Let’s face it ladies, with kids, work, errands, and the other thousands of things that pile up during the day, sometimes the fun stuff about being a grown-up gets put on the back burner…one of those fun things being sex. Sex is an important part of your marriage that needs attending to, and honestly, we deserve it! David Sbarra Ph. D is a couples therapist referred to as ‘The Relationship Scientist’, and with the help of You Beauty, he has the the answers to help you replace what’s missing from your bedroom. See what The Relationship Scientist shares with You Beauty below!
As a couples therapist, I hear a lot about people’s sex lives. I should rephrase that: I hear a lot about people’s less-than-ideal sex lives.
I often ask my clients about sex—how much do you have, how fulfilling is it, etc. Answers to “quantity and quality” questions are indicators of a couple’s overall wellbeing. For example, I worry less about a couple that fights intensely but has regular sex (that both people report is still satisfying) than I do about a couple who fights just as often and is not doing much of anything in the bedroom.
Relationship satisfaction tracks with sexual satisfaction. This was the conclusion of an interesting study out of Canada that investigated the sex lives and relationship satisfaction of 244 people over 18 months. Chief among the findings was that “intimate communication” was a key indicator of relationship health; the more of it, the better. Intimate communication is a nebulous term, but it refers, in this case, to the amount of time people said they spent talking about disagreements, expressing thoughts and feelings to each other, and discussing shared interests.
Sex counts as a shared interest. And the more you talk about it, the better it’s going to be. The challenge, usually, is how to do it. (Have the talk, that is. The sexual innuendos are inescapable here, just stay focused!)
Dealing With Sexual Mismatches and Incompatibilities
All couples have disagreements and disappointments about sex. Sexual mismatches (e.g., “I want sex at night but my husband always wants it in the morning.” or, “I want to do it four times a week; he wants to do it once a month.”) and incompatibilities (e.g., “I am tall—he’s short… the physics are tough.”) exist in almost every relationship. If you have difficulties you need to discuss in the bedroom (or, kitchen, or bathroom, or office, or wherever your sex life unfolds), this does not mean your relationship is doomed. The critical matter here is how you address these issues, and this is where the open and honest communication comes in.
Suppose, for example, you want more oral sex. Your man never goes down on you. (This is going to get a little R-rated, but I am trying to make a point: When you talk about sex, you need to talk about sex. You know what I mean?) When he does do it, he makes a big stink or pretends he just won a marathon. Let’s consider two conversations.
You: “How come I am the one giving all the oral sex in this relationship? You never go down on me. Why not?”
Him: “It’s just not my thing. I am sort of grossed out by it.”
You: “You’re grossed out by me?!”
Him: “No, not you, just doing that.”
You: “Well, I am not a huge fan of blow jobs, but I do it because I know you like it.”
Him: “Well, that must be your thing if you don’t mind doing it.”
You: “You’re being an ass.”
Him: “I am still not going down on you.”
How satisfying is that? Not so good, right? From my perspective, the problem with this conversation is that it doesn’t go deep enough.
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