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  #1  
Old Jan 24, '11, 12:25 pm
tek95969 tek95969 is offline
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Default Masturbation performed by spouse

If this subject is in any against forum policies I apologize. I read the rules and thought I had chosen the right category.
This subject is delicate to all I'm sure, especially me but I wanted to hear some other views along with what my priest has given me. Been married 30 years to my wife, returned to church 2 years ago and have gone through a serious process of "coming back" many confessions, had our marriage blessed etc. My wife and I had always had a great sexual relationship until a few years ago after her hysterectomy. Her interest was gone plus it was uncomfortable to the point of pain for her. She doesn't mind satisfying me by masturbation and oral means but I am unsure if this could still be a sin, even though it is within the marriage. My priest has said that what happens between a married couple is OK.
So my question is: By her doing this for me constitute a sin?
Or is it mainly self-masturbation which I know is sinful. I'll admit to being guilty of this years ago but since returning have avoided temptation completely.
Again, if this is inappropriate I'm very sorry and understand if it gets deleted but this is really bugging me and need to ask someone.

Thanks,
tek
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  #2  
Old Jan 24, '11, 12:31 pm
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Snugglebugmom Snugglebugmom is offline
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Default Re: Masturbation performed by spouse

It sounds like a solution, and to a non-Catholic it might be, but according to Church teachings it is still sinful. It may be unitive, but it is not procreative, i.e. there is no way those actions could lead to conceiving a baby. This in and of itself makes it a no-no. I'm not sure where your priest got his information, but it doesn't sound right to me.
I'm sorry, it sounds like you are in a pretty tough situation.
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  #3  
Old Jan 24, '11, 12:33 pm
mdrummer5 mdrummer5 is offline
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Default Re: Masturbation performed by spouse

From a literal perspective if she's doing it to you it's not masturbation.
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  #4  
Old Jan 24, '11, 1:03 pm
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Default Re: Masturbation performed by spouse

Such is a mortal sin...

As to the problem...contact http://www.ncbcenter.org/NetCommunity/Page.aspx?pid=183

ask to speak with an ethicist...they are recommended by Catholic Answers
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  #5  
Old Jan 24, '11, 1:22 pm
OraLabora OraLabora is online now
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Default Re: Masturbation performed by spouse

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bookcat View Post
Such is a mortal sin...
Not necessarily. That's not up to you to judge, but to God. The OP can help discern whether the sin is mortal or not, in the privacy of the confessional. Nobody here is qualified to pronounce definitely whether the OP is sinning mortally or not.
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  #6  
Old Jan 24, '11, 1:25 pm
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Default Re: Masturbation performed by spouse

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Originally Posted by OraLabora View Post
Nobody here is qualified to pronounce definitely whether the OP is sinning mortally or not.
True, the mortal part is not for us to decide. But these types of actions are inherently sinful, unless I am severely mistaken. The degree of culpability can be mitigated by circumstances.
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  #7  
Old Jan 24, '11, 1:27 pm
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Default Re: Masturbation performed by spouse

Quote:
Originally Posted by OraLabora View Post
Not necessarily. That's not up to you to judge, but to God. The OP can help discern whether the sin is mortal or not, in the privacy of the confessional. Nobody here is qualified to pronounce definitely whether the OP is sinning mortally or not.
The act which is proposed here is objectively a mortal sin (in the objective use sense...like when one says "murder is a mortal sin")

It is a grave matter.

(The persons involved must judge as to if they "committed" a mortal sin in the past...and a confessor can help there...)
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  #8  
Old Jan 24, '11, 1:34 pm
davidv davidv is offline
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Default Re: Masturbation performed by spouse

Quote:
Originally Posted by OraLabora View Post
Not necessarily. That's not up to you to judge, but to God. The OP can help discern whether the sin is mortal or not, in the privacy of the confessional. Nobody here is qualified to pronounce definitely whether the OP is sinning mortally or not.
But we can see that it is definitely gravely wrong and sinful.
Quote:
Originally Posted by CCC
2352 By masturbation is to be understood the deliberate stimulation of the genital organs in order to derive sexual pleasure. "Both the Magisterium of the Church, in the course of a constant tradition, and the moral sense of the faithful have been in no doubt and have firmly maintained that masturbation is an intrinsically and gravely disordered action."138 "The deliberate use of the sexual faculty, for whatever reason, outside of marriage is essentially contrary to its purpose." For here sexual pleasure is sought outside of "the sexual relationship which is demanded by the moral order and in which the total meaning of mutual self-giving and human procreation in the context of true love is achieved."139
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  #9  
Old Jan 24, '11, 1:53 pm
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Default Re: Masturbation performed by spouse

Welcome to the board, tek! Don't fret: CAF gets questions like this all the time. Your humility and your desire to obey the laws of Christ and His Church, following the laws as well as you can and even coming to a public internet forum to clarify them, is most praiseworthy. The suffering you (and your wife) must be going through must be enormous, yet you keep the faith.

THE LEGAL ANSWER:
Manipulation of the genitals as foreplay: go for it.
Manipulation of the genitals to orgasm: grave sin.

Everyone above is right. Your priest is absolutely wrong. He may know this and just not have the heart to say so. I can sympathize with that. He's still wrong.

A PAINFULLY LEGALISTIC QUESTION:
Would it be possible for your wife to masturbate you all the way to the point of orgasm and then, as you feel yourself hit the "point of no return," for you to direct your penis at her vagina? Significant penetration would not necessarily be required; a licit sex act needs only to deposit sperm inside the vagina (or make a reasonable attempt at doing so) in order to be considered unitively and procreatively normative. You might think of it as the opposite of "pulling out" -- instead, you'd be "pointing in" at the last moment.

A SINCERE, IF VERY INFORMAL, VERY BRIEF EXPLANATION OF THE TEACHING
I hate asking questions like that, because it makes the Church's teachings on sex seem mindlessly robotic, like we are completely obsessed with the physical and mechanical form of sexuality, rather than the emotional and spiritual contexts. Yet if Catholic teaching on sex has one central truth, it is that the physical form of sexuality has profound implications on everything else in your marriage. We deeply believe that human persons are not just "souls-in-bodies" but a radical union of soul and body, so that what our body does carries as much weight in the people we become as what our spirit thinks or feels.

So, yes. The form matters a very great deal. It might seem stupidly mechanistic, but sexual intercourse needs to be your body's way of saying, "I love you, I give myself totally to you, I hold nothing back, and if my passionate, self-negating love for you should bear the fruit of new life I welcome it." When your wife masturbates you (manually or orally), what your bodies are saying is, "I need you to give me pleasure. I love myself." I don't believe for a minute that that's what either of you are thinking consciously, but that's the Church's understanding of what's going on, and that's why the Church teaches that it's a serious problem. If you cannot participate in that act of gift, that self-negating love, then it is better to abstain.

THE WAY FORWARD
If you do what I have suggested above, that sort of reverse withdrawal, you and your wife will be participating in authentic, loving, marital sexual intercourse, but, plainly, it would still a diminished form of intercourse, injured by your wife's malfunctioning sexual appetite. She should see a doctor, because it is a medical problem, if you have described the situation completely. It may even be treatable, and if so that would be ideal. A close relative of mine also went through a hysterectomy, also experienced the same symptoms that your wife is experiencing, and it turned out to be a severe testosterone imbalance. It was easily treated.

DISCLAIMER: I am not a theologian. If I have said anything against the teachings of the Catholic Church, let my brothers and sisters of CAF correct me and let my errors be anathema.
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  #10  
Old Jan 24, '11, 2:01 pm
OraLabora OraLabora is online now
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Default Re: Masturbation performed by spouse

Quote:
Originally Posted by davidv View Post
But we can see that it is definitely gravely wrong and sinful.
We all know that. What we don't know is that the OP is, himself, sinning mortally or not.

People here are too trigger happy at saying someone sins mortally or not, when it is really something that should be determined inside the confessional, not an internet forum. Best advice is to direct the OP to his confessor.
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  #11  
Old Jan 24, '11, 2:59 pm
Lancer Lancer is offline
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Default Re: Masturbation performed by spouse

Quote:
Originally Posted by Snugglebugmom View Post
True, the mortal part is not for us to decide. But these types of actions are inherently sinful, unless I am severely mistaken. The degree of culpability can be mitigated by circumstances.
You are not mistaken...some excerpts from the Catechism...say the same...

Quote:
Offenses against chastity

2351 Lust is disordered desire for or inordinate enjoyment of sexual pleasure. Sexual pleasure is morally disordered when sought for itself, isolated from its procreative and unitive purposes.

2366 Fecundity is a gift, an end of marriage, for conjugal love naturally tends to be fruitful. A child does not come from outside as something added on to the mutual love of the spouses, but springs from the very heart of that mutual giving, as its fruit and fulfillment. So the Church, which is "on the side of life," teaches that "it is necessary that each and every marriage act remain ordered per se to the procreation of human life." "This particular doctrine, expounded on numerous occasions by the Magisterium, is based on the inseparable connection, established by God, which man on his own initiative may not break, between the unitive significance and the procreative significance which are both inherent to the marriage act."

( RE: 2377 below--even in a totally different scenario--IVF--...the Church's teaching is consistent...there really is genius in Catholicism...hard to live it but it is full of genius...a person...Our Lord Jesus Christ)
...in Luke 10:16...Jesus sends out the Seventy-two disciples and says:

Quote:
Luke 10:16 (ESV)
16 "The one who hears you hears me, and the one who rejects you rejects me, and the one who rejects me rejects him who sent me."

2377 Techniques involving only the married couple (homologous artificial insemination and fertilization) are perhaps less reprehensible, yet remain morally unacceptable. They dissociate the sexual act from the procreative act. The act which brings the child into existence is no longer an act by which two persons give themselves to one another, but one that "entrusts the life and identity of the embryo into the power of doctors and biologists and establishes the domination of technology over the origin and destiny of the human person. Such a relationship of domination is in itself contrary to the dignity and equality that must be common to parents and children." "Under the moral aspect procreation is deprived of its proper perfection when it is not willed as the fruit of the conjugal act, that is to say, of the specific act of the spouses' union . . . . Only respect for the link between the meanings of the conjugal act and respect for the unity of the human being make possible procreation in conformity with the dignity of the person."

I recommend spiritual direction to discuss this situation in full and without the normal time constraints of the Sacrament of Penance...but first...read the Catechism section on marriage -- 1601 - 1666 and the sixth commandment -- 2331 - 2400.

Pax Christi
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  #12  
Old Jan 24, '11, 3:30 pm
tek95969 tek95969 is offline
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Default Re: Masturbation performed by spouse

WOW! and WOWBAGGER THANKS!!
Such an overwhelming response BY ALL, one that I never thought I would get.
Let's see - YES, NO, MAYBE my head is now spinning.

Let me clarify a few points-
My wife is clinically obese making normal penetration difficult using the classic position of man on top. Other positions are painful also.
Hormones can cause cancer in woman who have a family history of cancer, her sister had breast cancer 5 years ago so she is afraid to take drugs.
It is agreed by both of us that it is a true act of love even though it is not pro-creative, which is no longer possible anyway.
I do not have impure or lustful thoughts in the process.
My priest is Polish and very smart but there may have been a translative problem when I delicately tried explaining the situation in the confessional. The fact that I was there in and of itself points to me thinking it was a sin .

My faith is now strong enough that I would not have too much of a problem abstaining if that's what it boils down to. But I guess WOWBAGGER'S solution may be possible also.

At this point I think I will go back and talk to my priest and be more clear this time as to the situation. My conscience before when I was doing it myself, was always troubled afterwards with guilt because I knew it was a sin, but thought since she was willingly engaged when doing it to me as an act of love felt OK about it and still remain so. But I am determined to do the right thing in trying to live as Christ wants me to live.

Lancer - Thanks for the references now to get my CCC

Thanks to all for your input I greatly appreciate it! Any more thoughts on the subject feel free to post.
Hope I didn't open a can worms!
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  #13  
Old Jan 24, '11, 3:45 pm
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Default Re: Masturbation performed by spouse

Quote:
Originally Posted by tek95969 View Post


My wife is clinically obese making normal penetration difficult using the classic position of man on top. Other positions are painful also.
Hormones can cause cancer in woman who have a family history of cancer, her sister had breast cancer 5 years ago so she is afraid to take drugs.
You may want to see if you can find a NaPro doctor in your area. (Google the Pope Paul VI Insititue - they specialize in women's health from a Catholic perspective.) There might be a way to balance the hormones without increasing the risk of cancer. (I have the same sort of family history, and I'm on hormone treatments with them.)
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  #14  
Old Jan 24, '11, 4:15 pm
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Default Re: Masturbation performed by spouse

Good luck, Tek. I'll direct some prayers your way, and entrust further spiritual advice to your priest. I'm glad my response was helpful.
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  #15  
Old Jan 24, '11, 4:17 pm
Seatuck Seatuck is offline
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Default Re: Masturbation performed by spouse

http://www.nds.edu/old/well-Palermo.htm



Perhaps you can do some research into a natural remedy if you don't choose to go through a NFP only doctor. Lubrication is allowed as well.
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