Dealing with desire discrepancy


What to do when sex is the LAST thing on your mind

Today we’re going to be talking about a desire discrepancy. One of the most essential things you can do if you’re married and your husband really wants to have sex, but you’re like, “There are so many other things that I would be rather doing.” Like reading a good book or watching a movie, going for a walk, cleaning out our garage, cleaning the toilet, or eating some chocolate. There are so many other things that make you feel happy and connected and allow you to enjoy life.

But, you know that it’s good for your marriage and you know it’s good for you. Maybe you’re arguing about the discrepancy and you’re kind of stuck between a rock and a hard place. So, let me just breeze on by that potential really funny analogy, for when it comes to talking about sex, and give you some real advice.

There is a discrepancy between the two of you

My name is Janna Denton-Howes. I am a marriage coach and I specialize in helping couples where there is a desire discrepancy. Where the husband wants it more and the wife wants it less. Yes, I very narrowly defined who I support because it’s so common. I have created a whole methodology for solving this in marriage because this was my experience and nobody was around to help me. So I figured it out and now I’ve taught it to hundreds of other women with great success.

Exhaustion and busyness aren’t the issues

I want to distill it down to one thing that you can do. And, really one thing you can do if, specifically, the issue you’re having is transitioning from daily life into enjoying some relaxing, pleasurable time with your husband. A lot of people will blame exhaustion and busyness and lack of time and having young kids. All of these things are legitimate situations that you find yourself in, but I don’t think they’re the cause of it.

You’re lacking an essential skill

After years of observing, learning, researching, and developing what I’ve developed, I’ve noticed one thing. That women are really lacking an essential skill. Now, because I’m talking about sex, this is related to sex, but I believe the lack of this essential skill is leading us to be sicker, more unhappy, resentful, waking up not excited about our days, and feeling like we’re not enough. Therefore, we have a desire discrepancy.

I believe the desire discrepancy, among other things, is because of this skill lack. I think we were created with it and it’s our natural position to be in, but we live in a culture that is dominated by the male way of doing things. Things are very much single-focused and emphasis is put on getting to the point quickly. Getting things done fast. I think we’ve just forgotten or never been taught or we didn’t have mentors to help us and support us.

One of my really important missions in life is to have more women doing this. Not only so that it can support their sex lives with their husbands but also to support their mental health or spiritual health or emotional health.

Pleasure less or Pleasure full

As you go about your day, you really have two ways to approach it. One of them is a pleasure-less way and the other is a pleasure-filled way. The same exact day. The circumstances and the facts of what you’re doing are the same. But there’s a decision that you can make, whether to go about your day in a pleasure-less way or a pleasure-filled way. And the outcomes are different depending on the choice you make.

Because we’re talking about sex, I’m going to say that the outcome will be that, you will transition into a pleasurable, physical experience with your husband much easier. You’ll start looking forward to it more. You’ll start understanding how it can be a source of nourishment, enjoyment, happiness, relaxation, peace, tranquility, and all the good things for you.

But how do you approach it in a pleasure full way?

First, you set that pleasure as an intention of your day. Yes, you’re going to get things done still. Yes, you’re going to check things off the to-do list but you’re going to do it in a different way. This is the skill of extracting pleasure.

Let me give you an example. In order to prepare for this blog’s Facebook live, I had a shower. I did my hair. I put on makeup. I got dressed. I opened up the blinds so I could see my bedroom and so I could find my clothes. I came into my office and I sat down. I wrote out an outline and practiced it and then I turned on the camera. Now, if I was going about it in a pleasure-less way, I probably would have been very much in my head. I would be thinking about the next thing I’m doing. I would probably be beating myself up because I wasn’t doing the thing fast enough. I would be rushing, I would be unintentional and the result would be different. I truly believe that.

And, now you’re seeing the result. This is not about guilt. This is not about another thing you have to do. You don’t even have to try really hard. If it’s your natural inclination already, it’s just simply about letting it happen.

Look for the pleasure potential that you have all around you, every single moment.

I have a pleasure potential right now. I can feel the seat beneath my chair. I can enjoy the beautiful colors of my planner sitting next to me. I can scrunch my hair and feel the delightful bounce of a freshly washed head of curls. I can feel happy and connected and the pleasure of being able to be of service and creating connection in the world.

What I’m allowing and letting in is more pleasure in my life. So when I’m in the shower, feeling that hot water cascading down my body and scrubbing my scalp and how that might feel. Or the towel on my skin. Or the warm tiles underneath my feet. The feeling of cotton as I put it on or the delight I could experience with looking at my clothes and making a decision about what I’m going to wear. I could come into my office and enjoy the colors of the room. Maybe hear some birds or wind on my window or if I have a candle nearby, the smell of that.

As you allow and let pleasure into your life more, then you are going to be able to transition into the sexual experience with so much more ease. Because you’re not going from that go, go, go, must get it done, have to do it mentality into now, I’m supposed to calm down, feel sensations in my body when another person is there with their expectations and all of that. It’s unnecessary to expect that of ourselves, and that expectation is what causes our desire discrepancy.

Simply practice

So you start practicing this in your everyday life. Little, tiny things through your five senses. One person in the Wanting it More community made this really great observation. She said, “If I don’t notice the pleasure, it’s kind of just lost. It’s not there.”

The potential was there but without noticing it and enjoying it and experiencing it, it’s gone for that moment.

And of course, you have another moment and another moment and another moment. The beautiful thing is that we have an unlimited amount of moments, as far as we know. We don’t know when we’re going to die, but even after death, we probably have the potential for pleasure after that. It’s my belief anyway.

You might think, “Well, I might be in a very unpleasurable environment.” Maybe you are. Let’s take a hospital, for example. I’m in a hospital, there’s fluorescent lighting, there’s noise or all the energy and the fears associated with being in a hospital and maybe you pick up on that. There are the uncomfortable gowns that you have to wear. There’s the worry about your health.

I mean, literally what’s pleasurable in that?

You always have your thoughts in the moment. You can always conjure up a memory of a pleasurable event or something that you just enjoy. For me, the sun on my skin is something that I adore. So I can imagine myself at a beach with the sun on my skin. Is it really going to take that much time? Probably not. Maybe a minute. 30 seconds. 10 seconds. Something really small but it can make a huge impact.

There is pleasure potential all around you right now, at this moment, as you’re reading this blog. And, if you can just notice it and let it come into your life by extracting the pleasure around you from your five senses, not only will you be a happier person, but you’ll be more productive, more creative and you’ll enjoy sex more. And, you’ll want it more. That’s why we’re here.

The effects of acquiring and developing this one skill

Not only will you be able to transition easier into the sexual experience, but you’ll be able to enjoy yourself more because you’ll have developed the skill of extracting pleasure from your five senses. You’ll really enjoy the feeling of your cheek against your husband’s soft cheek. Maybe enjoy that for 10 minutes. Or you’ll enjoy the sound of his heartbeats or the warmth of his embrace or the feeling of your hands through his hair or the heaviness of his body on you.

What you’re going to enjoy is unique and special and wonderful and created just for you. This is so exciting when you think about combining that with the connection, safety, love, and protection that an intimate relationship can provide. That’s what sex is about. It’s not about fulfilling needs, pressure, or trying to emulate something you’ve seen in the media or doing what you think you should do. It’s about genuine pleasure, genuine connection and all of those things that I mentioned are legitimate forms of pleasure.

So, to deal with this desire discrepancy, I really encourage you today to go about your regular life, not changing anything except for the intention to notice moments of pleasure. And, to get them and use them for your advantage, not only in your personal life but also in your relationship. Expect the sexual experience to be full of pleasurable moments. Not in terms of feeling pressure for it to be amazing or out of this world. But subtle, simple, very much tailor-made to you, types of pleasure. I hope that helps your desire discrepancy, and I’ll talk with you soon.


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