Sunday, 17 February 2019


Now I know this post doesn't naturally fit in the normal theme of "The Cunning Linctus", but it is a story that needs to be told. Sexual desire (lust, libido) is the basis for procreation, and is intricately tied to our self-image/identity. There are all sorts of reasons why lust can be stunted, so it is important for 'sex positive' writers to take a step back occasionally and gain some understanding of why some people are 'sex negative' - they are not all just evil religious spoilsports.

So, going back 50 years to the start of my relationship with my wife.


I guess you couldn’t have found two more neophytes when we started dating. First serious relationship for both of us. No sexual experience. I was from an up-tight religious background, and my girlfriend was from a broken home, living with a protective mother. Add to this her serious medical condition. Our courtship involved a lot of joint volunteering, caring and charity type activities. We were young, optimistic and idealistic. As far fetched as it sounds, we really were 25 year old virgins in the ‘age of Aquarius’ when we married.

Wedding and Honeymoon

A mistake we made with our wedding, was travelling a couple of hours to the honeymoon hotel. Due to a late start, no sex that night - not all that unusual I am told for  a wedding night. This ‘1st’ honeymoon was just a long weekend due to study commitments, so there was just one fumbling sexual encounter.

Back at our new apartment,  between settling in and study, our sexual start to married life was not exactly hot and steamy.

Five weeks later, we had planned a 2 week holiday as our formal ‘honeymoon’. But again we misjudged the situation, and daily travelling and a different bed every night, left our “honeymoon” sexless.

Now I know many men would have walked away from the ‘marriage’ at that point claiming non-consummation, but not us.

The Marital Bed

Our first six months was a very fumbling, intermittent sex life. Between women’s issues and her other health problems 2 or 3 times a month, sex was infrequent and mediocre. I think there was one very good encounter when I took the whole day off and we spent half the day in bed, mostly in fore-play, finally achieving successful coitus. Whilst my wife enjoyed extended foreplay, she was mostly not comfortable going below the waist. In month’s 7 to 12, despite moving into a house from the 1 bedroom apartment, sex virtually ceased, with my wife no longer able to relax enough to allow penetration - vaginismus, ‘frozen vagina’.
Over the next couple of years, the vaginismus subsided, but her health problem meant that we visited hospital ER more often than we had sex (4-5 times per year). As for quality, “Think of England”.

Starting a Family

We had discussed starting a family with a number of my wife’s medical specialists, but none were very supportive of the idea. A new specialist discussed the pros and cons with us and the risks involved - the risks to the pregnancy of her medication vs the risks of not being medicated. But he was encouraging and we set about slowly reducing her medication to about half. To achieve pregnancy as quickly as possible, we used the ‘Billings method’ of temperature monitoring to identify her ovulation days. So we were having the most frequent sex of our married life - once a month whether she liked it or not. Conception occurred soon after.
But the joy of the birth was short-lived on discovery of our baby’s own medical condition (Fallot's Tetralogy) that would require serious surgeries over the following several years. Any thoughts of further children were quickly put out our minds, and a vasectomy sealed it.

Post Natal Years

The postnatal hormonal changes and half strength medications caused my wife’s condition to flare up badly, so back onto full strength meds. But breastfeeding was thus out of the question. With the dangers of her medical condition, carrying or bathing baby alone were out of the question - a bit of a kick in the guts for motherhood.
Some new medications were coming onto the market, so we went through a series of attempts at new meds, but with numerous side effects, and mostly with no improvement in her condition. The one med that showed promise, caused anaemia and massive weight gain.

When your medical condition can throw your body into uncontrolled spasms or convulsions at a moments notice, then the merest hint of sexual arousal or possible orgasm, sets off alarm bells. So add body-image issues to her medical condition, married life wasn’t a bed of rose petals. The first couple of years post natal, were sexless. I guess conjugal relations were of such a low priority, that the years slipped by. In hindsight,  I estimate that over 20 years, we averaged between 0 and 2 times per year.

Empty Nest - Resuscitation or Expiration?

At around the 30 year mark, we were empty-nesters, mortgage paid and a comfortable career. My wife’s medical condition had settled a little. I started pressing/encouraging increased (resumed?) sexual activity, but with little success. It seemed to be a matter of “Well, if you really must. Hop on and get it over with” - hardly encouraging. I backed off somewhat and tried to get her interested in mutual masturbation, but there was no interest - touching ‘down there’ was off limits, and oral was abhorrent to her.
Eventually, I got her to talk about our situation, but all I got was “I just don’t enjoy sex and never have”. Well, after that smack in the face, I promised that I would never ‘bother’ her about it again, and I haven’t.

Long Overdue Explanations

It was 3-4 years later, that she started to open up a bit more about her childhood. It seems that her introduction to sex was as a pre-teen, hearing her drunken alcoholic father having his way with his wife and hearing her mother pleading to be left alone. Even in the 1960’s, a woman was still her husband’s chattel and conjugal rights were expected. "Rape in marriage" was inconceivable by definition of ‘marriage’.

After a few months, she asked her mother about it, and she had her first ‘lesson’ in sex-ed, including rape. The ancients described this as "The sins of the father will be visited on his children to the 3rd and 4th generation" (Ex.20:5, Num.14:18, Deu.5:9).

A modern brain scan surprised by showing the degree of brain trauma from a simple childhood accident. Mapping the area of trauma with areas of brain function, suggests the possibility of impaired pleasure centres.

Never a truer statement has been made, than "The must important sexual organ is the one between our ears"!

Who Cares For the Carer? Loving Oneself

So that just leaves me. When we vow “For better or worse, in sickness and health”, I guess we all assume that the worse and sickness will only be a small percentage of married life. Our relationship had virtually declined into ‘patient and carer’. I started going through bouts of depression. Who cares for the carer? It was through discussions with a friend at work, that I started to realise that there was no point in just blaming circumstances for one’s unhappiness. I had to take responsibility for my own happiness, thinking outside the square of societal conventions. The Good Book tells us to ‘Love your neighbour as yourself’ - I had been taught the first half all my childhood, but not really much about loving myself - that was always seen as being ‘selfish’.

And so I ‘bit the bullet’ and started taking some occasional ‘me time’ with some ‘ladies of pleasure’, but that’s another story too. When one’s home cooking is all DIY, it’s nice to dine out sometimes.

Sex Bloggers for Mental Health


  1. Wow - I don't know what to say really but I found that extremely moving. Sad,brave and so many other things. This is the first time I have read your blog, but will have to come again and do some back reading - I had an Aunt and Uncle that never had sex! I will have to post about it I think - now I have read your article

    1. Thanks for your feedback May. I wasn't sure how it would sit in e[lust] or within my own blog for that matter, which is primarily about my experiences with transactional sex. But as I've grown to see my blog within the broader community of sex bloggers, and not just me and my blog in isolation, and as I read about the experiences of these bloggers and their partner(s), I felt it was time to explain why my blog and experiences are different.
      Do enjoy reading further.


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