Intimacy certainly isn't the only deciding factor for a successful relationship, but it can often be a barometer of how connected you are with your romantic partner. That said, even if the two of you are actively physical with one another, you still could be having some issues in the bedroom. Not quite sure if you and your mate are struggling? Well, according to the experts, there are a few telltale signs you need to spice up your sex life, which in turn might help increase your bond.
There could be a few contributing factors in a sex life that's suffering, not the least of which is stress. Being in a certain headspace or even having a hectic schedule are examples of things that can dramatically affect how often you and your partner are finding time to get physical, as well as make the times that you do get intimate feel less than satisfying for the both of you. And the fact that it can be uncomfortable to discuss intimacy can only make things harder.
Thankfully, there are some clear signals that can let you know if your sex life could use a little boost, as well as show you what your relationship could be lacking (and that includes non-sexual signs of affection, too). Ahead, Valentina Setteducate, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and relationship/intimacy specialist at Playa Vista Counseling, outlines four key things to look for if you think you might be in a sex slump — and a few of them just might surprise you.
You Don't Talk About Sex with Your Partner
According to Setteducate, this simple practice is actually often neglected. "Being able to have open conversations with your partner about sex and intimacy is so important," she says. "Bringing up sex can lead to discussions about what you like and want in the bedroom, what your partner likes, and what you may be wanting to try more of. Starting to have these conversations can in and of itself lead to greater connection and greater intimacy in (and out) of the bedroom."
Everything Takes Precedent Over Sex
There's good reason many long-term couples will run into a slump every now and again: Obligations outside your relationship that can be distracting or demanding of your energy. "If it is hard to remember the last time you had sex, or even thought about having sex, it may be time to reflect on why sex has fallen so low on the list" Setteducate explains. "Taking time to intentionally re-prioritize sex with your partner is not only helpful, but a positive skill to practice for the long haul."
And as a bonus, the therapist believes that acknowledging to your partner that you haven't been making sex a priority — but want to change that — can boost their confidence. "When we are in a relationship, it is meaningful to hear we are wanted, and making sex a priority means you are making your partner a priority, too," she says.
Rushing in isn't always a bad thing, but if you and your lover find yourself routinely skipping over some sensual warming up, you could be missing out. "Although sometimes it's fun to get right to the act, slowing things down and taking time to touch and be with one another in an intimate way is important," Setteducate says. "Laying together, touching each other, and making each other feel good is important not just for a healthy sex life, but for building feelings of positivity, acknowledgment and desire between you and your partner. Next time your partner wants to jump right into sex, try slowing things down and seeing how long you two can go before diving in."
You Never Stray From Your Routine
Having regular sex with your partner is one thing, but according to Setteducate, it's also important to consider the kind of sex you're having. "Do you want to try a different position? Want to move sex out of the bedroom and into the kitchen for a change?" she offers. "Switching things up with one another and changing the scenery can do wonders for spicing up your sex life."