Who Should Take the Lead in The Bedroom?

who should take the lead in the bedroom

Negotiating physical intimacy in marriage can be a really touchy topic, not only here on the blog but in real life conversations. Both people in the marriage have different physical needs, whether it be frequency, positions, or pursuit.

There is no doubt in your marriage, there are certain roles you and your spouse take the lead on. Maybe your spouse is the main person in charge of taking out trash. It doesn’t mean you never do, but they do it most often.

Just the same as chores are assumed by each person as being their main responsibility, the same happens with initiating in the bedroom. Most often, this takes place because one partner has a greater need for release then the other. That can cause them to always initiate and develop this pattern in the marriage.

Today, I want to take a look at who should lead in the bedroom.

Is There Anything In Scripture That Says Only The Man Should Initiate?


For some people, they may point to places in the Bible that talk about men being the spiritual leader of the household. I do not personally interpret any of the scriptures to mean that this applies to sex.

If you feel that it is the man’s responsibility as the spiritual head of the home to make sure all sexual activities take place, then that is what is best for your marriage.

Since I don’t think that is what the scripture is implying, I have no problems with both genders leading equally or one more often than the other. 

Does Your Spouse Want You to Initiate?

This is a question you should ask your spouse. I can’t possibly presume to know what works in your relationship and what doesn’t. If I had to guess, I would say the answer is, yes, we all want the other person to initiate at times.

You can read what JD over at Sex Within Marriage has to say about his personal view of his wife initiating physical intimacy.

It is possible that your partner has already had this conversation with you. They may have shared with you that they would like you to come to them and initiate love making.

To a degree, their perspective may have a lot to do with how open you are when they ask for time together.

If you have a bad habit of telling your partner that you are not in the mood when they ask, they will stop asking as much. That doesn’t mean they don’t want to be with you, it just means they are tired of getting turned down. Can you really blame them?

Why is it Important That Both Take the Lead?


This is my personal opinion of course, but I think that both people in the marriage should take the lead at times when it comes to sex. If you are having a hard time negotiating sex in the marriage, taking turns leading can solve some problems. 

Taking the Lead Increases Desires

When you pursue your spouse, you are admitting that you have sexual needs. It is very important in finding satisfaction in your love life if you admit that you have these needs. This gives you permission to allow the desires for your spouse to build up inside of you.

Show Your Spouse You Love Them Through Initiating

For your spouse, being pursued physically can be a sign of love. Now, I know this gets sticky in marriages. If you have a high sex drive and your spouse has a low sex drive, then being pursued can feel like a bother.

I encourage the low sex drive spouse to work on initiating more often, because that will help with a lot of the tension in the marriage. It will show your high sex drive spouse that you love them. Not only that, it will help you to have a higher libido.

Why I Had a Hard Time Initiating My Husband in Physical Intimacy

I’ve been married for over 12 years to my amazing husband, Austin. For well over half of our marriage, I never initiated sex, even if I was in the mood. 

There were several reasons that I struggled to go to him and admit my needs. For one thing, I was shy in this area. Not shy when he would come to me, but would have a hard time admitting I was in the mood and go to him.

Another reason I struggled to initiate was simply not knowing what to do when I did. I know I’m not alone in this, and I think that there are plenty of other women that feel this way. Without trying to be stereotypical, I think more men have a better handle on what they want in the bedroom than women do.

I felt embarrassed about admitting my needs and I wasn’t confident enough to pursue my sexual desires for my husband. 

What Changed For Me

Over the course of many years, it become apparent to me that my husband needed me to initiate our time together. This was a way he could feel reassured of my love for him. The same reason I would feel loved when he pursued me intimately. 

We were missing the mark with each other when it came to desire. It felt like he would ask me when it wasn’t a good time and that would cause me to say no. In turn, he would feel hesitant about asking me, so our frequency went down.

When I noticed we weren’t together as often as in the beginning, I knew I had to do something about it. That is what caused me to figure out how to initiate. 

Ever since I decided to take the lead sometimes, it has revolutionized our love life. It meets needs for my husband as well as for me.

I can’t decide for you whether or not you will take initiative in this area of your relationship. However, I encourage you to work on it if you never initiate. You might find that it really takes your intimacy to a new level.

Do You Initiate or Wait to Be Pursued?

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2 Responses

  1. I think wives should be encouraged to initiate, but I think they desire their husbands to assume a role of leadership and dominance. Check out my Part 7 for more, Keelie. Dominance does not mean dominating.

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