April 23, 2013

"Mr. Mower tracked their sex life in a notebook he kept in his nightstand."

"He drew a chart and filled in different-shaped dots to represent various scenarios: He initiated sex but was declined. They planned on sex but didn't follow through. They actually had sex. Mr. Mower says he was rebuffed 95% of the time; his wife says his memory is highly subjective. He became grumpy, gained weight and stopped wanting to come home at night. 'For me to feel good about myself, I needed her to have sex with me,' he says. 'Otherwise I thought she didn't love me.'"

From a WSJ article titled "How Often Should Married Couples Have Sex?/When He Says 'More' And She Says No," linked by Instapundit with the line: "It’s the whole maintenance sex discussion again. As usual, the MSM is just catching up with InstaPundit."

I say: It's fine to recommend having sex just because your partner wants it, but I'm afraid there are some really unappealing sex-wanting partners out there. Remember this one was ready to out himself in the Wall Street Journal — keeping a graph in the nightstand, going into passive-aggressive mode. Hello? She's not attracted to you! And your solution is to become more and more unattractive? (Pic at link: Beard without a mustache?!)

In the story, the man reads a book called "The Passionate Marriage," decides he needs to "let myself feel what I really felt," and gives her the book to read. She says, we're told, that "reading a book about sex made her feel sexy." Well, at least the book made her feel sexy.

By the way, he's a blogger. Connect the dots. Why is he telling this grisly story and posing for bare-lipped photos in the WSJ? I presume it's a book project.

171 comments:

Marshal said...

Hello? She's not attracted to you!

Then she should have said "I don't". He's not propositioning the waitress at happy hour.

ricpic said...

Hello? She's not attracted to you.

So how does the marriage go on?

Unknown said...

He should have divorced her after 6 months. Obviously she wasn't prepared for a long term, loving marriage.

Inga said...

All she needed was a little bit of pornography. Hey if that book made her feel sexy....

Æthelflæd said...

"He drew a chart and filled in different-shaped dots to represent various scenarios"

What more could any woman want, I mean, really?

Sorun said...

If you read the whole article, you'll see that they worked it out. Women, especially, should read it so they can become better wives.

Rabel said...

"Pic at link: Beard without a mustache?!"

This is why we have weight classifications in boxing.

Original Mike said...

"Beard without a mustache?!"

Is there like some kind of book somewhere as to what's acceptable and what's not? I already know shorts, and now I know beard-without-a-mustache, but it would really be more efficient if you could provide a list.

Inga said...

Amish women must see something attractive in their husbands, they seem to have many children.

Æthelflæd said...

Sorun said...
"If you read the whole article, you'll see that they worked it out. Women, especially, should read it so they can become better wives."

LOL

Sorun said...

I don't understand why a man would shave the mustache part unless his wife doesn't like the feel of it when they kiss or whatever.

edutcher said...

He needs to learn what gets her going.

Sometimes it boils down to grow up and take care of biz.

Ann Althouse said...

And your solution is to become more and more unattractive?

Is this another shorts thing?

I mean, what's wrong with the Captain Ahab look?

Inga said...

Amish women must see something attractive in their husbands, they seem to have many children.

It's called a man.

Sorun said...

I don't understand why a man would shave the mustache part unless his wife doesn't like the feel of it when they kiss or whatever.

Amish men do it because of the anti-military thing. Long mustaches were a hallmark of cavalry officers back when.

Æthelflæd said...

If you can only have one, you have to go with a mustache. Unless it is a little Hitler toothbrush mustache.

mccullough said...

Time to go out and fuck other women. Divorce is expensive. You'll lose half your shit, if not more.

Æthelflæd said...

"Long mustaches were a hallmark of cavalry officers back when."

That's why they are hawt.

Amartel said...

Obvious manrage bait.

[tortured singing]
This is a woman's blog world
This is a woman's blog world
But it wouldn't be nothing, nothing
Without a bunch of guys fuming about female hypocrisy and that broad is not all that what's she complaining about give him sex
[Pounds stage while lackey wipes brow]

Lem said...

When He Says 'More' And She Says No...

I was looking for an Obama connection... ("Everything is about Obama") but the WSJ doesn't even mention his name in this article.

What kind of a news source is this Obamaless Wall Street Journal?

Mitchell the Bat said...

A hair-trigger and a meager load makes sex a tolerable chore for the woman, has been my experience.

Scott M said...

Men tend to express feelings with actions, not words. Unlike a lot of women, they probably don't have heart-to-heart chats with everyone from their best friend to the bus driver, and they often limit hugs and physical affection to their immediate family.

Stopped reading there. Just because this author and the other journalists she knows are stand-offish and insular, doesn't mean all men are. Men are perfectly willing to give a hearty man-hug to friends we've not seen in a long time.

"Woe be unto thee, oh man."

Drip...drip...drip...

slarrow said...

"Early in the marriage, Ms. Mower became pregnant and lost the baby. Her libido was diminished, and she was uncomfortable discussing sex with her husband."

Yeah, I think it was a little more complex than the facial hair.

Palladian said...

Beard without a mustache?!

Abe Lincoln says "fuck you".

Joe said...

She's not attracted to you!

Were it that easy. Passionless marriages are excruciating. Unfortunately, in the Mormon culture there is no way to determine sexual compatibility and many of us paid the price for that.

One aspect of this that can't be ignored is that if divorce is unacceptable and whatever a man wants is already suspect, if not demonized, once married, the woman doesn't have to do shit.

Æthelflæd said...

My husband is more huggy and affectionate with family and friends than I am. What a load of crapola.

Ann Althouse said...

Men need to take more responsibility for their own sex appeal.

Whining and creating some ideology of "maintenance sex" is pathetic.

And I do understand the concept, but it must be premised on the man being sexually appealing.

It's one thing to say the man has a larger appetite for sex than the woman and she should accommodate him. That's probably what Instapundit is talking about.

But it's quite another to when the woman just doesn't want this man at all.

Eustace Chilke said...

It's the illustration of the old joke about the only food known to prevent blowjobs: Wedding cake.

Æthelflæd said...

The guy isn't repulsive. She needs to take responsibility to make herself want him. Quint being selfish. She married him. She must have liked him at some point. I like the old Book of Common Prayer wedding vows: "With y body I thee worship".

mccullough said...

After watching the video clip of this married couple, the guy is a New Age pussy. His wife is cute but a cold fish. His chin beard is no worse than her stringy page boy hair style. She is a dyke who needs to come clean and move out of Utah. He needs to grow a sack.

Loren said...

What happened to "for better or worse" or "in good times or in bad"? Again Ann, it is not some random person, it is one's spouse.

Loren said...

What happened to "for better or worse" or "in good times or in bad"? Again Ann, it is not some random person, it is one's spouse.

Jay said...

Men need to take more responsibility for their own sex appeal.

There are more fat women than men in America.

Jay said...

But it's quite another to when the woman just doesn't want this man at all.

Then why did she say yes?
Where the divorce papers?

mccullough said...

This woman doesn't want any man at all. That's why she married this guy. He's her beard.

Sorun said...

"Men need to take more responsibility for their own sex appeal."

I agree. Married men often take stuff for granted. I'm in a lot better shape now that I'm divorced. Why? I need to be if I want to date someone I'm attracted to.

Also, if the man stays in shape, the woman might be more motivated to do so. Win-win.

Unfortunately, marriage is a lot of trial and error.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Jay said...

There are more fat women than men in America.

Yes, but the fat women can still get laid whenever they want.

cryptical said...

He needs to go to the internet and google up "red pill marriage".

Just a thought.

JBC said...

WSJ is writing about what Athol Kay and Rollo Tomassi (Rational Male) have been covering, and covering far better, for years. I suspect someone tipped the author of that piece off to Athol Kay's blog and she helped her self liberally to the ideas and content therein.

Marshal said...

Ann Althouse said...
Men need to take more responsibility for their own sex appeal.


There's no evidence he's less attractive now than when they were married. Claiming he's unattractive is projecting your own tastes onto her. If she felt he wasn't attractive she shouldn't have married him.

Brian said...

Counterpoint: her picture is at the link, too. A national newspaper comes to the house, and that is how she turns herself out: jeans, an ill-fitting t-shirt, lifeless hair, terrible make-up? This is at least suggestive that her de-sexualization goes a bit beyond "hubby has a stupid beard."

Drago said...

Æthelflæd said...
"Long mustaches were a hallmark of cavalry officers back when."

Cavalry officers were the flyboys of their days.

mccullough said...

This guy needs to read Bill Clinton's book.

Amartel said...

"She needs to take responsibility to make herself want him."

Yeah, it's a two-way street.
And she's really no prize.
And who's whining about creating an "ideology of maintenance sex."
When women had less power in the relationship, men could insist. They can't anymore as a general rule. Hence the need for an "ideology of maintenance sex."

Jeff with one 'f' said...

"Men need to take more responsibility for their own sex appeal."

"Mr. Mower says he was rebuffed 95% of the time; his wife says his memory is highly subjective. He became grumpy, gained weight and stopped wanting to come home at night."

I think the unattractive thing came after the years of sexless thing. He is the monster that she, in part, created.

traditionalguy said...

Frigid is as frigid does. Passionate women will always respond to a romantic appeal but non passionate women blame it on the poor smuck. Nobody is perfect. It is Love makes us overlook faults.

Original Mike said...

"Yes, but the fat women can still get laid whenever they want."

Not by me, they can't.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Ann Althouse said...

Men need to take more responsibility for their own sex appeal.

He has made it clear that the lack of sex is an issue in their marriage. When she married him, she took on the obligation of trying to work out such issues.

If something about his appearance ( facial hair, fitness level, etc. ) is contributing to her lack of interest, then she needs to take responsibility to let him know. If she lets him know, and he does not correct the situation, then it's his fault. If she does not let him know, then it is hers.

Æthelflæd said...

Drago said..."Cavalry officers were the flyboys of their days."

My husband had a crewcut and wore aviator sunglasses on our first date. Hooked me like a fish.

Sorun said...

"Yes, but the fat women can still get laid whenever they want."

I know a lot of women who aren't getting laid. Older ones in good shape, and younger ones who aren't in good shape. I'm not volunteering.

Dante said...

Yes, yes. We all know the role of the man is to listen endlessly to women complain about PMS, and whatever else bothers their depressed minds.

Susan Stewart Rich said...

Maybe he's wearing cardigans--and is not a hipster.

edutcher said...

Ann Althouse said...

Men need to take more responsibility for their own sex appeal.

And I do understand the concept, but it must be premised on the man being sexually appealing.


What about loving him because he's a good man?

Sex appeal is a pretty superficial thing. It also fades.

But a man who cares for a woman, who takes care of her, that lasts.

PS When The Blonde broke her foot, her best bud asked what I was doing during all this.

She answered, "He waits on me hand and foot". (not to mention the pups, including our 2 new arrivals at the time)

She cares more about stuff like that than whether I'm the next Errol Flynn.

Æthelflæd said...

"What about loving him because he's a good man?

Sex appeal is a pretty superficial thing. It also fades."

This.

Inga said...

Yes sex appeal fades, but they are still young and healthy. Why waste these good years?

mccullough said...

Sort of surprised that this couple is so young. Wait unto their 40s.

Astro said...

Althouse blames the guy.
It's his fault.
He's ugly.
He's being passive-aggressive.
He doesn't do enough to turn her on.
He's making a chart.
He's writing a book.

And the gal?
She ran out of gas.
She had a flat tire.
She didn't have money for cab fare.
Her nightgown didn't come back from the cleaner's.
An old friend of hers came in from out of town.
She got caught in an earthquake.
There was a tidal wave.
It wasn't her fault.

Pogo said...

It's the man's fault.

No matter the issue, it's the man's fault.

Susan Stewart Rich said...

"Great sex during marriage is hard work" is what the doormat of every chapel and courthouse should say.

Hard work does pay off.

Æthelflæd said...

Astro said..."Althouse blames the guy.
It's his fault.
He's ugly.
He's being passive-aggressive.
He doesn't do enough to turn her on.
He's making a chart.
He's writing a book."

Okay, but you have to admit the chart part is funny.

Otherwise, the girl is being selfish, short-sighted, and wasting their youth together.

mccullough, the forties are kinda nice though, with no ankle-biters puking or needing to be fed or diapered. The Fun Forties!

Æthelflæd said...

Pogo said...
"It's the man's fault.

No matter the issue, it's the man's fault. "

You have learned well, grasshopper.

Susan Stewart Rich said...

"I know a lot of women who aren't getting laid"

@Sorun

Interesting. Perhaps they have standards.

acm said...

Yes, men need to take responsibility for their sex appeal. That's not the problem, here, with the Mowers. The problem here is that the term "men have needs" is so poorly understood, even by men themselves. Once Mrs. Mower understood what her husband needed and why, she got it, and then, well, he got it. It's not about his beard or her haircut, which may be adorable to their eyes, it's about knowing what your partner needs, and why. Men have a responsibility to say "I need sex" just like women have a responsibility to say that they need listening, or kisses that don't lead to sex, or whatever. And both have to compromise---needs aren't an all-encompassing trump card. Obviously, a man needs sex, but that doesn't mean he needs it every night or in ways that make his wife uncomfortable. Likewise a woman needs to feel heard and listened to by her husband, but she doesn't need him to listen to her calling his mother a nasty name or some such.

Really, the Mowers seem like they did something that worked for them and blogged/wrote/talked about it. I don't get the problem.

BDNYC said...

This man is despicable. He's managed to combine unsavory sex begging (male) with self-absorbed public disclosure of grievances (female). He's worse than all men and all women.

KingCranium said...

A marriage with no, or very little sex, is excruciating, as someone else noted, unless both partners have agreed to it, and I suspect the number of such relationships between people in their 30s and 40s is vanishingly small.

When my marriage turned virtually sexless I questioned myself similarly to the guy in the story. I weighed a few more pounds than when we were married, but I wasn't fat, and didn't we share child care 50/50, and didn't I do all the cooking and cleaning so she would appreciate me? And yes, when the things you are trying aren't having an effect it's easy to retreat to anger or food as ways to hide or cushion your feelings.

What got me out of it was Athol Kay's writings and finding online forums with other men (and some women) discussing the exact same problems in their marriages. Kay's advice amounts to two lessons: man up, and pretty up. Man up is hard to quantify, but in Kay's usage means being the husband in the relationship, but not her best friend. Pretty up means get in shape, both to be more attractive to her, and to other women.

Michael K said...

My ex-wife used to describe this as a "mercy fuck."

Æthelflæd said...

KingCranium said: " Man up is hard to quantify, but in Kay's usage means being the husband in the relationship, but not her best friend. "

There is something to this. I think it can be a self-perpetuating cycle, though. The more he whines and begs, the less she is attracted to him, and the less she is attracted to him, the less like a man he feels. Which is why she needs to do the right thing and help him feel desired and manly.

Synova said...

Sorry but... if you expect someone to be faithful to you, they don't have any other sex-partner choices. It's incredibly selfish and controlling.

Martha said...

Unusual and perhaps pertinent that this couple waited to have sex until their wedding night--and then found the experience less than fantastic.

BDNYC said...

For some reason I can't help but think of the bad old days and legalized marital rape.

Birches said...

My spouse and I were both virgins when we married and still I am flabbergasted that a woman could marry a guy without really knowing if she wanted to have sex with him.

So I call BS on Joe's belief in sexual compatibility. You should be able to figure that out without the sex. Perhaps neither were paying attention to their actual relationship.

Inga said...

Mercy fuck/ pity fuck, not conducive to passionate sex.

Balfegor said...

Re: Althouse:

Whining and creating some ideology of "maintenance sex" is pathetic.

That's just the classic advice that women ought to "lie back and think of England," viewed through the distorted modern lens of self-help books and relationship therapy.

Re: Synova:

Sorry but... if you expect someone to be faithful to you, they don't have any other sex-partner choices. It's incredibly selfish and controlling.

Wasn't his problem not so much the sex as that he felt like his wife didn't love him, because she won't have sex with him? Sure he could go whoring, but that's apparently not what he was looking for. Though his obsessive attention to sex statistics suggests that sex was an awfully big part of whatever it was. Maybe she was cold to him in other ways?

McTriumph said...

Like I told my wife when I asked for the divorce, "I've got five sisters, I didn't get married to get a sixth".

Robert Cook said...

"My husband had a crewcut and wore aviator sunglasses on our first date. Hooked me like a fish."

I'm not gay but as a dispassionate observer of male looks, I've always thought crewcuts, buzzcuts and flattops were the least attractive "normal"* haircuts for men. And as a glasses-wearing man I've always thought aviator frames looked awful.

But, hey...variety is the spice of life, yes?

*("Normal" as opposed to dreadlocks, mohawks, and other purposely extreme or ratty hairstyles.)

Susan Stewart Rich said...

"I've got five sisters, I didn't get married to get a sixth".

@McTriumph

That is funny.

I Have Misplaced My Pants said...

It's really poisonous when both people get resentful of the other's lack of effort to be be attractive (not just physically). Why should I try if he's not, etc.

Susan Stewart Rich said...

"Thou shalt not have sex before marriage" does not mean "thou shalt not be intimate."

Here is a good rule: If you don't get turned on by kissing your future spouse, you probably won't get turned on by sex after you are married.

Birches said...

@ SSR

Exactly.

Methadras said...

She's kinda cute. They've been together at least twice, so something must have gone right at the time. The fact that he keeps a running diary of his sexual experiences with his wife leaves me a little creeped out, but I agree, the fat chin beard should just shave his head, go to the gym at least 2 or 3 times a week and find a way to make himself appealing to his wife and shut the fuck up with the whining.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Synova said...

Sorry but... if you expect someone to be faithful to you, they don't have any other sex-partner choices. It's incredibly selfish and controlling.

Women take note. If you ever wondered how much your husband loved you, remember, he gave you veto power over him ever having sex again. Ever. If that kind of love doesn't just about knock you off your feet, then you fundamentally do not understand the male libido.

And remember, with great power comes great responsibility.

Inga said...

IGGY, that was beautiful and true.

Æthelflæd said...

Robert Cook, think Val Kilmer in Top Gun. However, I know tastes vary.

Æthelflæd said...

That is some true truth, there Ign. Is B.

McTriumph said...

From a guy that experienced this, Synova and Ignorance hit the nail. I never kept a sexual diary, besides our society only celebrates women intellectuals and actresses who do this.
The more a husband adores his wife in these situations, the more self destructive the rejection manifest. I imagine women go through the same when neglected. When women speak out it's a break through.

Susan Stewart Rich said...

"If that kind of love doesn't just about knock you off your feet, then you fundamentally do not understand the male libido."

@ Ignorance Is Bliss

I never thought of it like that.

I'm surprised so many men have signed that contract.

McTriumph said...

Robert cook
I haven't had a crew cut since jr high when I rebelled against the mandatory hair style. I did shave my head on a bet once, but that is just another reason to hate Obama.
About the same time, 45 years ago, I started wearing Bausch & Lomb aviators, hand me downs from my father. I have ever since, the down side is some think you look like a cop or worse a 70s porn star. I do have sunglass clip-on thingies for my Anglo American 116s, but then I look like a drug addict.

Freeman Hunt said...

Maybe she had some kind of hormone dysfunction. Never wanting to have sex is not normal and sounds like a reason to visit the doctor.

Freeman Hunt said...

Charts are rarely a good idea.

I remember a boyfriend in junior high making a chart of himself versus a selection of other guys rated on various qualities that was supposed to prove empirically that I shouldn't break up with him. While very entertaining, it did not work.

(But then, what is breaking up in junior high? I don't know what it is now, but then it meant only that you no longer said you were "going out," while you were not, in fact, ever going out anywhere in any case. Hmmm.)

Æthelflæd said...

Robert Cook and McTriumph -

While not to everyone's taste, Val Kilmer in Top Gun was my teenage idea of perfection.

Will Smith pulls off the short hair and sunglasses look pretty nicely in this day and age.

Joe said...

How is the inability to determine sexual compatibility BS? To deny that people have different sex drives and perceptions is absurd. It is also possible one or both are lying to themselves about their own sexual drives and preferences or are simply too naïve.

To get personal, my ex and I were virgins when we married. She was very sexual when we courted, but was simply terrible in bed. It was such a difference and so awful I would have had the marriage annulled had I not been very religious at the time and naïve enough to believe we could work through it. Truth is, sex was sometimes great, but generally without passion.

In that regard, I agree with Althouse that while maintenance sex--passionless fucking--can be fun occasionally, over the long haul it's a pathetic substitute and ignores the real problem of a lack of true intimacy in a relationship.

Note with the Mower couple, the sex dropped off immediately. She didn't like it much and so decided not to bother and rejected him. Strictly speaking, she broke their marriage obligations. That isn't his fault. Based on my own experience and that of many men I have spoken to, if Ms. Mower doesn't change some serious issues with herself this marriage isn't going to last.

BTW, this isn't restricted to the religious and I agree that being sexually active before marriage is no guarantee. I know a man who was very sexually active with his fiancé. As soon as their honeymoon ended, the sex dropped off. After the baby, it ended. Like me, he made the mistake of thinking he could fix things. In the end, it cost him half of everything and more trying to fight for joint custody.

Nevertheless, by first hand experience Mormon culture so represses your sexuality before marriage, far too many people have unrealistic expectations. In my experience, the church gives a pass to women who treat their husbands this way.

creeley23 said...

What's the deal here? Husbands don't have any right to expect sex in their marriage unless they are up to Althouse's standards of male attraciveness? Thank Odin he wasn't wearing shorts...

But that wasn't the problem. This story, or at least so we are told, had a happy ending:

It seems to have worked. The Mowers say they have had more sex in the past month than in the previous two years. "Before, we focused on ourselves," says Mr. Mower. "Now, I have sex because I enjoy spending time with her and she has sex because she enjoys spending time with me. It is no longer about the ego."

Æthelflæd said...

Robert Cook and McTriumph -

While not to everyone's taste, Val Kilmer in Top Gun was my teenage idea of perfection. Will Smith does that look pretty well in this day and age.

Aridog said...

Æthelflæd said...

Reference: "He drew a chart and filled in different-shaped dots to represent various scenarios"

What more could any woman want, I mean, really?

Thread winner!

Exactly what I thought as I read the article at lunch today :-))

Æthelflæd said...

There is a difference between mercy/lie-back-and-think-of-England sex and "I may not be in the mood right now, but by golly, I am going to be responsive to my husband and work to GET in the mood" sex. There are some things husbands can do to make this easier, but ladies need to take some responsibility in this area. You may be up to your neck in diapers and laundry, or papers to grade, or whatever, but a little mental preparation goes a long way. As does remembering why you married him in the first place.

Methadras said...

Susan Stewart Rich said...

"If that kind of love doesn't just about knock you off your feet, then you fundamentally do not understand the male libido."

@ Ignorance Is Bliss

I never thought of it like that.

I'm surprised so many men have signed that contract.


And I've said before, that if you this isn't the kind of love you are experiencing then DO NOT GET MARRIED!!! It will only lead to disaster.

Nomennovum said...

Getting sex from your wife is a right. Wives, it helps keep your husband faithful. Divorcees, infrequent sex makes you nothing but an expensive whore. My wife cost me about $40,000 a fuck. Charlie Sheen gets it for about 1/40th of that, and his girls have the talent and the tits.

Moose said...

Men will always find a reason to fuck. Women will always find a reason not to.

Ann's rationale is refreshingly one-sided. As usual.

I'm wearing shorts!

Jason (the commenter) said...

Men get emotional about sex and women don't care, because women aren't more emotional than men, they're just more selfish.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

For those mocking the chart keeping, the article does not make sense as written. It presents the order as: guy charts, guy complains about rejection rate, wife says he has a selective memory. But if he had the charts, the rate would not be based on his memory.More likely scenario: guy complains about (estimated ) rejection rate, wife says he has a selective memory, guy starts charting. In this scenario the wife is in denial about the seriousness of the problem, and the charting is necessary to wake her up and save their marriage.

Ben said...

It would be nice if all the commenters in this thread would say if they're married and how long they have been married and how many kids they have, etc while giving advice.

If someone is 25 and dating fairly regularly it's an entirely different game than trying to keep things fresh in year 15 with 4 kids running around the house.

What worked for my wife and I at 22 and newly married isn't what works at 36 with 4 kids. Things change and it's just as much the wife's responsibility as the husbands to keep things fresh. Sexual rejection wears on a person after a while even if the other aspects of the marriage are just fine. The guy in the example found a way to communicate the problem and get a resolution.

Too many people now seem to just suggest throwing in the towel and finding someone new. What happened to a little hard work? Passion doesn't last forever.

Meade said...

Note to self: beard, maybe. But only with mustache.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Ben-
46 years old, married 23 years, 3 kids.
Extremely little sex, which is difficult to handle. ( Reasons include medication my wife needs that is known to lower libido, and my wife still dealing with issues from childhood sexual abuse. ) So we are working on it.

David Davenport said...

Men need to take more responsibility for their own sex appeal

Althousian sex appeal rules:

(1) No shorts

(2) No beards without mustaches
( i.e., no honest Abes!)

(3) No porkies

(4) No bedroom activity charts

(5) ? ... ( please fill in )

Birches said...

The BS is the belief that "if we just weren't sexually repressed Mormons, we would have avoided this mess." You've likened your own situation to the Mowers because of your shared religion. I don't see much similarity; Mrs. Mowers has (had) some serious emotional issues. You didn't find your wife appealing in bed.

People do have differing views over sex and those views often change over time. But even you allude to the fact that this happens to all people, not just Mormon virgins. So yes, I still call BS.

Dante said...

Men need to take more responsibility for their own sex appeal.

You mean like becoming the strong, silent (or should I say disinterested) type? The 50 Shades of Grey guy? The "Bad Boy"? The guy who has a great sense of self, and pursues his interests in a confident way, all the while sucking off the unsuspecting, aging successful woman? [I watch a lot of ID, so I see these bastards all the time, and loathe them, though oddly, their women are always unsuspecting: aka flattery works.]

Or do you mean men need to be more like women. Maybe men need more appropriate magazines, like "Cosmo," "Vogue," "Glamour", "Elle," "Harper's Bazaar," etc. Her's how to style your hair, shave your pubic hair, wax your legs, tone them, look seckesy, etc.

Young Metro-Fags can read the equivalent of Teen Magazine.

We can get our own movie shows the equivalent of "Nip Tuck." Oddly, the guys that I've known who have gone down this path are (sadly), losers. They have the single thing in common that they don't get enough pussy.

Or we can do what we always could, and that very few women have been able to. Build things. Create things. Provide the labor for a family. Push into new frontiers in science.

How Passé: Being a provider is the government's job. Gotta bring all those out-of-wedlock stats to the lowest common denominator or it isn't fair. Screw Marriage.

Oh, and let's not forget, we don't want to do anything that's offensive to women, along the way.

What Bullshit. What hypocrisy. "We want what we want, but don't ask for what you need."

And the corollary:

"If you give us what we ask, we will disdain it."

Dust Bunny Queen said...

For those mocking the chart keeping, the article does not make sense as written

Some people are just more analytical than others. Keeping a chart, (in code btw which was rather tastefully discrete), of what happened and what worked is really a pretty scientific and statistical way to try to figure out things. I did iissxx and got these results. Ohhhh do that again. I did oowwxx and got bumpkis. Ditch that plan. Not really romantic...but possibly useful. I'm a numbers kind of gal.

:-P


It would be nice if all the commenters in this thread would say if they're married and how long they have been married and how many kids they have, etc while giving advice.

Good point. The people in this article are quite young and do have children. There are a lot of factors to consider. Some things to think about are not only cultural (religious and naive) but also age appropriate. When you are young you can actually hump like little bunnies. Twenty or thirty years later, the mind may be willing but the flesh may be weak.

62 yrs old, married this time for about 20 yrs..... and remember the bunny days fondly. We also remember being able to bend over and put our palms flat on the floor without any problems, party all night, run up 3 flights of stairs without wanting to puke and other feats of physical daring do.

bagoh20 said...

I'll screw him, but he'll need to significantly raise the Y axis limits to graph that once-in-a-lifetime experience, and I'll want that data point represented by a happy face.

Darleen said...

There is a difference between mercy/lie-back-and-think-of-England sex and "I may not be in the mood right now, but by golly, I am going to be responsive to my husband and work to GET in the mood" sex. There are some things husbands can do to make this easier, but ladies need to take some responsibility in this area.

BINGO!! and when Dennis Prager wrote about the mood 4 years ago he was excoriated as encouraging marital rape.

Left-feminism has turned too many women into entitled children.

bagoh20 said...

I'm a bit of a graph whore.

Æthelflæd said...

Early 40s, five kids, married 20 years. Husband has very high drive. Things are better now than in our 20s.

Æthelflæd said...

bagoh20 said..." I'll screw him, but he'll need to significantly raise the Y axis limits to graph that once-in-a-lifetime experience, and I'll want that data point represented by a happy face."

Plus you have the mustache to complement his beard. You'll complete him.

Pogo said...

Maybe he shoulda tried a pie chart.

Dante said...

DBQ: Love numbers gals. I had a deep crush on one of them (MIT phd, and mutual). Wish my wife of 23 years, with 3 boys of mine had been the same.

William said...

You've really got your ducks in a row if boring sex is your biggest challenge in life.

kentuckyliz said...

Tracking our sex life in a book would be cause enough for me to say no.

Ben said...

But no sex was already the status quo.

Pogo said...

How about recording it in stone with runes?

Pogo said...

Not that I'd know anything about that.

Meade said...

Pogo said...
"Not that I'd know anything about that."

Oh no? Well I'd sure like to know just who it was that purchased THESE then.

Mr. Pogo Innocent.

Dante said...

Why is it so hard to understand the male sexual imperative is intrinsically different than the woman's?

I recall when my first kid came out, and some sadistic feminist/gynecologist decided the guy had to see what that thing was all about.

I very distinctly recalling when my first kid came out "I thought that was for fun for me." OK, now I know what it is really for. I'm enlightened. Thanks for popping my bubble.

If I had known the purpose, I'm not sure I would have done that until I was far more mature. Eh. Maybe I would have never been that mature. Who am I kidding: the desire is way too powerful.

Guys need sex to feel good. In fact, I used to have endless sex in college. One day three women in one day, and each of these raised my self esteem. Incredibly: a woman willing to allow you to enter them? Especially someone you know little? The ultimate in ego esteem.

But I didn't know what it was for. When I knew, it was quite an awakening to a new level of consciousness. Maybe the religious view of sex as procreation. Duh.

Now, I have an 18 year old who is trying to have sex with a 17 year old (against my wishes), who is a Christian, and has strong religious ties.

What can I do? I've forbid them form being in my home with the door closed (in part because the mother died suddenly a few months ago, and also due to respect for a very long tradition). But nature is calling, for both of them. I find myself in the very odd position, as a person who thinks the genes push these things, in trying to advocate to my son to not spoil the girl, especially under these circumstances.

The only saving grace is that he doesn't care much for what I say: his determination is far stronger than my protestations.

And what if he felt like women feel about sex? Would there be procreation? Despite Ann's thoughts about an all woman artificially inseminated society, I think not. The most incredible sex I ever had was unprotected sex with my wife.

Of the four times I had this, it led to 3 children, and one dead child.

So Ann, guess what. The guy is trying to tell you something. He played by your stupid, stupid rules, and it didn't work. He proved it. Get over it. Accept that women need to put out for their men.

creeley23 said...

Amy Alkon covered this pretty well a few years ago:

Relationships are filled with little tasks that don’t exactly bring a person to screaming orgasm. A man, for example, doesn’t wake up in the middle of the night with some primal longing to bring his girlfriend flowers, rehang her back door, or clean the trap in her sink. Like sex, these things can be expressions of love, but if a guy’s going to lock himself in the bathroom, it’s not going to be with “Bob Vila's Complete Guide to Remodeling Your Home.”

So, couldn’t putting out when you aren’t in the mood be seen as just another expression of love? Joan Sewell, author of I'd Rather Eat Chocolate: Learning to Love My Low Libido, told The Atlantic Monthly, “If you have sex when you don’t desire it, physically desire it, you are going to feel used.” Well, okay, perhaps. But, if a guy rotates a woman’s tires when he doesn’t desire it, physically desire it, does he feel used?

Actually, we all do plenty of things with our bodies that we don’t really feel like; for instance, taking our bodies to work when we have a hangover instead of putting our bodies in front of some greasy hash browns, and then to bed. For women, however, sexual things are supposed to be out of the question. I think the subtext here is not doing things we really don’t feel like if it GIVES A MAN PLEASURE. And no, I’m not advocating rape or anything remotely close to it. And, of course, if you find sex with your husband or boyfriend a horrible chore, you’re in the wrong place. Otherwise, if you’re with a man, and he’s nice to you, and works hard to please you, would it kill you to throw him a quickie?


She goes on to mention some research that while women may not feel the urge for sex as often as men, they can be "triggerable." Thus, making out a bit without committing to full sex may make the mood mutual.

bagoh20 said...

No wonder I don't have one of these woman things. They seem to always be in need of repairs.

I checked the internet, and yep, they have a lot of maintenance issues from what I gather. I'm waiting for the technology to get more mature. Owners seem to have problems keeping them working as well after the first couple years of use. I've heard the foreign models hold up better, but still not worth the investment based on the reviews I've read.

Pogo said...

@Meade

Cuneiform was not as successful.

Or so I've been told.

bagoh20 said...

I want something I can just jump in and go to town without having to wait for it to warm up. I want to park it and jump out without worrying that it will just coast away when I turn my back. Is that so much to ask in this day and age?

Æthelflæd said...

Obviously you need a pressure cooker.

Meade said...

Guys (who are married to girls), may I offer a small piece of honest advice?

You courted and wooed her and then married her because you loved her, right? It was in her kiss. (If "no", seek advice elsewhere.)

Now - never complain, never keep score, and never fail to do your best -- for God, country, and your beloved wife.

Always tell her that you love her, that you love everything about her, and that you will love her as long as you live and that you intend to live for a long long time.

Never stop courting and wooing her. Sex will happen. Never talk about it, write a book about it, or keep a graph about it.

Now go brush your teeth and then kiss your wife on her lovely pretty soft smooth cheeks. If she says something to effect of "not tonight dear", answer that you only wanted to tell her that you love her. And then thank her for marrying you.

Apply these principles and then forget where you ever heard them. They're all yours. You're welcome.

Freeman Hunt said...

The solution is too easy; it's a non-problem. It's sex. People are hardwired to like it. If one person isn't in the mood but goes along anyway, that person will be in the mood very quickly.

(Assuming there aren't other problems going on. I'm just addressing this "not in the mood" idea.)

Inga said...

Bagoh, are ya gonna wash it and wax it?

Inga said...

Meade and Freeman, now ain't that the truth?!

mccullough said...

Meade,

You are a sweet man.

bagoh20 said...

Inga, I don't go for the flashy, high-gloss models. I'm most concerned with reliability, something that won't get stuck in the mud, because I like to take her out for some fun in the outdoors. I want something I can get dirty, but still washes up nice, and can be taken uptown on a Saturday night.

bagoh20 said...

I think his wife reads this blog occasionally. She probably even dictated that with a rolling pin in hand.

She does have a rolling pin doesn't she? If not, they sell them. Please use the Althouse portal.

Inga said...

Dune Buggy.

bagoh20 said...

"Obviously you need a pressure cooker."

Been there, done that. Very dangerous, even in the best of hands.

pigpaws said...

The most incredible sex I ever had was unprotected sex with my wife.

Of the four times I had this, it led to 3 children,


Dante, the beauty or spirituality of that is what you should tell your 18 year old.

Meade said...

2 more things, if I may: never miss an opportunity to make her laugh. But you say you're just not a funny guy? No problemo. Steal. For instance, I steal all my best stuff from Pogo, bagho, Chip Ahoy, and Lem. And many others. Learn from the masters. Such as rhhardin.

And finally... Organize for Action if you know what mean and I'm sure you do. Be a man of action who organizes for action. You just might get some traction, Jackson. Be a cowboy AND an indian. A cop AND a robber. And an officer and a gentleman. Cheers!

Dante said...

2 more things, if I may: never miss an opportunity to make her laugh. But you say you're just not a funny guy? No problemo.

Anything else? How many miles on the road, Mead.

I'm sorry to say it, but I've never met a man who sucked up to a superior woman that I liked. So there's my bias, and you can pillory me for all you've got.

And, for what it's worth, if there is an eternal scorecard, I hope you and Ann win out, but not in some stupid trite way, like, "Oh, make her laugh."

How about make her kids grow up into responsible adults, with good values.

My god, the rogue men in the world have been recruited.

Meade said...

Gee, Dante, you sound like you could stand to get laid. Or at least get a good night's rest. Good luck, man.

bagoh20 said...

I got laid once. It did help.

Inga said...

Meade and Ann, you two seem to be well suited. Ann said sometime back, when I made a crack about Meade that they were simpatico. I believe it, I'm glad for you.

Dante said...

Gee, Dante, you sound like you could stand to get laid. Or at least get a good night's rest. Good luck, man.

Meade,

Yeah, there is nothing better in the world than a woman who opens herself up to you. It's amazing.

I simply don't like the easy roaders, but I'm changing my mind as I get older. Enjoy.

Lem said...

For instance, I steal all my best stuff from Pogo, bagho, Chip Ahoy, and Lem. And many others. Learn from the masters. Such as rhhardin.

Jeez Meade... that's a hall of fame. I was going to say there is no possible way I belong in that group of luminaries... but I'm learning that if somebody says something nice about you, you should just say thank you... and advise him/her to see a psychiatrist.

See?

Lame stuff like that is how I made my name.

Inga said...

Dante sounds like a neurotic bird, you know the kind that pluck out their own feathers.

bagoh20 said...

This is all good info that I need.

" never miss an opportunity to make her laugh."

I try that, but how do handle it when she says: "Shut the fuck up, you stupid clown, and so help me God, this gun is loaded, and I'll give you till the count of three to take off those underwear of mine, and if they are ruined by your fat ass, I'll put a hole in you before you get a foot off the front porch"?


Æthelflæd said...

That's just foreplay, Bagoh20.

Inga said...

Especially if they came from Victoria's Secret.

Dante said...

Dante sounds like a neurotic bird, you know the kind that pluck out their own feathers.

I used to love nothing more than to tease a woman. Make her desire more than anything in the world, and when finally giving them satisfaction, seeing their eyes look up at you with dilated pupils of pure satisfaction and content.

Too bad the feminists got in the bed too, eh?

Lem said...

I presume it's a book project.

The name of the book is The Journal of Worst Practices: A Memoir of Marriage, As-per-usual Syndrome, and One Man's Quest to better his odds as a Husband.

Dante said...

Oh, and Inga, I'm thinking it's time to get a new avatar. The Big Bird one is getting old. You know, the one in which the left made a public policy issue about a child's program as the most important issue of the world.

I need something more visceral, in which I can capture the cynicism of "Make them Laugh," instead of make the framework for the kid's future.

Maybe Obama phone mom, with her guttural English, and disrespect for the very system that give her sassy black ass the Obama phone.

Carl said...

Hello? She's not attracted to you! And your solution is to become more and more unattractive?

Despite your unreflective scorn here, Althouse, apparently that is an effective response. We could easily conclude that just by asking ourselves what the typical female response is to the failure of a husband to, say, remember an anniversary or deliver a sufficiently smitten compliment on the new dress or hairdo. Is it to become more attractive? Or is it to turn into a raving unloveable bitch? The question answers itself.

But mate-retention strategies are so essential to species survival that they are wired deep into the DNA. They have been honed by 40,000 years of brutal natural selection. So if being a bitch is a typical response to your mate's sexual or romantic interest flagging, it can only be because that is an effective strategy, much more so than your naive suggestion that Mr. Niceguy would be the better response.

Indeed, the PUA community would argue the guy's real problem was that he was not hostile enough. He should have started openly flirting with her older friends, made condescending comments about her cellulite, offered to buy her a one piece to retire her bikini, some other kind of neg hit, to make her try harder.

It's not clear that isn't too far, of course, but there is sound social science research that discovers that people are generally more responsive to negative evaluations from their intimates and positive evaluations from strangers. If you want to motivate a woman, in other words, you should compliment her if she's your acquaintance but criticize her if she's your wife. (The same is true if you're a woman trying to motivate a man, of course.)

Why that might be true is a fascinating question, with deep roots in human evolutionary psychology. But it is true, and so your scorn is rooted at least in part in ignorance.

Kirk Parker said...

Birches and SSR,

Exactly ^ 2. Waiting till marriage is doable, but if it's easy that's gotta be a warning sign.

Æthelflæd,

"Early 40s... married 20 years... Things are better now than in our 20s."

That was my experience, too. Mind you, I had few complaints about my 20s when I was going through them, but 40s were definitely better. Now I can't put my figure on any specific things that I think were responsible for this, but I do remember hearing guys in their mid-30s to early 40s complaining about not getting any, and I trying to present a sympathetic face, but thinking to myself, "Really? Whoa!" Oh, wait, yes I do: vasectomy after child #4. No more messing around before messing around! Totally relaxing and hassle-free.

Kirk Parker said...

bagoh,

How do you know the gun is loaded? :-)

Ignorance is Bliss said...

creeley23, quoting Amy Alkon, said...

...A man, for example, doesn’t wake up in the middle of the night with some primal longing to bring his girlfriend flowers, rehang her back door,...

I've woken up in the middle of the night with a primal longing to rehang my wife's back door...

That is a euphemism for something, isn't it?

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Meade said...

Never stop courting and wooing her. Sex will happen. Never talk about it, write a book about it, or keep a graph about it.

Glad to hear that this has been your experience. Follow-up question:

How many years do you wait for the sex to happen before determining that maybe you should talk about it?

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Pogo said...

How many years do you wait ...?

According to Harold Ramis, Phil Connors (Bill Murray) spent 10 years trapped in Groundhog Day, more than half of that spent trying to bed Andie MacDowell.

Aridog said...

Meade said...

Note to self: beard, maybe. But only with mustache.

Suggested addition: no free standing soul patch, either. YMMV

Aridog said...

I'm not one prone to talk about my personal sex life beyond what seems humorous to me, but I will add a feature here: In every instance in my 55 years of a sex life I have had to personally like the girl or woman in a social and wit sense if I was to enjoy the sex, or even pursue it. Looks wasn't enough, and I'm sure that'd be considered a "bug" not feature by many people.

Hey, it may be a bug, but to this very day when I look at a woman whose looks, or mannerisms, catch my eye initially, the first question in my head is "would she be likable?" Every day all the time when I see my partner of 30+ years now, even just in passing, I find myself re-telling myself what I like about her...every single time. I might glance at her ankles or her neck or just her smile and my mind sees the whole that I adore...and reviews it every time.

One of the pecker-perk-up advertisments on television lately seems to empahsize the *like* aspect of loving someone, the adorable quirks, and sexual actualization. So I figure at least there is one other person who wrote that copy that thinks like I do.

It is not like I had/have a choice...it is just how I am wired. Boring, eh.

NotquiteunBuckley said...

This guy should murder, rob, rape and get more tan, then he won't have a problem getting pussy tingling.

For example:

This is a link

NotquiteunBuckley said...

"At the center of the investigation was an alleged leader of the Black Guerilla Family, Tavon White, who prosecutors said fathered five children with four of the corrections officers — Jennifer Owens, 31, of Randallstown; Katera Stevenson, 24, of Baltimore; Chania Brooks, 27, of Baltimore; and Tiffany Linder, 27, of Baltimore — since his incarceration on attempted murder charges in 2009."

LOL.

ed said...

Good rule:

She doesn't put out, she gets thrown out.

ed said...

@ Carl

"... If you want to motivate a woman, in other words, you should compliment her if she's your acquaintance but criticize her if she's your wife. (The same is true if you're a woman trying to motivate a man, of course.)"

So there is a biological reason for nagging then? Who knew.

Martha said...

great COMMENT thread--especially Meade's wise advice at 11:01 pm.

FYI the WSJ has NO comments for this article--only the message:

"We're sorry, this discussion has been closed."

chickens

ed said...

"... Apply these principles and then forget where you ever heard them. They're all yours. You're welcome."

Or you can become a sugar daddy to young college girls and bang an 18 year old every day of your life until you die and never have to deal with nagging, her being too tired or not interested.

Economics. Science!

ken in sc said...

After my ex found out that she could not get pregnant, she cut me off totally. It took me five years and over 10 thousand dollars to get her to sign divorce papers.

PWS said...

My mind connected this story and the post about Remnick/Limbaugh: to both guys I would say: "look in the mirror."

Steve said...

A mercy fuck is better than nothing.

But not much.

Freeman Hunt said...

"Or you can become a sugar daddy to young college girls and bang an 18 year old every day of your life until you die"

I think this was a joke, but I've seen people write similar with seriousness. Treating young people like objects to be used and discarded is reprehensible. I hate reading that advocated by older people who should know better.

gregq said...

"It's fine to recommend having sex just because your partner wants it, but I'm afraid there are some really unappealing sex-wanting partners"

Fine. Then divorce him. Don't stay on as a pretend spouse.

If you find your spouse repulsive, you shouldn't be married to that person.

But if it's OK for a woman to say "honey, you've gotten ugly, I don't want to have sex with you any more", then it's equally OK for a man to say "honey, you've gotten ugly (now that you're in your 50s), I'm going to divorce you and marry some 20-something cute thing who turns me on."

Pick. But you get either both, or neither.

Meade said...

Ignorance is Bliss said...
"How many years do you wait for the sex to happen before determining that maybe you should talk about it?"

I was unclear. What I meant was - never talk about sex with your wife with anyone other than your wife. With your wife, talk about sex every chance you get. I recommend talking about how great it was and how lovely she was the last time it was great and lovely. Recall to her the specific details of her beauty and lovelieness. Keep it personal and private. Avoid talking about the release of any of your chakras. (Especially your lower chakras.) Avoid being goal-oriented. It's suppose to be the joy of sex, not the job of sex. Take your time. After all, it's manly to exhibit patience and endurance. Be the man!

Ben said...

That works well and good for some people but not others.

If my wife doesn't stop what she's doing and make time for it then it doesn't happen no matter what I try. She's stubborn as a mule and mostly immune to persuasion.

Thankfully she sets aside time every couple days to allow herself to be in the mood but the regularity of sex is 95% controlled by her.

Bill said...

Can't agree more how much Athol Kay's book and blog have improved my sex life with my wife. He distilled some PUA concepts with evo psyche, and really lays out a road map for a man to become, as Ann said, "more attractive". One of his observations is that attraction is not a choice, so if you are just getting occasional "duty sex" you have some work to do. And it really isn't a short cut - be a better version of myself = better sex life.

He is currently rewriting his Primer to address female issues (60& of his forum members are wives wanting their husbands to "man up").
Athol Kay's blog

ed said...

@ Freeman Hunt

"I think this was a joke, but I've seen people write similar with seriousness. Treating young people like objects to be used and discarded is reprehensible. I hate reading that advocated by older people who should know better."

It's called 'economics'.

As for the 'used and discarded'. Seriously? Have you kept up with what girls do in college now?

And hey, it's cheaper than divorce.