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  • Why doesn’t my partner want to be sexual anymore?

    There can be SOOOO many reasons a partner loses interest in emotional or sexual intimacy!! Here’s a few that I hear in my therapy office:

    -I’m stressed out by work, chores, kids
    -I feel pressured to have sex more than I want to
    -My partner is often angry or critical of me
    -We don’t spend any quality time together
    -I feel alone in the relationship
    -My partner doesn’t take care of themselves anymore, etc

    So what can a couple do to ignite the flame again? Here’s a few ideas:

    1-When a partner is stressed out from all the work, kids, or chores to do at home divide labor as evenly as possible. Know what needs to be done and do it. Studies have found that partners that do their fair share of chores have more sex!! So do the dishes, cook dinner, put the kids to bed, etc.

    2-Pressure of any kind, sexual or otherwise, creates a recipe for disaster and sets up terrible patterns in a relationship. Instead cultivate a warm, caring, fun environment without the expectation of sex! Touch for touch sake, not just as a warm up to sex later that day. 

    3-Anger and criticism will scare anyone away. Remember your partner is someone you love and I’m sure you don’t want to hurt them or push them away. Take some deep breaths if you feel your anger bubbling up, take a break, go for a walk, work out, or try individual therapy to help figure out where this anger or critical patterns are coming from and learn what to do about it. 

    4-Remember when you were dating or before you had kids you were able to find fun things to do together that felt connecting? What were those things? Write a list and start doing them. Allow yourself to have fun together again. Also, make sure you are doing things together that both of you like to do as well as having eye to eye conversations. TV time and being on your phones are NOT quality time…find an activity to do together instead. 

    5-Feeling alone while in a relationship can be very disheartening. So look for ways that you can connect emotionally and physically. Have “couch time” where you and your partner set aside 15-20 minutes every other night to chat about how each of you are doing. This is a great way to check in on each other as well as ask if there’s anything different that your partner needs from you. Remember eye contact and look at each other. Listen to understand, not to respond.

    -Eating well, working out and/or hygiene issues often come up in therapy and it can be so hard to talk about this. Make sure you’re taking care of your oral care and grooming as well as not wearing your oldest sweatpants every evening because they’re comfy. You don’t have to dress up in your very best clothes but wear something clean, comfortable and flattering when at home together or out and about. 

    Try these tips to bring more closeness and connection into your relationship. You may be surprised how these ideas may you feel more connected to your partner emotionally and physically. 

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