Wrung out and stressed from spending long hours in the office, sex is not likely to top your to-do list.
Eros Coaching sexologist Dr Martha Tara Lee says, “It’s hard to get into the mood or have any real desire [to have sex] when you’ve been working long hours or when you haven’t been sleeping well.”
While obvious libido-killers include stress, anxiety and depression, other underlying psychological issues could also hold you back from having sex — let alone enjoying it. Dr Lee highlights questions to help you figure out:
* What is going on in the relationship? Your ability to communicate with your partner in and out of the bedroom can have a huge impact on your sex life as a couple. So, take sort any issues or disagreements that are causing fights between the both of you ― soonest. Don’t shy from speaking to a therapist or counsellor if you can’t seem to work through your issues with each other.
* What is your “sexual attitude”? Being open with your partner about your likes and dislikes in the bedroom can enhance your sex life as a couple. Dr Lee advises that you consider asking for what you want in the bedroom. “Your beliefs about sex ― as to what is ‘normal’, ‘proper’, ‘expected’ and ‘age-appropriate’ can alter your sex life.”
“Your beliefs about sex ― as to what is ‘normal’, ‘proper’, ‘expected’ and ‘age-appropriate’ can alter your sex life.”
* Are you bored with sex? Sticking to a routine and doing the same thing all the time can make having sex feel like you’re completing a chore. Issues like not feeling the romance or attaining an orgasm in bed can suggest a lack of an authentic emotional connection and pleasure, which results in you not keen on doing the horizontal mambo.
* What other sources of stress do you need to deal with? A tyrannical boss, uncooperative colleagues and an abusive work environment could ruin any thoughts of making babies. So, take a day off and clear your mind ― it might do your sex life some good. Dr Lee shares, “You may wish to work with what you can immediately — [try] eating healthy foods, getting the required amount of exercise, and having sufficient rest.”
To address the issues that influence your decision to have sex, you need to communicate with each other and ask for help, if it’s needed. Dr Lee stresses, “You are the other 50 per cent in the relationship, and can make sex better by implementing some changes.” The good news is that you can use your creativity, imagination and organisational skills to sustain your sexual intimacy. Try these tactics…
1. Make yourself feel sexy Dr Lee says, “Get something that makes you feel sexy — lingerie, makeup, heels — the item need not be expensive, and so what if it is? You deserve a treat.”
2. Find ways to unwind Have a long bath, light candles or burn essential oils…
3. Use massage oils Giving each other a good massage is a great way to loosen up and release any pent-up tension. Being in a relaxed state can help the both of you connect more effectively with each other.
4. Set the place and mood Take time and effort to get the ambience right — dim the lights, and getting the bed and room temperature right are just a few things that can really help get you in the mood for lovemaking.
5. Get some music going Music is a powerful tool for relieving stress and if you’re preparing for a romantic night. Dr Lee advises, “If you are conscious about the noise you make during sex, music can also help block some of it out.”
6. Fantasise to get ready for sex Don’t be afraid to let your imagination run wild to get you in the mood. Dr Lee notes that one’s desire to have sex doesn’t always occur spontaneously, especially if you are tired or stressed. Just visualising and imagining can put you in the right mindset for intimacy.
“Playing and having a good laugh together is [the] kind of foreplay that frequently leads to some very serious lovemaking.”
7. Play together Do simple things like taking a shower together, indulging in a pillow fight, wrestling or having a tickling match. Dr Lee shares, “Playing and having a good laugh together is [the] kind of foreplay that frequently leads to some very serious lovemaking.”
8. Make more time for sex Just like how we should make time for the things that matter, you should try to set aside time for sex in your schedule. Then, prepare yourself ― put your best foot forward by dolling up ― the way you would before a date. By being more prepared, both of you can be assured of a better experience. Also, it’s important you take your time during sex, especially since woman’s bodies tend to take more time to respond to physical stimulation.
9. Be creative You don’t have to stick to intercourse to give each other sexual pleasure. Dr Lee advises, “There are plenty of other ways to have fun — [try] oral sex, masturbation or using sex toys — expand your mind and enjoy!”
10. Get professional help If you’re struggling to enjoy sex, don’t shy away from seeking professional help. An ob-gyn is your go-to medical expert for female fertility problems while a urologist is best suited to help men. Consult a sexologist like Dr Lee if you need help sorting through the psychological challenges that may be holding you back.
Elsewhere on SmartParents.sg…