The Other Sex Talk

Talk to me!Situation: You’d love to tell your husband or wife the way you feel about your sex life or about that thing they do during lovemaking that drives you nuts, but their too sensitive to take your feedback constructively. If you are honest with them, they are going to get defensive. It’s happened before.Question: So, what do you do? Tell them the truth and have them blow up or shut down? Or, keep it in and suffer silently?

Answer: Neither!

This kind of thinking (that things are either or) is detrimental to achieving worthy goals.  There are times we face uncomfortable choices. Shrinking from them or deferring them only ensures frustration and dissatisfaction. It is, also, one root cause of stagnant relationships where couples look up one day and find themselves unable to pinpoint exactly when either begins to resent the other.

Often, though not always, others don’t become offended because of what we say as much as how we said it. Blurting out in the middle of sex “Why do you always have to do that!” is a sure fire way to raise your spouses defenses and/or lower their self esteem…especially because you may have been very successful in projecting your sex life as being totally alright.

There are ways to have conversations about the issue, great and small, that are a barrier to more fulfilling and enjoyable sexual intimacy.

1. Start conversations with an affirmation of what is right with your sex life and what especially pleases you.

2. When presenting concerns, start with statements of what the issues are…not stories. In other words, start with “I feel like we may be in a sexual rut” rather than starting “Last night, you did the same thing you always do.”

3. Use ‘I feel’ statements when sharing what concerns you or what you believe is not working. “When you cum quickly and get up to wash, I feel as though you don’t care about what I need.” “When you say no to me initiating sex so often, I feel as though you don’t desire me or see sex as a priority in our marriage.”

4. Don’t discuss sexual issues just prior or after sex. Set aside time, preferably not in the bedroom, to discuss these issues. Pre-think what you want and need to say and how you can say it in ways that preserve the integrity and esteem of your spouse. This doesn’t mean compromise what you feel. It does mean that you pay attention to tone, body language and the tips above.

5. Ask your husband or wife what issues they may see in the area of intimacy that may be a barrier to having a more dynamic sex life. Pay attention to what you are hearing and repeat it in your own words to ensure correct understanding.

6. Be patient. Having shared with one another, give each other time to think about what was said and come up with some measurable ways to resolve any outstanding issues. I want to be clear that solutions should be measurable. If something is being done ‘enough’, then give a number of times or measure of duration that might satisfy you. You can then look back over time and judge, objectively, rather real change or progress has been made.

Ultimately, sexual performance is a touchy subject for men and women. We all want to be good lovers to our spouses. Notwithstanding, we need to know that touchy subjects can be approached and resolved without nuclear relationship fallout. The tactics of our conversations are as important as the topics. Enter your discussions with an internal commitment to making sure the discussion keeps moving. Be humble. Be attentive. 

We think you may find that successful conversations have the same thing in common…a shared perception that each spouse highly regards and favors the other. Sounds simplistic? The greatest truths in life almost always are!

About ThePureBed
Welcome and thanks for giving us a once over! Our blog celebrates and honors sexual intimacy in the context of marriage.

One Response to The Other Sex Talk

  1. Dr. TS says:

    This is very interesting!

    My wife and I recently designed a 500 Card game which couples play in restaurants, while out for coffee, or for a walk, even over the phone. It can be played over an hour or two, or just a few cards, for 3-4 minutes.

    The game is called, “A PRIVATE AFFAIR: The Erotic Game of Secrets, Plans & Promises for Couples,” and is intended to help couples enjoy the “successful conversations” you describe. As a therapist, my experience is that many couples are aware of their poverty in this area, and are earnest in their desire to get back on track, and into deeper things together. Often, however, they just don’t quite know where, or how to begin! The game is an invitation to couples, to much more deeply enjoy their own “Private Affair!”

    We have had very positive feedback from couples of all ages, some just married, others married for 50+ years!

    Our sexual lives are of course completely interwoven with all the other parts of our relationship, and this the game addresses, challenging couples not only toward risking greater honesty and intimacy, but also considering and scheming new plans and dreams, and making specific commitments to new promises.

    The rational for this approach is described in detail on the FAQ section of our site.

    We would invite you to take a look! Great sex is part of an ongoing great conversation of discovery, connecting, helping, healing, celebrating, etc. on all levels. The game helps facilitate this deeper understanding while enjoying a meal together, or a gentle evening walk.


    Dr. T. Sellick

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