Withholding Sex

I am part of a Facebook forum about relationships. Today someone a posted a comment declaring that if you want to know if he really loves you, then stop having sex and see if he stays. This kind of "test" or manipulation is something I cannot support.

When you are in a healthy relationship, sex is a natural, willing expression of your love for each other. Using sex as a weapon to test, to manipulate, to threaten or to punish is never going to get you that loving relationship you desire.

In a relationship, the question should be does this relationship provide each of us with enough of what we want from a relationship? If the answer is yes, then be in it 100%. If the answer is no, then you have some decisions to make. You can ask for more of what you want. You can adjust your expectations. You can make the conscious decision that even though you aren't getting exactly what you want, staying in the relationship is a better alternative for you than leaving. Or you can leave the relationship, either physically or mentally.

I am not saying that testing your relationship is not an option. Of course, it is but at what cost? Let's say you follow this person's advice. You withhold sex for six months while you are trying to figure out if he really "loves" you. What are the possibilities? He loves you but he leaves because he has a belief that if you really love him, then you are sexually expressive. When you stop having sex, he realizes you don't love him anymore and he leaves.

You could stop having sex and he stays for other reasons but decides to get his physical needs met elsewhere, unbeknowst to you. Is that what you wanted?

You withhold sex and due to rising sexual frustration in each of you, you notice both of you are bickering over things that never bothered you before. You continue on this path and slowly errode the good relationship you shared previously.

How would you feel if your man suddently decided to stop talking to you? As a general rule (of course, there are exceptions), men are more physical in their expressions of love while women tend to be more verbally communicative. Taking away the way he shows his love to you would be similar to him deciding to stop communicating with you. Does that sound like something someone in a loving relationship would do? Would you want to stay? Would you feel loved and supported?

If you are in a relationship you believe needs to be tested, what are you in it for? Either your partner is giving you enough of what you need in a relationship or he or she is not. Evaluate your relationship on how it works for you and allow your partner to do the same. If it's working, great! If not, talk about it. See if you can fix it. If you're successful, great! If not, then decide if you can live with the tradeoff or leave.

Let's stop putting each other through "tests" when our loved ones don't even know they are being tested, let alone what the rules are. Who can pass a test without full knowledge of what's being tested? Are you getting enough of what you want in your relationship? If not, what will you do about it?

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