The Lie of Mercy Sex

I’m on a mission to remove the term “Mercy sex” from our collective vocabulary. I wrote to the men about it recently – see What If It’s Love, Not Mercy?

The Lie of Mercy Sex

Looking back, I see times when I thought Lori was offering mercy sex, but she was not. She was offering me the best she thought she could do not because she had pity on me but because she loved me. When I treated her offer as something less than a loving act I insulted her. Aside from how that must have hurt, I doubt it improved her desire to be sexual with me.

Some of you are on the giving side of this, and some of you are on the receiving side. If you feel your husband gives you mercy sex, then I challenge you to prove it. What if it’s love, not mercy? What if you read it as mercy or pity because of your own fears or doubts? What might happen is you gladly received it as a gift of love?

If you have been accused of providing mercy sex, or your husband acts as if that’s what you’re doing, I suggest you set him straight. Tell him pity is a turn-off. Tell him you have sex with him when you have no interest because you love him and want to provide him with the things he wants and needs. 

Another way to kill the mercy sex issue is to be proactive. Don’t wait for him to ask, offer. Say something like “I’m not horny but I bet you are (or I know you are), so how about a hand job or a quickie? I know it’s not your first choice, but I want to do it for you if you will let me.” Or just reach out and touch him without any words. If he’s always after sex, he will be thrilled!

~ Paul – I’m XY, and I choose to see all sex with my wife as a gift of love.

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4 Comments on “The Lie of Mercy Sex

  1. There is a difference in giving sexual intimacy to your spouse when you are not up for it and begrudgingly doing it so they will stop “pestering” you about it – to get it over with. One is a giving of oneself out of love.
    Perhaps you could discuss the different kinds of love making and the difference from NOT making love. A quickie or a hand job can be love making and they can be clear messages that the other person isn’t important. Maybe in difficult marriages they can be confused. Why?

    • @Greenbean950 – A lot of men assume mercy sex because of their own fears and doubts. They also assume she can’t be into it because she’s not acting the way he acts when he’s into it. It’s a whole lot of assumptions.

      I suspect women on the receiving end of less than enthusiastic sex do much the same because of their fears and doubts.
      Paul Byerly recently posted…Friday Flashback: Too Busy Because Too Much Is ImportantMy Profile

    • Greenbean, i agree. That was my wife for many years, she would do it I think so I didn’t pester her for sex. I think some women can give sex when they aren’t in the mood out of love. I am sure it is tricky to do it out of love and not make it mercy or pity sex. My wife only rarely would ask me if I wanted sex, a handjob or a quickie. I didn’t enjoy the way she gave pity sex and she didn’t enjoy giving it, we stopped doing that probably 15 years ago.

  2. Reading someone else’s mind is risky behavior, and can create all manner of problems. And, guessing another person’s motive is mind reading. Real love is often doing for the one loved something that we aren’t particularly interested in ourselves. For someone to do something that was an act of love and then have it misinterpreted, is a serious offense. Unless there is clear evidence to the contrary, always assign a good motive to every action of others. It’s a good policy.

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