Wanda* and Henry* have never really struggled for lack of sex. In fact, the couple, who have been together for over a decade and have three kids, didn’t find themselves turning to a calendar or getting “intentional” until the birth of their third kid, who is now 3 years old. These days, with their oldest well in the know (their other kids are 11 and 9), they utilize locked bedroom doors, but yearn for the days when they can just get down and dirty wherever — and whenever — they want.
Fatherly spoke to the couple about about how boring they think they are, how their sex life has gotten better over time, and what they love about each other.
The Couple: Wanda and Henry
Ages: 35 (Her) 36 (Him)
Years Married: 13
Years Together: 13 (“We didn’t have a very long courtship.”)
Number of Kids: Three: An 11-year-old son, nine-year-old daughter, and three-year-old son.
Location: Augusta, Georgia
Occupations: Freelance writer (her); non-commissioned military officer (him)
You have three kids. How has having children changed the course of your sex life?
H: It’s kind of tough to say. We had kids — 18 months after we got married? So, we didn’t have a strongly established [routine.] Even over the course of the 18 months, we moved twice. So we weren’t really set in our ways prior to having kids.
W: We have always had a really healthy sex life. The first two kids were pretty close together. They didn’t change too much about our sex life. We still had sex four to five times a week, pretty much, for the first nine years of our marriage? It was kid number three, that put a little bit of a —
H: It ruined everything.
W: Don’t write that! That put a damper on it. It was just a lot more work. I was more tired; he was working more. We had a harder time bouncing back after kid number three.
But you’ve bounced back?
W: We’re back to five —
H: Five to six times a week.
Wow. That’s great.
W: We think so.
So how long did it take you guys to bounce back to that healthy frequency of sex?
H: It took three years. It was a lot of other things changed. A lot of what put the brakes on after kid number three was that my work schedule was in the neighborhood of about 70 plus hours per week. We moved twice over the course of that period of time, too. So, those things kind of all collaborated, and made it really difficult for us to get back to our preferred rhythm. It’s really only been the past couple of months that we’ve gotten back to like, really, trying to put good streaks together.
W: Still, it would never go longer than a week — maybe two —
H: No. Short of me being gone, I don’t think we… if we’re together, we’re going to have sex.
How would you describe the quality of your sex life?
H: I would say better than ever.
W: Yeah, it’s great. It’s always been good, but it’s definitely better now than it was at the beginning. I think that as our relationship has matured, and we’ve grown up and grown together, and you know, it’s cheesy, but fallen more in love, that it’s transferred into the bedroom.
H: We communicate more effectively. And we respond to how the other person is feeling. So, even when if it’s likely that our frequency is going to change, or the chances that we’re going to say, “We’re doing this because we need to or only one of us really wants to,” has gone away. In general, when we have sex nowadays, it’s because we both want to. We’re responding to the other person a little bit better than we have before.
So, you’ve moved way beyond ‘maintenance sex.’
H: Yeah. It’s no longer something we have to ensure we write down for Tuesdays and Saturdays.
So, do you guys have a sex schedule? Or hours you put aside for one another once or twice a week?
W: Right now, we’re pretty much just, whenever. There’s no schedule, rhyme, or reason. We don’t have to do that right now because we’re in a good place. But we have! I’ve never written it on a calendar but I have decided, ‘Okay. We’re going to do it Thursday this week and I’m going to prepare myself all day Thursday mentally.’ Like, ‘I’m going to do it! I can’t say I’m tired!’ There are also times that I have said to him, “If I’m brushing my teeth for bed, the window has already closed.” I’ve told him to get it together earlier than that.
We’ve started foreplay by talking to each other about sex, first thing in the morning. So we have kind of utilized a ton of methods. I’d be hesitant to write on a calendar right now, because our children can read, and they know what that word means. So… yeah. [laughs]
I imagine that the challenges have shifted as your kids get older. 11 year olds can walk into any room whenever they want to.
W: Yeah. We lock the door now! We didn’t have to do that before we had kids. We are a little bit more careful about timing, too. Well, sometimes.
W: But they pretty much know, if the bedroom door is locked, they’re not just going to sit there and pound on the door. We’re unavailable. It doesn’t matter what we’re doing at that point, we’re just not available.
H: We have a three year old. He’s not the only one in the house when we lock the door. We’re pretty confident that he’s not going to stick anything in an electrical socket. He has his big brother and sister around to sort of make sure nothing terrible happens. We’re confident the house won’t burn down on a Sunday afternoon.
When was the last time you had some really great sex?
W: Yesterday morning?
W: I guess there was some buildup to it. We had a date night ‘in’ on Saturday night, but we were both “over-peopled” by the end of that, so we did our own separate thing and went to bed. We knew it was going to come on Sunday, and it worked out that it did.
Has experimenting sexually always been a big part of your life?
H: Um, not really. We’ve always just really enjoyed sex. We’ve always had very good chemistry, so we haven’t really felt like we needed to add anything or try to spice things up. I think we both come from pretty conservative upbringings. There hasn’t really been a lot of exposure to fantasy play or anything else like that. So our upbringing is sort of baked into how we view sex.
W: I think we would be open to trying different things, if we were both in agreement on it. We’ve varied some things. But, like he said, there really hasn’t been a need to do anything else. It’s really good the way it is.
So, like in that vein, are there any things that you guys have discussed trying in the future? Any strange positions?
W: I think, when our children move out of the house, and we have more freedom, it would be fun to get out of the bedroom. We’re kind of stuck in there right now with the kids walking around.
W: But, I think that if we’re still doing it 4 to 5 times a week in 15 years, I’ll be really happy.
So, what’s your favorite thing about your sex life?
H: It’s been nice that we’ve grown together, I think. The intimacy doesn’t feel forced. It’s not something we’ve had to manufacture. I think, why is our sex life better now than it was 10 years ago is because it feels way less forced. There hasn’t really been a need to put it on a schedule, or the need to do something different to spice things up. So instead, we’ve become the most boring couple that has sex five to six times a week you’ll ever meet.
W: My favorite part is how much he desires me. After three kids, I’m not a skinny mini. I have stretch marks and all that stuff. He just looks at me like I’m the best thing in the world. And that’s my favorite.
I love that quote: “We’re the most boring couple that has sex five to six times a week you’ll ever meet.”
W: It’s totally true. Totally.
H: We’ve ended up in different groups of people, wherever they are at on their marriage or relationship, they ask, occasionally: ‘How do you guys still get along so well?’ We say, ‘Well, we have lots and lots of sex.’ And they’re like, ‘Really? There isn’t anything else?’ Like, no. No man. We’re not therapists. We’re not anything in particular. We just really carve out time to be together. We’re very candid to each other about desiring each other; about wanting to have sex with one another. So, it stays at the forefront of our communication and our relationship. It incentivizes us, and keeps us interested in each other.
So it’s never taken a backseat.