Healthy Relationships,  Sex+ Intimacy

#HealthyRelationshipsFirst: Sex + Intimacy

5 steps to create a playground for open expression, juicy sex, and greater intimacy

By Mary Kubeck

mary kubeck

Is that even possible?” my client asked with a look of skepticism. I had just told her that the goal in attaining a passionate sex life, was to create a place in her relationship to freely express herself with complete openness and vulnerability.  A simple “yes” to that question felt inaccurate. You see, although it is possible, it is a fluid process that changes daily. It requires continuous effort and commitment; however, the payoff is deeper intimacy and better sex. So, here is a suggestion on how to get started!

  1. First, pick a mutual time that is free of constraints, pending appointments and outside interruptions.  This time should be as private and precious as the time you are openly intimate with each other so that you create a safe space for open expression. Make a date when you both are fully resourced and fresh. Don’t wait until the end of the day when you are exhausted.  
  2. Second, let your partner know what you wish to explore so that you can both reflect on it before you come together for discussion.  (For example: I would like to explore implementing sex toys into our intimate time.) This allows both of you time to check in with your feelings on the topic and construct your thoughts in a way that will be most receptive for your partner. This does not imply that being receptive to hearing the desire is equivalent to being in agreement with the desire. Those are two very separate things. This is a starting point to open discussion without the element of surprise.
  3. Third, listen to your partner’s desire with a spirit of curiosity, not judgement. It is often easy to respond to your partner with surprise or shame if it is an area that you may not find particularly appealing. This will only serve to shut down future conversation and minimize the opportunity for increased intimacy. Remember, if your partner is vulnerable enough to share a very intimate part of their desire, it must be met with compassion and a need to understand. Anything less, could result in long lasting consequences to your relationship with regard to trust and communication.
  4. Fourth, do not immediately dive into deep conversation around each other’s newly expressed desire.  This is crucial in creating a safe space to express.  Once your partner reveals their desire, simply respond, “Thank you” and allow the idea to sit in a space of understanding and non-judgement (not necessarily agreement). What happens during this time is that the nervous system begins to recognize that expression of desire, will not be met with an adverse reaction.  A sense of safety is created and sets the stage for continued intimate discussion.  
  5. Last, set aside time later in the day to discuss the newly discovered desires. This will give you and you partner time to digest expanding your sexual play in a way that honors the limits of what each of you are willing to explore. Creating healthy boundaries for yourself as you expand bedroom play creates safety and at the same time, adds excitement into the bedroom.

Once you decide what you would like to explore, you may wish to take a class on that type of sex play or hire an intimacy professional to help guide you in your sexual expansion. This will ensure that your sex life stays on a path of continued excitement and passion!

Creating that space of acceptance and vulnerability  must be approached with curiosity and compassion.