‘All couples go through phases where they don’t have the time or energy for regular sex. If this has become the norm and you would like to rediscover your sex life, Relate’s Sex Therapists can help you communicate.’
It’s natural to want better sex with your partner and sometimes there are specific reasons for your difficulties. Don’t be embarrassed about it, ask for help.
Typical problems that cause anxiety and often real distress might include Erectile Difficulty, one or both partners have ‘gone off it’, inability to orgasm or climax, difficulty with penetrative sex, pain on intercourse, sexual compulsion.
Sex therapists are trained couple therapists who have gone on to specialise and offer this sensitive but rewarding area of therapy. This means that they are accustomed to a wide variety of sexual and couple difficulties. You’re in good hands.’
Clients often come to us and say “I WANT to want my partner…” feeling frustrated they don’t know how. And there’s nothing that pleases us more as psychosexual therapists to see people leave with richer, warmer relationships and desire itself rekindled. Nobody needs to resign themselves to a partner that’s more like a Friend… with No Benefits. Whilst we can’t replace the solid work we can do in psychosexual therapy at Relate Bradford here’s some starting points for those of you wondering about this very thing.
The Honeymoon Period is ACTUAL SCIENCE.
There’s a load of chemicals that collude and collaborate in the early days of a
romance, all the stuff that makes you unable to focus on anything else, and
daydream about the next time you’re together. This period usually lasts between
6 months and 2 years, but some couples ebb and flow in and out of the honeymoon
for decades by maintaining curiosity and awe for their partner. Embrace change
and adventure, keep having new shared experiences, and remember to flirt. You
don’t finish romancing your partner after the first couple years, instead keep
on doing it.
You’ve got 2 kids, 2 dogs, and 2 jobs and a
mortgage between you, and you wonder why it doesn’t feel buzzing with passion?
The joys of the long term bonds you have together may mean that some of the
spontaneity has gone. But everyone else is spontaneous right? No, it’s a myth
that sex is spontaneous, there’s usually some planning in it somewhere!
Scheduling a time you can actually have it doesn’t mean you can’t also keep up
seduction. Adjust your expectations and flex to changes like the natural
process of ageing.
Couples can often fall into patterns of
unhelpful behaviour, and one of the most common ones we see with desire issues
is one partner always saying no, and the other partner always chasing. This can
become a vicious cycle of pressure, rejection and everyone feeling bad. Both
roles are uncomfortable. Nobody can want something by being told they should
want it. In fact, for the pursuer of sex to step back and give the other one
space is an essential part of the distancer being able to feel want. It’s good
to get a little hungry before a meal, right?
For manycouples, not-so-good communication can
be a key cause of low desire, bad sex and general relationship issues. Try
using “I feel” statements in discussions –
“I feel hurt when you don’t kiss me back” is less blaming and shaming
than “you never kiss me back” explains what is going on for you. Swap negative
feedback for positive: “mmm yeah, I like it gentle like that” reinforces and
compliments rather than gives rise to a row!
Closeness can be a passion killer too!
Sometimes a couple know each other too well, are too much best buddies, too
fond of all the same things. Security and cosiness feels wonderful and safe but
to feel desire you need to feel a bit hungry…and wanting requires a leaning
toward someone rather than having it on a plate served up already. This doesn’t
mean playing ‘hard to get’ but rather understanding you and your partner/s as
separate people with different lives.
Not You, It’s Me
Whilst partner’s feel rejected by your lack of
desire, it is often the ‘low desire partner who is struggling with rejection of
their own sense of worthiness or attractiveness. Not wanting anyone else can
often be a defense against feeling so unwanted themselves. And unfortunately
feeling unwanted or unloveable can’t be substantially resolved by someone else
– rather it is inner work to transform the person’s own idea and vision of
If you want to go a bit deeper we love…
This TedX Talk by Esther Perel…
Blog written by Relate Bradford Therapist, Tabitha
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