Let’s talk about sex! Whether we keep the conversation behind closed doors or choose to talk about it with a professional, sex is a very important aspect of life affecting relationships, happiness, and health.
While there is no threshold to determine what constitutes a healthy sexual balance, a major issue between couples involves the frequency of sex-- whether there is too much or too little action going on in the bedroom.
Throw away the recycled stereotype that men prefer sex more than women; just erase it from your mind! In most relationships, one partner desires sex more often while the other may have a lower libido- all gender biases aside- and that’s okay.
It’s very rare for couples to be on the same sexual wavelength at all times, especially as the years pass. But if you or your partner experiences any hang-ups over this issue and it’s causing a strain on your relationship, it’s time to take a look and have a deeper conversation together.
Sex Drive or Withdrawal: Which am I?
Nobody knows you more intimately than your partner, except perhaps yourself. It’s important to think about which space you occupy in your relationship. Are you ready to pounce on your partner anywhere, any time of the day? Or are you content with a weekly romp in the sheets to satisfy your desires? Think also, in turn, of your partner’s sexual habits and preferences. Does your partner turn you down after a stressful day? Does your partner prefer personal care time (a massage, a bath) before sexy time?
Sex drives aren’t predictable like clockwork. There may be days where you can’t keep your hands off of your partner and others where no matter how hard you try, you just can’t seem to get in the mood.
On the other hand, sexual withdrawal can occur whether we are aware of it or not, which includes complete lack of sex either due to inability to perform, a declined mental state, or lack of desire. In some cases this can even signify a deeper underlying relationship issue. Everyone is different but sometimes it can feel like you and your partner are never on the same page. What do you do then?
Think and Talk: A Collaborative Effort
There’s a good reason why so many people don’t talk about sex, it can be embarrassing and awkward. But it’s very important for couples to be open-minded during this type of conversation and keep it accessible and positive.
If one partner is experiencing sexual withdrawal, a variety of factors come into play. They could be experiencing stress at work or home (sometimes both), drowning in fatigue, a yearning for more exploration or excitement from your sex life, or they could even be feeling resentful towards you!
Sex boasts wonderful euphoric after-effects but the reality is that it can require even more emotional satisfaction and contentment before even partaking in the act. Ask your partner if there are things bothering them and how you/they can work together to make life easier. Also don’t hesitate to ask them if there are things they find lacking or want more of when it comes to intimacy. Sometimes you just have to ask your partner what they want and they will be more than willing to tell you!
On the other end of the spectrum, there can be too much of a good thing! Sometimes the frequency of sex doesn’t matter as much as the quality - finding that ideal balance requires a joint effort from you and your partner. Discussing intimate activities you can do together to build up that desire can be crucial, as well as, the importance of separating intimacy from sex - they’re not mutually exclusive! Cuddling on the couch together over a movie, spending time talking over wine, even just going on a date-- all of these things breed intimacy and can help make for some amazing connection and passion when sex does happen.
Communication is key when it comes to sex. Working together as a couple to make the other person feel loved and listened to can work wonders when it comes to finding that perfect sexual balance in your life.