Whenever I do an interview about being a marriage life coach, a question that typically comes up is what's the one thing that's a consistent issue in marital unions? No doubt about it, sex is in the Top 2. If the couple is not having a sexual issue in and of itself, the other challenges within their relationship are directly affecting—and by that, I mean, infecting—their sex life.
I once heard a senior woman who'd been married 70 years say that one of the main distinctions between married couples and every other type of relationship is sex is supposed to transpire, on a regular basis, between spouses. I wholeheartedly agree. That's why, whenever married partners aren't having 1) sex; 2) consistent sex and/or 3) good sex, I don't see it as a minor inconvenience. I see it as a problem. A pretty major one, at that.
You might've heard that reportedly 15-20 percent of married couples in America are in a sexless marriage (meaning they're having sex less than 10-15 times a year). But if you're wondering what's going on behind the scenes to make that the case, I just want to take out a few minutes to share with you some under-the-radar reasons that are resulting in waaaaaaaay too many husbands and wives not getting the FIRE SEX that they certainly deserve.
Not Making Sex a TOP Priority
Over the years, there are couples who've told me that once I get married, I'll look up and months will go by without any action going on. They say it's a part of marriage (yeah…OK). What's interesting is these same couples hold grudges for weeks on end, constantly fight about stuff and, while they may love each other, they don't seem to like each other very much. My point? It's not "normal" to not make sex a priority in marriage. When a couple fails to do so, it's usually indicative of other issues that are going on.
We make work a priority because we've got bills to pay. We make children a priority because they are our responsibility. If you're married and sex is not a priority to you, think about why it's not important. That will reveal A LOT.
There are 24 hours in a day and 168 hours in a week. A man needs five minutes to have an orgasm. A woman, on average, needs 25 minutes. Finding 30 minutes a couple of times a week to strengthen your immune system, lower your stress levels, and make you feel more connected to your partner—shouldn't that take precedence? (That's a nonrhetorical question, by the way!)
Not Getting Your Hormone Levels Checked
There's a woman I know who recently went into menopause and refuses to take an estrogen supplement but constantly complains about her husband wanting to have sex when she doesn't. Whenever I mention to her that her hormone levels dropping probably has something to do with her low libido, she brushes it off. That's unfortunate.
In order for us to be in the mood, our estrogen and testosterone levels need to be on point. Just like a woman's libido can tank during menopause (or even perimenopause), a lot of men go through what is known as andropause, which is when middle-aged men see a drop in their testosterone levels.
However, being that things like stress and diet can also alter our hormones, lowered levels is not simply an age-related issue. If lately, you've lost that lovin' feeling, make an appointment to see your doctor. It may just be a matter of altering your lifestyle a bit or them giving you a prescription in order to get your hormones back on track.
Not Going to Bed at the Same Time
Guess how many couples don't go to bed at the same time? A whopping 75 percent! Why is that a problem? Well, for one thing, with all of the hustle and bustle that transpires throughout the day, sometimes the only time a couple can connect is when they are engaging in a little bit of pillow talk. Then, there are studies that indicate the couples who have mismatched sleeping patterns not only have more marital conflict, they have less sex too.
Case in point. One of my clients is always complaining that his wife's drive is not as high as his. She admits that is true, but she says that a part of the problem is he likes to have sex in the middle of the night when she's an early riser and is more down for morning sex. He has a studio in their home and so he likes to record late at night. Whenever I suggest going to bed with her a couple of times a night, he's got excuses for why he needs to create during that time instead.
Listen brotha, marriage is about compromise. Do you want to create songs or some content for them? Just sayin'.
Not Scaping the "Land"
Another couple that I work with used to not see eye-to-eye on oral sex. Let's just say that the husband was very DJ Khaled about it all (SMH). For years, the wife conceded (reluctantly so) and it really started to take a toll on their relationship. I get why too. A man who thinks he should receive oral sex without giving it is selfish, at best. Love is not selfish.
Yeah, what this husband was on didn't sit well with me, so I dug deeper. Although he did admit that the taste wasn't his favorite thing on the planet, the bigger issue was that there was no landscaping in his wife's nether regions. She said that since he never went down there, she didn't see the point.
Fast forward about three months later, and her face was beaming. When I asked why, her husband said, "Because the jungle is now a golf course." #dead
I've done some unofficial polling about how important pubic hair maintenance is. You might be amazed how much it matters—to both men and women. Sometimes the minor things can become major issues.
If oral isn't happening as much as you'd like, check with your partner about if the hair condition down there has anything to do with it. A little trim may open up a whole new world of possibilities.
Not "Saying Grace"
Whatever. Laugh if you want to, but I know several couples who say grace before coitus. Like, a literal "Heavenly Father, for what we are about to receive, we thank you" prayer. Even one of my favorite New Age books The Celestine Prophecy touches on the importance of acknowledging a higher power when it comes to the resources that we have; how when we do, it makes experiencing those things that much sweeter.
And you know what? It might sound crazy, but the folks who pray before sex say that the experience is soooooooooooooo much better whenever they do.
Look, if you're saying "Oh God!" during sex anyway (and A LOT of folks are), why not get things going by asking him to give you the strength and power to set it totally off up in your bedroom?
Makes good sense to me. Either way, don't knock it until you try it.
Not Having Foreplay Throughout the Day
I remember hearing a senior-aged pastor once say (from the pulpit, which I really dug) that he and his wife continue to have off the charts sex. Why? Because of his foreplay game. Only, he wasn't talking about the stuff that happens moments before intercourse. He described ironing his wife's clothes the night before, helping her with the dishes and calling her in the middle of the day, just to say how much he loved her as being acts of foreplay.
A man working two jobs being told how much he's appreciated. A new mom being told how unbelievably sexy she is. Their spouse can be clear on the other side of the town when they say these things yet I'm willing to bet that their partner wants to jump their bones the very moment they get home!
A lot of married couples are totally jacking up their sex life because either there's not enough physical foreplay before sex or worse, there's not enough "I want to stimulate your mind and connect with you emotionally" foreplay throughout the day.
Try it. See how much your spouse ends up liking it.
Not Being Spontaneous (Even If You Have To "Plan" It)
I can't stand the whole "Who wants to eat the same food every day?" line of thinking some folks have for why they don't want to get married. Feel free to jump in the comments here but, from what I hear, a lot of husbands and wives don't get sexually bored due to them always having sex with the same person; it's more about always doing the same things with the same person—week after week, month after month, year after year.
An author by the name of François Du Toit once said, "The moment you exchange spontaneity with rules, you've lost the edge of romance." Along these lines, when's the last time you've inboxed your spouse a hotel reservation, sent them some sexy lingerie via a courier or initiated sex in a location that was nowhere close to your bed?
A lot of us will put creativity into any and everything BUT our sex lives. Surprise your spouse with something sex-related that they would never expect. I'd be floored if it didn't help to add some spice into your sex life!
Featured image by Getty Images.
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