URIDU Health Family Work

What are common conflicts over sex?

Some men do not want their wives to use family planning - often because they do not know very much about how different methods work. The reason may also be that they are worried about their wives' health because they have heard stories about the dangers of family planning, they may fear that if a woman uses family planning she will have sex with other men or they may think it is ‘manly’ to have lots of children.

Arranged marriages are still common practice in many countries. The bride and groom have little or no say in what happens and following the wedding young girls are often isolated from their own families. In many communities, a woman becomes the property of her husband, who, after the marriage, may believe that he has the right to use her body for his pleasure whenever he wants.

Under these circumstances, many women find it very difficult to love their husband and to enjoy sex with him. Instead, they may feel they are being pressured into having sex with someone they do not know very well or possibly do not even like. They may reject their husband, or keep finding excuses why they cannot have sex with him. When this happens the husbands may get angry and force them to have sex, which can lead to a “vicious circle“, of the women resenting and rejecting their husband even more.

Some married men also think they still have the right to have sex with other women whenever they choose, whilst their wives are to be theirs alone.