Skip to main contentAccessibility feedback

Dear catholic.com visitors: This website from Catholic Answers, with all its many resources, is the world's largest source of explanations for Catholic beliefs and practices. A fully independent, lay-run, 501(c)(3) ministry that receives no funding from the institutional Church, we rely entirely on the generosity of everyday people like you to keep this website going with trustworthy , fresh, and relevant content. If everyone visiting this month gave just $1, catholic.com would be fully funded for an entire year. Do you find catholic.com helpful? Please make a gift today. Thank you. Wishing you a blessed Lenten season.

Dear catholic.com visitors: This website from Catholic Answers, with all its many resources, is the world's largest source of explanations for Catholic beliefs and practices. A fully independent, lay-run, 501(c)(3) ministry that receives no funding from the institutional Church, we rely entirely on the generosity of everyday people like you to keep this website going with trustworthy , fresh, and relevant content. If everyone visiting this month gave just $1, catholic.com would be fully funded for an entire year. Do you find catholic.com helpful? Please make a gift today. Thank you. Wishing you a blessed Lenten season.

Is it true that sexual intercourse between a married couple is sinful if the spouses do it with lust for each other?

Question:

Is it true that sexual intercourse between a married couple is sinful if the spouses do it with lust for each other?

Answer:

I realize that in our culture the word “lust” can be understood quite broadly, from “lusting after a chocolate bar” to simply finding another person to be sexually attractive.

But for the Catholic Church, to lust is to seek sexual pleasure in another person solely for one’s own pleasure without regard for the other person. The Catechism of the Catholic Church states: ” 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” (CCC 2351).

To have sexual feelings for one’s spouse or to enjoy sexual pleasure with one’s spouse is fine and according to God’s design. But to use one’s spouse as an object of pleasure without concern for the spouse is mortally sinful.

Did you like this content? Please help keep us ad-free
Enjoying this content?  Please support our mission!Donatewww.catholic.com/support-us