yes. I'm grown up so I can talk about sex without giggling. though I do still giggle when they say duty on tv because it sounds like doody.
Did you know that a study was once done on babies in an orphanage? These babies were fed and diapered but not snuggled and loved. They couldn't thrive and some died. Snuggling and loving is very important to the human soul. Touch is very important.
I think it is also important in relationships. A male friend the other night was slightly inebriated and started crying to me about his wife. They have been married over 8 years (I am guessing because their special needs kid is about that age) and she won't give him physical affection any more. He is honestly thinking about cheating. I gave him the same old line about her being tired and is he doing anything for her needs, and he assures me that he is, but she is still cold and frigid to him.
I had another friend who complained that her husband wasn't interested any longer. She wondered if it was because she has recently put on a few pounds (on her, it goes straight to the boobs too!).
I've been through dry times in relationships. The 17 year marriage went through a period of them. I understand that they might be natural (dry times)- but I contend that they are damaging to the spouse and to the relationship.
Sex is linked to intimacy. I know both can stand alone- but I am refering to the intimacy that is created through sex. The closeness, the touch, the sharing, the trusting, the concentration on the spouse and only the spouse (everything else in the world forgotten for just a few moments). That is needed. This intimacy might be created other ways- but I usually find when the sex is gone, the spouse can't or won't concentrate solely on his/her partner- the touches are gone, the kisses, the everything that makes a marriage more than platonic.
I also understand that some relationships do fine without sex. Awesome. I might even get to that point at some time, but right now I am nearing forty and my sex drive is right up there. I don't do the f-word, I don't pick up strangers, and I prefer my drive to be aimed at a meaningful connection in a relationship. I also want to say that those relationships that do fine without sex usually have both spouses at that point. My friends would not agree that no sex is good for their relationships.
I feel bad for both of them- just as I feel like crap when I am not getting loving. I gasped when my girlfriend asked about her weight- making love should not have anything to do with that! The spouse you married is going to look a hella different in 20 years, so don't expect a perfect body to last forever. Wrinkles, sagging, scars, and maybe even injuries may occur to the partner. You should still want to physically connect with him or her. If not, something needs to be looked at.
If one partner is begging for sex and the other is denying it, something needs to be looked at as well! This is a huge rejection. It is painful and hard to understand. My friend, the male, looks like a viking and was reduced to blubbering tears. I've cried myself to sleep over this as well. The denial goes beyond the rejection- it could also be a powerplay, a way to get back at the spouse, a selfish issue, a withdrawal from the relationship, intimacy issues, etc.
I didn't know exactly what to tell either friend- except hang in there, it might change. That's what I bitterly tell myself through my dry periods. I wouldn't judge the male friend for cheating- I hope he doesn't, cheating isn't the best way to fix the issue. I just hope the spouses see what the withdrawal of intimacy is doing to their other halves. I just hope my friends can continue to thrive without touch. Until things change- I have plenty of hugs for them (not as good- but OK for life support measures)