DUST OFF YOUR LUST
First of all, the lowdown.
My husband and I have been together for 13 years. We’ve always had a solid foundation of trust, humor and compassion. I can’t imagine another being to have gone through several ups and downs in our lives with. We’ve emerged strong and seasons come and go.
Since having kids, our communication has changed. Not necessarily for the better. We got so caught up in the whirlwind of kids and several more massive upheavals in our lives that we found ourselves suddenly not communicating and stuck in a rough patch.
Intimacy and communication in relationships go hand in hand. So if the communication within the relationship is not functioning, chances are the intimacy is also off.
Having said that, it’s also natural that needs change over time and also individually. With needs I mean sexual desire.
While there’s no age limit when it comes to being active in bed since sex drive depends on several factors, research suggests that the libido in women is highest between the ages of 18 and 24. Source: Deccan Chronicle.
We went from having an incredible sex life to having kids and basically it was a path of sleepless nights, worry, exhaustion combined with big changes and a shift in my desire.
Without delving into all this too far it is blatantly clear what needs to happen:
Communication is the lifeline of any relationship. If you and your partner are not communicating (whether sexually or just in general), tensions will be high, thoughts will run riot and it’s bound to end in unsatisfied demeanors.
First of all, we need to find time for one another. Carve it our despite the exhaustion. Remind yourself that those twenty minutes you let your partner tell you about their day (when you want nothing more than to snuggle under a blanket and watch Netflix) mean the world to them!
Second of all, reassess your body language communication:
- Avoid distraction when spoken to: come on, you know that’s just offensive
- Use your hands (this is a common NLP practice): by placing a hand on someone’s shoulder etc. you create attachment
- Speak with your eyes: be aware of your facial expression, look into your partner’s eyes
- Offer an understanding touch: a hug, cuddle or warm gesture raises oxytocin levels, increases trust and reduces stress
- Body language: keep your body language open and inviting
Source: The Universal Talk.
I will differentiate here because the sexual communication is something you work on together. Here are the different approaches I am going to take.
Honest, especially designated chats about sexual desire, needs and intimacy. It is good to talk about your sexual preferences and possibly reassess (especially if you’ve been with your partner a long time). Possibly there are other routes you’ve not explored with a Pandora’s box just itching to be opened! When venturing down new paths and trying new things we need to remember the following:
- Say Yes to what you want and No to what you don’t: very self explanatory
- Non-verbal sex communication: our body language speaks volumes, stay tuned in to sour partners and ask if in doubt!
- Talk with your partner about sex to increase sexual safety and informed decision-making: if you don’t tell your partner if something is not comfortable or if you have certain desires, how will they know how to please you?
- Increase comfort and intimacy: ask questions. The more you know, the easier it will be!
Getting in the mood
It can be tough sometimes finding the right time for both of us where we are both in the mood. Again, sex can sometimes be planned yet still spontaneous (think date night, dirty talk, new toys, role-play etc.). There are other ways of bringing some spice back into your relationship.
To get in the mood, try things like:
- Provocative seduction: i.e. wear certain articles of clothing
- Sensual touch: i.e. gentle kisses or a massage
- Emotional connection: i.e. arrange quality time or engage in genuine conversation
- Sex talk: i.e. send a provocative message
- Power play: i.e. take charge of the situation
Source: all ideas from the fantastic „THE COME AS YOU ARE WORKBOOK“ by Emily Nagoski (details further below).
It doesn’t always have to end in sex! You can explore and decide that’s enough for you. Don’t force things. There’s no law that says you must both orgasm. Be free and fumble!
You might be wondering why this is here. Food has always been something that connects my husband and me. Lately, it has been the bane of my life though. Planning and preparing three meals a day plus two snacks in between has left me burnt out (I don’t know how cooks do it!).
I want to reintroduce the spark that food used to bring to our relationship by cooking together again. The sitting in the kitchen in the evening, poring through cooking books, sending each other recipes we’ve seen, watching cooking shows and finally preparing it together brings us closer and ends in the wonderful act of: sensual eating.
If you recall your own eating escapades, the pleasures of food are not unlike sex, in certain regards. There’s flirting with the eyes first, then infatuation, seduction, eating with total abandon, and, hopefully, eyes rolled back in absolute pleasure. (…) However we imagine aphrodisiacs, one thing is for certain; those that love to eat and love to make love are pleasure seekers. If food gives us just as much pleasure as a kiss, a touch, an orgasm, then why not revel in it? Rumpling up the tablecloth is prelude to the bedsheets, and edible delights are best tasted with love. Source: Huffpost.
And so, we will enjoy our pleasures! You’re likely to find many photos of this on my Instagram: mummys_coming
Other interesting ideas
- Date night: we’ve decided to get some „outside“ regular date nights in. With a befriended couple (also with kids) we would have a swap once a week or fortnight and head out. Even if it’s just a walk, it doesn’t need to be a full blown five course dinner, it helps to get out of your own four walls.
- Adult Card games. I’m looking at a German one by a therapist where I live. There are plenty online (google intimate couples card game!). For anyone in Germany, this is the one I’m trying: Doch doch doch Kartenspiel: Ann-Marlene Henning
- New toys! We can all do with an update of our toys closet!
As always, I will be reading up about a few areas and educating myself a little with the following (for now):
- Exploring BDSM: A Workbook for Couples (or More!) Discovering Kink by Ms Morgan Thorne (link here)
Mating in Captivity: Unlocking Erotic Intelligence by Esther Perel (link here)
The Come as You Are Workbook: A Practical Guide to the Science of Sex by Emily Nagoski (link here)
Sex at Dawn: How We Mate, Why We Stray, and What It Means for Modern Relationships by Christopher Ryan (link here)
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