The women in a small town in Colombia were fed up because the one road that led them to the nearest big city was in total disrepair. It was so bad that it took up to 14 hours to reach their "local" hospital and there were even reports of pregnant women dying in the ambulance on their way to give birth. Community board meetings and red tape, be damned! These women took matters into their own hands and did the one thing they knew would spur their men to take action and fix the road: they banded together and agreed to withhold sex until the job was done. Conniving and manipulative? Maybe. But you can add "effective" to that list because their protest, called the "crossed legs movement," is working like a charm.

This is the second time the women in this town have declared a sex strike in order to get the road repaired. The last time they did this was two years ago, and although they were promised a new street, nothing happened. But this time around, bulldozers, machinery, and working men are out in full force, proving you've got to at least wait for construction to begin before you take off your clothes. 

In all seriousness though, I typically feel it's pretty crappy to withhold sex and pleasure in order to get someone to do something for you. Have your eye on a gold bracelet and not giving it up 'til your husband breaks down and buys it for you? Bad, bad reason to withhold sex. But in this case it feels like the cause is important enough to break that rule. These women know they have one bargaining chip and they're using it for the greater good. 

And there are at least three more times when I think it's completely acceptable to withhold sex from a partner:

He refuses to hold up his end of the parenting duties and you're exhausted as a result. If you're the only one who gets up in the middle of the night, feeds, disciplines, and plays with the children, sex with your partner is probably going to be the last thing on your mind anyway -- at least until he starts pitching in. 

You've caught him sexting/endlessly texting another woman. Even if he says she's a work colleague, I would quickly construct a self-respect wall all around my privates and not cave in until that matter is resolved. 

You know that if you withhold sex tonight, tomorrow's sex is going to be even better. There are positive reasons to withhold sex, too! Sometimes flirting, getting each other hot and bothered, and then walking away makes for an even more interesting next day. 

Have you ever withheld sex to get something you wanted? 

 

Image via _nickd/Flickr