I feel like we are just flatmates now.
I hear that phrase regularly from clients. It doesn’t matter if they're gay or straight, long-term or medium-term partners. They mean they don’t have much physical intimacy anymore. They are ‘bed dead’.
Hearts to parts
Sadly, many people feel embarrassed or shameful when talking about sex, and find it hard to discuss. This is tragic, because physical intimacy is restorative, fun and connecting. And it’s deeply human.
Physical intimacy is supported by having an emotionally safe intimate space in our relationship first. I use a phrase: ‘hearts to parts’.
What does the research say?
John and Julie Gottman are renowned relationship experts. Their research shows that couples with satisfying sex lives do the following.
They say “I love you” every day and mean it.
They kiss one another passionately for no reason.
They give surprise romantic gifts.
They know what turns their partners on and off erotically.
They are physically affectionate, even in public.
They keep playing and having fun together.
They make sex a priority, not the last item of a long to-do list.
They stay good friends.
They can talk comfortably about their sex life.
They have weekly dates.
They take romantic vacations.
They are mindful about turning towards each other – they ‘lean in’.
On the other hand, the Sloan Centre (UCLA) found that couples who have an unfulfilling sex life do the following:
Spend very little time together during a typical week.
Become job-centred and child-centred.
Talk mostly about their huge to-do lists.
Seem to make everything else a priority other than their relationship.
Drift apart and lead parallel lives.
Are unintentional about turning toward one another.
Do you need help?
Long term relationships are really satisfying, and also really tough. Romantic partnerships may also bring up our childhood emotional pain.
You are very welcome to book in for a free 10-minute chat with me: https://calendly.com/margofield/10minutecall
In person appointments are available in Macedon or Romsey, and face-to-face online (Zoom) appointments are also available.
If you would like to book a couples appointment, go here:
Thanks for reading.