Q&A: Sexual Frustration After Separation

“My husband and i have been together for 11 years and he just recently left me for another women 2 months ago.  i am 33 and in my prime raging with sexual frustration.  My question is now being married and in the beginning stages of divorce i am missing sex and intimacy.  I don’t desire him back due to finding out about 7 years of lying and cheating but this sexual frustration is too much to bear.  A guy friend of mine of course wants to help me out but i have a tight devotion to the Lord and strong convictions and know it is not in my best interest or his.  Is there anything biblically wrong with me using a vibrator to help me through this crisis in my life?”

Let me start off by saying how sorry I am that you are going through this.  What a very tough situation to find yourself in.  Divorce is never easy, and when you add years of lying and cheating into the mix it is even more painful.

I think that it is natural to miss sex and intimacy after being married.  You had both for years and now it has been taken from you.  Of course there is going to be a void there.  The danger I see is this guy friend who is available to “help you out” with this void you are feeling.  You are vulnerable and are being tempted right now to do something that you know is not right, but look at what God tells us:

Matthew 26:41 (NIV)

41″Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak.”

You said that you have a tight devotion to God and you know it isn’t right.  I know that you feel your convictions are strong, and that is a good thing.  But I also know that temptation can be hard to resist when you are lonely.  It is easy to let someone step in and try to “help you feel better” when you are feeling defeated.  I encourage you to take steps to ensure that you will not fall here, such as making sure that you and your male friend are never alone together.  Do not put yourself in a situation where it would be easy to give in. Instead of looking to him, and others to help fill this chasm that has been created in your heart, I encourage you to look to our Lord to fill it!  Use this time to draw closer to him.  Get more involved in your church or women’s group.  Fill your iPod with uplifting songs of praise.  Devote more time to reading God’s word so that you will deepen your relationship with Him.  He wants you to look to Him to meet your needs.   As the Psalmist said in Psalms 32, let God be your hiding place.  Let Him protect you from trouble and surround you with songs of deliverance.  Listen to this song and think about letting God fill that intimacy void in your life…

Let’s look at another passage of scripture:

1 Corinthians 10:12-14 (NIV)

12 So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall! 13No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.

God says that when you are tempted, he will provide a way out so that you can stand up under the temptation.  Right now you are hurting and vulnerable.  You are frustrated and missing the sex and intimacy that you once shared with your husband.  I’ve already talked about letting our Savior help you with the intimacy part.  I believe that as you draw closer to Jesus and actively pursue a deeper relationship with Him, the need for a sexual relationship will lessen some.  I’m not saying it will cease to exist, just that it will not control your life to the point of extreme frustration, because you will be focused on things that are good and pure.

And when the times come that you do need sexual release, then masturbate.  If you have read any of our site, then you should know that we do not think that masturbation = sin.  Remember the part about God providing a way out so that you can stand up under temptation?  Well, if you are relieving your own sexual urges when they arise, then you will be less likely to fall into sexual sin with someone else.  So that I’m clear here… yes, it is my opinion that using a vibrator on yourself is perfectly fine, so long as your thoughts are pure.  It is entirely possible to masturbate without fantasy involved at all (even though some people do not believe this).  The sin would be if you were thinking of and lusting for your male friend or someone else while doing so.  So be sure to guard your heart and mind when you find yourself having to “take the edge off.”

Making the transition to a life without sex, after being married, can be a huge adjustment.  It’s hard for many married people to understand, because they haven’t been in that situation before.  I’m so glad that you wrote in to us because there are probably other women out there who are facing similar circumstances in their own lives.  If anyone else has been through this before, maybe they will leave some advice or encouragement in the comment box.


  1. Happy New Year to everyone. I have been following this blog for a long time, however this is my first comment post.
    This article saddened me as it touched a healed cord with me.

    This time last year, I myself was going through a divorce. My wife of 6 years moved out and moved in with an ex-flame. At the time, I was going through as much pain as the lady referenced in this post.

    First, I just want to say I am sorry.

    Second, I encourage you to run to Jesus. I screamed at him. Yelled to him. Cried out to him. Worshiped Him. I played Praise and Worship music around the clock, changing the atmosphere in my empty house. http://www.pandora.com is an awesome site that will play music nonstop for an hour.

    Third: Do not be afraid to ask your girlfriends or family for hugs and a shoulder to cry on. It is necessary for your sanity.

    Fourth…Listen to this song by hillsong… Desert Song –
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QemZQKKJbRU it will encourage you.

    Today, I am happily married, attending a different church and we are whole and thriving.

    Ladies, thank you for this ministry. It is a voice of healing to many, including my wife and I.

  2. Great advice for a sad situation. My initial response was, “oh sure, i bet the guy friend is eager to help”….sheesh!! Good for you to warn about being vulnerable and guarding your heart when you are so lonely. Bless you for touching people’s lives in ways that really matter.

  3. Along somewhat of a tangent to this discussion, I am curious about the statement that we can masturbate without sinning in our thoughts. What are we supposed to think about while we’re doing this?
    And has this really worked for anyone?

    Anybody out there masturbate without thinking about some other person in a sexual way?

    What did you think about?

    Even when I just try to do it with my wife in mind, it hasn’t worked. I can’t imagine how a single guy would do it.

  4. There has been quite a lot of discussion about this on the articles in our Masturbation category. You’ll find the category listings at the top of each page on the right hand side.

    Essentially it is a matter of focusing on your own body and what you are feeling. If you can not masturbate without fantasizing about other women then it is clearly a sin area for you and should be avoided, but many men and women can do so without lusting after someone who isn’t their spouse.

  5. I do not think you need to worry about masturbation, honestly I think you should worry about your mental and emotional health. You must take care of yourself physically and mentally. You have gone through alot….look out for your self girl. everything else will fall in line! 🙂

  6. Hi,

    How sad I was to read your post and thankful for the comments you received herein.

    What a blessing to be able to even talk about these aspects of our daily lives in a Christian context.

    My life would be forever altered in your situation and I would not be a very pleasant woman to know for some time.

    My frustration would lead me into all manner of outside commitments to just feel worthwhile as a person after such betrayal.

    Guard yourself from too many commitments and volunteerisms. Although you would be busy and feel gratified from all the ‘ you are so wonderful because you do so much for all of us ‘…. it is a terrible escape hatch to use during this time of huge transition in your life.

    Needless to say, you will be prayed for by all of us here and especially during this time of ‘what will I do with myself this New Year of 2009’.

    My prayer for you is that you will experience more love from the Lord Jesus than ever before, that you will have more genuine friends than you could have imagined, that those who do love you will lavish that care upon you more than ever, and overall that you might consider adopting the phrase…..

    2009, love is divine.

    Mull over that short blip and see how much you can make it a part of your life. God is faithful and He will never leave nor forsake you. Turn to him as all these posters have exorted you to do and see how magnificent He makes your life through this year.

    God bless you sweetly.

  7. I commend cumingirl for stepping out to touch basis on such a difficult and embarrasing topic. I’ve been w/my husband for over 10 yrs and have been seperated for about 3. Currently, we are in the final stages of finalizing our divorce and life as a single mom, living without sex has been EXTREMEMLY challenging. I’ve had male friends who happily relieved my sexual frustration in the beginning. However, as I developed my relationship w/Christ, I really didn’t think about sex as often as I used to. Trust me, it was really hard for me to make the transition. Going from 2-3 times a day making love w/my husband to almost nothing was absolutely challenging. Each time I masturbated, I felt a sense of guilt and shame. I wasn’t sure if I was committing sin but I knew that it was becoming more difficult to control my sexual desires. To make a long story short, knowing that our bodies are the temple of the holy spirit and that he lives inside of us helps me try to stay on track. However, I believe that if your thoughts are pure when you masturbate, you should be fine. Since I’m still technically “married” thinking of some good times my husband & I shared helps me tremendously when trying to maintain healthy attitude while masturbating. This issue is definitely something that needs to continued being addressed because I’m sure many christians are struggling with it.

    – Jackie

  8. Just wanted to follow up on my previous comment….after posting that comment, I’ve been feeling extremely convicted in my heart about trying to justify my point. Its unfortunate that many of us are struggling with similiar issues. However, we can communicate w/each to provide support.

    Apparently, God has put something in my heart to change my view point on this subject. Therefore, I am truly sorry if I’ve misinformed anyone here. This is something that I wrestly with and will continue seeking answers from God and surround myself with people to encourage me.

  9. I found this site the other day and am so thankful to know that other women do have these feelings and issues. I just celebrated my 25th anniversary by myself. My husband and I have been physically separated for seven months. Haven’t had sex in 19 months. After our first year of marriage my husband just didn’t really care if we had sex, head was a different story. We averaged sex every three months, and I usually ended up masterbating because it was just an act to him, no foreplay, nothing. I just thought that was marriage sex was. I wanted sex atleast once a week if not more. I took advantage of his morning erection when ever I could.

    Now to my current situation. I still do masterbate, yet not very often, I don’t seem to need the relief or feeling. However, with my past period I was extremely horny and even ended up watching porn. All that did was escalate the problem, like duh! So I masterbated that evening without much relief and did again in the shower the next morning. We are talking about the shower I had today, again not much relief. My problem, which I can not recall ever having, just this afternoon the strongest feeling, ache, desire came over me. I would get horny for my husband, but this happened without any outside stimulation, except mine. I has been very difficult to concentrate, with this extreme sensation in my clit and vagina. Now I know how guys feel, I think. I’ve tried masterbating again without producing an orgasm. I don’t know what to do to relieve this aching desire. It makes me feel like I need a good f—, which I have no intention of doing. I have a wonderful walk with the Lord and have finally become content in being single. I have no need for a man at this time, since I am perfectly capable of taking care of my sexual needs, yet I am unable to relieve this feeling. I need help, and quick. Thank you all.

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