Let's Talk About Sex
"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 around the topic of sex and pleasure?
Here’s a few ways to get you started:
A great game I suggest to start with for couples is the Pleasure 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 openly and being comfortable with each other around the topic of sex.
Just because your partner wants to do something, doesn't mean you have to do it. But try to 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.
Find the right time for you and your partner. Don't do the Pleasure 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.
Dirty talk or texting. Building up the sexual momentum might mean being “flirty” with each other; sending provocative texts throughout the day or simply whispering desires into your partner’s ear randomly. Cute or sexy notes in your partner's pockets or briefcase/gym bag to let them know you desire them.
Be Spontaneous. Not everything has to be planned. You might have to be the one taking initiative and plan something for the both of you. Dinner and dancing or any other fun date idea to have you both spending time together and reconnecting.
Role Playing. Yes, I know, you’re probably thinking that might not be for you. But it’s important to know that role playing doesn’t always mean dressing up in the bedroom, sometimes it could be meeting at a local bar or hotel lobby and pretending to be strangers. Reliving the excitement of the unknown and build up.
Explore a Sex Shop together. Plan an afternoon or evening to pop into a sex shop and browse. You don’t have to necessarily buy anything, but it might be something fun to talk about and wonder about together.
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 their desires, if you don't feel comfortable with their suggestion, be honest and authentic, but try to be open minded.
Enjoy and explore each other's needs… Sometimes a relationship just needs that sexual kickstart to get going.