The Mommies, authors of The Mother Load, receive lots of e-mail from people of all ages who are seeking advice on everything from parenting to spousal relationships to being parented. Here The Mommies advise a tired wife.
by Caryl Kristensen and Marilyn Kentz

Bottom fish? I have a wonderful husband and three darling children, ages 14 months to five years old. My husband is a loving, involved father, and good provider. We can afford for me to stay home with the children. I feel very fulfilled being a fulltime mom, and also feel I am doing a good job at it. I am very affectionate and involved with my kids. I am able to put a lot of time into planning healthy meals and good activities.

The thing is, it is a rewarding but pretty exhausting job! When I finally crawl into bed at night, the first thing I want to do is to just lay there for a few moments with no one touching me! I can fall asleep in about five seconds I am so tired. But my husband! Oh, he is always "in the mood." He is right there being very amorous the moment I touch the sheets. I find myself feeling irritated and wishing he would just talk to me a little or even just cuddle in a non-groping way. Don't get me wrong -- I adore him and find him extremely attractive, but I am spurning his advances more often than not.

I know this hurts his feelings, and heaven forbid, I would hate it to get the point where he is "looking elsewhere." He has never threatened this or even hinted, but it is getting so the going to bed period has gotten tense and uncomfortable. Do you have any suggestions as to how I can better "get in the mood," at least more often? I try to explain that I am just so tired, but I think that excuse is getting really tired itself.

Thanks for reading,

Tired Mom & Wife

The Mommies reply Dear Tired Mom and Wife:

Take heart, because you are one of millions who go wearily to bed every night and are secretly thinking, "Honey, you got a right arm, and you can learn to use it!" Most women caught in the spin cycle are experiencing a great, if not huge lack of libido, and the only thing we want at the end of the day that is long and hard is a good night's sleep. This is so absolutely normal, but holding it all in is not.

Start talking, first of all, to your husband. Here's a tip: It's usually not a good idea not to start the talk in bed after you've just rolled away from him. We think you'll find (unless your husband is a total jerk) he will be willing to compromise. Let's face it, they'll do anything to get some! Tell him that you generally like to be awake when you are making love to him and that because of your lifestyle this may require making an appointment to have sex. We know this sounds cold, and hardly spontaneous, but trust us, if you can plan for it, you just might find yourself looking forward to that time together.

Remember, your husband can no more turn off than you can turn on. Unfortunately for all of us, hormones aren't logical. Work with the man ... he loves you.

We've been there! The


recommended for you