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Equipping Parents For the Culture War

Guest: Rebecca Hagelin

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May 01, 2017

Is the Felt Need for Sex Equal?

Dr. Dobson, is the felt need for sex the same in both males and females?

Many men and women differ significantly in their manifestations of sexual desire. Research seems to indicate that the intensity of pleasure and excitation at the time of orgasm in women and ejaculation in men is about the same, although the pathway to that climax takes a different route. Most men can become excited more quickly than women. They may reach a point of finality before their mates get their minds off the evening meal and what the kids will wear tomorrow morning. It is a wise man who recognizes this feminine inertia, and brings his wife along at her own pace.

This coin has two sides, however. Women should also understand how their husbands' needs differ from their own. When sexual response is blocked in males, they experience an accumulating physiological pressure that demands release. Two seminal vesicles (small sacs containing semen) gradually fill to capacity; as maximum level is reached, hormonal influences sensitize the man to all sexual stimuli. Whereas a particular woman would be of little interest to him when he is satisfied, he may be eroticized just to be in her presence when he is in a state of deprivation. 

A less passionate wife may find it difficult to comprehend this accumulating aspect of her husband's sexual appetite, since her needs are typically less urgent and pressing. Thus, she should recognize that his desire is dictated by definite biochemical forces within his body, and if she loves him, she will seek to satisfy those needs as meaningfully and as regularly as possible. I'm not denying that women have definite sexual needs that seek gratification; rather, I am merely explaining that abstinence is usually more difficult for men to tolerate.

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