But what about when intercourse is not an option, either because of medical reasons or other limiting factors? The most obvious one for a woman would be the latter stages of pregnancy when sex may be uncomfortable or for the weeks after childbirth.
There also may be other medical conditions or injuries for a husband or wife that are not completely debilitating, but still make actual intercourse difficult, so that alternatives to intercourse are necessary. There are alternatives to sex that you can still enjoy.
When you learn to embrace and nurture sexual arousal that is not limited to intercourse alone, the positive effects on your marriage can be profound — endearing you to each other in a way that you never would have considered otherwise.
Here are 3 suggestions for alternatives to sex: Sadly, I think too many couples downplay or short-circuit the extent they can use their hands to bless and affirm their spouse. Too often, sex becomes overly focused on the penis and vagina, and the couple overlooks other areas of the body that are quite responsive to touch. In fact, consider taking your time getting naked, possibly undressing each other sensually. When you start caressing with your hands and fingertips, consider all parts of the body.
As a wife, it may be extremely arousing for you and him when your husband lightly caresses your breasts and nipples. And for a man, he may find it incredibly exciting to have you caress his inner thighs and testicles.
Use a mix of light and firm touches, with smooth transitions. Respond accordingly to how they react. When your spouse is caressing you, give feedback. Why not allow your spouse to use their hands to get you there? Remember, you are in the exclusivity of your marriage bed, so consider it your private sexual playground to arouse each other.
Certainly, oral pleasure can be such a gratifying way to give and receive sexual love, but using your mouth in other ways to arouse your spouse is enjoyable to explore. How often are you sexually playful and sexually affirming in the way you speak to your spouse? There is power in words. Are you using yours to delightfully intensify the sexual arousal between the two of you? Discretely, yet intentionally, initiate conversations that are sexual in nature with your spouse.
These can be particularly powerful if done when your spouse is least expecting it. If handled well, these conversations definitely will lead to two people in bed. And all their clothing on the floor. How delightful is that?! With the use of your hands, mouth and words, you can heighten the sexual pleasure in your marriage, making sex about more than just intercourse. Do you see what a difference that could make in the intimate connection you and your spouse share?
Julie Sibert writes and speaks about sexual intimacy in marriage and is the co-author of Pursuit of Passion: Discovering True Intimacy in Your Marriage. You can follow her blog at www. She lives in Omaha, Nebraska, with her husband, their two boys and one rambunctious German Shorthair Pointer dog. Now, do you have any advice for us today?