5 Experts Share Their Big Ideas on How to Keep Your Sex Life Fresh

Posted by on January 4, 2018 in Conscious Living, Relationships & Sex with 3 Comments

couple embrace in bedBy Jill Hamilton | AlterNet.org

“There are only two tragedies in life: one is not getting what one wants, the other is getting it,” said Oscar Wilde.

Passion is a tricky, elusive thing. Once captured, it flounders. But why does it wither when domesticated? Why do sexy intense beginnings so often lead to boring, sexless or otherwise meh middles and endings? Why aren’t we having sex with our dear, highly-available partners, like, all the time?

“Our senses crave novelty. Any change alerts them, and they send a signal into the brain. If there’s no change, no novelty, they doze and register little or nothing. A constant state—even of excitement—in time becomes tedious, fades in the background because our senses have evolved to report only changes,” writes Diane Ackerman in A Natural History of the Senses.*

Or, says my friend Matthew, who thinks deeply on such things: “Once you’re with someone, they become your family. And you don’t want to have sex with people in your family.” Which is true enough, especially that last bit.

But you can rekindle passion, at least according to the top Big Thinkers in the field, who offer differing—sometimes wildly so—theories on how to do it. By reframing things a bit, you can soon be happily fucking your beloved family member once again. Though you’ll probably want to phrase that differently in your head.

Related Article: Tantric Intimacy & Sex: Why It’s Important

1. Marnia Robinson

Cred: Corporate lawyer-turned-writer and speaker on sex, relationships and porn. Co-hosts Your Brain on Porn website with husband Gary Wilson.

The Big Idea: Karezza sex (slow sex without attempting orgasm) can help hack your neurochemicals.

The Fix: The neurochemicals that make us so giddy with the first flush of love only last two years, tops. After that, the buzz wears off and couples get habituated (the nicer, more sciencey term for bored). Instead of trying to jack things up with new positions or sexy clown costumes that can further numb response to pleasure, slow things down with karezza sex, a form of affectionate, sensual sex that generally doesn’t result in orgasm. This sex, according to Robinson, strengthens lovers’ bonds and results in more frequent and satisfying sex. “It’s like learning to diet by eating smarter, rather than struggling to eat less,” writes Robinson. “As my husband says, ‘My limbic brain stays enchanted because I don’t attempt to fertilize you.’” (Her husband, it will not surprise you to learn, is a science professor.)

Test drive: Practice a “bonding behavior” like gazing into each other’s eyes for several minutes or lying with your head on your partner’s chest and listening to their heartbeat or synchronized breathing.

Further reading:  Cupid’s Poisoned Arrow: From Habit to Harmony in Sexual Relationships.

2. Shmuley Boteach

Cred: American Orthodox rabbi, author and TV host.

The Big Idea: Women are deep and endless sources of sexuality. Exploring that eroticism leads to richer, more profound sexual/spiritual connection.

The Fix: A woman’s sexuality is “much deeper and longer lasting than a man’s. In the face of such intensity, most husbands fear they can’t measure up,” writes Boteach in The Kosher Sutra: 8 Sacred Secrets for Reigniting Desire and Restoring Passion for Life. But for the husband who’s brave enough to jump in there and explore, there are sublime pleasures to be uncovered. “There is a part of us, a passionate part that is raw, instinctive, animal, visceral, and not attuned to social norms. It’s incredibly erotic to witness this side of a person become revealed. A man who can arouse a woman to this level of abandonment witnesses something incredible,” writes Boteach, in perhaps the hottest collection of sentences you’ll ever read by a rabbi. This deep sensuality flows into the rest of life, giving everything an “erotic pulse.”

To get to that place, Boteach recommends “Kosher Tantric” sex, including delayed orgasm to prolong sex, making it into “a worship of the divine spark in each other.” He’s also against going to the bathroom in front of each other—ruins the mystery.

Test drive: Try the Jewish custom of abstaining from sex for two weeks when the woman starts her period. “Every month, there must be two weeks devoted to physical love, and two weeks devoted to intellectual communication and emotional intimacy,” Boteach writes in Kosher Sex: A Recipe for Passion and Intimacy. It may sound a bit old school and rigid, but the forbiddenness fostered by abstinence can build lust, plus the on/off plan happens to correspond nicely with most women’s monthly swings of desire.

Further reading:  The Kosher Sutra: 8 Sacred Secrets for Reigniting Desire and Restoring Passion for Life.

3. Esther Perel

Cred: Writer, speaker, couples and family therapist.

The Big Idea: We need safety and security in a relationship, yet we also need adventure and excitement. The problem is that satisfying either of these needs sort of negates the other. The trick is riding the wave between security and excitement, figuring out ways to introduce novelty, risk and mystery into the familiar and comfortable.

The Fix: The erotic thrives on power plays, thwarted desire, threats of rivals and other non-safe and lovey ideas. Tap into these rich sources of desire by questioning your ideas about what’s “acceptable” to you. For a lot of people, the greatest sources of excitement and pleasure have to do with childhood hurts. Being willing to poke around in these dark areas of your erotic brain is a potent natural fuel for pleasure.

Test drive: Embrace the “shadow of the third.” In every relationship, there are other players, whether actual infidelities, flirtations or agreed-upon partners. Accepting this and working with it—whether by actually introducing others into your marital sex, negotiating monogamy or just feeling the arousal of a threat (perceived or real) of a romantic rival—beats complacency back and helps you see your mate as the desirable creature that they are.

For further reading: Mating in Captivity: Reconciling the Erotic + the Domestic

Related Article: 3 Tips to Create the Kind of Intimacy That Makes a Man Fall Deeply In Love With You

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