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How To Get Better At SexLove And RelationshipsSustaining A Loving Relationship

Communication | Let’s Talk About Sex! Here’s How

Communication - talk about sex - relationships advice

Communication: the vital ingredient for successful relationships and scintillating sex lives. Master these skills and talk, talk, talk!

Many couples live together for years but never really talk intimately. Yet communication is vital to any relationship. Talking can make an adequate sex life absolutely fabulous!

Sex is a very private subject for most people – especially when it involves our own personal sexuality. Even within a close, truly loving relationship, many people can still feel awkward about declaring their sexual needs, desires and anxieties.

The joy of a close personal and sexual relationship is that a couple can discuss and share their fears as well as sexual desires. But all too often there is a lack of communication. A couple who can succeed in overcoming this communication gap will almost certainly find that the physical and emotional sides of lovemaking will become even better.

There are many reasons why communicating about sex is so difficult. A major problem is that we tend to make general assumptions about what men and women want and need, and on a personal level we assume the wants and needs of our partners. Not communicating about sex is at the heart of countless problems and arguments within long-term relationships.

Time to talk

Clinical experience and many couples’ own personal explorations of relationships have highlighted some ways to break down the barriers when communicating about sex. Many people who go to marital and psychosexual counselors complain that they never talk and then wonder why their relationship seems to be withering.

Make time

It is a good idea to be quite disciplined when it comes to communicating about sex. One answer is to make a special date with each other, a personal time when you will talk more intimately than usual.

Try to make it fairly early on in the evening so that you are not both exhausted and likely to become irritated. It may be a good idea to go out, as being on neutral territory can help enormously.

Try not to talk about any sexual problems when you’re both in bed and feeling sexual. It is a vulnerable time and usually only results in frayed tempers and egos.

Writing down what you feel you can’t say out loud to your partner can be a less stressful way of working out problems.

Talk the same language

One of the problems when communicating about sex is that we often use different sexual terms. We usually assume we know what our partner means, even though we may never have actually asked.

One way to break down the barrier is to play a game with your partner. Make a list of all the words for sex and body parts you know. Be as rude as you can – slang can be a great way to avoid embarrassment. Next to the different words, write how you feel about them. Perhaps some make you feel shy, giggly or just plain horny. Now swap your lists.

Communicate physically

It may seem odd to discuss massage in the context of communication, but it can be a useful tool.

First, communication between lovers is physical, and sensual massage is a good learning tool. Also, the physical closeness that takes place is a solid foundation for any other form of communication about sex.

Second, the ‘instructions’ given by your partner during massage are a more interesting way of becoming aware of each other’s erogenous zones. Everyone is different and some of the areas can be a complete and pleasurable surprise.

Third, taking the time to massage one another can lessen any stress which can build up as relationships become more serious.

Much hostility in a relationship can arise over no-go areas. These can be areas that aren’t about sex but spill into sexual communication. Fighting about subjects such as family, friends, religion or politics can lead to major conflicts and upheavals.

Honestly communicating and overcoming shyness can be fun. Among the benefits will be the increased intimacy with your partner.

Approaching the war zones

For many couples, every time these sensitive subjects come up, one or other skirts around it. It seems easier to do this because each holds different views which, if aired, would lead inevitably to conflict.

Obviously, no two people can agree about everything, but a good friendship can withstand a fair amount of disagreement. There are often no absolute answers and it is important to respect each other’s opinions and recognize the boundaries.

Be sure that you both know what the no-go areas are, and then work through them slowly and lovingly.

When you reach an area about which you repeatedly cannot agree, try to accept it. If your relationship is good, it will stand quite a lot of disagreement, provided that you don’t resort to ridicule and humiliation.

If you have many no-go areas, it may be of benefit to seek some form of mediation. If a couple is constantly disagreeing it will be difficult for both to get a reasonable amount of support and care, both emotionally and sexually.

Avoid full-scale rows

Although it can be difficult to discuss sex, it is essential in preventing small disagreements blowing up into full-scale rows.

It is extremely easy for a couple to start discussing a problem, and then for one or other partner to include all kinds of other things – such as his relaxed attitude to the washing up, her incessant nagging about his nights out with the lads, or who should be taking responsibility for paying the household bills.

Confrontations such as these escalate in minutes. Be extremely careful. Hurtful things said on the spur of the moment during such rows stick in the memory for a very long time and can be really, really difficult, even impossible, to remove.

When you set about discussing a sexual topic, always remember that your partner is probably your best friend and that the most important thing of all is not to harm the friendship. At times, this may mean holding your tongue.

Value friendship

It is understandable that you might want to dump your troubles onto your partner, but if he or she cannot cope, or does not know how to deal with your problems, have you really made much progress?

Many people misuse their partner’s friendship. A boss who is impossible or a row with the children can all be upsetting, but many people then bring these pressures to bear on their relationship, and the time spent together becomes a long, miserable catalogue of woes.

Instead of expecting your partner to cope with all your personal difficulties, it is probably better to try to deal with these problems yourself. The option then is to turn to your partner for emotional support, rather than expecting them to solve your problems or bear the brunt of your frustration and anger.

How you approach your partner is the key to success. A loving friend may be the ideal person to sound off to, but if this becomes a habit, beware. Constant aggression can wear away the most solid of friendships and push the most tolerant partner into saying, ‘I’ve had enough.’

This may not necessarily mean that they will leave you, but they may withdraw their constant support. They could become remote and uncommunicative for fear of having to take on yet another load of trouble. The relationship will slide slowly and inevitably downhill.

Most people think: ‘I love him/her, therefore I would do A, B or C but not X, Y and Z.’ The usual assumption is that your partner has the same definitions of love, and almost certainly he or she will not. Don’t make assumptions. Sitting down together and talking over the different grey areas should show you just how individual your definition of love is – and so help you understand your partner’s.

Behave in a more loving way

Communication means listening to all your partner’s needs as well as voicing those that are important to you. Many couples start off with a private language, pet names and communication skills. As the relationship continues, these can be lost through laziness, lack of practice, complacency or boredom.

Partners who behave in a loving fashion as much as they possibly can will find that their relationship and sex life will be able to withstand the criticism when it does occasionally happen to occur.

Being sexually in tune with your partner needs working at. You must invest time and effort or you’ll see no return.

Second honeymoons

A second honeymoon can last for as long as you want – an evening, a day, a week, or more. There is only one rule – devote the time solely to each other and agree not to fall into your usual routine under any circumstances. Be more adventurous, try out new sexual positions and spend more time on sex play, make love in a different place, do something you’ve never done… The possibilities are endless.

Enjoy a sensual holiday at home, book into an intimate hotel for the weekend or fly off abroad for a fortnight. Whatever you do, go back to courtship behaviour and spend the time rediscovering one another. When you return from your holiday, build your new exciting experiences into your relationship.

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