I honestly don't think that there are any words more over-used on the planet than "sex" and "sexy". In contemporary advertising and everyday conversations, "sexy" is used to describe just about everything: your car, my lipstick, a woman's legs, breasts, a guy's rear end, a magazine, a pair of shoes and the list is by no means exhaustive. We have grown so accustomed to singing about sex in Pop and R & B music, having it talked about on talk-shows, discussed on blogs (present company included), in bars, over coffee at work and even alluded to surreptitiously in board rooms that we have pretty much heard it all. Regretfully, in our overtly sex-saturated society, something that should really allow us to go whoopee has become virtually run-of-the-mill. We are basically suffering from sexual over-exposure and the sad thing is that our relationships are being adversely affected.
How are these effects being felt you might ask. They have likely contributed to much of the boredom often experienced by many of us in the bedroom. Where sex is concerned, have you ever thought "been there, done that" (big yawn)? I mean what else is really new in the sexual stratosphere (barring the unmentionable kinky variety not mildly appealing to us normal people). Really, think about it. How do regular, well-adjusted couples not interested in the least in flaying each others skin or in some other de-humanizing behaviour, continue to get a kick out of sex, particularly if they have been married for a good, five, ten, fifteen or maybe twenty years.
I admit having been married for a quite a few years myself, that cultivating and maintaining bedroom excitement is no easy feat. Our common-sense tells us that relationships will drift though a number of stages. After the hot and sexy early years where we can hardly think straight or keep our hands off each other, we find ourselves settling into the routine of coupledom. There are the bills to be paid, the babies, the changing careers, continuing education, the parents and life which just keeps on happening.
These shifts in the dynamics of our relationships are very often reflected in the bedroom. It is usually the first place to experience the emotional strains which can plague a marriage because of changing life-circumstances. Because sex is an ultra-vulnerable act which forces us to let our guard down, it easily becomes the place which is most susceptible to the normal stresses and strains of a relationship.
So what am I saying? Bedrooms can become besieged with boredom because of a number of reasons. Sex has become as common as the common cold, and the changing scenes of life and relationships don't exactly make it easy for couples to feel all hot and bothered under the collar.
So what happens in the bedroom during these junctures of our lives? Well, where sex is concerned there is always the element of choice. There are a number of ways individuals and couples can and do choose to deal with the issue of bedroom boredom.
The Auto-Pilot Response
This occurs where couples mostly have sex when either half-asleep or half-awake (just a matter of perspective). Sex occurs as a matter of course, pretty much like the necessary bodily function of going to the bathroom. There is absolutely no effort at creativity or ingenuity extended into the love-life. Sex is brief, functional, perfunctory and release-oriented; pretty much along the lines of that well worn expression "wham-bam-thank-you-mam!" The missionary position becomes etched in stone and sometimes the wife can even do the grocery list during the act, if she can get her eyes opened wide enough.
The Sexless Response
Couples go sexless when the cares of life become so overwhelming that sex is no longer worth the time, work and effort. This couple begins to function almost along the lines of a brother and sister. There may or may not be a certain sense of warmth between them but life has become so centred on the activities of family (children and in-laws) that this couple has actually lost all sense of being a couple. In this response pattern, the practice of not having any sex (or as little as twice a year), is not necessarily a well-thought out or deliberate response. It usually occurs because one individual looses his/her desire and the other capitulates because he/she gives into a feeling of powerlessness in the situation.
The Nocturnal Headache Response
This response occurs when there is a simple lack of common sex, I mean common sense. One partner (usually the woman) gets locked into complaining of a nightly headache, while failing to realise that she's having that headache precisely because she has not had some good sex in a while and perhaps needs that great orgasmic release. No seriously, the headache response reveals an escape-route mentality. Of course I am not denying that there may be times when illness may prevent partners from experiencing a good roll in the hay but that's not the point here. Barring genuine illness, partners can become locked into various excuses as to why sex does not happen. "The kids will hear us", "the dogs are barking", "my mother lives next-door", "there is a hole in the ceiling" all become viable reasons as to why sex should be circumnavigated. While this sex-avoidance behaviour may only be perpetuated by one individual, it becomes a significant road-block to sexual intimacy since it definitely takes two to tango.
Perhaps this is the most lethal of responses to bedroom boredom. It occurs when one or both partners begin to look outside the relationship for the sexual excitement which they know is lacking. The partner or couple who gets locked into this response may not be necessarily interested in leaving the relationship. There may be a sense of security in knowing that they have built a life together. They perhaps share a mortgage, a car loan, kids, pets and the list goes on. What they don't share however is an exciting sex life. When sexual boredom has set in and there is a lack of dialogue on the matter, the result could very well be a tendency to inspect the grass on the other side. This is a response that is grounded in laziness and a self-serving agenda. The energy, spontaneity and ingenuity that is often required to make an affair work, had it been applied to the marriage, would most likely have resulted in a re-kindling of the sexual fires. The self-serving partner is however looking for a quick fix and working on a relationship can be time-consuming.
The "I Want to Have Great Sex With You" Response
There are couples who love to have great sex, and I mean with a capital L. There is however one condition. They only want to have that great sex with the person to whom they are committed. Sex for such individuals is not an end in itself. It's not a case of "any sex will do". They are not into trading vaginas and penises for their own personal aggrandizement. Do such couples experience boredom in the bedroom? Of course! Their boredom could be as palpable as the next guys. What distinguishes their response however is their level of commitment to the relationship and their intuitive understanding of the value of a good sex-life to the health of the relationship. Because they understand the basics of relational health, they are therefore willing to put in the extra work to alleviate the bedroom blues. They also understand that love is really about putting the needs of another individual before their own. This means that if each partner focuses on what to do to please the other sexually, then the result is likely to be one sexually fulfilled couple.
Regardless of the response mode you and your spouse may have found yourselves in when it comes to the bedroom blues, the following tips represent a starting point for your continued sexual renewal as a couple: