"Let's talk about sex, baby. Let's talk about you and me. Let's talk about all the good things and the bad things that may be... Let's talk about... sex." - Salt 'N' Pepa
I bet you still have that song in your head, I am sorry for that. But when I decided to write an article on sex for couples, that song sprang to mind. It made sense. The secret to a happy sexual relationship is being able to talk to your partner about your needs and desires. That means dropping the guard and flowing in vulnerability. Talking about sex with your partner isn't always easy, in fact, most couples I see cringe at the very idea of having to ask their partner for what they want sexually.
Common phrases I hear with couples...
"Shouldn't he/she know what I like?"
"I just want to please my partner, I don't care about my desires that often."
"I don't feel comfortable telling him/her. I feel silly."
"That's too much pressure."
"What if he/she thinks my sexual needs are strange or weird?"
These are only some of the many questions that come up. In many of my previous articles I discuss the importance of communication and how communicating your needs and wants is an essential piece to a healthy relationship - and that includes sex and/or intimacy.
So, how does one get started and open up the line of communication? A great game I suggest to couples is the Fantasy Bowl. Similar to the Jar game. Each partner writes down 3-5 fantasies or desires they wish to explore with their partner on separate pieces of paper. This can include sexual positions, places, and/or activities. Take the loose pieces of paper and throw them into a bowl. Mix them up and each partner takes a turn pulling one out. The idea is to discuss them with each other and to slowly ease your way into expressing your sexual needs. You don't have to do any of the items suggested yet, it's about starting to talk, open up and being comfortable with each other around the topic of sex.
Sex is an important part of a relationship, but so is communication and that sometimes means being vulnerable and expressing yourself. Be gentle with your partner when they are sharing there desires, if you don't feel comfortable with their suggestion, be honest and authentic. Just because your partner wants to do something, doesn't mean you have to do it. But try allow a safe space to discuss and express one another's feelings without judgment. Keep an open mind. I'm sure 1 out of the 5 listed might be something you'd consider exploring.
Keep in mind the setting and environment you and your partner are in. Don't do the Fantasy Bowl when you're both stressed from a long day and want to just "get it over with". Choose an evening you both have time for each other... make it a special night.
Enjoy and explore each other's needs... sometimes that alone can spark new and fun ways to be intimate with each other.