In a recent Savage Love column, Dan Savage made a pretty provocative assertion that “when we marry, we’re signing up to f**k someone at least semiregularly for decades. Not interested in f**king? Don’t marry.” He was responding to a letter from a woman whose husband, despite jerking off to porn three times a week, only had “quasi-forced, strictly missionary” sex with her “at most three times a year.” With an unsatisfied “sex drive of a 16-year-old boy,” she said she was at the point that she was ready to go f**k “a minor-league soccer team.” Savage’s response? She should!
I can’t say that I necessarily agree with his advice to stay married and have an open relationship, which is based on the fact that they have a kid together, and the assumption that their marriage is an otherwise happy and healthy one. He argues that if they’re compatible, they should stay together for the kid’s sake and have an open relationship that would allow for the sexually frustrated wife “to seek safe, sane, and nondisruptive sex elsewhere.” Personally, I think the whole sex issue is a symptom of something much deeper that can’t possibly be healthy for a kid to grow up around, and besides that, kid or no kid, people deserve to be married to spouses who want to f**k ‘em.
That brings us back to Savage’s earlier argument that if you’re not interested in having regular sex with the same person for decades, don’t marry him or her. With the exception of marriages designed to trick the system, I whole-heartedly agree with his sentiment. You know what we call relationships that don’t involve sex and intimacy? Friendships! I mean, barring serious illness or some physical problem that makes sex impossible or completely impractical, it’s just cruel and unusual to remain legally committed to someone without giving it up on a regular basis. Sure, some people are asexual (remember them?), but for everyone else, sex is a necessary component of a happy, healthy life. To deny the person you love of this basic human need is to fail as a spouse. Vowing to stay committed in sickness and in health is great, but when are people going to start vowing to stay committed in the sack, too?