tagReviews & EssaysLit Wives: A Guide to Relationships

Lit Wives: A Guide to Relationships


I must begin by defining the term Lit Wives. While not a Lit Wife, I would have no problem being one in most cases by what the husband DOES. Hopefully, I would not be one to do to my husband what the Lit Wives do. Once I provide my definition, you might question that statement, but I will clarify.

In terms of a definition, a Lit Wife is the wife of a husband who receives some form of enjoyment from the website Literotica (or other sexual sites, porn, etc.). Most Lit Wives are unaware they are Lit Wives. In many cases, husbands seek out their extracurricular entertainment surreptitiously.

For all of you Judgy McJudgersons out there, I used to be one of you. How dare a husband experiment with sexual activities behind his wife's back? Is that not cheating? He watches porn by himself, he is married, and he masturbates? Ew! He reads textual porn and jerks off? Disgusting! He chats in a sexual chat room? How dare he!?

One thing you learn while frequenting and participating in chats on a sexual-based website: you soon put your feet in others' shoes, whether you like it or not. Because of that, here I will upset many people with my words. The messenger will probably be killed (me, by the way).

Much of what I will say others will view as anti-feminist, disgraceful, victim-blaming, and reactionary. I truly believe, however, that this needs to be said. Lit Wives (and husbands, as I will discuss later), when faced with unhappiness for what your significant other does online, try fulfilling their emotional and physical needs yourself.

The noise I just heard was heads turning in shock at that statement and looking at that above thesis statement with disgust (because the thesis remains the focus of the rest of the essay).

Before you say, "What gives her the right to say that?" let me explain myself.

I joined Literotica as a named member over six years ago. In just a couple of months, I will have been happily married to the most wonderful man in the world (who is not a "Lit Wife," as he is often looking over my shoulder in chat rooms asking about what I am laughing so hard) for nine years.

Also, I am a submissive. For some reason, many of the husbands of Lit Wives purport to be Dominants, or at least men with Dominant tendencies. In several cases, I have served as the sympathetic ear on which they have unearthed their tale of woe.

About a year ago, I talked to one such individual and jokingly said, "I need to write a how-to-save-your-marriage manual for wives of men on Lit." He, equally jokingly, agreed, and that became a sally mentioned several times over.

Somehow, after several months and listening to several husbands detail a remarkably similar story, my ruminations about writing the Lit Wives guide became much less comical and much more focused on reality.

Ultimately, I hope that I am a romantic. A very sexual creature, too, but I believe with all my heart in the idea of marriage as an institution. I strive to be the anti-Laura Wasser, the divorce attorney to the stars. Marriage can exist, be successful, and last. This is not a fantasy or a pipe dream.

Much of what I may outline could be considered misogynistic (funny, since I am female) or a huge step back for women's rights.

Bear with me, though, and I will try to make sense and hopefully help readers see the point I desperately try to make.

First, and this may seem elementary, but what do Literotica, other sites like Literotica, and pornography have in common? No, they do not all objectify women. The correct answer is SEX! Sex features in our biological directive to continue the species. Our sexual drives are strongly tied to that need to reproduce.

I consider myself a sexual being. Yes, I am aware there are people who are not sexual beings, who are, in fact, asexual. But guess what? I hate to clean house. I hate to pay bills. But, as an adult, a married adult who has a child who expects to have a somewhat clean house to live in, I have to do clean and pay the piper (or the companies I owe money to).

If you are an asexual wife? Or an asexual husband? Guess what!? Sex remains a very important part of your job (yes, I said JOB) as a spouse.

A recent study in the scholarly journal Social Psychology and Personality Science (results published late in 2015) states that marital satisfaction (happiness) correlates with the amount and frequency of sex. The findings stated that once a week serves as the magical frequency of sex. Sure, most respondents preferred more sex, but the target to reach remains once a week, a doable goal.

Now, wives who have been withholding sex, Lysistrata-style, on husbands (or vice versa) for a month or more, your culpability comes into play here. Yes, this is where you are to blame. Yes, this is where you are at fault.

As a spouse (with the physical ability to complete the sexual act—in other words, you will not die or be hospitalized for attempting the horizontal mambo, and you do not have a physical impairment that negates your ability to do so), it remains your job (yes, this may seem redundant) to have sex with your spouse. Frequently. As the study above advocates, you should have coitus, to quote Sheldon Cooper, at least once a week.

I apologize in advance because I am going to destroy your arguments of reasons not to have sex. Do not expect me to be very kind about it, either.

1)I am having my period. Originally, I thought about saving this one for last, but, for women of childbearing age, this one seemingly negates our sexual partners' access one out of four times a month. Or does it? Wives, blowies are not just for birthdays anymore. If you pledge to save your marriage and become a good marital partner, that one time of the month when you would not be able to have vaginal intercourse without weirding either you or him out should be a time to bring out the blowjob. I have yet to meet a man who does not like a blowjob.

2)But my tummy/head/back/insert-body-part-to-whine-about-here hurts. A friend of mine runs into this problem. His wife bless-her-heart likes to blame minor aches and pains for not wanting to have sex. I have another (female) friend who lives with chronic pain in her back, her shoulder, and her head (she has migraines). Why do I bring her up? She and her boyfriend have sex very frequently!

3)Exhaustion. My husband and I work full-time. He has a very physically demanding job; I have a mentally and emotionally draining one. Many evenings I literally crawl across the threshold, dragging my laptop bag behind me. However, I have told my husband that, if asleep when he gets home and we have planned (yes, planned) to have sex, he should wake my ass up!

4)I am stressed about (insert bellyaching reason here). Being an adult is STRESSFUL. There. I said it. Bills, work, kids, worry about aging parents, aging cars, world affairs, and current events all serve as daily reminders of the stress in our lives. Sex, a form of exercise (if you are doing it right), burns a lot of calories. And, for those of you with a minimum knowledge of biochemistry and anatomy (and I sucked at biology in school), exercise releases endorphins. Endorphins make you happier and calmer. Therefore, even for asexual people, sex should equal happy. And, oh yes, sex remains an excellent form of stress relief.

5)My religion says people should not enjoy sex. Now, I know what my religion and many other religions say. With very few exceptions, most religions want to continue. To carry on, there needs to be more generations of members. Therefore, reproduction has to happen. Therefore, sex has to happen (in theory). In conclusion, I doubt your religion wants married couples to stop having sex.

6)If I give in and have sex with my husband, he will want it all the time. Um, duh. My friend (above) heard his wife fire that remark back when he asked for more sex. Remember that once a week amount? Keep that in mind. If you (the Lit Wives out there) have been withholding sex from your husband for one of these reasons for months, yes, he will want it more often than that.

But sex is not important in a marriage, right? I mean, sure, it is a PART of a marriage, but it is not the only part or even that big of a part of marriage.

This will sound a bit pedantic, but, yes, refer back to the study that says that sex IS correlated very strongly with marital happiness and satisfaction. After all, your spouse is not that troll with drunken pick-up lines who approaches you at a bar for an easy lay.

Instead, this is your spouse to whom you made vows that are legally binding (and, in many cases, hold some form of religious significance, as well). So, just how does it affect a spouse who does not engage in coitus on a regular (weekly) basis?

The word you are looking for is rejection. In sexual beings (well, in most people), individuals see the denial of sex as rejection. The rejecting spouse may not see the denial as that when he or she has a headache/tummyache/is stressed/feels nagged. The rejected spouse? When the Lit Wife repeats the slight continuously, the rejected spouse cannot HELP but see the situation that way.

So what, right? People should get used to rejection. Rejection is healthy. But is it healthy to face rejection from a long-term committed partner? A partner in a marriage that the law considers together as one unit?

Again, this is not a "you think" multiple-correct-answers kind of question. The answer to the question of rejection being healthy is a resounding NO.

Side effects of rejection to an individual and the marriage as a unit are disastrous. No, I am not using hyperbole here.

The rejected partner soon perceives the rejection of an offer of sex as the manifestation of the rejected partner's unattractiveness to the Lit Wife. Again, this situation is not casual strangers deciding whether or not to bump uglies. This is (theoretically) a loving, supportive matrimonial relationship. In one such case, the Lit Wife took it one step forward and told her husband that she no longer felt sexually attracted to him. No extra paranoia necessary there.

Thus, the husband of the Lit Wife develops a lowered self-concept. Soon, this rejection, over time, results in emasculation.

Perhaps more dangerous to both the rejected individual and the marriage as a whole is the loss of intimacy. Rejection is soon destructive of intimacy. Many sexual partners see sex, or lovemaking, if you will, as the physical manifestation of intimacy. If you reject that physical manifestation of intimacy, you effectively kill any hope of intimacy, of closeness, in the relationship.

The rejected partner will then consider one of two options: effectively emasculated, he will sublimate his desires. Those individuals do not often frequent Lit and the like.

No. I meet the ones who explore another path. Rejected, faced with a loss of intimacy and self-concept, these husbands of Lit Wives seek acceptance and intimacy elsewhere, as an outlet to their desires.

I think it best to examine the possibilities from the innocuous to the guilty.

The first, Internet pornography, hereafter referred to as porn, remains the most innocent of the alternatives to continual rejection. Simply this: the husband of a Lit Wife masturbates while watching porn outside of his wife's presence. Some wives consider this to be cheating. As it is a form of foreplay between my husband and myself, I disagree.

Innocuous in intent and practice, porn allows a release (please pardon the pun) for frustrated partners. In many cases (I am trying not to generalize here), those who consider porn cheating are often the ones who deprive their spouses of something. Namely once-a-week sex.

A bit more "in the gray zone" of cheating is frequenting chat sites of a sexual nature. That is where I tend to come in contact with the rejecteds (note that I refuse to use the term reject, as it seems harsh).

Ostensibly looking for a good time, eventually their tale of woe comes out. While originally siding with the sisterhood and privately shaming them for what I termed cheating on their wives, gradually the tales began to develop a pattern. The pattern of the rejected.

Most, sadly, do not seek to physically hook up. I say sadly because they try to remain faithful to their wives, inasmuch as they can, while still facing rejection, at turns, from their wife. The rejecting wife would, of course, see visiting sites, such as Literotica, as cheating.

Now, here is where (if I have not already) I make the Lit Wives furious. It is to these men, these rejected husbands, that I dedicate this entire essay. Because of seeing the story repeated with very little deviation time and time again, I no longer sympathize or empathize with the Lit Wives of this variety. You truly made your bed, and, now, you have to occupy that place of rest.

In this case, I do not see it as cheating. I do, however, see it as cheating if the spouse is part of a partnership in which the other person actively works to meet the needs of the then-termed "cheater." That is something entirely different.

Usually, a logical progression exists to the final, and most damaging, reaction to rejection. And the logical progression normally takes the form of porn, chat, and the final stage: physical intimacy with a partner outside of the marriage without the Lit Wife's knowledge or consent.

Legally, this is adultery. And, I will be honest, I have not decided ultimately how I feel about this one. Therefore, other than to say this remains the often end-result for the rejecteds, I will not comment upon it.

So, now that we have examined the excuses given by the rejectors—I am sorry, Lit Wives—and the results of that rejection, how may concerned parties prevent such a fate?

The easy answer remains the two items I flippantly threw out in my thesis: fulfill their emotional and physical needs. When I discussed the possibility of writing this with a few of my friends on Literotica, I heard the same two responses from several people:

1)The husbands are selfish for trying to force their sexual wants on their wives and should learn that it is okay for their wife to say "no."

2)Usually the refusal to have sex is part of a deeper problem.

I do not necessarily discount either of those, especially the latter. Sexual rejection, coupled with a lack of affection or a lack of communication, can lead to a Molotov cocktail that will blow up in the face of the relationship.

And, in pretty much every case of the Lit Wives/rejected husbands, a severe lack of communication has weakened already the relationship, even before the rejection.

It hardly goes without saying, then, that communication remains key to a preemptive strike against rejection, "cheating," or cheating. I mean the kind of communication where both parties feel valued and validated throughout and at the end of the discussion.

That is a very adult concept, and one few adults can manage. Communication is not name calling, nagging, whining, the silent treatment, or a combination of any or all of the above.

It is not easy. Let me rephrase that. It is probably one of the most fucking difficult things you will ever do. As a mother who carried a child nine months and gave birth, I can safely say that effective communication can be even more difficult than fulfilling the biological directive.

But communication requires planning, and planning equals boring. Really? Let me blow your mind with an example.

A friend of mine (mentioned previously) recently wrote a truly beautiful, heart-wrenching letter to his wife. I wish I could write something that beautiful. In it, he told of his love for her but also of his feelings when she rejected him sexually. He detailed that he wanted to talk things out to repair the relationship.

Why did he write it? He hates confrontation and worried (after many failed attempts at communication) that he would again react negatively to her lack of openness to communicate. After a misunderstanding with the letter, they sat down and talked about their marital problems and their relationship now appears to be on the mend.

That is someone who is willing to go the distance to save his relationship because he saw himself staring down the end of that line of logical progression and seeing the inevitability of it.

But letter writing and communicating are not spontaneous. Sex should be spontaneous!

I am sorry, Lit Wives, but sex needs to be penciled in to your calendar or typed in code into your phone's day-at-glance. If you do not deliver regularly on the once-a-week sexual goal, you need to plan that sex! Spontaneity is awesome if you choose to have sex the other six days of the week. The bonus eggroll.

If marriage remains one of your jobs (and the correct answer is yes, it does), and you schedule meetings on your calendar for work (as do most of us do that do not want to end up fired for skipping a meeting), then you need to schedule the most important meetings of your marriage job: sex.

I have a friend who is trying to get pregnant. She and her husband schedule sex twice or thrice weekly. It is a goal of theirs. The once-a-week goal should be the Lit Wives'.

Another friend's wife did not want to plan sex because the sex would not be spontaneous. So, as a result, they pretty much never had sex.

Do my husband and I never have spontaneous sex? Yes, we do. However, we also have planned sex.

But I want to have romance and love-making, and he just wants to have sex! Pouty face. Love languages aside, sex remains the commodity we offer to husbands (sex, affection, and intimacy: the triad that interweaves) in marriage. Sex is one of the things we (expectedly) bring to the table.

In not doing so, Lit Wives break that contract.

If you do not like what your husband does, if you want more romance in your marriage, then you need to practice some of that communication I mentioned above. And, then, you need to practice this really novel concept that some of the blog set support: date your husband.

I date my husband, although not with as much frequency as I used to. Set aside a date and time weekly and stick to it. Because of monetary constraints and the fact we would have to have someone watch our child, we do not leave the house. We have dates-at-home.

There is one rule that I have for date night that I insist that we stick to: there are no electronic devices in use during the date unless the purpose of the date requires them (i.e., watching a movie together, having a round of friendly competition on the gaming system, checking out some spicy truth or dare apps, or watching porn together). If books serve as a distracting influence, ban those, as well.

He will like the dates because he will get sex at the end of the evening. Oh, did I mention that needs to be a given, as well? Dating your husband is win-win.

Of course, these suggestions only work if the Lit Wives choose to follow them. If they want to save their marriages. As optimistic as I try to be, I doubt the marriages where the Lit Wives have denigrated their husbands, in addition to rejecting them, will survive.

I am not sure the death of those marriages is not something that should happen.

For those Lit Wives (and their husbandly partners) who choose to work on improving their marriages, I have the strongest of hopes.

The best case scenario? Do not be a Lit Wife in the first place. Instead, be a supportive, caring, and loving partner. However, if you are a Lit Wife, I hope you take the words penned above to heart.

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