and Wife

In this second blog in a series on living as roommates, Dr. Wall scoffs at the notion that living together is preparation for marriage and suggests it’s training each other to be roommates instead of husband and wife.

Part Three: Living As Roommates: Famous Words Before The Divorce: My Kids Are My Number One Priority

This blog is the third in a series on living as roommates instead of living together as husband and wife.

Part Four: Living As Roommates: What if Your Wife or Husband Was Priority Number One Instead of Your Kids?

In this fourth blog Dr. Wall continues his series on roommates vs. husband and wife by looking at the temptation parents have to invest in their kids and ignore each other. This is fine for roommates; not for husband and wife.

Part Five: Living As Roommates: Aunt Bertha Kisses

Dr. Wall continues his series on living as roommates instead of husbands and wives by mocking the excuses people use to NOT be affectionate with their spouses.

Part Six: Living As Roommates: Housekeeping Gone Mad

In this continuing series on living as roommates instead of husband and wife (for the rest of the blogs in this series click here), Dr. Wall exposes how living as roommates carries over into the area of housekeeping. It isn’t pretty. Proceed with caution.

The next blog in the series is:

Part Eight: Living As Roommates: The Foundation of Meaningful, Marital Sexuality

In the blog above Dr. Wall’s exposed some of the hurtful thoughts, feelings and actions around sexuality that create havoc in marriage. He suggested that married couples who live this way are really living as roommates instead of husband and wife. What does sexuality and marriage look like when sexuality works and the husband is being the kind of husband he should and she’s being the wife she should? What would a couple have to do to get there?

Here’s a couple of other blogs on similar topics to the ones discussed today:

Porn and Oprah: This Time She’s Got It All Wrong

Dr. Wall rants against Oprah’s recent declaration that women need to kick up their sex lives with porn.

“Honey, I’m Sorry. I Can’t Tonight. I Have An Excuse.”

Dr. Wall suggests that spouse who wants sex more and the spouse who wants sex less BOTH need sexuality the same.


Dr. Bing Wall is a marriage therapist with a practice in Ames and Urbandale, Iowa.  To set up a time to see Dr. Wall click here or call 888-233-8473.  For more information about Dr. Wall click here.

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