Many people can easily remember the “good ‘ol days of their relationship…the early days when spontaneous and frequent sex was as routine as the morning cup of coffee. But after many years, children, mortgages, and careers, sex often begins to fade. There is more desire for sleep than there is for an orgasm with your partner.
In the post-“50 Shades of Gray” era, it is common for couples to consider spicing up their sex lives with new activities in order jump-start the desire (think leather, bodices, and fantasy play). At times this may be effective but it can often lead to arguing, hurt feelings, and commentary on “what kind of girl/guy do you think I am?!”
What we know is that when we change a routine in our lives (that includes a sexual routine) it almost always creates some anxiety as there is an internal push-pull to keep the old familiar habit — even if it wasn’t producing the results that we wanted!
Desire often begins to atrophy as routine and predictability increase.
A real bummer for people who have been married for years and decades!
If you want to jumpstart desire, start by trying these three things:
Problems with desire solution #1: Get to know your own relationship with desire.
What turns you on?
How honest can you be with yourself about this? Do you have certain fantasies that you privately enjoy? Are there specific sensations that really get you going?
Maybe your desire feels more quiet and timid…do you shame this part of you are simply say, “I don’t have a libido!” and leave it at that?
What might it be like if you started exploring your desire — yes, around sex and intimacy, but also around food, music, play, art, dance, creativity, work, children, etc. Get to know what ignites you and if you sit back and wait for it to happen or if you actively try to lean into it.
Problems with desire solution #2: Get clear about your own biases and judgments.
Most people have judgments and biases when it comes to sex.
You might have strong opinions about porn or certain times of fantasy play. You might have an experience with some kind of sexual abuse and feel more safe with only certain kinds of touch.
It is vital that you get clear about what your biases are so that you can share them with your partner.
Sharing yourself in this way helps to grow intimacy and give an opportunity for acceptance, curiosity, and exploration.
Problems with desire solution #3 Get honest with your partner — without blaming them!
If you have a hard time talking about your desires with your partner, it would make sense that it would be hard to do anything with your desire with your partner.
Begin sharing these parts of yourself that you’ve kept hidden and private — this helps to widen your relationship container so that you can hold more together as a couple.
Remember, these are your desires and there is no room here to blame or shame your partner but simply share more about who you are.
Ready to go a bit deeper in this work? Call us now and you will be matched with the therapist who can best serve you and your partner today. Call 720.457.3342 or book online by clicking on the red button at the top of your screen. We look forward to hearing from you!