How many times have you wished for a better sex life?  Resolve using these concrete suggestions to make in happen in the new year!  Prioritize your intimate life, fine-tune what works and expand your sexual repertoire. Here’s your step-by-step instructions to recommit to and re”vamp” the bedroom! 

Even if you are married and still doing it too, an occasional jolting out of sexual complacency will help you reach a new level of skill, pleasure and connection. I’ve often suggested that well-functioning couples reserve a hotel room for a few nights in lieu of therapy to see if this intense focus alone helps them to reconnect emotionally and rekindle sexually.  

Happily married couples can climb out of the sexual doldrums with three commitments:

1)   Prioritize intimacy

2)   Fine-tune what already works

3)   Expand the sexual repertoire 

Commitment # 1 – Prioritize intimacy. Retreat for a weekend. Withdraw from the mundane. Set aside a whole Friday night through Sunday afternoon to be together in a focused way. Think of it as 48 hours of sex CEUs. NO kids, NO phones, NO emails, NO computers, NO Twitter, NO Facebook, NO work allowed – just you and your spouse. I know it’s impossible to fathom in this era, but I left my kids for weekends away without cell phone access and just a hotel number (there were no cell phones.)

My strong recommendation is you get out of YOUR house.          

Friday evening’s instructions:

  1. Spend the first night in a quiet, relaxed way – perhaps with room service. Eat dinner together without talking about kids, bills, work, or world events (let peace begin at home!) Alcohol in moderation.
  2. Explicit exerciseArousal stage fantasy exercise. Spend one hour writing answers on this form about your ideal of sexual enjoyment together.  Use extreme tact when describing what works imagining what would work better. This is meant to be an encouraging exercise not an opportunity to criticize.  
  3. Sit back to back on the bed (naked if you choose) and read each other’s answers.  Questions are allowed for 15 minutes.
  4. Make love.


Commitment #2 –

Fine-tune what works.  Here’s how:

Saturday’s morning instructions:

  1. Explicit exercise Feedback exercise. Each of you will take turns being a giver and a receiver. Start with neutral body areas progressing to the genitals. (Oil is good, undressing optional in the beginning.) The receiver, with eyes shut will rate each touch out loud frequently on a scale of 1-5 (5 is high for feeling good!) for a period of 30 minutes. 

                                 a.     For instance – “That’s a 1… that’s a 2…” Sometimes numerical data helps the giver in a more concrete wayto understand what works than a more generic comment like, “Well, yeah, that feels okay or that feels good…”

                                 b.     As arousal increases - It can change the receiver’s experience of the same touch.  A rating of a “1” could become a“5” later during the 30 minutes and be regarding the exact same earlier touch.

Saturday’s afternoon instructions:

  1. Dynamic exerciseAnalyze your patterns. Separately, take time to complete the following 4 sentences with a paragraph of your thoughts. Honesty in marriage is spelled T-A-C-T.

                                 a.     Answers should NOT be vague or generalized, like “Be sensual” or “Stop criticizing me.”  Instead – ask for something accomplishable and concrete – “Rub my back with oil as a sexual beginning,” or “Tell me what you like about my body,” etc.

  1. “In my opinion, our weaknesses regarding sexual intimacy are………”
  2. “My contributions to the difficulties are………”
  3. “One specific, concrete thing, I need from you to make this better is………”
  4. “From my end, I commit to making things even better by………”

Rest. Walk or exercise according to your physical ability.  Exercise has been proven to improve arousal when immediately proceeding a sexual incident.

Saturday evening’s instructions

  1. Eat appetizers and drink lightly.
  2. Make love.
  3. Dinner out.
  4. Rest.


Commitment #3 – Expand Your Sexual Repertoire –

bringing new ideas and emotional risk into the bedroom increases our ability to get aroused and our level of desire.  Focus on the area of variety – in pacing, in technique, in sexual acts and in sexual positions.  This is often the most difficult area of our sexual experience to talk about requiring our courage and our creativity.

  1. Dynamic and explicit exercises – Share the following:

                                 a.     Fantasize out loud to each other by describing a pleasurable fast and a pleasurable slow encounter.

                                 b.     Technique challenge – Practice "edging" with each other. Bring each other close to orgasm and stop right at “the edge.”  Relax.  Then, bring each other to high arousal again.  Stop.  Third time – go over the edge and fall into orgasm.  “Edging” is a technique to increase the power and intensity of climax for both men and women.  Try the exercise by alternating turn rather than attempting to do it simultaneously.

                                 c.     Brainstorm a list of all the sex acts you can both think of.  Don’t judge your own ideas or your partner’s.  Spend 15 minutes of quick thinking.  From your list, circle 2 ideas that are new and you are willing to try.  Do them!

                                 d.     Sexual positions – couples have favorite intercourse positions that help them reach climax. There’s nothing wrong with the tried-and-true but today work for variety. Try something not on the bed but in the shower, standing up, or on a chair just for fun.

 

Is your partnership ready for this weekend rendez-vous?

Answer “Yes” - if you listen without interrupting each other. You can take suggestions without feeling criticized. You desire closeness sexually and emotionally and are willing to approximate it without having perfection.

Answer “No” - if you fight over sex with some frequency. You (the sexual pursuer) are reading this article and know that your partner (the sexual distancer) wouldn’t be caught dead reading it. More often than not, you wouldn’t describe yourselves as happy.  You say things like, “But you do the same thing!” in an argument.  Instead schedule a regular appointment or intensive weekend with a sex therapist who can moderate your discussions.

Link for therapeutic help and weekend intensives from Laurie Watson at SexTherapy in Raleigh, Cary, Greensboro and Chapel Hill, NC. Laurie’s book Wanting Sex Again is available on Amazon!

Please join her on FB! or Twitter at AskLaurieWatson

 

About the Author

Laurie J Watson LMFT, LPC

Laurie Watson is an AASECT certified sex therapist and licensed couple’s therapist. She lectures at Duke University’s Medical Schooland is the clinical director for Awakenings in Raleigh.

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