Also, RideItOut, I agree with your assessment of the vast majority of the BH approaches to "demand" sex acts. I'm just trying to point out the audience problem -- what people hear and consequently respond to, rather than what is actually being said...which is why I think those discussions are better placed in protective threads like this one, because other men tend to hear and understand with more nuance, in this particular regard.
Look, I get the argument that WWs tend to feel ashamed and degraded coming out of affairs and when they want to reconcile (also a choice for them) that they want to rebuild that intimacy in a trusting environment. I get it. That's how we all want to feel when we're having sex.
But, you know what? Sex wasn't safe for me for a long time after D-Day. If I'm completely honest, it's still not 100% safe for me *now*. I still have mind movies during sex sometimes. Not the debilitating ones from the early years, but those stray thoughts pop in. They'll probably be there for the rest of my life. And God forbid I don't bring my A game -- get a little too excited, cum a little too early, not be 100% in the mood. That triggers a whole set of insecurities about whether she'll start looking around for something else. My rational mind knows that's stupid and my wife (likely) wouldn't do that...but the animal bits of my brain aren't always rational, and they get a vote in what I think, too. (Digression: On the second or third night after D-Day, my wife took a sleeping pill and we ended up having sex. Right in the middle of it, she said, "I love you, AP". She knew immediately what she'd said, and so did I. Again, my rational brain connects the sleeping pill and her confusion. My emotional brain has never unheard it. Not ever.)
My wife accepted any sex we'd have after D-Day. And we had a ton of angry sex. My mentality was that I would be goddamned if I was going to deny myself sex when I wanted to get off just because I happened to hate her guts. I think we both understood on some level that when everything else was going wrong, sex was the only glue that was keeping us together. Call it better marriage through brain chemistry. Whatever. Sex would calm the rage waters for a couple of days. Looking at the world through cum-colored glasses, I guess.
Whatever, right? It worked for us.
So, no, I don't buy the position that any sort of demand with the implied threat of divorce is abuse or something. My first wife was pretty frigid. She had a history of childhood sexual abuse. It tormented me as a young man, but I thought I'd manage it...right up until we were laying in bed one night, and I'm kissing her neck, touching her, and doing the usual sorts of things to express a desire in having sex with her, and she said to me "When you keep trying to get someone in the mood and they clearly don't want it, it's the same thing as rape."
The marriage didn't last six months after that.
Now, as a fully grown adult with more experience in dealing with the adult repercussions of childhood sexual abuse, I understand how she was feeling now. I get that she had unresolved issues surrounding sex and responded by feeling threatened. Twenty year old me didn't know that. Twenty year old me knew that I was *not* going to deal with that shit for the rest of my life. One of the basic stipulations of being married to me as a twenty year old kid was that I was now allowed to have the religiously sanctioned sex that I'd been denied all of my life up to that point. You could even call that a hard boundary for being married to me. And like all boundaries, that doesn't mean that I get to tell you what to do. It means that I get to choose what I allow into my life.
(I was also a cSAB kid...but it never really bothered me. It was something some creep had done to me, not anything I ever interpreted about being about me or a reflection on me. This is likely due the fact that when I told my parents at 5 years old what had gone on, they immediately dealt with it. Got the guy arrested. I grew up knowing that my parents would keep me safe from creeps if I told them the truth.)
So, in other words, enthusiastic sex is a boundary issue for me. We're going to have sex and we're both going to like it, goddammit. Otherwise I'm going to terminate this relationship and find someone who does. This is much easier for me to say now that all of my bio kids are fully grown and on their own. It was a different sort of calculus when they were young and in the home. I understand that, too. I sympathize with guys who have frigid wives or wives who are situationally frigid (butt sex or whatever), because there's some truth to the argument that the least invested sexual partner controls the sexuality and expression of the marriage. Those limits are negotiated in every marriage, and not always to the satisfaction of both parties, so I recognize that's a real thing...but it's also what I would call a normal "marriage thing" that everyone has to deal with and if you can't negotiate it, then it's in your best interest to get the fuck out or find other compensations to make up for the lack. I don't think that threat of getting the fuck out because your partner is unsatisfactory is abusive. It just is. My wife isn't entitled to my constant company/support/income any more than I'm entitled to butt sex just because we once signed a piece of paper pledging to do our absolute best to meet one another's needs until death-do-us-part.
That's the thing about infidelity. It's a one-sided renegotiation of the formerly agreed upon marital rules. Reconciliation is like declaring bankruptcy. You have to reach out to all of your creditors and pick what debts you're going to affirm and which you're going to give over. If you've ever been through bankruptcy, it's a painful process of cost/benefit analysis. In this case, sexual exclusivity (and/or the sexual rules of engagement) have already been bargained away, and a great many WWs seem to want to believe that they can re-affirm that obligation and take all of the other commitments off the table (It's a brand new marriage with all of the old rules back in place!) Which is bullshit. You don't reconcile with the same BH you cheated on. He's a different guy, a different debtor. All of those things that were once settled law get to be hauled out and re-examined to see if they're worth affirming again. (And honestly, any BS who doesn't realize they're approaching that re-negotiation from a position of power and seize it is a fucking idiot. Don't know about you, but one of the biggest light bulb moments for me was getting to hear the litany of real and imagined resentments my wife used to fuel her affairs and realizing that I had a list just as long that I'd never bothered to drag out to justify bad behavior because I was under the delusion that love covers a litany of sins. Fuck that. If you get to weaponize your resentments, then so do I. That's a new marriage rule.)
Anyway, I'm just rambling now. When you're an old guy, you have trouble separating this shit into discrete chunks, because it's all interconnected. Just don't get me started on the whole trope about women being the experts on healthy dynamics in your relationships while the guys are the coarse, un-nuanced rubes who are best led about by their swinging dicks, lest they make bad decisions.