It is quite common that couples in long-term committed relationships hit periods of time when one or both partners have low sex drive or desire for sex.
This is normal and to be expected for periods of weeks, months or for some even years. Yes, years. There are many many reasons why couples stop having sex despite their best efforts to stay engaged.
Not having sex is only a problem in the relationship if it is a problem for your and/or your partner. If your low desire causes distress for you or your partner there are many things that you can try to invite a new relationship with desire and sex.
#1 Way to Improve Low Sex Drive: You are in charge of your desire
To get started, you must remember that if your desire is low — and you want your desire to increase than it is your job to begin to engage with your sexuality in a different way (UNLESS you have a medical condition, are taking medications that drop your sex drive, or otherwise have an organic reason for low desire).
What this means is it is not your partner’s job to ‘jump start your car’. It is your job to begin to get to understand your own erotic template — what makes you feel sexy, how do you receive pleasure in your life (sexually and otherwise), what are your fantasies (again, sexual and otherwise), and how do you allow yourself to engage with your own sexuality and sensuality.
If you find yourself saying, “Yes but he doesn’t [fill in the blank]” or “I would be able to enjoy my sexuality if she would [fill in the blank]” then you are getting stuck in some patterns of blame with your beloved — which will make it difficult to shift out of this pattern of not being sexually intimate.
This is not to say that your partner doesn’t have responsibility — they do! But first, start with yourself.
#2 Way to Improve Low Sex Drive: Our bodies go where our thoughts lead them
Play this game:
Notice, how do you turn yourself on and how do you turn yourself off? This is a powerful tool from Sex Therapist Guru Dr. Gina Ogden.
Here is how it works, as soon as you wake up in the morning, notice where your thoughts and energy go:
Are you thinking about the argument from the night before and how annoyed you are at your partner?
Are you feeling relieved for a new day to try to practice being connected again?
As you move through the day, if your partner brings you a cup of coffee, do you allow this gesture to reach your loins?
Do you allow small daily events to sink in as a small act of love and even possibly foreplay?
Do you notice that there is not enough cream in the coffee and feel your connection to your partner wane even more…and possibly begin to nurse some practiced thoughts about how different you are?
If you are responsible for your own sexuality, then it can be quite powerful to pay attention to where you put your attention and energy throughout the day.
It would be a challenge for the most randy person to suddenly expect their desire to be sky high at bedtime when he or she had not nourished thoughts of intimacy, connection, fantasy, and sensuality for days.
If your thoughts are of everything but sex, connection, and intimacy…well, then is it a surprise at all that your body is not ready at 9:45pm when the dishes are done, kids tucked in, and you finally fall into bed?
#3 Way to Improve Low Sex Drive: Practice the 1 to 10 ratio
If you want to have sex or be physically intimate with your partner then you both would benefit from at least 10 opportunities for physical, non-sexual touch for each 1 sexual encounter.
when you walk through the kitchen, a quick peck on the cheek or maybe a hug or rubbing his shoulders
holding hands over a meal
snuggling on the sofa
taking 15 seconds to make eye contact before leaving the house in the morning and putting your hand on her hip
rolling over and giving him a squeeze before jumping out of bed in the morning
There are a hundred simple ways to touch your partner and this starts to get the juices flowing if we are wanting to anticipate intimacy later on in the day.
#4 Way to Improve Low Sex Drive: Make out
Remember the days of making out with your boy/girlfriend in the backseat of the car? All of the pent-up sexual energy that emanated from those hours of kissing. Making out has that effect on most people…it builds sexual energy. There is tremendous intimacy in kissing in this way. I work with many couples who stop making out completely. However, it is (for most people) an important step in the process of growing arousal and desire.
Maybe you don’t like the way that your partner kisses. It might be too wet, too slow, too fast, or too much tongue. Maybe you have never given your partner this feedback because you don’t want to hurt her/his feelings…so instead, you just shy away from their advances all together. Which has, in part, led to your reduced sex drive.
As tough as it might sound, this is an important opportunity for emotional growth in your relationship. Expressing your desire to be close and the ways that you would like to be kissed to promote more connection is vulnerable for most people in relationship. And, it can also be healing and can profoundly change your relationship trajectory.
If you find yourself reading these tips and thinking, "I don't know where to start!" or "I don't know how to talk about this with my partner." Then, please, give us a call. There is no need to do this alone. We are all trained therapists who specialize in working with couples and we want to help you get back on track today.
Call our Client Ambassador today at (720) 457-3342 ext 0 and let's get started! Or schedule online 24/7 by clicking one of the red links at the top of our page. We look forward to hearing from you!