Can’t talk about sex? You are not alone. At least 50% of the couples that come to us for sex therapy struggle with verbal sexual communication. They just do not talk about sex. Period. Whether sex is happening or not, they never discuss it.
In my research and preparation for a class I taught, Sexy Mama! Ignite Your Passion, (a class specifically for mom’s looking to revive their sexuality after kids), I came across 5 ways to talk about sex that applies to all couples, not just mom’s with lost libidos.
Laurie Mintz, Ph.D., shares the 5 types of sex talk in her book, A Tired Woman’s Guide to Passionate Sex. Here’s the first of her five suggestions:
Kitchen Table Sex Talk – the problem-solving discussion:
This is your go-to conversation when you have to problem-solve an issue in your sex life. Sex is just as important a topic as money, children, work and future planning. It is the act that separates your partner from everyone else.
I often tell couples to talk about sex outside of the bedroom. Do not bring it up while you are lying in bed, frustrated. Instead, talk about sex in a nonsexual, neutral space to create safety and alleviate pressure. Sex talk makes many people feel vulnerable. A neutral space removes any expectations that the conversation must result in mind-blowing sex.
Another important aspect is timing. Do not bring it up 5 minutes before one of you has to leave for work or when one of you is clearly exhausted. Choose your words carefully and speak from a place of love.
A common healthy communication technique is the use of “I” statements. Dr. Mintz offers this example:
Instead of saying, “You don’t seem to know how to turn me on”, try, “I think it would help me get turned on if you…”
The first statement focuses on the deficits of your partner, the other keeps the focus on you. Your partner is more likely to hear your request and be less defensive when you use “I” statements.
So, get the ball rolling and have your first kitchen table sex talk. Stay tuned for my next blog post, “How to Talk About Sex Part 2: Provocative Sex Talk” (this is where the fun begins!).