Sexual satisfaction does not occur just because two people are attracted to one another, or even in love. The happiness in many relationships is compromised by sexual dissatisfaction.
The dissatisfaction isn’t always about performance. It includes a decrease in desire, a decline in frequency despite desire, and increase in sexual dysfunction. Older couples are more likely to experience dissatisfaction, but couples across all life stages can feel short-changed in the bedroom.
No worries though, spicing up your love life doesn’t have to involve rope and blindfolds if that’s not your thing. You also don’t have to spend an hour in a lingerie shop that makes you feel more objectified than sexy. And, hanging from the chandelier or spreading out on a kitchen counter doesn’t usually play out in reality as well as it does in the sex fantasy.
Nevertheless, a lackluster love life is an easier fix than many couples realize when both partners are willing to invest in the satisfaction of one another. Great sex can be achieved with communication and relaxation in partnerships that are healthy.
Assuming there are no ongoing conflicts that interfere with desire, these ten practical strategies can help you modify your sex routine and turn the heat up in the bedroom.
As emphasized in the article, “Say It,” couples who communicate are more likely to have satisfying sex. Words should be used before, during and after sex to enhance the experience. Although movie romance makes sex look magical, in real life partners need to use words to fulfill desires.
Before sex, proper communication sets the tone. Offer to touch one another in sensual, but nonsexual ways. Do not start out touching genitals or breasts, and ask permission to touch those parts instead of assuming that is what the partner is ready for.
Asking permission may feel awkward at first, but so is having to apologize or receive an apology because the female did not orgasm, again. Risk the awkwardness up front. You will both get used to it over time and enjoy the results of slowing down.
2. Slow Down
Sex is an experience of intimacy. It should feel intimate, not rushed. Ejaculation is not the goal.
Sex is used for bonding, which is why making sure both people orgasm is important. Rushing through sex is a symptom of entitlement by men or a symptom of compliance instead of consent for women. Extend the nongenital touching until you are invited to touch genitals. Then continue to delay penetration until multiple female orgasms have occurred.
Adding time to intimacy takes practice and communication. Have fun with it instead of seeing it as an obstacle.
3. Remove Shame
Many partners carry shame in their intimate relationships. Some people are ashamed of how their bodies look. Others feel ashamed of how they sound when they orgasm. Some people are even ashamed to give or receive pleasure.
While your partner is not obligated to fulfill any particular sexual desire, shame should not be used in rejection or denial. If there is any shame between the two of you, reread the part about communication.
4. Touch Yourself
Self-stimulation can be a great partnering tool when shame is removed from the sex experience. Men’s attempt to stimulate the clitoris can be a steep learning curve.
Female DIY while the partner stimulates other parts of the body can make for great teamwork. Saying “let me show you”, or “let me help” is a sensual invitation to enhance bonding. It will go much further than telling your partner he doesn’t know what he’s doing.
There are many reasons to interrupt sex after it starts, especially if you remove the tendency to rush. Consider how interrupting may enhance the experience based on your needs.
Discomfort, for example, is a great reason to interrupt your partner. Repositioning only takes a moment. In fact, stopping your partner to reposition is also a great way to get them to reengage if you think they have gotten too lost in their own pleasure.
The female may interrupt for a moment after an intense orgasm. The male partner may need to interrupt to delay ejaculation.
If communication stops after penetration begins, that may be a sign that the two of you are not remaining connected to one another. Ironically, an interruption may be the best way to stay connected.
Use and communicate about protection against unwanted consequences. Confirming the use of protection before you engage puts both partners more at ease.
You can focus on one another instead of having your minds wander and worry about what is going to happen afterward. The greatest care you can show to a partner is making sure that they will not be subjected to unwanted consequences.
7. Use Lube
The use of lubrication is not just for condoms, especially for women over 40. A lubricant can be used to enhance stimulation as well as penetration. Use it generously and reapply as necessary. It is totally fine to interrupt penetration to reapply lube. Not all lube is the same.
If you are using condoms, make sure you use water or silicone-based lubricant only. Over the counter lubes in regular stores are not necessarily the best quality. Do not be afraid to search online or in adult stores to find better products. I have recommended “Lure For Her” in my human sexuality course for many years. Keep searching until you find something that you enjoy.
8. Count the Orgasms
Try to beat the odds and try for multiple female orgasms. Make a game out of female pleasure to take the pressure off of performance.
Time yourselves to see how long it takes for the female partner to orgasm. Agree that the female has to have three orgasms before penetration to test how well the two of you work together. Count how many total orgasms the female has and try to beat your record once a month.
The objective is to break tradition and center sex around the female orgasm rather than the male genital. These games are guaranteed to change the quality of your relationship outside of the bedroom as well.
9. Know Your Porn
If you use pornography to spice up the action, choose wisely. Not all pornography is alike.
Most men and women who view pornography have a healthy recreational appreciation for it, and certain types of pornography support partnering. Eroticism is the type of pornography that enhances sexual arousal through female empowerment.
In eroticism, the female is often the center of pleasure by her male partner. Female orgasm occurs, often before penetration. The focus is on carnal pleasure without the objectification of body parts. Eroticism can be distinguished from the male aggressive – female submissive portrayals of sex in most pornography.
If you choose to integrate pornography into your sex life, make sure it exemplifies the ways in which you would like for your sex life to be. Don’t forget to communicate about how and how often you are willing to use this resource as well.
10. Get a Room
Make a monthly or quarterly habit of getting a hotel room and spending the night away from the children, your jobs and housework. Make sure the hotel is at least a three-star, preferably four-star, and it has a king size bed to accommodate moving bodies. A cheap room can definitely ruin the mood.
Build a romance kit to take with you each time. Don’t forget the lube, massage oil, lingerie, and toys. Keep the packed kit visible in your closet as inspiration.
Remember that everyday love-making is a big contribution to sexual satisfaction. Love-making is a compliment on the way out the door, a thank you to acknowledge the contributions your partner makes to the family, a helping hand to free up your partner’s time, a rose for no reason, asking (and taking) your partner’s advice, and holding space for your partner to just be themselves.
Bakari, R. (2019): Say It. Upjourney Online Magazine, retrieved February 28, 2018. https://upjourney.com/say-it-sexual-communication-that-satisfies
Frederick, D.; Lever, J.; Joseph B.G. & Garcia, J.R. (2017) What Keeps Passion Alive? Sexual Satisfaction Is Associated with Sexual Communication, Mood Setting, Sexual Variety, Oral Sex, Orgasm, and Sex Frequency in a National U.S. Study, The Journal of Sex Research, 54:2, 186-201, DOI: 10.1080/00224499.2015.1137854
Sánchez-Fuentesa, M. d., Sierraa, J. C., & Santos-Iglesiasb, P. (2014). A systematic review of sexual satisfaction Author links open overlay panel. International Journal of Clinical and Health Psychology , 14(1), 67-75.
Women on the Web. Retrieved February 28, 2019. https://www.womenonweb.org/en/page/495/how-can-you-prevent-a-future-unwanted-pregnancy