The moment you change sex life from a fun, loving way to express yourself with your partner is the same moment you have brought a host of relationship issues into your marriage.

Your sex life connects you and your partner on a deep emotional level. The oxytocin released during sex is shown to improve trust between partner, lower stress, and studies suggest that it may even play a role in fidelity. It’s no wonder, then, that using sex as bait to get your way can be a real killjoy in your marriage.

Signs you’re using sex as a weapon include anger or frustration playing a role in your sexual activity, withholding sex to get what you want, and teasing your partner with the prospect of sex – but only as a reward.

Using sex to get your way is not only childish, it is also selfish. By treating romantic intimacy like a bargaining chip, you create damaging relationship issues that can be hard to fix. Here are 7 ways you’re ruining your marriage by using sex to get your way.

  1. Sex Becomes a Game

And not the fun kind.

Once you begin using your sex life as a means to get your way, your spouse will soon expect sex to be their reward for helping out.

This means that your spouse may start doing things they wouldn’t normally do and expect to get intimately rewarded for it. If the reward does not happen, your spouse will feel disappointed, frustrated, and rejected. This can create a vicious cycle of behavior that will only further your relationship issues.

Not only does this take the romance out of sex, but it creates distance between the two of you.

Your spouse should help you perform chores, attend functions and act kindly toward you because they love you, not because they expect a sexual favor in return.

  1. You Won’t Enjoy Being Intimate

There are plenty of amazing reasons to have sex with your spouse. Studies show that the more sex you have with your spouse, the more likely you are to verbalize your love to one another.

Research also indicates that women are more likely to have orgasms with a loving partner than a hookup encounter. Your sex life can also have a positive effect on your health, lowering your risk of heart attack, reducing the risk of prostate cancer, and improving bladder control.

When you begin using your sex life as a way to manipulate your partner into something, it starts to lose the wonderful benefits listed above. Using intimacy as a weapon will make sex less enjoyable for you – especially if you are only thinking about what you’re going to get out of the act once it’s over.

  1. It Creates Negative Sexual Tension

If using your sex life as a weapon is new to your relationship, trouble will soon follow. Throwing a wrench into your regular sexual routine can create negative sexual tension between you and your partner.

Your spouse may be puzzled by your actions. They may wonder if you are considering ending the relationship or ask you what they did to upset you. Furthermore, training your spouse to associate sex with work or treating lovemaking like a reward can make them feel belittled and angry with you.

  1. It’s a Challenge

When you use your sex life as a bargaining chip to get your spouse to do chores, give in to your whims, or withhold it as a punishment, you’re creating a challenge between yourself and your partner.

For example, if you are withholding sex to win an argument or to force your spouse to help you, your partner may retaliate by also withholding sex. This is a dangerous game to play since sex is proven to connect couples on an emotional level and boost oxytocin and relationship satisfaction.

A drop in sexual activity in your relationship can create bitterness and resentment between you and your spouse and should be corrected as soon as possible.

  1. Using Sex to Get Your Way is Selfish

One study reveals that couples sharing household chores ranked as the third most important aspect of a successful relationship. This came just under fidelity and a rocking sex life.

This desire for help around the house can cause problems when one partner uses sex as a lure to get their spouse to wash dishes, do yard work, or perform another household chore.

This manipulation is not only an odd, cold choice for getting your spouse to help out, but it is also selfish in nature.

You should be having sex with your partner because you want to connect with them on a deeper level or because you want to share a fun activity together – not because you want them to do chores.

Such a selfish action will encourage your spouse to associate sex with doing unpleasant tasks.

  1. It Displays Poor Communication

Are you feeling overwhelmed with taking care of the house, kids, work, or cooking? If you are, your knee jerk reaction should not be to manipulate your spouse with your body, but to communicate with them. You should feel free to ask them for help and to lean on them for support or comfort.

Using or withholding sex as a weapon reveals poor communication in your marriage. This can lead to misunderstandings, arguments, and severe relationship issues.

Avoid ruining your marriage through manipulation by learning how to communicate kindly and honestly with your spouse about your needs and desires.

Manipulating your sex life is sure to bring trouble into your marriage. It causes your partner to grow distant, to view sex as a game instead of a shared activity and causes poor communication between the two of you. Instead of using sex as a weapon, use it as an expression of love for your spouse.