When was the first time you wanted to say, “NO”
“I don’t like that”
For many of us, these moments are more common than we'd like to admit- especially regarding intimacy, pleasure, and sex. This Treasured Letter™ explores my journey of discovering the necessity of communicating desires in life and marriage. From it, I pray you'll gain understanding with answers to your question, "How do I talk to my wife about our intimacy issues without causing problems?"
The journey begins in childhood, where we often encounter situations that challenge our ability to express our desires. As a young child, I had a particular aversion to certain foods, yet I rarely voiced my preferences. One vivid memory was the Chinese restaurant nights. I eagerly devoured the shrimp and broccoli but dreaded the shrimp and vegetables with the clear sauce. I felt compelled to eat it because it was always included in the meal, and I feared that refusing it might jeopardize my favorite dish.
The fear of not getting what I wanted often held me back from saying, "No, I don't like that." So what did I do? Grinned and bore it. I don’t recall ever being asked if I enjoyed it. I was never given permission to refuse it.
I endured the disgusting shrimp and vegetables with the clear sauce silently; never having the courage to express my true feelings. It wasn't until much later that I mustered the courage to voice my preferences, only to be met with surprise and confusion from my mother. And do you know what her response was?
I predicted she would ask, “Why didn’t you tell me?”
I hoped she would affirm, “You could’ve told me. We didn’t have to get that, and you didn’t have to eat it!”
I believe what she actually said was, “I got it because I liked it, and I thought you liked it, too- because you never said anything about it.”
Think about how I must’ve felt at that moment.
That's the way many wives feel when to intimacy, pleasure, and sex.
The Weight of Unexpressed Desires
As we grow older, we encounter more situations where the desire to speak up clashes with the fear of not being heard or understood. According to my current natural hair stylist- one such place for many women is the beauty shop; and I understand why. Here, unspoken discomfort becomes a common theme:
- The burning sensation during relaxer treatments
- Scalding hot water during shampooing
- Painful bobby pins digging into the scalp
- Tight weaves causing discomfort
But it's not just about the physical discomfort; it's also about the emotional unease of not being able to express our feelings. Unfortunately, speaking up doesn't always lead to a solution- as witnessed during an unforgettable visit to the beauty shop I ensured as a child.
One day, as a seven-year-old, I found myself at the beauty shop, excited about the prospect of a new hairstyle. Little did I know that the experience would leave me in tears. I hadn't been warned that the person I saw in the mirror afterward would be unrecognizable to me. That beautician was beaming with pride, but I was devastated to see my hair transformed into a 2-inch jerry curl. "I look like a boy!" I exclaimed. My tears flowing for days; I cried longer on the inside.
Subsequently, I carried the weight of unexpressed desires within me, many of which involved trauma and traumatic experiences. Phrases like "NO," "I don't like that," and "STOP" remained nonexistent, buried under layers of unspoken discomfort. As I navigated through life, the consequences of not being able to express my desires continued to affect me profoundly.
The Importance of Learning to Communicate Desires, especially in Marriage
In adulthood, the struggle to voice our desires often persists. We bring these childhood patterns into our relationships, where they can impact our ability to communicate effectively with our spouses. My decision to undergo the "big chop" and embrace natural hair serves as a prime example of this struggle.
Without consulting my husband or involving him in the decision-making process, I started on this journey to set an example for my daughter. In my mind, it was a powerful choice to show her the beauty of our natural hair. I would've never guess that my husband would feel so blindsided- echoing the same sentiments I had as a child when I saw my jerry curl for the first time. He even said, “You look like a boy!”
Do you see how I thought I was doing a good thing, and I was, but I didn't go about it the right way? My husband wanted to be informed and prepared, too! Looking back, I can imagine how we could have talked about it before I made such a drastic change. He may have even had some valuable input that would've helped me in the process of regrowing my hair. But, I didn't give him the opportunity to express his desires.
Listen, your intimacy issues may be similar to any side of these scenarios. Either of you could be the one who thinks they're doing good, but is going about it the wrong way. Or, either of you could feel like your voice and desires don't matter- so you don't express them, or they aren't considered.
Because as a survivor of sexual assault or abuse- allowing these deep levels of vulnerability, transparency, and liberty can be very challenging. Your wife's power in these areas were stolen from her. Even if she's reclaimed them, she still must feel safe and protected enough to release them with you. You would think it's an automatic priviledge for the husband; but it's not. It's her conscious decision.
In any marriage, communication is key, especially when it comes to desires and intimate feelings. So when you’re talking to your wife about desires, pleasure, intimacy, and sex- remember that she may be new to permission or using spiritual, verbal, and emotional tools to articulate her feelings- or hear yours.
To strengthen your bond and experience deeper intimacy within your marriage, it's essential to find a way to talk about your unmet intimacy needs without making things worse. Imagine this process as a special path built on understanding, trust, and attentive listening. To guide you along the way, accept our invitation to explore "The Harris Compass™" -which offers effective communication strategies for conversations about intimacy.
The Harris Compass™
The journey of expressing desires in marriage is complex, shaped by our experiences from childhood through adulthood. It's essential to understand that both partners may carry unspoken desires and discomfort. By embracing open and honest communication and utilizing tools like "The Harris Compass™," we can create a healthier and more fulfilling marital connection, ultimately leading to a deeper bond between spouses.
For husbands looking to strengthen their bond and satisfy their intimacy needs, try using our LEAD method from The Harris Compass™:
-Listen attentively without judgment or interruption so she feels safe and protected
-Explore & Experiment to discover what works best for you, individually and together
-Acknowledge & Affirm her efforts- no matter how insignificant they seem to you
-Deeply Connect Without Sex so you can be intimate and stay fulfilled at any given moment
Ask your wife to try our LOVE method from The Harris Compass™ to enhance her connection with you:
-Listen attentively without interruption or judgment so he feels safe and appreciated
-Open your soul (mind, will, and emotions) to Deeply Connect Without Sex
-Vulnerable to honestly acknowledge his efforts, no matter how insignificant they seem to you.
-Explore & Experiment to discover what works best for you, individually and together
A Pathway to Intimacy
As you walk this path together, you're not just moving closer in distance, but in emotion. True understanding becomes your reward. By speaking your heart and truly hearing your partner's, you reveal a deeper level of intimacy that you may not have known existed within your marriage.
We make it super easy for wives to initiate this with my book, “Sweet and Freaky: 90 Daily Messages to Your Husband™”. These emotional treasures form the essence of true intimacy.
Because it's been proven that marriages shift as a result of using this book, intimate notes from “Sweet and Freaky: 90 Daily Messages to Your Husband™” are included in every King and Queen Intimacy Experience™!
Genesis 2:25 reminds us of the beauty of intimacy without shame, and "The King and Queen Intimacy Experience™" is designed to help you achieve just that.
Deepen Your Connection with The King and Queen Intimacy Experience™
With determination, understanding, and shared commitment- challenges become opportunities for growth. If you're a devoted Kingdom husband seeking to rekindle the flames of passion, enhance your communication, and experience more pleasure and fulfillment with your beloved wife, consider "The King and Queen Intimacy Experience™." This transformative journey is designed for committed married couples to encounter acceptance, pleasure, fulfillment, and freedom in the bedroom, tailored to their unique intimacy needs and desires.
Enjoy reconnecting and having more pleasure and fulfilling intimacy with your wife when you begin your journey today as King and Queen lovers with "The King and Queen Intimacy Experience™."
For Husband and WifeKing and Queen's Preference™: Designed to identify individual relationship needs and preferences, this short pleasure questionnaire is completed by the husband and wife (individually) before creating and curating her Intimacy Gifts:
- Providing personalized recommendations from our range of intimacy solutions
- Creating a unique and empowering experience for each participant.
- Ensuring she receives gifts she actually desires, and would touch her on a deeper level.
For The Husband
He will gain understanding, hope, and options for intimacy with his wife; dispelling the beliefs that he:
-Is being punished for past sins
-Has to accept a sexless marriage
-Must find ways to remain faithful without fulfillment
For The Wife
She will reclaim and embrace her sensual and sexual power, conquering the complex prison that is limiting her from experiencing pleasure and desires after sexual assault or abuse.
I am Mrs. Monique Harris, trusted as a Certified Trauma (and survivor) Informed Care facilitator with a long track record of advocacy and activism for survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence over the last 11 years. Part of my service work is empowering survivors with Jesus so they can take back their power in healthy meaningful ways.
Husbands go from rejected and disappointed, to accepted and pleased with The King and Queen Intimacy Experience™ by Soul Remodeling.