Sex and the Second Marriage
Traditions of the first marriage for the bride and groom tell us that their passions for each other physically ignite and erupt with the simplest glance or whispered flirt. Newlyweds should desire each other in a voracious and healthy sex life.
God created man and woman to perfectly compliment each other. He also created sex so the husband and wife may engage in the joys of love-making. Couples continue to enjoy sex even after the arrival of their children. Physical intimacy is an incredible gift from God.
But, how about when it’s your second or subsequent marriage? Can you still enjoy a robust sex life with your new spouse even when the home is occupied with children from your blended family?
The answer is a resounding – YES.
God is a God of second chances. He will forgive you the sin of divorce once you fully come in confession and repentance. Restoration is possible, and along with making you whole in your second marriage, sex continues to play an important role.
Blended family parents do face challenges not known by first marriage couples and parents. One of the biggest challenges is what distinguishes two people from being re-married versus being a blended family. Children are the defining factor. One or both adults may bring kids to the family table.
The difficulties in this dynamic as it relates to maintaining an active sex life often involve the kids. There can be a myriad of combinations prohibiting one or both spouses from pursuing a renewed sex life. Here are a few:
One or both parents may experience feelings of guilt or shame having sex with their new spouse while their child is at home.
One or both parents may experience a “fear” of being discovered by one of the children while having sex with each other.
One or both parents may lack the feelings of romance or physical intimacy because their spouse’s child reminds them of their partner’s ex-spouse.
Non-biological children may present a constant reminder to the adult that their new partner was previously married, which may cause feelings of insecurity.
One or more of the children may require special attention during the night hours. It’s common for a single parent to allow their kids to sleep with them. This is a difficult habit for the child to break and may cause feelings of resentment toward the new adult who now interferes with the night-time routine. It may also cause the parent to miss the security of sleeping with their child in the bed.
Interrupted sleep patterns, barging into the parent’s bedroom and crying from the child’s room are all common behaviors that interfere or prohibit intimacy and love-making.
The strain of developing relationships between the non-biological parent and the spouse’s children can manifest itself into a disruption of emotional and physical closeness between the adults.
You may find yourself wondering if you and your spouse will ever enjoy sex again. You may even jokingly count the years until all of the kids are grown and out of the home. Unless it’s the day before the last child’s high school graduation, then counting years until uninterrupted sex isn’t the answer.
Re-married adults must communicate about these issues. Next to financial conflict, children are what dooms second and subsequent marriages to failure faster than anything else. Isn’t it worth the conversation?
It’s common for biological parents to carry guilt from their last divorce and worry about the kids reaction to their original, nuclear family dissolving. This creates an atmosphere of inverted priorities where the whims of the children over ride the responsibilities of the parents. That usually means the adults are neglecting themselves at the expense of their kids.
In a bible-based marriage, spouses must show all of their children that God is the family’s priority. Next comes the husband and wife, in order of focus. Finally, but not least of all, the children come into the mix. This structure will allow parents to set boundaries for the family and in particular limit a child’s interference with the adults’ time for physical intimacy.
Although both adults may be anxious to enjoy the gift of sex that God blessed them with, they should always be sensitive to the feelings their children may be experiencing. Competition for affection is very real for a child.
Additionally, studies have shown that kids of divorce are more likely to become adults who divorce. Fortunately, kids who witness an example of a loving, committed relationship even in a re-marriage setting, provides a foundation for them to avoid the pain of their own marital failure.
The key is balancing the physical displays of affection in front of the kids. While neither steaming up the windows or cold-shouldered hands off are conducive to good examples, adults using common sense in the presence of their children often do provide healthy examples of what loving, affectionate couples look like.
The less stress from the family unit lends itself to a more intimate connection between the husband and wife. And of course, as God intended it, more sex for the second married.