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3 Things Your Wife Wants in Bed (But Is Too Shy to Ask For)

Picture of Lisa Welsh
Lisa Welsh

Podcaster
Sexual Health & Pleasure Educator
Media Liaison for the World Association for Sexual Health

For busy working couples, intimacy often takes a backseat to the overwhelming list of daily responsibilities. 

Yet, intimacy is essential to nurturing your emotional connection and overall well-being. Many people feel that a happy sex life can help stabilise the family unit. 

However, the constraints of time, energy, and poor communication often lead to an unsatisfactory intimate life for many couples.

In this article, we’re diving into a delicate yet important subject that resonates with many women — the three things your wife wishes you did in bed but might be too shy to ask for. We’ll also cover some additional tips to improve sex in your marriage. 

1. More time on foreplay

Foreplay is often more than just a warm-up. For many women, it’s a critical aspect of their sexual satisfaction. 

The clitoris, a highly sensitive organ with a high concentration of nerve endings, plays a central role in female sexual pleasure. 

For many women, clitoral stimulation through various forms of foreplay can be more effective in reaching orgasm than penetration alone.

Why is foreplay so important? 

  1. Increased arousal: Foreplay builds up arousal, making sexual intercourse more enjoyable for both parties.
  1. Provides clitoral stimulation: The clitoris is central to female sexual pleasure for many women, and foreplay offers the opportunity for focused clitoral stimulation.
  1. Fosters emotional connection: Quality foreplay provides an opportunity to connect emotionally, enhancing the overall intimate experience.
  1. Addresses mismatched libidos: Investing time in foreplay can be particularly beneficial for couples with mismatched libidos, as it helps to align emotional and physical readiness for further intimacy. It can allow your wife’s sex drive to increase — resulting in more frequent and pleasurable sexual experiences. 
  1. Increases sexual desire: Some individuals experience spontaneous desire, where sexual interest arises without any particular trigger. Others (in many cases females) experience responsive desire, triggered by external factors such as physical touch. Understanding this distinction can offer insight into the importance of foreplay. For those with responsive passion, the build-up and activities during foreplay may be crucial for sexual arousal and satisfaction.
alt: List of the benefits of foreplay

Why is it hard for your wife to ask for more foreplay?

Discussing the need for more foreplay — specifically, clitoral stimulation — can be a sensitive topic. Women may hesitate to bring it up for fear their partner may feel inadequate or impatient, or it might be perceived as a critique of their sexual abilities.

This makes it extremely difficult for your wife to open up about foreplay at times and can dissuade her from asking you. 

How to give your wife the best foreplay

  1. Be attentive: Listen to your partner’s verbal and non-verbal cues about what they enjoy. Adapt your actions for mutual pleasure.
  1. Quality over quantity: Foreplay doesn’t have to be a lengthy process. Quick but focused and intense moments can also be deeply satisfying, especially for busy couples.
  1. Incorporate variety: Spice up your foreplay routine by incorporating different activities. Think beyond physical touch to include verbal affirmation, eye contact, and even sex toys.
  1. Prioritise clitoral stimulation: Given its importance in female sexual pleasure, include focused clitoral stimulation during foreplay. Techniques can vary, including oral sex, the use of fingers, or toys, so communication is critical to understanding what pleases your wife.
  1. Communicate: Always keep the lines of communication open to ensure she is comfortable and enjoying herself. This will help you adjust your actions to make the experience as fulfilling as possible for both of you.

By giving foreplay — specifically clitoral stimulation — the attention it deserves, you’re investing in an intimate experience more likely to satisfy both partners. 

It’s an essential practice that has the power to deepen emotional connections and enhance sexual satisfaction.

Learn the 10 secrets to giving your wife an intense orgasm

2. Emotional presence over physical performance

Many women crave emotional presence as a cornerstone of a fulfilling, intimate experience. 

Contrary to popular belief, sexual satisfaction often doesn’t hinge on athletic prowess or an arsenal of specialised techniques. 

Rather, being “in the moment” emotionally enriches the experience that’s difficult to achieve through physical manoeuvres alone.

Why is emotional presence during sex important to your wife?

  1. Mutual respect and consent: Emotional presence starts with acknowledging and respecting your partner’s needs and boundaries, ensuring that intimacy is a shared and consensual experience.
  1. Intimacy as a shared experience: An emotional connection transforms sexual activity from an act one person “does to” another into a shared, meaningful experience.
  1. Enhanced pleasure: Being emotionally present can amplify sensations and deepen the overall feeling of connection, making the intimate encounter more fulfilling for both parties.

Why is it hard for your wife to ask for an emotional connection? 

Admitting that an emotional connection outweighs physical performance can make women feel vulnerable. 

There’s also the risk that their partner might interpret this as criticism, which makes it a sensitive issue to bring up. 

The societal focus on performance over emotional engagement also contributes to the difficulty articulating this need.

How to give your wife emotional intimacy during sex

  1. Mindfulness: Be in the moment. Put away all distractions and focus your mind solely on your partner and the experience you’re sharing. This will help you tune into her needs and expressions.
  1. Communication: Foster open dialogue. Prioritise checking in with your wife before, during, and after the intimate act. This could range from simple questions like, “Is this okay?” to more complex conversations about desires and boundaries.
  1. Affirmation: Simple affirmations and compliments can significantly enhance your partner’s experience. It boosts her confidence and deepens the emotional bond you share.
  1. Reading subtle cues: Pay attention to your partner’s non-verbal cues, such as facial expressions, sounds, and body movements. These cues can give you valuable insights into her comfort and pleasure levels.
alt: Ways to give your wife emotional intimacy during sex

By consciously incorporating emotional presence into your intimate life, you’ll address a fundamental desire many women find difficult to articulate.

This enhances the physical aspect of your relationship and fosters a deeper, more meaningful connection with your partner.

3. Open communication about desires

Open, honest communication is often cited as one of the most effective ways to enhance satisfaction in intimate relationships. 

Discussing sexual fantasies, desires, and boundaries can improve the physical aspects of a relationship and deepen emotional connection and trust.

Why is open communication about desires important? 

  1. Enhanced pleasure: Communicated desires can lead to more satisfying sexual experiences for both partners.
  1. Trust and emotional safety: Open communication fosters a sense of trust and emotional safety, which are essential for a satisfying, intimate life.
  1. Alignment and understanding: It enables couples to be on the same page about their needs, desires, and boundaries, avoiding misunderstandings and fostering a more harmonious relationship.
  1. Consent and boundaries: Explicit conversations about what is and isn’t okay ensure that both parties are comfortable and consensual in their activities.
alt: Why is communicating sexual desires important

Why is it hard for your wife to express her desires and fantasies? 

Discussing sexual desires and fantasies can be highly sensitive. 

The fear of being judged, misunderstood, or causing offence can create a barrier that prevents open communication. In some cases, societal norms and personal inhibitions can also inhibit these discussions.

How to talk to your wife about her sexual desires

  1. Create a safe space: Make it clear that you’re open to hearing about your partner’s desires without judgment.
  1. Be proactive: Don’t wait for your partner to bring it up. Take the initiative to start conversations about sexual desires and boundaries.
  1. Use ‘I’ statements: Frame the conversation in terms of your own experiences and desires to avoid making your wife feel defensive or judged.
  1. Be open and receptive: Listen and validate your partner’s feelings and desires without interrupting. This can help her feel more comfortable sharing.
  1. Regular check-ins: Make time for regular discussions to update each other on your desires, boundaries, and any new things you might want to explore.

By taking steps to normalise and prioritise open communication about sexual desires and boundaries, you contribute to a more satisfying and fulfilling intimate life for both you and your partner.

Tips to improve sex in your marriage

Here are some additional tips you can use to make sex in your marriage more passionate and intimate so your wife can’t get enough. 

Allow tension to build

As humans, our brains often experience more pleasure when we go without something for a while before we receive it. So, take your time during foreplay and build the anticipation so that when you and your wife finally have sexual intercourse, the pleasure is much sweeter. 

Separate your sexual intimacy from routine

As busy working couples with kids, we can often think of sex as an item on our to-do lists. So, it’s important to separate sex from our daily routines. 

Avoid speaking of routines or household chores in the bedroom. Remember, sexual arousal disappears when you’re distracted or stressed. 

Carve out time to spend with each other — outside the bedroom

Spending time with your wife outside the bedroom will help build the emotional connection we discussed earlier. She’ll feel like you’re giving her attention without only being after sex. This will make her feel appreciated and desired. 

You can spend time with her by: 

  • Having sexy date nights 
  • Going out to dinner
  • Watching movies together
  • Cooking together
  • Talking to her throughout the day via text message

Focus on touching her affectionately

Ensure you touch your wife affectionately — in and out of the bedroom. This is especially true if you know that touch is one of your wife’s top love languages. 

Make sure you rub her shoulders if she’s stressed, put your hand on her leg when she sits next to you, and give her an affectionate kiss and hug when she gets home from work. 

Change up the type of sex you have

Unfortunately, sex does tend to get boring when you’ve been in a relationship for a long time. To make it more interesting and exciting, try to vary the kind of sex you’re having. This can mean varying the sex position, location, or incorporating fantasies. 

Need some inspiration for sex positions? Here’s a list of the top five hottest sex positions you’ve likely never tied (or even heard of). 

Maintain sexual curiosity

This links with the previous point. If you feel like your sex life is getting a bit stale, try new things (with consent, of course). The best approach is to focus on trying new things based on what you know your wife already loves. 

For example, if you know your wife loves oral stimulation, offer to buy a toy you can use on her while simultaneously stimulating her with your mouth.  

Improve your sex life by giving your wife the things she desires

A fulfilling, intimate life doesn’t just enhance your relationship. It contributes to your overall sense of well-being and happiness. 

Achieving this doesn’t have to be another task on your full plate. With a bit of open communication and mindful action, intimacy can be a natural, pleasurable part of your busy lives.

So, let’s break the silence and the cycle of unmet needs. 

For many women, these are the wishes they’re hesitant to express. We create a platform for deeper emotional and physical connections by bringing them into the open. After all, isn’t that what we all crave in our busy, hectic lives?


Want to spice up your sex life? Take a look at Beducated to help sizzle the passion in your relationship.

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