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If You’re In A Committed Relationship, Avoid These Sex Mistakes At All Costs

Sex

Being careless. Not having enough knowledge. Something being a misunderstanding. Being confused. Things seeming like an illusion or delusion. Neglecting something (or someone). Over or underestimating something (or again, someone). Making a false move. Guess what all of these things have in common? They all define what it means to make a mistake.

Now humor me for a moment. If you're currently in a long-term relationship with someone, first, how's your sex life going? If you're not able to give me a firm "great!", here's my follow-up question—if things could be better in the bedroom department, could a part of it be due to the fact that some mistakes are being made? Are you or yours being careless? Are one of you under the illusion (or delusion) that something is working when it actually isn't? Do one or both of you have a tendency to overestimate the impact you're making on your partner? Yeah, it's not the most comfortable self-reflective kind of conversation to have (even if it's just with yourself), but sex is too important in a relationship to not put some thought into whether you—or they—could possibly be making some pretty serious sexual faux pas.

Mistakes like what? Let's start off with these right here.

1. Being Way Too Predictable

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Always at night. Always missionary style. Always in the bed. You see the operative word in those phrases, right? I'd say that when it comes to about half of the couples that I work with, the issue they're having has something to do with sex. And one of the things that comes up the most is how bored one or both of them are. One of the best definitions of bored (as it relates to this topic) is "tedious repetition". When something is tedious, it is monotonous and tiresome. Who wants sex to be like that?!

Whenever I think of boring sex, I think about people who do it, just to say that they did it. There's no creativity. There's no spontaneity. There's no real forethought put into the experience at all. Then sex ends up becoming predictable, stale and even lifeless.

A healthy marriage includes a healthy sex life. The more energy and effort you put into making sex fun and exciting, the more of a reflection that will be on your connection with your spouse overall.

2. Always Expecting the Other to Initiate

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Sometimes, I'm tickled when I hear what some wives want. On one hand, they give side-eye to submission (even the Christian ones which is interesting if you check out Ephesians 5:22 and Colossians 3:18) while on the other, they think that a man should be the sole provider and the sexual initiator because "that's a man's job".

No time to get into the blatant contradictions here. I'll just say that when it comes to initiating sex, it should be an equal effort for both parties. That's because both men and women want to feel wanted and like their partner can't wait to jump their bones.

There's a couple I know right now who hasn't had much sex in (count 'em) five years. Whenever I ask either one what the problem is, they say it's that they are waiting for the other to initiate. Five years, y'all. SMH.

3. Not Tending to Each Other’s Emotional Intimacy Needs

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A few years back, Durex conducted a sex survey that revealed (surprise, surprise) sex is best between two people who know and trust one another. In other words, sex is the most fulfilling when there is a solid emotional connection established. Thing is, when you're trying to keep your relationship strong, you and your partner may have different needs or similar ones but at different times. What you can know for sure is doing things like becoming fluent in their love language, being affectionate in ways that aren't sexual, going out on dates, showing support and admiration, being open and available to pillow talk, expressing sentiments throughout the day—all of these are examples of doing things to keep you and yours emotionally connected.

Don't assume that just because you and your significant other are official or that you share the same address and/or last name that you're emotionally in a good place. The only way to know for sure is by asking your partner. Do that tonight, if you can.

4. Losing Their Sense of Humor

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Surely this isn't a surprise, being that most of us desire a sense of humor in our partner, but did you know research reveals that a part of the reason why we want someone who makes us laugh is because it displays humor, wit and timing? Someone who has a sense of humor also knows how to not take themselves too seriously and are able to bring relief to stress-filled situations.

As far as bedroom action goes, sex tends to be more fun when both people can laugh at each other, themselves and even sex-related slip-ups. And ladies, it also doesn't hurt that (reportedly) the more a man has the ability to make us laugh, the more orgasms he can give us in the process.

Knock knock joke, anyone?

5. Being (Sexually) Selfish

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DJ Khaled and Tip Harris. These are the two men who immediately come to mind when I think of men who are sexually selfish. DJ Khaled for that ridiculousness thing he said a few years back about expecting oral sex but not giving it (to his wife, y'all). Tip, not for what he does or doesn't do in his marriage (Tiny gives me the impression she's pretty held down in the bedroom department), but what he once said in a song with Justin Timberlake—I hate to have to cancel my vacation so you can't deny/I'm patient but I ain't gonna try/You don't come I ain't gonna die.

T.I. is a cutie pie; especially back in those days. But ain't nothin' hot, sexy or appealing about a man who only cares about his own pleasure. Unfortunately, this doesn't only happen over radio airwaves. It's going down like this in bedrooms all over the world too. Maybe one day I'll pen an entire piece on sexual selfishness. For now, I'll just say that sex is sooooo much better when both partners get off on their partner getting off; when they are not focused on their orgasm so much as their significant other's.

A person who thinks like DJ Khaled or has Tip's song philosophy is making so many fumbles in the sex department, it ain't even funny. It really isn't.

6. Slipping on the Body Maintenance

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Bad breath. Not body-scaping. Skipping out on the pedicures (scratchy feet in bed are the worst!) and smell goods. Yes, when you're in a long-term relationship, your partner should love you just as you are. At the same time, you should respect them enough to want to keep your hygiene and body presentation up.

One of my favorite married sex stories is about a couple where the wife was giving fellatio and the husband was skimping on the cunnilingus. After we had a full-on counseling session about just how selfish/ridiculous he was being, he said he would give doing it more often a shot. Fast forward to about six months later, when I asked how it all was going in that department, the wife was thrilled. I'll never forget what the husband said: "It's a lot easier after the jungle becomes a golf course." Need I say more?

7. Failing to Regularly Try New Things

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Kev On Stage and Mrs. Kev On Stage have a series called The Love Hour. Their episode "I'm a Freak. My Spouse Isn't" touched on everything from sexual incompatibility—or "sex drive gap" as they call it—which they believe is very common in marriage to coming up with ways to make the more sexually conservative and/or lower libido partner interested in trying new things (i.e., exploring their spouse's freakier side). It's an hour and a little bit of change long, so if you want to get to the meat of it all, check out 21:00-31:00 then 41:00-48:00 then 52:00-1:05. The appreciated bottom line of the episode is if you want your sex life to not get old, it's important to be willing to try some new things.

8. Having Sex with an Agenda in Mind

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Agenda. Sometimes it can be such a dirty word. In the area of sex, I hate it because there are far too many people who make the grave mistake of only engaging in copulation if they are able to get something out of it; and I don't just mean orgasms and intimacy.

Sex is not supposed to be an applied tool of manipulation. It shouldn't be used to get your partner to do (or not do) something. It shouldn't be used as a way to deflect an issue (you misspend money and rather than own it and apologize, you distract them with sex). It shouldn't be used, period.

If the only time sex really interests you is when you want to get—or get out of—something, you are definitely having sex with an agenda. You're also making a huge mistake because you're sending the message that sex is more about control than love. That kind of mentality is something, sooner or later, you will live to regret.

9. Not Making Their Partner Feel Desirable

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When Ayesha Curry did her Red Table Talk, she caught quite a bit of backlash for sharing her insecurities (goodness y'all. How are we gonna tell someone what they have the right to be insecure about?!). Kev On Stage's Righteous and Ratchet show provided an interesting male perspective on it all. Anyway, when Ayesha shared that she sometimes wished that men would notice her more, what I took from that is sometimes she struggles with feeling desirable.

I don't think that means she's unhappy in her marriage or that Steph ain't taking care of business in the sex department. I think she meant that most married people remember the butterflies and the feeling of not being able to keep their hands off of their spouse during the beginning stages of their relationship. The flirting, the staring, the wondering if they'll ever come a day when you'll get enough of them. The feeling of insatiable desire.

Newness brings forth one kind of desire. But the acknowledgement that you've got someone who has your back, loves you to hell and back and knows your dirty secrets and habits and still wants to give you the business? That is desire on a whole 'nother level! Do you and your partner project that to one another? It's a big mistake if you don't.

10.  “Forgetting” to Make Sex a Top Priority

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One of my little love brothers (someone who isn't a blood relative, but I love him as if he were one) recently told me that he was engaged. During our two-hour conversation about it, something that I shared with him is the fact that something singles sometimes underestimate about sex after marriage is how much of responsibility it is. What I mean by that is it's something that should be treated as a top priority because it's a huge part of what keeps a couple emotionally and spiritually connected.

The couples I work with who are seemingly on their last leg, the one thing they all have in common is the sex is seriously slackin'. There's actually one couple I know who've been together for well over 15 years, but they haven't had much sex almost half of that time; they can count how many times on less than two hands and, as far as good sex, they can count that on only one. There is nothing good or even remotely healthy about that.

When something or someone is a priority to you, it means that it (or they) precede other things. It also means that they are given special attention. Since one of the main things that sets marriages apart from all other relationships is the fact that sex is involved, don't make the mistake of sending the message to your spouse that intimacy with them is on the bottom of your list or that you're not willing to set aside time to give it your complete and total undivided attention.

Out of all the sex mistakes you could make, this is probably the biggest—the one that ultimately can lead to a break down in your connection and possible a broken marriage too.

Featured image by Getty Images

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ACLU By ACLUSponsored

Over the past four years, we grew accustomed to a regular barrage of blatant, segregationist-style racism from the White House. Donald Trump tweeted that “the Squad," four Democratic Congresswomen who are Black, Latinx, and South Asian, should “go back" to the “corrupt" countries they came from; that same year, he called Elizabeth Warren “Pocahontas," mocking her belief that she might be descended from Native American ancestors.

But as outrageous as the racist comments Trump regularly spewed were, the racially unjust governmental actions his administration took and, in the case of COVID-19, didn't take, impacted millions more — especially Black and Brown people.

To begin to heal and move toward real racial justice, we must address not only the harms of the past four years, but also the harms tracing back to this country's origins. Racism has played an active role in the creation of our systems of education, health care, ownership, and employment, and virtually every other facet of life since this nation's founding.

Our history has shown us that it's not enough to take racist policies off the books if we are going to achieve true justice. Those past policies have structured our society and created deeply-rooted patterns and practices that can only be disrupted and reformed with new policies of similar strength and efficacy. In short, a systemic problem requires a systemic solution. To combat systemic racism, we must pursue systemic equality.

What is Systemic Racism?

A system is a collection of elements that are organized for a common purpose. Racism in America is a system that combines economic, political, and social components. That system specifically disempowers and disenfranchises Black people, while maintaining and expanding implicit and explicit advantages for white people, leading to better opportunities in jobs, education, and housing, and discrimination in the criminal legal system. For example, the country's voting systems empower white voters at the expense of voters of color, resulting in an unequal system of governance in which those communities have little voice and representation, even in policies that directly impact them.

Systemic Equality is a Systemic Solution

In the years ahead, the ACLU will pursue administrative and legislative campaigns targeting the Biden-Harris administration and Congress. We will leverage legal advocacy to dismantle systemic barriers, and will work with our affiliates to change policies nearer to the communities most harmed by these legacies. The goal is to build a nation where every person can achieve their highest potential, unhampered by structural and institutional racism.

To begin, in 2021, we believe the Biden administration and Congress should take the following crucial steps to advance systemic equality:

Voting Rights

The administration must issue an executive order creating a Justice Department lead staff position on voting rights violations in every U.S. Attorney office. We are seeing a flood of unlawful restrictions on voting across the country, and at every level of state and local government. This nationwide problem requires nationwide investigatory and enforcement resources. Even if it requires new training and approval protocols, a new voting rights enforcement program with the participation of all 93 U.S. Attorney offices is the best way to help ensure nationwide enforcement of voting rights laws.

These assistant U.S. attorneys should begin by ensuring that every American in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons who is eligible to vote can vote, and monitor the Census and redistricting process to fight the dilution of voting power in communities of color.

We are also calling on Congress to pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act to finally create a fair and equal national voting system, the cause for which John Lewis devoted his life.

Student Debt

Black borrowers pay more than other students for the same degrees, and graduate with an average of $7,400 more in debt than their white peers. In the years following graduation, the debt gap more than triples. Nearly half of Black borrowers will default within 12 years. In other words, for Black Americans, the American dream costs more. Last week, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, along with House Reps. Ayanna Pressley, Maxine Waters, and others, called on President Biden to cancel up to $50,000 in federal student loan debt per borrower.

We couldn't agree more. By forgiving $50,000 of student debt, President Biden can unleash pent up economic potential in Black communities, while relieving them of a burden that forestalls so many hopes and dreams. Black women in particular will benefit from this executive action, as they are proportionately the most indebted group of all Americans.

Postal Banking

In both low and high income majority-Black communities, traditional bank branches are 50 percent more likely to close than in white communities. The result is that nearly 50 percent of Black Americans are unbanked or underbanked, and many pay more than $2,000 in fees associated with subprime financial institutions. Over their lifetime, those fees can add up to as much as two years of annual income for the average Black family.

The U.S. Postal Service can and should meet this crisis by providing competitive, low-cost financial services to help advance economic equality. We call on President Biden to appoint new members to the Postal Board of Governors so that the Post Office can do the work of providing essential services to every American.

Fair Housing

Across the country, millions of people are living in communities of concentrated poverty, including 26 percent of all Black children. The Biden administration should again implement the 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule, which required localities that receive federal funds for housing to investigate and address barriers to fair housing and patterns or practices that promote bias. In 1980, the average Black person lived in a neighborhood that was 62 percent Black and 31 percent white. By 2010, the average Black person's neighborhood was 48 percent Black and 34 percent white. Reinstating the Obama-era Fair Housing Rule will combat this ongoing segregation and set us on a path to true integration.

Congress should also pass the American Housing and Economic Mobility Act, or a similar measure, to finally redress the legacy of redlining and break down the walls of segregation once and for all.

Broadband Access

To realize broadband's potential to benefit our democracy and connect us to one another, all people in the United States must have equal access and broadband must be made affordable for the most vulnerable. Yet today, 15 percent of American households with school-age children do not have subscriptions to any form of broadband, including one-quarter of Black households (an additional 23 percent of African Americans are “smartphone-only" internet users, meaning they lack traditional home broadband service but do own a smartphone, which is insufficient to attend class, do homework, or apply for a job). The Biden administration, Federal Communications Commission, and Congress must develop and implement plans to increase funding for broadband to expand universal access.

Enhanced, Refundable Child Tax Credits

The United States faces a crisis of child poverty. Seventeen percent of all American children are impoverished — a rate higher than not just peer nations like Canada and the U.K., but Mexico and Russia as well. Currently, more than 50 percent of Black and Latinx children in the U.S. do not qualify for the full benefit, compared to 23 percent of white children, and nearly one in five Black children do not receive any credit at all.

To combat this crisis, President Biden and Congress should enhance the child tax credit and make it fully refundable. If we enhance the child tax credit, we can cut child poverty by 40 percent and instantly lift over 50 percent of Black children out of poverty.

Reparations

We cannot repair harms that we have not fully diagnosed. We must commit to a thorough examination of the impact of the legacy of chattel slavery on racial inequality today. In 2021, Congress must pass H.R. 40, which would establish a commission to study reparations and make recommendations for Black Americans.

The Long View

For the past century, the ACLU has fought for racial justice in legislatures and in courts, including through several landmark Supreme Court cases. While the court has not always ruled in favor of racial justice, incremental wins throughout history have helped to chip away at different forms of racism such as school segregation ( Brown v. Board), racial bias in the criminal legal system (Powell v. Alabama, i.e. the Scottsboro Boys), and marriage inequality (Loving v. Virginia). While these landmark victories initiated necessary reforms, they were only a starting point.

Systemic racism continues to pervade the lives of Black people through voter suppression, lack of financial services, housing discrimination, and other areas. More than anything, doing this work has taught the ACLU that we must fight on every front in order to overcome our country's legacies of racism. That is what our Systemic Equality agenda is all about.

In the weeks ahead, we will both expand on our views of why these campaigns are crucial to systemic equality and signal the path this country must take. We will also dive into our work to build organizing, advocacy, and legal power in the South — a region with a unique history of racial oppression and violence alongside a rich history of antiracist organizing and advocacy. We are committed to four principles throughout this campaign: reconciliation, access, prosperity, and empowerment. We hope that our actions can meet our ambition to, as Dr. King said, lead this nation to live out the true meaning of its creed.

What you can do:
Take the pledge: Systemic Equality Agenda
Sign up

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