Duty Sex Isn’t Sexy: Our Podcast Take 2!

by | Jul 21, 2022 | Libido, Podcasts | 6 comments

Duty Sex Isn't Sexy Podcast
Merchandise is Here!

Let’s talk obligation sex–and how it’s a terrible libido and marriage killer!

This July I’m rerunning some of my favourite podcast episodes from about a year and a half ago or two years ago, to help those who have recently joined the podcast or blog catch up and make sure they didn’t miss anything big!

We’re back in August starting a series on stories you just need to hear.

This week, I wanted to rerun this episode on obligation sex!

 

Or, as always, you can watch on YouTube:

 

Timeline of the Podcast

1:00 What does research say about the ‘Obligation Sex’ message?
7:35 The difference between biblical sex and duty sex
11:05 Why frequency isn’t the problem, and why we have authority of OUR OWN bodies
18:35 RQ: “Do I owe my husband Valentine’s Day sex?”, with guest Andrew Bauman
27:37 RQ: “My husband wants it TOO much!”, + a discussion on consent
35:50 Benjamin Young joins us for a grea discussion on consent and marriage
51:10 Join ‘The Great Sex Rescue’ launch team!
52:30 Sheila shares her personal story of how the obligation message hurt her

Our Guests: Andrew Bauman and Benjamin Young

We talked with counselor Andrew Bauman, who has been on the podcast before, about why we shouldn’t talk about Valentine’s Day sex as something that she “owes” him just because he bought her flowers or took him to dinner (despite what some other blogs may say). And then I invited Benjamin Young on to talk about an epic Twitter thread where he was talking about consent!

See my original post, with more info, that went along with this podcast here

The Obligation Sex Debunking Posts

Some posts that have also dealt with obligation sex and coercion

And check out The Great Sex Rescue–with two chapters looking at where the obligation sex message has been taught, what our survey of 20,000 women told us about how it affected us, and what we should teach instead.

"A groundbreaking look into what true, sacred biblical sexuality is intended to be. A must-read." - Rachael Denhollander

What if you're NOT the problem with your sex life?

What if the messages that you've been taught have messed things up--and what if there's a way to escape these toxic teachings?

It's time for a Great Sex Rescue.

Great Sex Rescue

Things Mentioned in This Podcast:

The Obligation Sex Message: Why duty sex isn't sexy

What do you think about obligation sex? Is the message changing? Are people hearing? Let’s talk in the comments!

Sheila Wray Gregoire

Author at Bare Marriage

Sheila is determined to help Christians find biblical, healthy, evidence-based help for their marriages. And in doing so, she's turning the evangelical world on its head, challenging many of the toxic teachings, especially in her newest book The Great Sex Rescue. She’s an award-winning author of 8 books and a sought-after speaker. With her humorous, no-nonsense approach, Sheila works with her husband Keith and daughter Rebecca to create podcasts and courses to help couples find true intimacy. Plus she knits. All the time. ENTJ, straight 8

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6 Comments

  1. Sarah O

    For the life of me, I can’t understand why someone would want coercive sexual attention. The thought of anyone touching me in an intimate way when I KNEW they didn’t want to is icky beyond description. I don’t understand it in duty sex, I don’t understand it in sex buying, I just don’t get the appeal AT ALL. I don’t understand people who accept that kind of “attention” or worse yet, those that work so hard to get it through strategy and manipulation. To me, sexual tolerance is a metric ton worse than sexual rejection. “I wish that you were either cold or hot!”

    I appreciate the male voices here, but sometimes I feel crazy with the level of nuance allowed around “don’t have sex with someone who doesn’t want to have sex with you, no matter who they are or how horny you happen to be”. I feel like the answer is, “Why would you want to? Why would you want someone to touch you intimately with dishonesty, disappointment, resentment, disgust, or even hate? What’s the matter with YOU that you would want that? Gross.”

    Andrew and Benjamin are always outstanding guests and great to hear from them.

    Reply
    • S

      This is such a spot on point Sarah!

      Sheila, I would really love a podcast on this. Maybe even with some experts and every day guys as well. I’d love to see someone ask “Why?” Even one step deeper than we’ve gotten. Several more “why’s” would be even more fascinating.

      Reply
  2. Mark Boyd

    I think your bias is showing. You frequently refer to “duty sex.” In my experience, the wife can bless her husband by satisfying him sexually, and she not have an orgasm or even get particularly stimulated. But she can find it pleasing to pleasure and satisfy her husband. She is able to give him a gift of sexual pleasure, and she can find this pleasing and satisfying or fulfilling for herself. In a sense, it is a Biblical duty, but doing what God created us to do, isn’t really a duty.

    So it’s not either/or. Either she has an orgasm, or she’s performing a duty. No, she can bless her husband by pleasing him sexually.

    So rather than so frequently talking about “duty sex,” and deriding the giving of sexual pleasure, you might help women to see that they can bless their husbands without necessarily having an orgasm every time he does.

    It’s important for the husband to be ready, willing and able to help his wife to have an orgasm if she is so desiring, but sometimes she might not be in the mood.

    Reply
    • Rebecca Lindenbach

      “In my experience,” says a man.

      What is your experience of the feeling that a woman has when this occurs? Is it what your wife tells you? That’s fine, but that’s not your experience. That’s you’ve been told. By one woman. Rather than the data that we found from our surveys, which is that if women do not reliably reach orgasm during sex, they are highly likely to rate “used” as the most strongly felt emotion after sex.

      I recognize what you’re saying, but you’re still saying that women’s pleasure matters less than men’s. So he orgasms 100% of the time, and she has to give him even MORE orgasms even if it doesn’t work for her. Even though sex is already easy for him.

      Reply
    • Healing

      Mark, just curious, do you ever “bless your wife sexually” by bringing her to orgasm without expecting anything yourself? I mean, you say that a wife is supposed to do this for a husband. Does it go the other way too? I mean, it could bring you pleasure just by seeing her enjoy herself.

      And I’m not saying on an occasion, a wife can give her husband an orgasm without expecting anything in return… say, a quickie before going somewhere is fun. Or maybe she will gift him some oral or a hand job… but that is her decision and shouldn’t be the norm.

      Speaking from MY experience, as a woman, who was on the giving and not receiving end 90% of the time, it builds resentment. As much as as people like you “claim” it’s the wife’s Biblical duty and that woman do not need to orgasm regularly, I really don’t think that was God’s intention for sex. Is it the ACT of sex that pleases God? Is it the man’s release that pleases God? Or is it the love and unity that the act BRINGS that pleases God?

      Even thinking about this from a scientific perspective… Let’s talk about oxytocin the “bonding” hormone. This hormone bonds a mother and baby during nursing. Helps the mom not abandon her infant when she is sleep deprived, mentally unstable with PPD, etc. God made it this way. This hormone is ALSO released during ORGASM as to bond the husband and wife. So if only the man is getting the bonding hormone signal, what happens to the woman who doesn’t orgasm? He’ll feel connected to his wife but if she’s not also regularly getting the bonding signal, she won’t feel the same bond. THIS doesn’t seem like “God’s design.” HE made hormones. HE made them work the way they do. HE doesn’t make mistakes. HE gave women a clitoris to get her to orgasm.

      So yes, a woman can bless her husband with an orgasm on the rare occasion but feeling OBLIGATED to give one sided sex IS duty sex and is not God’s design. And if your wife is having sex with you when she “isn’t in the mood” good luck to you both. If both spouses leave the marriage bed fulfilled, THAT pleases God. If one spouse leaves fulfilled and the other leaves sad/lonely/feeling used/etc. HOW is that pleasing to God, despite the ACT of intercourse being done?

      Reply

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