How to express personal grooming preferences?
We have a lot of issues. Most are probably mine.
But I could use some advice and prayer for wisdom about how to handle one that I’ve avoided for a long time:
To be honest, and it’s hard to admit this, I find my wife’s body hair to be a turn-off. Down there is totally unmaintained and extensive. (And it sometimes smells terrible.) She does shave her legs, but very infrequently, and even then it’s pretty haphazard, with lots of missed spots and scratchy stubble.
I’ve tried for years to ignore it and pretend it doesn’t matter, because I feel like it shouldn’t.
But it’s hard to be authentic and enthusiastic when part of you is saying “ew.” And lately I’ve realized that in doing this I’m walling myself off emotionally.
So what can I say? How can I do so both lovingly and honestly?
Well, for starters, you should probably avoid the phrase “smells terrible.”
Make it a positive request (“I want this”) rather than a negative request (“I don’t want this”). You want to see her shaved and clean, rather than you don’t want to see the hair. If you don’t already, you can offer to also shave yourself, so that you’ll both be engaging in more thorough grooming together.
We all have our personal preferences. Thanks for sharing yours with regard to your wife’s personal grooming.
Can you take showers or baths together? Why not try that and then enjoy washing each other.
Would it work to encourage her to consider your ideas by talking about you both looking your best for the other? Doing the extra things to show love? Talk about what you both can do for your relationship?
We can’t change everything (sometimes very little) about our spouse. A few things will never change – unless we do. So, I know you say it has been years, but perhaps this is a way in which you are to show your unconditional love to her.
Also, I’m curious to whom you are comparing her? What is your standard to which she doesn’t match?
I am not a woman, so I could be wrong here, but I thought that a healthy vagina should not ‘smell'(?) Obviously, when a woman becomes sexually excited there is lubrication, which has an aroma that many husbands enjoy. I assume you are not talking about that? Does she have good hygiene (i.e. take showers, baths, etc.) ?
As for the unmaintained pubic hair, as Nova said you should express your preference in terms of wanting to see her groomed.
Sometimes the things we eat can cause odors to come through the pores of our skin; that of the pubic area being folded against itself, the odor would reasonably cling.
Does she have difficulty shaving her legs? Is it hard for her to see or difficult to twist and bend to reach? Could you offer a monthly spa treatment that included leg waxing (among other, more relaxing things, like a massage)? Make it a gift of CARE and PAMPERING for her amazing body that you love rather than cleaning herself up enough to pass muster.
In regards to your follow up questions:
-I don’t know that the smell you are describing sounds “healthy”. I notice I have a stronger smell when I have worked out and sweated, if we had sex earlier in the day and I haven’t showered yet
I’ll give some background and kind of put myself out there. When we first got married, I did no grooming. The only way I could have an orgasm at the beginning of our marriage was through OS. DH would often get a hair caught in his throat, and I have experienced that when giving OS as well, so I know it is distracting. He didn’t complain in a mean way, but it was noticeable that it wasn’t always pleasant. So, for several years I would trim most of my hair down really low. I came across an article talking about Brazilian waxes making orgasm easier. I decided to give it a try and got one before a 5 year anniversary trip.
My experience has been that being waxed makes sex and sexual touch more enjoyable, and so I get a Brazilian every month (well except now with the shut down).
Perhaps you can bring it up that way, asking if you can experiment together and both remove hair and see if it feels different.
The spa day idea could work as a one-off. Either you could frame it as a treat for her (“you’ve been working so hard lately, you deserve a day off and some time to relax, so I booked you a spa day…”) or as part of another occasion (“it’s our anniversary soon, let’s go away for a romantic weekend, and to help you prepare I’ve booked you a spa day so that you’ll look extra sexy…”).
Then you shower her with compliments.
Soft words can be good. But somethings biting the bullet and coming right at the problem with bare honesty is the only way to get someone’s attention. Sounds like she isn’t giving the area much attention now. I doubt you saying something brutally honest will make it any worse.i would say something along the lines of “honey, I love you. I love X Y Z about you. I am having serious trouble with this though. It is causing me to be put off and I don’t want to be put off. Can you help me here?” I would be blunt. And “if there is anything similar about me or something I’m doing that causes you similar distress, please tell me so I can handle it for you.”
I know what you are afraid of – the same as many of us – that she!ll cut the spigot off. Unless she is just a vindictive person, I doubt that will happen. She might even appreciate some hard honesty.