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Beyond Blue

r-LOVERS-mediumvariable.jpgI published the following post on the Huffington Post two days ago. Judging by the 400-plus comments, I apparently hit a raw nerve. I only read two comments before feeling nauseous. And I didn’t go back because my friends who did read the comments told me to stay clear. 


You always run the risk of being attacked, of course, when you write about something so private. But I suspect most people can’t appreciate the sheer fatigue a working mom of young kids feels at the end of the day … when you have invested 10 hours of your entire self into your work and settled the 21st argument between Thing One and Thing Two, throwing both into their rooms for the fifth emotional outburst of the day. Maybe I should have explained that I have trouble doing ANYTHING at night. I haven’t read in eight years, ever since the insomniac of a son was born, because I have no energy and even less concentration. The only thing I am good for after putting Katherine to bed is staring at the ceiling … which I do for fifteen minutes before snoozing. 

So throw the stones if you want, but I know in my heart that committing to sex at least twice a week is an act of love, not selfishness. And my therapist agrees. 
At Eric’s 40th birthday party, just as he was blowing out the candles on his cake, one of my friends asked, “What do you think he’s wishing?”
 

I blurted out, “That every night be trash night.”

She howled. She knows the history of trash night in our home….

A year or so ago, I got fed up with my mate’s constant begging for sex, so one night I asked him point blank, “What is the minimal number of times a week that you need sex in order to be satisfied?”

“Twice. Absolute minimum.”

“Fine,” I said. “You get Monday and Thursday. If you don’t beg any other night.”

It then occurred to me that Monday and Thursday evenings were trash night. We drag out all of our rubbish and recyclables from the last few days and leave the stuff on the curb … to be picked up at 5 a.m. the next day, when the trash truck compressors will try to wake up our slumbering kids.

Yes, trash night is sex night in our household. Clearly a “Seinfeld” episode in the making.

This concept … of a scheduled sex session … was so intriguing to the other birthday guests that trash talk dominated the entire conversation for the rest of the evening.

“What about bulk pick up?” one asked.

“And what if you miss a day?” asked another.

“Eric’s lucky,” said the guy crossing his legs. “Our trash is only picked up once a month.”

“This, right here, could very well replace trash night,” said my friend with a spoonful of chocolate mousse in her mouth.

The next morning, as I was thinking over everyone’s comments, I began to wonder, “Why is sex so much more desirable for men than it is for women? What happened to the days before kids when the begging was mutual?”

According to a recent post on Psych Central called “Older Women Still Enjoy Sex,” a new study by the University of California-San Francisco refutes the claim that as women age, they lose interest in sex. Senior News Editor Rick Nauert writes:

In the study of nearly 2,000 women, aged 45 to 80 years old, 43 percent reported at least moderate sexual desire, and 60 percent had been sexually active in the previous three months.

Half of all sexually active participants described their overall sexual satisfaction as moderate to high. More than one quarter of women aged 65 years or older remained moderately or highly interested in sex, and more than one third of women in this age group had been sexually active in the past three months.

Among sexually inactive women in the entire group, the most common reason was lack of interest in sex (39 percent), followed by lack of a partner (36 percent), physical problem of partner (23 percent) and lack of interest by partner (11 percent).

In their book, “What Wives Wish Their Husbands Knew about Sex,” coauthors Ryan Howes, Richard Rupp, and Stephen W. Simpson try to help couples communicate better about sex so they can free the experience to be the life-giving and nurturing activity it should be to a relationship. They write:

The reality is that women and men actually wish for the same thing. We both wish for intimacy, lifelong love, trust, respect, fun, and romance. We both want hot, mind-blowing sex. The only challenge is that we approach these wishes from different angles.

Maybe trash night, for me, is just the beginning of an attempt to figure out this males species I live with. Maybe it’s a twice weekly opportunity to express my commitment, love, and devotion in a language that he speaks.

Or maybe it’s simply a way to do away with all the begging.

What about you? Do you have trash night?

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