Does a Great Sex Life Equal a Great Marriage?
According to research, the answer would appear to be Yes! On the whole, couples who describe their marriage as satisfying and enjoyable tend to portray their sexual relationship with their spouse in a positive light as well. So, if sex is such a critical component in marriage, why are so many committed couples struggling in the bedroom? One of the main reasons is Boredom. Just like any other activity in marriage (paying bills, housework, cooking, etc.) sex can become part of a couple’s routine. Instead of being something that breathes life into a marriage, sex often becomes a chore…an obligation rather than a blessing. Yet, this was never God’s design for sex. Read the first section of Song of Songs if you don’t believe me. So here are a few suggestions to put the sizzle back into your love life.
Reach out and touch your partner with your phone. Build desire and anticipation by sending your partner romantic texts such as: “Been thinking about you all day,” or “Remember what we did last week? Let’s do that again when you get home.” You can also use imagery to heighten the senses. Ladies, lay out some lingerie on the bed and send a photo with the caption, “Which one of these outfits would you like to see me in tonight?” Since our greatest sexual tool is our mind, anything that you can do to get your partner thinking about the two of you together will increase desire and draw them to you like a moth to a flame.
Speak their Language
We’ve all felt the frustration of being around someone who is speaking a foreign language. You feel frustrated and disconnected. Now imagine how your partner feels when you are not speaking their Language of Love. Romance means something different to everyone. Your job is to become fluent in your spouse’s romantic tongue. For example, if your husband or wife likes gifts, make a point of bringing home romantic items like flowers, chocolates, or jewelry. If your man is an acts of service kind of guy than find out what makes him feel cared for sexually and do it often. The point is to put the focus on your spouse so they feel prioritized.
Abandon the Familiar
Just like eating the same foods too often can cause them to lose their flavor, a stale and predictable sex life will slowly diminish desire in a marriage. But in order to break out of your sexual ruts, you have to be willing to take a few risks. Try different sexual positions. Make love at a different time of the day than normal. Be more verbal in the bedroom or try some role playing. You only have to observe nature to see that God loves creativity and variety; so why limit yourself in the bedroom.
Extreme Bedroom Makeover
Since most of can’t afford romantic getaways to exotic locations every week, why not make your bedroom your own, personal paradise. Paint your room with soft, sensual colors. Replace photos of relatives with pictures of romantic places like Paris, Rome, or the Caribbean. Purchase matching bedroom furniture and have a specific theme in mind. Get an electric fireplace. Think of some of your favorite hotel rooms or bed and breakfasts you’ve stayed at and incorporate those designs into your bedroom. You’re going to spend at least one-third of your life in your bedroom…you might as well enjoy it.
Dress to Undress
They say that it’s not what’s outside that counts but what’s under the surface that makes us who we are. With this in mind, make a point of wearing lingerie or silk boxers under your work clothes once in a while. They may be slightly uncomfortable and impractical, but I guarantee they will keep you in a sexual state of mind all day. Your spouse won’t know what hit them when you walk in the door.
Talk the Talk
Your Words Matter! And it’s not always what you say, but how you say it that counts the most. Speak to your partner in soft and gentle tones. Avoid sexual verbiage that is crude or offensive to your spouse. A good exercise to improve sexual communication is to sit down with your spouse and make a list of every sexual slang or term you’ve ever heard of. Go through them one by one and tell each other whether the word is offensive to you and why. This will not only increase your sexual vocabulary, but it will also help you be more sensitive to your spouse’s auditory palate.
You did it when you were dating; a sensual whisper in your lover’s ear, a soft brush of their cheek with your fingertips, sending messages with your eyes. Why stop when you’re married? Flirting is simply the art of showing someone you desire them in a fun and subtle way. So play a little hard to get…as long as you never play hard to want.
Communicate with your Hands
We’ve all witnessed newlyweds who can’t seem to stop touching each other. We often criticize out loud, saying things like “get a room” or “ooh gross,” but secretly we’re envious of their sexual energy and desire for one another. Touch can convey yearning for our spouse when the right words escape our lips. Be intentional about snuggling when you watch a movie together or holding your partner’s hand while strolling through the mall. Let them know, that after all these years, you still want them.
Never underestimate the power of a quickie. Too often, couples use lack of time as an excuse for not having more sex. Sex doesn’t always have to be a big production. Take a shower together before church. Pull your partner into the bedroom for a few minutes before they head off to work. Quickies can be a great way to remind your spouse that you will always “make time” to squeeze them into your schedule.
By the time you get home from work, make dinner, finish the housework, and wrestle the kids into bed, you and your spouse are often emotionally and physically exhausted. Your mind may be sexually motivated but your body won’t cooperate. While exercise and a healthy diet can boost our energy, nothing compares to the benefits of getting a good night’s sleep. The average person needs a minimum of 8 hours of sleep a day to function properly. If possible, you and your spouse should go to bed at about the same time each night. This will program your brain to start shutting down earlier, thus giving you and your partner a more restful night’s sleep.
This may not seem very romantic, but the truth is, we tend to forget things we don’t make a priority. Talk to your partner, and the two of you come up with a minimum number of times both of you would like to have sex each week. Then, get the calendar out, or your daily planner, and write it on your schedule. For example, I had one client who wrote the initials TS (Think Sex) every three days on her calendar, as a reminder to prepare herself physically and mentally for a sexual encounter with her husband. What a lucky guy! Not only does scheduling sex in your marriage let your partner know they are important to you, but it also creates an atmosphere of excitement and anticipation as the two of you look forward to being together.
Renew your Mind
As I mentioned earlier, your most powerful, sexual tool is your mind. How you think greatly influences how you behave. If you grew up in a home where sex was never discussed or was depicted as dirty, you may have developed some mistaken beliefs about sex that need to be challenged with truth. Also, if you or your partner have been wounded sexually in the past, such as abuse, infidelity, or pornography, sex may have become associated in your mind with pain rather than pleasure. If you fall into one of these categories I strongly encourage you to seek help. There are numerous, Godly resources (counseling, programs, books, videos, etc.) you can utilize to help you heal and retrain your brain. Don’t let fear and ignorance keep you from having the passionate and fulfilling marriage God intended.
- Red Hot Monogamy: Making your Marriage Sizzle By Bill Farrel
- The Gift of Sex: A Guide to Sexual Fulfillment By Clifford and Joyce Penner
- Ways to have Fun, Fantastic Sex By Clifford and Joyce Penner
- Healing the Wounds of Sexual Addiction By Mark Lasser
- Crazy Good Sex By Les and Leslie Parrott