What a great time we always have on Bob and the Showgram sharing relationship advice with you on air each month! We are so grateful to have been given the opportunity to give away a free Couples Workshop registration on air today to one lucky winner. In case you missed the show, you can listen to the podcast on iheart radio here.
Today we talked about how to have more sexual intimacy in your relationship. What we know about relationships is that couples who report the most satisfying sexual relationships with their significant others have 2 things in common 1) they talk about their sex lives with one another and 2) they are good friends. These couples also make sex a priority in their relationship.
So we wanted to share some tips for creating more sexual intimacy in your relationship.
Talk openly about sex with your partner.
Talking about sex should include talking about what gets you in the mood and also what turns you off. Each of us has a sexual accelerator (things that turn us on) and a sexual brake (things that turn us off). Your talk about sex should include learning what your accelerators and brakes are and then finding out what your partners accelerators and brakes are.
Along those same lines, talking about sex with one another should also include talking about working through the times you aren’t feeling sexually connected. Specifically, when one of you is feeling rejected sexually.
All relationships have ebbs and flows - that’s normal. But if one of you is feeling rejected or dissatisfied in some way, talking about it and working through it is what matters. Now, learning how to have those conversations is very important and most people don’t - not because they don’t care, but because they just don’t know how. It’s not common knowledge and not really taught anywhere. However, it is crucial if you want to have a deeper emotional and physical connection with your partner.
Here are some questions to get you started:
- What accelerates your desire and what puts on the brakes?
- Who should initiate sex?
- How should we talk about rejection in a gentle way?
- What do we each want before, during and after sex?
Make sex a priority
We can’t tell you how many times we hear from couples that they just don’t have time for sex or they are just too tired. We know that making time for sex can feel like a challenge. However, when couples prioritize this area of their relationship they find that they start having more enjoyable sex and more frequent sex. This is often a result of your partner feeling important to you and that their needs are important and valid. This creates a culture of appreciation and trust that fuels intimacy and sparks your partner to want to connect more, both emotionally and physically. Scheduled sex is a good thing in a relationship as long as there is also a balance of spontaneity and connection as well.
Develop a close friendship
Couples who report having a very good sex life also report being very close friends with their spouse/significant other. Our advice then is to always be working on the friendship part of your relationship.
Here are some ways to develop a close friendship with your significant other:
- Be present when you are with them. Put away any distractions, turn off the TV and devices and really make a point to be engaged. Ask questions about what they are sharing and offer empathy and validation for their feelings. Learn to be a great listener and this will build trust with them. Trust is the foundation for a healthy and deeply connected relationship. For women, especially, trust is a critical aspect of sex. Women connect emotional and physical safety with sex in their brain and it either accelerates or puts on the brakes for them.
- Spend quality time together. Set aside dedicated time for your relationship and make it a priority. Here are some suggestions for how to spend quality time together:
- Uninterrupted time to talk everyday
- Date night every week
- Cook dinner together
- Find something new or adventurous to do together
- Workout together
- Read the same book and talk about it together
- Show each other non-sexual affection. Give affection frequently and sometimes unexpectedly – give hugs, kisses, cuddling without the intention of sex.
- Compliment and appreciate your partner. Share what you appreciate about them and make it personal. Here are some suggestions:
- I really appreciate how hard you work for our family
- I appreciate how creative and fun you are and I especially like it when you plan our date nights.
- I appreciate how loving and caring you are and that you take care of me when I’m sick.
Remember to work on both aspects of your relationship, the friendship and the physical intimacy. This is the best way to have more sexual intimacy in your relationship and a deeper emotional connection.
Shelly Hummel, LMFT and Carole Cullen, LMFT
More information about the authors can be found at: