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My divorced friend and I were standing together watching our kids play ball in the field. Suddenly, she blurted:  “Can you believe I haven’t had sex in over two years?”

“You can not be serious,” I replied emphatically. 

She laughed and shook her head. “Yes, I’m afraid I am. Since I got divorced I’ve had to go back to school and be a full-time single parent and struggle to make money. I really just haven’t had time to date.”

I tactfully asked her questions: Were there religious reasons holding her back from having sex? Was she concerned about being labelled a 'Divorcee'? Was she afraid of intimacy? Had her ex-husband abused her?

But none of these were factors. She said, “Believe me, Delaine, it’s NOT 'cause I don’t want sex. I’ve just had so much on my plate, that ‘going without’ has become a bad habit.”

Later on that evening after tucking my kids in bed, I began wondering, “CAN going without sex, in fact, become a ‘bad habit’?” How many women put taking care of their kids and organizing their new lives so far ahead of physical intimacy that they find themselves in a serious rut? My girlfriend had expressed how pent-up she felt — moody, edgy — especially around ovulation time. She’d also expressed that her self-esteem had plummeted; she questioned if she was even desirable to men. To me, that seemed a crime — she was a lively, hardworking, beautiful woman in her prime.

Then I wondered: Is 'going without' harder on a woman's over all well-being than we think? Is it better to have sex just for sex than to 'go without' for TWO YEARS? 

We all hear about STDS, unwanted pregnancies, commitment issues, selfish lovers and all the other ‘scary’ reasons why we should wait for the next serious relationship. But what about the times sex without love is good — or even fantastic? The times when you walk around the next day feeling a bit ‘achy’ down there and a smirk on your face. The times you walk with a skip in your step, like your cells are vibrating so much faster that everyone must know you had great sex the night before.

So I’m putting it out to you. Do you think ‘going without’ CAN become a ‘bad habit’ with unhealthy consequences, or is it worth it? According to YOUR rules, how long could/should you ‘go without’? 

 

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4 comments

  • Comment Link RJ Friday, 22 May 2015 18:11 posted by RJ

    Labor Day weekend this year - 2015 - will be nine years I have gone without sex. Yep... since late summer 2006. I got divorced in 2005, after 18 years of marriage. By the time we split up, the hubs and I were having sex about 2-3 times a year. Perfunctory, obligatory, 2-minute sex. The first year I was divorced I was seeing this guy and we were screwing every weekend + usually 1-2 times during the week. It was fantastic. Then he moved to another state - Labor Day weekend 2006 was the last time he visited. We fucked like jackrabbits all weekend... and I never saw him again. Been without ever since. I think about sex all the time, I have graphic sex dreams at least once a week. I am at the point that I am just going to go to a bar, pick up the first decent prospect, and let him hammer me in the parking lot.
    Thanks for letting me vent.

  • Comment Link Deb Sunday, 28 June 2009 11:54 posted by Deb

    Going without: Wow. It has been 10 months for me, and he has not even moved out of the house yet. I'm in my 40's also. My attorney has advised me not to even LOOK at a man until the divorce is final, because I want sole custody. As time goes by, and because I'm back in school, I'm having a harder time not looking. And when you look, sometimes they look back! Ack! Extrememly frustrating. I have a long road ahead of me, I can see that!

    Susan, perhaps you are not sending out the signals that you are interested? Order a book on Body Language from Amazon :-)

  • Comment Link Guest Sunday, 21 June 2009 02:07 posted by Guest

    I am going without....it has: I am going without....it has been two and a half years for me. I'm a single mom and full time college student. I was betrayed by my husband. He left me for his assistant at work. We married at a young age and our marriage was a long one but I do think he experienced a midlife crisis at 40. I lost my self-esteem and was devastated. I'm getting my life back together and long for someone to love. I'm extremely lonely. One thing not mentioned in the article is who asks for the date? I still think men want to be the ones asking. If a woman is never asked, then how do they find a partner to love anyway? I am an attractive, 40 year old woman, but no one is asking me out, so my drought continues.

  • Comment Link Guest Friday, 19 June 2009 11:26 posted by Guest

    Sex: How Long Should You Go Without It?: I went without for 10 years. I was in a crummy marriage, I knew he was messing around with women on the internet and strongly felt he was having an affair with a co-worker. I was financially dependent on him and was afraid that if I left him that my children and I would be in poverty. That is one of my greatest fears.

    I stopped letting the ex touch me because I didn't know what STD's he was exposing himself too. I also felt that my having an affair wouldn't make matters any better and ex had done a number on my self esteem.

    We have just recently separated and ex moved out a few months ago. I am so relieved I was finally able to get to this place. I have also met someone and am happy to report that my 10 year drought is finally over.