If you’re looking to learn sex education for married couples, here’s a quick primer on marital intimacy and how to keep desire strong for your ENTIRE married life. This education will help you whether you’re engaged and looking to learn a bit more about what sex is going to be like once you’re married, or if you’re currently married and you just feel like you and your partner’s desire for each other is waxing and waning and you’re having sex less and less often.
Marriage has changed over the course of history. We used to marry not for love but more for strategic gain. When we were choosing a partner, we wanted a good provider, a stable and strong homemaker, a strategic match.
Nowadays, we still want someone strong, stable, providing for our needs AND we want a passionate lover, a best friend, someone to complete us, we want it all! As author and sex therapist Ester Perel says, “We measure our self worth through love and relationships. Think about it! When someone picks you- you feel great. You feel like you are finally someone that is attractive, desirable, and good enough. This level of expectation that people bring to relationships (our entire sense of self worth!) is unprecedented and we can crumble under the weight of those expectations. We’ve created something (marriage) where we ask 1 person to give us what an entire village used to provide!”
If you feel like your partner no longer desires you intimately, know this:
The first step in sex education for married couples is to understand how marriage comes with many expectations. As we mentioned before, now that the institution of marriage is not only for stability and for providing financial sustenance; rather, it is for love, fulfillment, and personal satisfaction, our sense of self worth is directly tied to marriage and THAT inherently can set us up for failure.
The second step in sex education for married couples is to know that you picked your partner out of all the others, even those that you were strongly attracted to in your younger days, because something about your spouse told you that he/she was someone you could really settle down with and build a stable life together. She/he would make a great caretaker.
The problem is, that in all of the care-taking that comes along with marriage, we sometimes lose the curiosity that we have for each other because our spouse has become more like a caretaker rather than our passionate lover.
How do we know this to be true? Society has taught us that you should know it all if you live together. The longer we are married to someone, the more we should “know” them. Think of the Newlywed game. It’s almost unthinkable if we just don’t know everything about each other. So we just get used to each other and lose that sense of curiosity.
How can you get curious again? It’s usually when the burden of care-taking is removed. Think about when you saw your spouse’s face light up with passion- was he at work? was she giving a presentation?
The solution to this is that you keep up the curiosity. When life at home becomes too routine you do something about it!
Commit to paying attention to your partner and getting curious about them. Tell them how much you miss connecting with them. Make a committed and concerted effort to make love. Good lovers are not born they are made. Let life still bring you surprises and know that you haven’t exhausted it all with your partner. Practice good self care. Allow yourself to have your own private fantasies if it helps you to feel like a sexual being again-irrespective of your partner’s advances or lack of advances with you.
Bring back that creativity, imagination, curiosity, and novelty that you used to feel for your spouse and make it alive again. Don’t be ashamed that you want to feel fulfilled intimately. Own the fact that you want passionate intimacy.
And if you’re experiencing problems with your own body and your self image, practice some good self care so you can learn to love yourself and feel desirable.