Now, I realize I'm a newbie wife, but at this point I've had a baby and moved several times and weathered a lot of garbage, so I think this puts me at a fairly advanced rank. Even if it didn't, I'm not going to hold back when I think there's something valuable to be shared.
Right now, you might have noticed that story shared at HuffPo and other places about the husband who sent his wife a spreadsheet cataloging how many times in the last month he'd propositioned her and how much success he'd met--and, if not, why not, according to her. She promptly reposted this to Reddit, seemingly unaware of the fact that it makes her out to be as much a frigid bitch and a liar as it does him a wussy little passive-aggressive weenie.
...Now that I've got the point-and-laugh out of my system, let's move on to a different lesson to be learned from all this.
The thing is, there's a problem when you only feel good to go a few times a month, and none of them in the same week. It's not just a problem for him, or for the marriage, but it's also a problem for you. When we're young and healthy like the wife in the story, we should have at least a passing interest a few times a week. (In fact, that's something guys complain about, that the frequency of sex seems to go down after you get married.*)
Should. But so many of us don't. There are always so many reasons why "now is not good"--some genuine, some only existing in our heads. And it's those reasons that are only in our heads that cause most of the problems. As with any self-delusion, the only way to get over it is to act like you're already over it, which means that sometimes, maybe a lot, we should just do it.
If the mere fact that your husband comes to you and you only for the thing he needs--in fact, the one thing he can't hire someone to do for him and shouldn't--isn't enough to get your feet in the air, then let's go over some other really good reasons that you might not have known about. I'm not going to appeal--much--to your nobler sentiments; I'm just going to appeal to secondary reasons that the feminists don't want you to know. In no particular order...
7. He'll like you better. No, seriously. Over and above the purely psychological effect of you doing something nice for him, the release of various bonding hormones from orgasm will literally make him want to be around you more and be nicer to you. This isn't to say that you should be manipulative or have fantasies of turning him into your puppet, but it's something to keep in mind. So unless you were a complete idiot and married a player (who is historically self-centered and probably broke his bonding mechanism), this is a consideration.
6. You'll like him better, too. Sauce for the gander is sauce for the goose. You are as much liable to the bonding processes as he is. Furthermore, you're more likely to find him attractive, even if he's objectively less so since you got married. The mind tends to follow the body.
5. You might just enjoy it. While we're on the subject of physical "helps"--God is merciful to give us fleshly inducements to do the right thing--there is a dirty little secret to female sexuality that we only ever hear about in cases of rape: what they call "bodily betrayal". It's where you begin to enjoy the stimulation, regardless of whether you invited it or not. While it's a horrid and confusing thing to happen during rape, it can be used to our benefit in a marriage; you might not have started out wanting it to begin with, but you end up having a really good time.
4. You'll want it more. You know how they say you shouldn't go on a crash diet because it can screw up your metabolism? That will make your body go into famine mode, and you'll find you need fewer calories to maintain your current weight, so you lose the ability to lose weight. Well, sex is the same; if you put yourself in famine mode, your libido will downshift to match the apparent availability. This is pretty common after childbirth, actually--and there are so many other factors that you may misattribute your lowered libido to fatigue or lack of attraction or whatever else is going on. The only way out is through; just do it, and you'll find your appetite going back up.
3. You'll feel better. "You need to get laid" is not just a myth. There are all kinds of lovely things that sex does to the body, especially in us women--attitude adjustments, self-image improvements, mood stabilizing--that you need to keep in mind he's doing you a favor as well as himself. We women are especially prone to depression and the fanatical need to get people's approval; sex helps fix that.
2. It'll help him stay the course. By this I mean that getting it from you helps him not go getting it somewhere else. This is not to say that men have no moral agency or that it is only and ever the wife's fault if her husband goes tomcatting. However, this is a nasty, ugly world full of temptations, full of loose morals and rationalizations, and full of women who would be only too happy to prove that they're better than you by stealing your man.**
1. Because God said so. If being a Christian doesn't matter to you in any kind of practice, then you can skip this part, but to me, this is a huge and important deal. Part of the purpose of marriage is to provide a legitimate release for the potent force of human sexuality (yes, among many other things, but stay focused). As such, we are commanded--husbands and wives--to not deny each other. Get over the notion that your body is your own; it's not. Get over all your self-focused attitudes, in fact. You can't be a Christian if you reserve things for yourself. Give it all to God.
God is good and patient, and He put in place ways for us to reap subtle rewards for doing the right thing, both here and Hereafter. He knows we're not always strong enough to do things only because He said, so He has given us these temporal mercies.
And maybe, if enough of us do what we should do, other women will follow suit, and we won't have to listen to unbelievers crowing about how God's plan is such a horrible, horrible thing.
* My husbands says that when you marry a whore, she regards it as retirement, so this is no surprise. What did you think she was if she was willing to get down and funky with you in exchange for dinner and a movie? But that's beside the point.
** Don't let's pretend this is anything else. Women get it on with other women's husbands because they want to prove superiority to the cheated-on wife. Men can pat themselves on the back and crow about how they "still got it" and are all manly and attractive and Gamey and stuff, but the truth is that they're being used as trophies.