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Married Mormon Sex after Mormonism


marriage sexMy wife and I have been married for so long that I won't say how long - it might conjure nasty visuals given the rest of what I will say. We are each at different stages of leaving Mormonism, and have recently had some experiences that are so profoundly meaningful to us that I will share them, despite their intimate nature. I will not use my real name in order to preserve my wife's and my confidentiality in light of the intimate nature of what I am about to share with you.

It has been fascinating to feel (and that is the important word) life come into our relationship as we leave Mormonism. A lot of that has had to do with raw sensuality that stirs some of our deepest and most powerful emotional forces. I have long said that intellectual forces are ineffectual against the kind of emotional firepower the Church uses, and that one must fight fire with fire. Here is a perfect example of how that can happen.

My wife, who I will call Eve, finally took her garments off about six months ago. And after having made love and slept naked in each other arms a number of times (we are both slow learners), and enjoying waking up in that state and simply laying beside each other and talking before beginning our day (something we have never done), we both began to experience some things that caught our attention.

There is something about skin-to-skin contact - lots of it - that fills a reservoir inside of me. It does the same for Eve, but the reservoir is different for each of us. Most of this experience is non-erotic. We do make love more frequently than in the past, but that is the least important part (much to my surprise) of this process.

Simply lying naked together and talking pretty much every night and morning for at least a few minutes, while I rub her back, she my neck, etc. is satisfying at a level that I have experienced few times in my life. I would love to see a profile of the hormonal cocktail this causes.

The feelings we have, I am sure, have something to do with acceptance at a deep level, and the simple sensation of human skin caressing human skin. I have no doubt that humans evolved to mate in this way - to bond to each other skin to skin, and so become more like one. This is a powerful part of what holds a couple together. The "become as one" concept is still, in my view, a useful metaphor. After laying together skin to skin for a while in a non-erotic way our boundaries are impossible to discern.

I am equally certain that the injunction that within Mormonism even married couples must "cover their nakedness" in front of each other and wear garments while sleeping together is part of the sensory deprivation program Mormonism evolved to weaken those forces strong enough to interfere with its control over its members. Mormonism is not unusual in this regard. Most other ideologies that are successful in the long term use similar techniques.

While Eve and I were talking about this recently (while caressing each other naked in bed), she said she couldn't believe that Mormon leaders sit around and plan these things. I responded that they of course do not. The social organizations that survive in the long term evolve effective means of keeping their people under control, and these means usually come to be regarded as "sacred" and hence beyond question.

The Mormon practice of suppressing the degree of sensual experience between spouses is simply one of the countless techniques that ideologies have evolved over the millennia of their existence that help to counteract powerful forces that may cause personal interests or allegiances to dilute institutional power.

In any event, we both feel more alive than we ever have, and this change in feeling has been so striking that we have talked about it a lot. The sexual aspect of our lives has caused some tension between us in the past, but no more than appears to be the case with most couples I know well enough to gauge this. And in our case (which is not always the case, of course), I have been the one who wanted more love making while Eve has been too tired, etc. to willingly participate. Hence, I have often had the feeling when we made love that it was mechanical and unsatisfying. And there were rare and wonderful occasions during which there were fireworks for both of us.

Eve would say that she felt a lack of acceptance; that she did not feel that our relationship was emotionally satisfying; that I did not pay enough attention to her; etc. and that this as well as the demands made on her physically by child bearing and child rearing were what deadened her sexually. Her position was, basically, "What do you expect given all that I am doing?”

The change that has occurred during the last month has been nothing short of miraculous. In the past when we took off all of our clothes, it was either to shower or to make love. Both of us, we have realized, were still uncomfortable in some ways being in each other's presence while naked. Nakedness was a temporary state required by some functional necessity (getting ready to shower; to make love; etc.). And it was bad in some inarticulate way. The injunction to "cover thy nakedness" rang in our subconscious ears.

When we began to just lay together, skin to skin, and talk to each other; to feel each other's pulse and breath; to simply feel our physical selves, our body-shame began to dissipate. Eve has taken to locking our bedroom door as soon as we enter it each night, and undressing down to nothing. I do the same. We lounge together that way. If I become erect while with her in that way (not the usual occurrence, by the way), I no longer feel I need to hide that from her. Seeing me in that condition used to be bad news from her point of view, or so I felt. And, there was just something awkward about having an erection unless we were in bed and she was ready for me, or at least willing to accommodate me.

Eve now comes to bed when I do instead of seeming to find almost any excuse to stay up late while I go to bed relatively early (10 P.M. roughly) in order to get up early. Now, we both have about half an hour at the minimum almost every night to feel each other's intimate, physical presence, and to talk more than we ever have. In the morning we wake up and do the same before getting out of bed. This is the best part of the entire day for me in many respects. We are both rested. Life comes back into us as we touch each other. Sometimes this leads to lovemaking, but most of the time it does not.

Eve tells me that she feels my love and acceptance in a way that is new to her. A basic need she has felt unfulfilled ever since we married (and perhaps long before) is being met. She is satisfied, and happier than she has ever been during our marriage and probably in her life. This makes her want to make love more, and more passionately, than ever. I can feel this as we touch each other whether naked or not, but particularly while we lie together with nothing between us. Whether we make love or not, she has completely given herself to me, and I to her. We both feel this. It is a new experience for both of us.

From my point of view, this process works in a completely different fashion than it does for Eve. As a Mormon male, I had no idea that I needed non-erotic physical intimacy. When I reluctantly get out of bed after spending half an hour with my arms wrapped around Eve, touching her in various ways and talking to her, I feel as full of life and energy as I have ever felt. And, I am satiated from a sexual point of view whether we have made love or not. I do not feel the need to pressure or cajole Eve into making love. This makes me feel acceptance at a level I have never felt before.

Eve, for the first time in our marriage, is sometimes the sexual aggressor and I am happy to play along. And at other times we simply drift from the comfortably non-erotic touching into something more. It is wonderful to simply yield to this process. It feels like the most natural, and at the same time amazing, thing one can imagine. There is still a sexual spring that coils within me in a way it does not in her, but this is no longer a source of negative tension between us. It is a part of the process we both relish, in different ways and for different reasons.

When I think about being with Eve, naked at the end of the day or before getting out of bed to start our day, I am not thinking about sex. I am thinking about the whole experience - the touching; the feelings of security, acceptance and wonder; the calm we feel; the two bodies becoming one sensation that dominates both our love-making and quiet touching; etc. This is a far larger, more encompassing experience than either of us has ever had. The very concept of lovemaking has been redefined for me.

And, most importantly from my point of view, the experience I have just recounted has finally broken Eve's Mormon chains. She has become ready to let go. It has been a bloody long, slow process. It has been painful for both of us. I have wept a number of times during the past month as I have thanked her for loving me enough to stay within shouting distance until this could happen. And paradoxically, I am as certain as one can be about this kind of thing that we would not be where we are now had I not used the sledge hammer - and been ready to walk out the door - about a year and a half ago.

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