Intercourse Etiquette Question

First of all, I hope this is not too personal a question for all of you. I am somewhat newly married (in my 3rd year of marriage), and my husband and I have been disagreeing on the following situation.

We took a one week vacation, with my parents and our two young children, and stayed at my brother-in-law’s home (he’s a bachelor). Towards the end of the trip, my husband made it clear that he wanted to engage in intercourse. I didn’t feel comfortable with it for a few reasons. For one thing, the walls are paper thin in this house, and it echoes like crazy. I wasn’t sure that I would have time to wash my own bed linens before leaving for home the next morning. The kids were asleep, but my parents were still awake and packing up their things. When I told him that I was uncomfortable with the idea (and that we’d be in our own home the next day anyway), he got frustrated with me, saying that he thought I was just giving him petty reasons. He says that it’s common knowledge to my parents and his brother that we do have intercourse since we’re a married couple, and that I shouldn’t be so worried about it.

So my question to you is, what do you see as good etiquette when staying at family members’ homes for similar amounts of time?

My DH and I have made love at his parents’ house many times on vacation. We just try to be really really quiet! Um… why would you have to wash your own bed linens? My MIL always has us strip the beds the last day we are there, and then she just throws it all in the wash. Do you think it would bother them to find evidence of lovemaking on the sheets? I mean, you ARE married…

Your husband could have been nicer and tried to be understanding. I mean, you were going to be home the next day. And how fun would it be if you were all worried and stressed about it anyway? But I also think you could have been a little more understanding about him being a guy who’s gone a week without sex, and been less uptight about it.

Talk about this before your next vacation, so that the issue is worked out before it causes a problem again.

I think it’s nice of you to be respectful of your surrondings, in particular being in someone elses home.

I’m a single guy, so I want to agree in theory with your husband, but I think you were fine to disagree with him. He should have more respect for his family as well.

There is something that makes most of us uncomfortable when hearing people make love. Even if you were trying to be quiet, you might have been overheard.

Your husband will not enjoy sex with you if you are up tight or nervious. Its best to miss a few days and then to enjoy yourselves later. You don’t want kids giggling and laughing at what they think they heard. Acting chaste is fun sometimes. You husband really doesn’t want sex when you are not in to it…
When my wife is happy, I’m happy:):):):):):slight_smile:

My take as a guy in a similar state of life:

I think the thing that may have frustrated your husband was that when the opportunity presented itself you immediately thought of…laundry!

Don’t worry my wife’s mind works the same way. He was feeling confident and dangerous but was met with a reminder that married life can be boring and by-the-book. All men long for freedom and he was expressing that by claiming the freedom to throw out the rulebook and take his wife here and now. In the moment it can be frustrating because it’s not so much that we have to wait another day for sex, but that the rejection is a reminder that we have to submit our will, in fact lay down our very lives, and that is a holy (and frustrating) challenge.

I’m the wife, and in my opinion, it is absolute great fun to make love in your parent’s house! It’s especially fun if you’re making love in your old bedroom (or your spouse’s old bedroom)! Best of all is if you’re making love in the bed that you grew up sleeping in.

My husband and I have always been very horny when we visit relatives. The element of “danger” or “getting caught” makes the lovemaking that much more exciting! You have to try really hard to “be quiet,” and that just makes you want to moan and sigh even more! And you try not to creak the bedsprings, but the harder you try to stay quiet, the noiser they seem! You just know that your parents are overhearing you–it’s so exciting!

I’m very serious here. Some of the best sex you’ll ever have is in places where there is a possibility of “getting caught.”

You want to know what’s even more fun? Making love at one of your KID’s places (when they’re out on their own). Our daughter told us, “You’d better not have sex out here!” (We ignored her and had a great time!)

Even though it seems embarrassing, it isn’t. Your parents WANT to know that you are happy and still madly in love with each other. You aren’t doing anything that they haven’t already done.

Your kids want to know that you still love each other, too, and even though they make faces about parent sex when they are older, they are secretly very proud of their mom and dad and their love for each other.

Just one hint–make SURE that you put your shirt on right-side out after you’re finished and come back downstairs to join your parents watching the late news. I didn’t once–came downstairs after a love romp with my shirt on WRONG SIDE OUT–now that was embarrassing!

I have been married almost 20 years and never have, never would make love in my parents’ house or his parents’ house (if there was anyone else home). Too distracting!

If you were living there for an extended period of time, that might be different but for a short vacation, I would wait until I got home.

I don’t think it’s a HUGE deal either way. If you’re uncomfortable, for any reason, and all you’re asking is to wait a few days, I think that’s the most important thing. I don’t think either spouse should pressure when someone is uncomfortable about it. And although to others (including my husband) it’s exciting and would be fun, that doesn’t override the other being uncomfortable.

And I do think that there is an element of, if not respect, than just plain consideration to whoever you’re staying with. The sheets thing, well, I don’t want to clean someone else’s mess of bodily fluids up, no matter what kind of bodily fluids it is. And unless Catholics have found a new way to make it not messy (the condom is the only thing I’ve ever heard of that helps with that), I don’t know how you could keep it from being pretty obvious. Of course the “evidence of sex” from a married couple in and of itself shouldn’t be offensive, but having to handle it, and it being expected of you that you shouldn’t mind, would be in my opinion.

I’m sorry, Cat, but knowing that your kids and parents are happy to know you are in love and happy does *not *mean they want to hear you have sex.

Sure, it may be “dangerous” and “exciting” to have sex in your parents’ home, but if you know you can’t do it without infringing on their own space then you shouldn’t do it. Paper thin walls? Creaky bed mattresses? Moaning that you cannot contain? No.

Why subject someone to something they don’t want to hear, in a space that belongs to them, where they cannot “escape” it? That would TOTALLY violate my boundaries if I was your parent or child. And I wouldn’t want to be laundering your sheets, either.

I don’t want my parents to feel like they have to be involved in our lovemaking in any way.

And yes, I’ve made love to my husband in my parents’ home, but at very discreet times when I KNEW they wouldn’t know or hear. And we used a towel over the sheets to spare the sheets. It’s easier taking care of the towel on your own (and it’s less obvious) than carrying a load of sheets to the wash.

I agree with this post :slight_smile: great fun with the element of getting caught kind of exciting. Neither of us ever put our clothes on inside out though, that would be very funny though!


I lean in agreement with the last two posters…and I’ll leave it at that. :stuck_out_tongue:

My husband and I have had relations at my parents’ house, but we were in a very isolated room on the second floor. I really don’t think I could handle it with people walking around outside the door. I also agree that people really, really don’t want to hear the sounds of your lovemaking. I used to overhear the people in the apartment next to mine, and that was really stepping into my personal space!

I’d lean towards if you or your spouse is not comfortable with it, then it shouldn’t be done, and there’s no point in making the other person feel bad about it.

I think if I had my sister and her husband over at my place, I would not really want to hear them making love. Yes of course I want them to love one another, but I don’t think I should have to listen in. And if the walls are rather thin and sound travels well in the house, you will be listening in even if you don’t want to. Sure, you love your spouse, but you do need to mind the people who own the house and respect some boundaries.

I guess this is just kind of a subject that depends on the person.

If the walls are thin, it would be immodest to have noisy sexual relations. Of course, one does not HAVE to be noisy :wink: If the bed makes noise, you move to the floor.

The laundry thing has me scratching my head. When one has overnight guests, one launders the bed linens when they leave anyway, and I really doubt that your family is going to black light them inspecting for traces of marital relations before they toss the sheets in the maytag…

I was thinking the same thing.

me too :wink: And without being…inappropriate, there are other places and ways in which to have relations besides lying on the bed. :shrug: However if you can’t be quiet or if you’re just plain uncomfortable with it I can see why you’d want to wait. For some women I think being comfortable is really important and being at the IL’s might not be too comfortable…

I think whomever said it probably put your husband off that the first thing you thought of was laundry was on to something.

:smiley: :D:D Well, if the relatives all work as CSIs then maybe there is something to be concerned about. But otherwise, probably not.

Whoever said the advice of moving to the floor is spot on! Hubs and I have done that a few times whenever we had to housesit for his parents. :smiley:

If you are still worried about the laundry, you could always offer to strip the sheets yourself. :slight_smile: They’ll assume you’re being polite. (hopefully)

My DH and I have used the bathroom counter when the desire would hit us at his parents’ house, and the kids were out in the backyard with Gramma and Grampa! :dancing: Locking door… no creaking bed springs…

I’m sure they’ve figured out what’s going on when both of us seem to disappear for ten minutes… but who cares? We’re married… we’re allowed. :smiley:

And besides, once when I was visiting their house before DH and I were married, they woke me up when they were making love! :blush: It was a little embarrassing, but it was nice to know they were still hot for each other after 20 years. Especially since I was going to marry their son… and he would pick up their attitudes about sex!

um…is there generally a lot of ‘mess’??? My dh insists on thoroughly cleaning himself up with tissues, so I do too, and the sheets too if it’s come out. I always wondered if this was normal practice or a hangup of my dh’s. (another example of how he would rather just ‘look’ than actually ‘do’)

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit