In my sexual healing practice I often hear from couples that have a great sex life until something big changes. Whether that’s deciding to move in together, getting engaged, getting pregnant or other big life changing things, one or both partners finds that their sex drive drops off. If it doesn’t pick up within a reasonable time, they start to feel shame and guilt and rather than get help sorting it out or talking to their partner about it, it just goes unchecked. The other partner may also have their own issues brewing in relation to the reduced amount of sex and before you know it, the couple are stuck in a ‘little to no sex’ place, each afraid to address it or talk to the other about it.
So how do you get out of this rut and back on track with your fantastic sex life, and possibly use the situation to improve your sex life even more?
First of all, someone has to bring it up. It’s essential to talk about what’s going on and how you’re both feeling about it. When big life changing things happen, we can feel fear, worry and anxiety and that alone can lead to a lowered libido. Physically and emotionally, our internal resources are being redirected to dealing with the stress of the new changes and that can shut down our usual sexual responses. Sometimes, just talking openly about what is going on will help. Once it’s all out in the open, you’ve both shared how you’re feeling and heard and felt what’s going on for your partner, the door to intimacy can open again.
We have sex for lots of different reasons, and one of the main reasons, particularly in a committed relationship, is to feel connected, physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually to our partner. If your sex drive has changed recently, look to see how connected you’re feeling to yourself, to your partner and to life in general. A big life change could cause you to shut down somewhere and lead to feeling disconnected. If that’s the case, find ways to reconnect to life. Walking out in nature, yoga, meditation, a good hearty dance to your favourite music or even a good cry can help.
Ironically, having sex can also help you to feel more connected. Our sexual energy is life-force energy, the stuff that helps us feel alive, vibrant and in touch with everything around us. If you’re not up for sex just yet, spend some sensual time together, without the pressure of full on sex. Stroke and caress each other, share a bubble bath or just snuggle up and watch a film you love together. Once that intimacy is reignited it will be easier to find your way back to your usual sex life.
Remember, it is perfectly normal for your sex drive to ebb and flow over time. Rather than alienate yourself from your partner and from your own sexuality, share the experience. You’re not on your own with this, you and your partner are a team. Sharing the experience and what you’re feeling will likely create a deeper intimacy, more trust and a more fabulous sex life in the long run.