Joe Beam, Ph.D.
Sex after marriage
What can we do about our less exciting sex-life after marriage? Wow! There are a lot of couples out there who are not having sex at all. According to the research in the late 1980s and early 1990s, there was a really gigantic sex study published in the book called Sex in America. The research found that about 20 percent of American couples between the ages of 18 and 59 have sex with each other ten times a year or less. These relationships are classified as no sex marriages. Another 15 percent in that same age group have sex with each other twice a month or so, and those are called low sex marriages. So the conclusion of that is this: More than one third of the American couples that are having sex with each other are considered to be no or low sex marriages. So obviously there’s a problem with sex between committed couples because they clearly are having a less exciting sex-life post marriage.
Some people consider sexual therapy. There you look at one of three things:
Sexual Desire — When looking at your desire, is it global or situational? In other words, is this just a global-like a desire for sex, or is it situational, having to do with a specific person or a particular occurrence? Also under this category is the potential for hypoactive or hyperactive sexual disorders. Hyper means that the person can’t get enough sex, and, believe it or not, those people are very miserable. Hypo means that they don’t have very much desire for sex, and so the pharmaceutical companies are now working on answering these questions: How can desire be increased? And what drug can make that happen?
Sexual Arousal — Arousal is the ability to be able to have sex in an enjoyable way, which means that the man can have an erection that lasts long enough to make him happy and her happy. That the woman can overcome vaginal spasms, if that’s the problem. Or, she can use lubrication to increase arousal, as well. These things mean that you can physiologically have sex. But it’s important to also prepare mentally and emotionally. There has been a large amount of research done on women that shows that even if their bodies physiologically respond, if they don’t mentally and emotionally respond, they still don’t feel aroused. Therefore, the sexual experience is still unpleasant and contributes to not wanting sex as often as their partner might.
Orgasm (or climax) — Can you climax? And if you can, is it painful or is it pleasurable? Does it take too long or does it happen too fast? These are questions that you should know the answer to and be aware of.
What research is finding now is you can skip the desire. If you don’t have the same levels of desire but if you can arouse and enjoy the sexual experience, then you will want to have more sex with each other.
Most people don’t want to schedule sex. But, in this day and age, you almost have to. Life is too busy. So, make a deal with each other that you’re going to do everything that you can to arouse each other and have sex 2-3 times a week, or approximately every 72 hours.
But, the key is that you’re going to make it a very pleasurable experience. It’s not like (sigh) we have to do it again now. No. You’re going to make it happy bonding and touching and loving. Be creative. Try a new place in the house. If nobody else is home, you can do all kinds of things to arouse each other. So, if arousal increases and it becomes physically pleasant and you can have pleasurable orgasms, then a physically pleasant, increasing desire will start growing.
You can still have a great sex life post-marriage and in long-term marriages. You have different levels of sex drive, but you can still have wonderful sex with each other being aware and planning. It really works to deal with a diminished libido and less exciting sex life after marriage.
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