How to Deal with Sex and Intimacy Problems in Marriage
There is strong evidence that a married couple’s contentment with their sex life directly impacts their overall relationship satisfaction. MedicalNewsToday reports that having sex generates good feelings referred to as an afterglow that lasts about 48 hours. Interestingly, further research also indicates that the afterglow actually bolsters a marriage in the long-term.
Unfortunately, in spite of the wonderful feel-good buzz that sex adds to life, many couples complain that they struggle with having enough quality sex. Stress, children, boredom and busy schedules all play a role in disrupting a healthy sex life.
The good news is that there are proven ways to improve your level of intimacy which translates into a more vital sex life. Below are some ideas for recapturing the excitement of sex.
Spend More Quality Time Together
One of the most obvious causes of a lackluster sex life is not spending enough quality time together. If you don’t make time for each other so that you can connect emotionally, it will become difficult to connect physically. Remember, what is quality time for one spouse may not be the same for both people.
The challenge is to find meaningful activities that you can both enjoy as a couple. Think back to when you first started dating. What brought you together initially? Date nights have become a common way to rekindle the fire in the bedroom.
It is crucial to make each other a priority. Put away your cell phones. Remember, the goal is to recreate the connection you once enjoyed before time, children, demanding careers, and life got in the way.
Make an Effort to Get in the Mood
While some people may be able to jump right into a sexual encounter with little effort, few people can pull off sex on demand consistently without decompressing to get into the mood. If a nice bubble bath is the one thing sure to get you thinking about romance, then take that bubble bath.
Whether it’s music, a glass of wine, or staring at the stars with your beloved by your side, you must make the time to make it easy to look lovingly into each other’s eyes and get close emotionally. Remember, your spouse is likely a bit different than you are. We all respond to different gestures and warm up in different ways.
Erotic movies, sexy lingerie, and walks in nature are all tried and true ways to get you and your spouse into the right mindset. Discuss what you like and don’t like with your partner. Remember one person’s erotica might be another person’s idea of disgusting porn. Be sure to honor your differences when you are getting into the mood.
Learn what works and what doesn’t. While going to dinner can be romantic, if you stuff yourself with spicy, rich food, then don’t expect to feel sexy later. Use your common sense with lovemaking in mind.
Prioritize Intimacy and Stop Worrying about Sex As Much
When the idea of sex has become a stumbling block and created so much stress in the relationship that both partners feel anxious every time the subject comes up, it is time to take a break. NBC contributor, Nagoski recommends that you focus on intimacy instead of following sex tips for a specified period of time. Take sex off of the table completely for a week or a month.
Spend time together talking, hugging, and kissing instead. These actions build intimacy that strengthens your emotional bond with each other.
Nagoski also suggests the six-second kiss, a recommendation touted by therapist John Gottman. Spending quality time together kissing and hugging is likely to turn up the heat in your love life again, leaving you longing for the time to be up so you can have sex again.
Change Your Bedroom Routines to Add some Mystery into the Equation
Few married couples would argue that their love life was more exciting when they first met. Like so many aspects of life, even lovemaking can get monotonous after a few years. The good news is that it does not have to stay that way.
Try talking about your fantasies. Surprise your partner with a new twist in the routine. Don’t always expect the other person to initiate sex. Be an active and enthusiastic participant. Even when you aren’t in the mood at first, many times that changes after a few minutes of foreplay. Relaxing enough to go with the flow and enjoy your body is half the battle for busy, stressed-out couples.
Marriage is a commitment. Oftentimes, the wedded bliss we expect falls short, especially in the bedroom. By making some extra effort to spend quality time together and prioritize emotional intimacy, you can recapture the spice of the healthy sex life that you deserve.