Growing distant

Just as there are happy satisfied marriages, there are as many marriages where there is unhappiness of a different kind. The couple get along well and are able to communicated verbally on all issues , but once it is bed time you see them looking away and keeping a distance from one another. He loves her and She loves him too they are both attracted to each other turned on by one another, but they don’t make love any more !

Night after night she finds excuses like headache, fatigue and overwork as an excuse and he sits in front of the TV waiting for her to sleep after which he crawls into bed next to her - so near yet so far ...When such a thin happens there has to be a reason, a person’s libido does not flag down without a cause.

sex and romance

I am listing down some of the probable causes of a flagging sex life among couples and alo explore what can be done to get it going again on the right track !

1. Communication - We can see that communication is the number one requirement for any relationship to sustain and grow. As with everything else, couples need to communicate about sex and what they expect from each other. I was reading about a case study where a young couple belonging to a middle class had stopped having sex 2 months after their marriage and had to finally go for counseling after more than a year. The couple were open about their feelings with the counselor and the major problem seemed to have been lack of communication between the two. The girl was brought up in a very traditional household where talking about sex was a taboo, so she had her own imagination and visions of how sex would be for her when she got married. But her husband on the other hand was the typical youngster who wanted to be satiated by the physical union rather than take his time and make sure that she too needs to participate and enjoy sex as much as he did.

This vast difference in their approach to love making is what made her refuse sex and begin to hate it. But after counseling where they were advised to communicate at all levels and also asked to study each other’s moods. According to many sex specialists an inadequate foreplay is one of the commonest reasons for non fulfillment. Dissatisfaction in the bedroom can lead to dissatisfaction and in some cases even a complete breakdown of a marriage. However, it is also commendable that women are becoming more vocal these days about their preferences and that is a healthy sign!

2. Monotony – I remember a movie where a wife is grumbling to her husband about neglecting her and he in turn tells her 'I never promised you a Rose garden ? But the wife did not bargain for a desert either ! Monotony is one of the primary causes for the decline in sexual interest. When sex becomes boring and romance goes out of love making couple would rather not perform! A couple who communicate are also able to look for more inventive ways to make their sex life interesting by being innovative.

One can try different locations, different positions and be adventurous rather than being inhibitive and making your partner lose interest in the act as well. Let your mind run wild, after all you are sharing yourself with your husband so there is no need to limit oneself or draw a Lakshman Rekha as to how far can one go! Share your fantasies or at least listen to what your partner has to say and make things happen.

3. Biological differences – Nature has made a man and woman different and this also creates certain unique problems which can be seen in the bedroom as well. Men can be extremely attentive one minute and become cold and withdrawn the next minute totally confusing the woman. Most women feel that this is because their husbands don’t love or care for them anymore. This is a very common complaint that many women have regarding their men.

But when you look at it from the mans point of view – they sometimes need to pull away and analyse before getting closer again, but when they spring back again the woman is hurt and angry because of their previous withdrawal and doesn’t respond. This results in an impasse .He feels that things would be okay once they have sex whereas she feels everything has to be Okay before having sex. The only solution is to understand and give space. With realisation they should both understand how to deal with each other when there are such mood swings.

4. Strangers in the night – Often we see in films and serials a joint household where the men go about their business during the day while the women are confined to the kitchen and household duties and seldom have or given an opportunity to communicate leave alone have any intimacy during the day. At night after all the duties are over they sneak into their bedrooms and he grabs her caught up in satisfying his own needs without stopping to consider her’s. He takes what he considers is his conjugal right and she gives what she considers is her conjugal duty. So where does romance come in here ?

In the above scenario , sexually they are like two strangers and this happens in majority of the households. This kind of act diminishes the sexual pleasure and after a while the interest may peter out altogether .Unless there is mutual participation there is no mutual pleasure, so it is only fair that both be given a chance to participate. Taking time and becoming comfortable with each other’s bodies and a prolonged foreplay can make the woman more responsive and bring back the romance in a marriage. A couple should also develop an awareness for each other sexually or otherwise and share things, which promotes sharing of pleasure in the act.

Man and woman 1933-34

5. Being self conscious –This often happens with women after they bear children and their bodies undergo some not so positive changes .They also may put on weight in all the wrong places and feel very conscious about it. It makes them uncomfortable and sex becomes awkward for them. But according to most men a few extra kilos don’t really matter, in fact some like it better than having a too thin body to hold on to ! I have heard many women say that they don’t want to undress or expose their bodies , which according to them has become unattractive. Most Indian women are never convinced that they look good even with the extra pounds/kilos and need constant reassurance. Once that is given by a wise husband things are bound to work out.

6. Make her feel special – Why I am concentrating on the lady is because most of the sex related problems often come from their side. In a new relationship, a man’s testosterone drives him to fulfill his sexual desires, so he finds ways to make her feel special enough to desire him and respond to his advances. But in time as other pressures crowd in, he becomes less attentive and this is bound to make her feel that he does not desire her in the same way. This makes her lose interest in sex .

What is important is that you retain romance in your marriage by doing special things to have a satisfied sex life as well. One must remember that romance and sex go hand in hand and only when they come together can one expect to have a fulfilling sex life. To get your romantic life back on track, do something special to each other. Bringing flowers and chocolates or favorite sweets to the wife or holding her hand while having a conversation is an indication of one’s affection and love. But make sure that you are genuine about is and are not doing this only when you want sex. Because one can easily see through it and this can lead to further deterioration.

7. Be Understanding – We see many families where women are stretched t the limit taking care of the kitchen duties, looking after the children and catering to the needs of the in laws and by the end of the day the woman is far too exhausted to even think about sex and romance. It is better to be understanding and a man should be able to give her love and affection rather than demand sex. Try to give her a hand if you can in her household duties and lighten the burden so that you can spend more time together.

Taking her out for a short vacation so that the two of you can revive the romance back into your married life, may make things better. At the same time, it is important to make each other feel that you love her or him as an individual rather than for what he or she can give.

8. Nagging – This is one of the most damaging things that can harm not only one’s sex life but also your marriage. According to analysts Nagging and lack of appreciation are big turn-offs. Nagging a husband for his inability to bring in more income, or his inability to perform in the board room or in the bedroom can inhibit his sex drive or worse make him seek satisfaction elsewhere!

Similarly, lack of appreciation for the care and effort she puts in and being insensitive to her feelings can diminish her sexual interest and make her critical of him. Criticising and nagging never helps, in fact it only makes the person become annoyed and negative which really does not help. Instead making a sincere effort to appreciate the other person when he or she has dome something special and trying to overlook their minor faults really helps in strengthening a relationship.All these minor points make a difference to your sex life. Dont be stingy in your appreciation - agood policy to adopt between couple is to give generously and frequently!

9. Misconceptions -– Many couple enter the institution of marriage with a lot of misconceptions about sex. This is because there is no openness in our society and any talk about sex within the family is frowned upon so the natural curiosity that one has about sex never gets properly answered. People read sleazy magazines listen to friends and others version of sex which may or may not be real, given to exaggeration , so the conclusion they draw is very confusing. On the one hand they tend to think that sex and romance is one and the same and at the same time our films and books tend to make sex into a fantasy which it is not.

Another major misconception is that as one grows older a man should decrease and control his sexual activity which is further from the truth.This attitude comes from the general belief that excessive sex will wear down the sexual organs and thus lead to sexual impotency. In fact, sexual health and activity at any stage in one's life promotes the emotional health of a person which in turn improves physical health.

10. Fear and Acceptance - As a man grows older, it is but natural that his physical and mental faculties slow down. But while he accepts other aspects like slow physical movements,failing eye sight, many men see slowness in the sexual arena as evidence of impotence and slow arousal as his failure as a man. Many people begin to develop such an inferiority complex about this that they become over anxious to perform thereby increasing the stress levels in their partners as well. One should remember that anxiety and sensuality cannot go together. Since this is a fact of life one should accept the inevitable.

We have to accept that with age our body's reactions slow down and hence it is normal for a man to take longer to get aroused. Both the partners need to have a lot of understanding and patience when this happens and give enough time for the man to feel comfortable and enjoy his prolonged awakening.

Hammond-SS10

To conclude, most couple are unanimous in their opinion that sex gets better with age. While it is all about energy and performance when one is newly married and relatively young , with age one mellows down and becomes more understanding and caring about one's partner and this also develops a stronger bond between them. Sex and romance in a marriage should be kept alive and thriving no matter what age or stage of life you are in. It is better not to compare and contrast your own marriage with others , instead concentrate on making it better for yourself and your partner to bring the romance back into your marriage.


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