Julie Sibert – Engaged Marriage

All Posts by Julie Sibert

About the Author

Julie Sibert writes and speaks about sexual intimacy in marriage. You can follow her blog at www.IntimacyInMarriage.com. She lives in Omaha, Nebraska, with her husband and their two boys. When she's not writing, she's probably drinking ridiculously overpriced coffee.

What Is It About an Orgasm That Is So…

By Julie Sibert | Sex & Family Planning

What Is It About an Orgasm That is So...Powerful? Mesmerizing? Fulfilling?


I’ve had some pretty amazing orgasms with my husband, and each time I am in awe of God. In awe that of all the ways He could show off His creativity, He would choose this.

Oh my, what intense, profound, and whimsical depth of pleasure an orgasm is. Only you, God. Only you could come up with something like that.  (I like to remind women and men that the clitoris serves no other purpose than a wife’s sexual pleasure. None. That’s its only job description).

And no other experience even comes close to the feeling of an orgasm.

Which is why when I hear from wives who have yet to have an orgasm – or who have extreme difficulty experiencing one – I morph into some kind of sex cheerleader, urging them to not give up.

“You do not want to miss out on this! Seriously. Please don’t give up. Don’t fake it. Don’t rob yourself of this. And don’t rob your husband of seeing you and feeling you experience this.”

Sure, I can hear your skepticism at my enthusiasm, as you mull over whether I’m making waayyy too big a deal about sexual climax in the marriage bed.

“Sex isn’t all about orgasm, Julie!”

True. But let’s not kid ourselves. It’s a lot about orgasm.

When a husband and a wife are physically able to be sexually intimate, yet their sexual encounters drift toward only the husband being sexually satisfied, what happens?

Enter bored wife, stage right.

Not only does sex become boring, routine and chore-like to a wife in this scenario, it also becomes a source of tremendous resentment.

She begins to begrudge sex; find ways to avoid it; and possibly even blame him. And before long, the whole fabric of the marriage is taking a hit.  Ironically, even he starts to not really enjoy sex, because she’s not into it.  And how could she be? I mean, there’s no pleasure in it for her.

Sure, we’d like to think sexually unsatisfied wives could rise above all that, but human nature being what it is tells us that few wives (if any) really can  just keep “taking one for the team” – without ever getting to hoist the trophy.  And honestly, why would we want them to rise above it?

Why would we want them to keep missing out on the mind-blowing experience of sexual release?

If you are a wife who has never experienced an orgasm and have resigned yourself to never having one, there’s nothing – nothing – noble about your lack of sexual climax.

“But Julie, if God is such a generous God, why is this so difficult for so many of us wives? Why isn’t a wife’s orgasm as predictable as a husband’s?”

Valid question.

And I used to think that when I get to heaven, I would finally be able to ask God face-to-face my most perplexing sex questions (I know. Probably not what should be high on my priority list at that point, but if you’ve followed me at all, you can’t seriously be surprised I wonder these things, right?)

I think, though, I won’t have to wait for my answer, because I think God has already given it to me. (Probably figures He wants to squelch my annoying journalistic tendencies while He has me down here on earth. Who can blame Him?)

I believe God has created a unique opportunity for a husband and a wife to discover a level of intimacy they otherwise would miss if it was really easy for both of them to climax.  If it was always easy for both a husband and a wife to have an orgasm, I think we would downplay  God’s intention for sex to be this profound connection.

And if it was difficult for both a husband and a wife to have an orgasm, I think we would give up too easily, also missing out on that profound connection.

So instead, God creates a situation where a married couple is left with no other option than to learn together what it will take for them both to experience sexual pleasure.

In the exclusivity of the marriage bed, God invites a husband and a wife to vulnerably and intentionally explore each other’s bodies, to teach each other sexual pleasure, to try new techniques.

Yes, the penis tends to be more predictable than the clitoris, which may leave us assuming that the wife must have greater patience.  But think about the scenario again, okay?  Do you see where both a husband and a wife need patience?  Arousal is an opportunity; not a burden.

Wives, if you struggle experiencing orgasm, I pray you will hear my heart on this.  Your sexual pleasure matters.   If you have thought it doesn’t matter or if your husband has been indifferent, I encourage you to courageously shed light on this.

I was talking with a wife the other day who said it was 10 years into her marriage when she finally got the courage to talk to her husband about the reality that she had never had an orgasm.  She knew that together they had to figure out how to change that unhealthy pattern into a healthier one where they valued pleasure for both of them.

Her marriage and their sexual intimacy are better today because of what at the time was an incredibly awkward conversation. Praise God she pushed through that hesitancy.

What about you?  If you are a wife who struggles experiencing orgasm or if you are a husband with a wife who is missing out on sexual pleasure, what are you going to do today to start righting the ship?

The most profound intimate places in a marriage begin with authentic vulnerability.

For more reading on orgasm – because honestly, who doesn’t want to read more about orgasm – go to the orgasm page on my site (full of nearly 30 posts specifically about orgasm. Seriously. An entire page.)


Does He Fall Asleep After Sex? What’s That Really Mean?

By Julie Sibert | Sex & Family Planning

Does He Fall Asleep After Sex- What's That Really Mean-I remember a time after my husband and I had just made love, and we were talking.

And by we, I mean me. I was talking. Mostly to myself.

And he was falling asleep.

He was falling asleep so quickly that had it been an Olympic sport – this falling asleep shenanigan – he would have taken gold.

Can you relate to the above scenario?

Some of you are seething just thinking back on similar moments in your own bed.

Maybe it happens every time you and your husband have sex. You’re still reaching for a towel (what with the lovemaking having wrapped up only seconds ago), and you glance over to see your husband asleep!

Like, really asleep.

And you are hurt. Offended.

Baffled that the two of you have just experienced this incredibly bonding experience, only to have him roll over and drift off with ease.

If him falling asleep feels hurtful to you – maybe even compels you to think you are nothing more than the object of his sexual release – I want to encourage you as one wife to another.

I want to encourage you to see his sleepiness in a different light.

Could your husband’s sleepiness be a compassionate compliment, rather than an insensitive insult?

Many wives have wondered why a man can fall asleep so quickly after lovemaking. She interprets his unabashed sleepiness as an emotional slight, a confirmation that all the stereotypes about guys and sex are indeed true.

Sex is just sex to him.

There is another possibility, though.

I would even argue it’s a more credible possibility than the emotional carelessness we too often have assumed when he falls asleep after sex.

When you and your husband make love, he is at his most vulnerable. Every husband I ever hear from in comments and emails tells me that sex is not just sex.

It’s not just a physical release.  (After all, he could do that all on his own).


What I hear from other husbands (and my own) is that sex ushers a husband into a profound affirmation of love.

He feels so incredibly safe and honored and loved by the woman he married.

Your husband falling asleep after experiencing incredible sexual connectedness, not to mention a great orgasm, shouldn’t offend you.

If anything, you should pat yourself on the back and smile.

He feels so relaxed, so loved, so affirmed. Well done. You rock as a wife.

And isn’t that what you want for the man who wears the ring you gave him?

Isn’t it what you want for the man with whom you share commitment and messy life and cumbersome schedules?

He is sleepy because he just gave his whole self up – physically, emotionally, spiritually – to do the one thing he can experience only with you.

If some casual conversation after making love is more important than all of that, then I encourage you to humble your heart.


And the next time he falls asleep quickly after the two of you make love, curl up next to him.

Take a breath. And go to sleep too.

Your marriage will thank you.

When Did You Stop Nurturing Sex in Your Marriage?

By Julie Sibert | Sex & Family Planning

lack of sexRecently, there was a big fire in a treasured old building in downtown Omaha, Nebraska.

Today I again want to use the fire as an illustration.

As is the case with most fires, the investigation after the recent Omaha fire primarily was about figuring out how and where it first started.

Fire investigators try, often successfully, to trace everything back to a source. A starting point. A trigger.

By working backward, they can figure out how to move forward – either to make sure whatever went wrong doesn’t happen again OR to solve mysteries that are hidden way back at the source.

“Uh, what exactly does this have to do with sex?!” you’re probably wondering.

Quite a bit, actually.

The longer I speak and write about sex and hear countless stories about marriages struggling sexually, the more intrigued I am about how and where the struggles began.

I used to want to jump quicker into talking solution, but not so much now.

Now I want to know the back story.

When did these sexual problems start? Why do you think they started? I dig through the rubble for the source, the starting point, the trigger.

Sure, in the headline, I ask, “When did you stop nurturing sex in your marriage?” But I just as easily could have asked…

“When did you start refusing sex?”

“Why did sex become boring?”

“When did you start disagreeing about sexual frequency?”

“Why is sex always a battle ground now?”

Anyway. You get the picture, right?

It’s really hard to find solutions to sexual struggles if we don’t at least have some framework to look closer at the problem in the beginning.

Truth be told, a lot of people just don’t want to do that.

Because it is exhausting and tedious work – to lift and sift through the boulders and shards of relational turmoil.

Sometimes, what’s going on couldn’t even be classified as turmoil. It often goes by it’s more common name – “life.”

“Life got crazy busy. We had soccer practice. And that job promotion. And the furnace went out. And then our teenagers had to study for the ACT. And don’t even get me started about the problems we had with the car.”

I meet and hear from so many people whose sexual intimacy is anything but intimate (and certainly not frequent), and they drifted to that reality long ago.

That sexual drift – away from intimacy – likely was triggered by something.

Maybe that something was  intense on the relationship Richter scale, like a porn addiction or adultery.

Or maybe that something was less dramatic, like a rogue calendar or added responsibilities at work or slowly mounting financial struggles.

Something, though, began sabotaging the sexual relationship.

If that describes your marriage, I pose the question again:

When did you stop nurturing sex in your marriage?  Think for a moment.  Can you find the how and where?

When you find the how and wherethe source, the starting point, the trigger — it is easier to find a solution.  (Notice I said easier, not easy, because solving sexual struggles takes hard work and heart work).

But your marriage is worth it.  It is so worth it. And nurtured sexual intimacy is worth it.  When we learn why destructive fires start, we are better equipped to keep them from doing more damage in the future.

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Sexual PDA: Better to Give AND Receive!

By Julie Sibert | General , Sex & Family Planning

public display of affectionIt’s that time of year when you’re making the rounds of parties for Christmas and the New Year.

Maybe you’re even hosting a few of these shindigs. (If that’s the case, then you’ll definitely need a way to relieve some stress!)

I want to lay down a challenge for you and your spouse.  Be super intentional about communicating your sexual desire for each other at these gatherings — without being obvious about it.

There’s something beyond sexy about public display of affection (PDA).

I think this is particularly arousing if PDA isn’t really your thing.  After courageously venturing into this arena, you may discover it is your thing!

Let those crowded chaotic boisterous parties be your opportunity to give AND receive PDA. It will make sexual connection even hotter when you crawl beneath the sheets after the party lights go down.

You may even be inspired to leave the party early!

Want some ideas? (Of course you do!)

Here are 5 public displays of affection worthy of your heart and time:

Use Those Fingernails

Gals, you more than likely have an advantage in this department.  There’s just something about fingernails and light caresses.  Some great areas to run your fingernails?  Back of the neck, just under the shirt cuff, along the arm, along the hand and fingers.

Get creative and make the most of those tingling touches with your fingernails.  Your lover will totally get what you’re saying.  And you won’t have to say a word.

Find the Small of the Back

What is it about that waistline area right in the center of the back?  Husbands and wives can both make the most of affectionate touch in this area.

To make it especially sensuous, move your finger tips in a subtle, yet firm, circular motion, drifting along the waistline toward either hip or up the spine.

Get Sneaky

Okay, this might not count as true public display of affection, because it’s all about sneaking out of sight.  Obviously, you have to be wise about this, especially if you are in someone else’s house.

But if you discern it’s appropriate and easy to sneak into the pantry, den or a hallway out of sight, then take the chance to have a passionate kiss or some less-than-subtle caressing.

Whisper Your Intentions

Sure, you don’t want to announce in the presence of partygoers what you’re going to do later when you get naked.

But there’s no reason why you can’t whisper those things quietly to your lover.  You know, while you’re going through the buffet line or making your way to the kitchen for a refill on your refreshment or cuddled up on the couch in the family room.


You don’t have to wait for a party to put your PDA plan into action.  All of the above work well in other atmospheres as well — shopping at the mall, traveling in the car, waiting at the airport, going out to dinner,  seeing a movie, running errands and so forth.

Make the most of your public display of affection!  It will pay big dividends later! (And by later, I mean a few hours later.  Literally. Just. A. Few. Hours. Later.)

When You Crave Sex More Than He Does

By Julie Sibert | Sex & Family Planning

When You Crave Sex More Than He DoesI am a wife with a high sex drive.

Some people would say that trait puts me in an incredibly small minority.

But word to the wise, there are more of us out there than you may realize.

I do hear from women who would love more sex with their husband — and they are baffled as to why he isn’t on board with that.

Each marriage is unique and the circumstances behind mismatched sex drives certainly vary.  I get that.

Some of the below questions, though, might spur some opportunities to either better understand what’s going on or to initiate some dialogue with your husband.

If you want sex more than he does, ask yourself:

Does he really know I want more sex?

Sometimes subtlety works in making sexual desires known, but I wouldn’t rely too heavily on this approach.

If you are “hinting” at wanting more sex or if you are simply waiting for him to always be the one to pursue you, such an approach is probably leaving you frustrated.

Somewhere along the way, I think women (particularly Christian women) got the idea that it is more appropriate to wait for him to do all the initiating. The problem is there is nothing biblical to such a thought.

If you want more sex, don’t assume he knows.  And if he is not receiving your attempts to initiate, talk to him (preferably in a non-sexual setting).

Express to him that you hunger to be with him more sexually.

Could there be a physical reason he’s not interested in sex?

I certainly can’t cover every physical possibility, but there are a few worth mentioning.

For example, some guys experience erectile dysfunction and they find this embarrassing and/or discouraging.  They simply don’t want to either initiate sex or respond to your pursuit, because they question whether they will be able to get and/or maintain an erection.

They don’t want to disappoint you or themselves, so their logic is to avoid the situation altogether.  But that approach is not doing either of you any good.

A variety of things can cause erectile dysfunction.  Sometimes age and/or alcohol consumption can play a factor. Sometimes it can be the result of medications (such as for high blood pressure) or various medical conditions.

Certainly you and your husband shouldn’t navigate this on your own or make sudden changes in medications.

If you think your husband is struggling with erectile dysfunction, talk to him.  Be his champion and partner and safe person.

Remind him that it is not a reflection of him as a man and that erectile dysfunction is increasingly a more treatable experience.

It is worth a trip to the doctor and any specialists to talk openly.  This is true not only for erectile dysfunction, but also such things as weight gain, depression, diabetes and so forth.

Doctors, nutritionists and counselors exist to help individuals and couples build healthy lives, including healthy sexual intimacy.

And it is important to remember that even if actual intercourse is no longer possible, sexual contact that is affirming to both of you is still possible.  Throughout marriage, whether we are talking about sex or anything else, we have to find ways to adapt and still nurture our oneness.

Is he stressed about something?

Stress can take a toll on any person’s sex drive.  No surprise there, but we tend to think it is women who struggle with this, not men.

As much as we like to joke around about men being able to forget about everything when they crawl beneath the sheets, this is just not always the case.

I can point to a few occasions when my husband and I tried to make love, but he admitted that his mind was preoccupied with something else.

It wasn’t that his heart wasn’t in it.  His mind wasn’t.  And he couldn’t get past that barrier in that moment.

If you think your husband might be worried or stressed about something (finances, work, family matters, other responsibilities), shed light on this. Express to him you are concerned and you want him to be able to talk to you about everything, even the stuff he maybe is trying to protect you from.

Ultimately, what makes for an intimate bond (sexual and otherwise) is a deep abiding friendship.  If he is overwhelmed or stressed, you as his wife need to know.

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Does sex always mean mutual sexual pleasure?

This question might surprise you, but hang in there with me, okay?  If the pattern in your sexual intimacy has always meant intercourse, then that is how you as a couple have come to define “sex.”

As life moved along, you found you wanted sex more than he did, and you both still saw it as always including intercourse.

But a husband and wife can experience sexual connection without intercourse every time.  Are you willing to experience nakedness with each other and closeness and sexual touch without it always concluding in an orgasm?

Are there deeper issues going on?

Sometimes a man’s sex drive with his wife decreases because of deeper (maybe even tragic) circumstances in the marriage.  These could include (but not be limited to) such things as deep communication problems, pornography use, and infidelity.

Obviously, if a husband and wife are struggling in their relationship (or if one of the spouses is struggling in the relationship), then this is going to take a huge toll on sexual intimacy in the marriage.

I think counseling can benefit a couple any time in marriage, but I think it is a necessity if the marriage is facing a crisis.  Don’t hesitate to say to your husband that you want the two of you to go to a marriage counselor.

If he won’t go, then go on your own.  Not only will this give you the insights of a professional counselor, it also will demonstrate to your husband that the status quo situation of your marriage is not okay with you.

You are going to do whatever you can to strengthen the marriage.  (If you can’t afford counseling, check out these three ideas).

Lastly, with regard to sex drive, I want to encourage you as a woman to remember that it is not wrong that your sex drive is higher than your husband’s.

Sometimes I hear from women who think there is something “wrong” with them for wanting sex.  But the truth is that sexual desire is a good thing in a marriage and couples will spend their married years navigating the impact that desire has on their relationship.

As I said at the beginning, I am a wife with a high sex drive. And that drive at times has been higher than my husband’s.

Though it can feel uncomfortable to address this in a marriage, we are grateful we have.  The health of our marriage is worth it.

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