Overcoming Common Sexual Problems
How To Stay Faithful & Be Monogamous With Your Long-term Lover
How can we come to the position that sex is just a recreational activity between consenting adults?
One of the best forms of contraception is the pill because it allows us to avoid actively thinking about reproduction, making babies, family life and all the other issues that arise during sex between two adults, especially the simple fact that enjoying sex for sex's own sake can be anxiety provoking.
If you are not taking the pill, one of the best ways to overcome this dilemma is to incorporate contraception into your sex play.
So for example, men who find putting on a condom difficult -- it often causes a man to lose his erection -- can incorporate the opening of the packet and the rolling of the condom onto the erect penis into sexual foreplay.
Many women really enjoy looking at their man standing up, sporting a hard erection, and the added titillation of seeing him roll the condom down the length of his penis while he looks at her with a burning sexual gaze, full of desire for her and what is to come, can make her shiver with sexual anticipation.
Equally, watching a woman put a diaphragm into her vagina as she looks at her man with a seductive, knowing expression can focus a man's mind intensely on the pleasure of sex to come.
Another idea is for him to put the diaphragm inside her; or for the couple to do it together as part of foreplay.
In any event, actively making the act of contraception another part of sexual foreplay gives it a very different feel, one that is exciting rather than inhibiting. It actually becomes part of the anticipation of sex rather than a chore or a distraction which can make his erection wither or her vagina dry up.
Sharing contraception in this way also means that women become less resentful because they don't feel that this job is all down to them.
When a couple share all aspects of sex in this way, and when sexual activities like contraception become part of their foreplay, the couple can very often let go of their inhibitions about reproduction, fear of pregnancy, and shame about simply enjoying sex for its own sake.
It's worth noting in passing that premature ejaculation is a source of considerable shame for many men - as is lack of orgasm or body image problems for many women.
If you're having some difficulties conceiving, than sex can become tortuous. Any form of sex that does not involve intercourse and ejaculation within the vagina can seem like another lost opportunity to conceive a child.
And yet, the pressures that this approach to sex place on a couple can be just as intense as the pressure from the having every act of sex haunted by the fear of getting pregnant. If you're trying to conceive, then the first step should be to back off and relax.
Start enjoying sex for its own sake by engaging in other activities than intercourse.
Try masturbation, mutual masturbation, sensuous touching, oral sex, or indeed anything else that takes your fancy. After a while you will find that your tensions dissipate and sex can become more enjoyable again.
That's probably the time to start trying to make babies - which, despite sounding old-fashioned, is best done for everyone's sake in a monogamous, committed relationship where the father and mother work together on child care!
5 Lack of variety - the way to boring sex
Why is it, couples in their millions have asked each other, that sex becomes boring when a couple have made a commitment and settled down together? The first reason is probably the lack of novelty.
After all, when you think about the excitement of a new relationship, the heady sexual thrills, and the intense sexual excitement and urgency, a significant part of the pleasure comes from the novelty of having a new partner and trying all kinds of sexual activities with them. There is no thought of sexual betrayal; monogamy is all the partners want. Yet familiarity need not lead to boredom!
The sad truth is that many couples who have been together for a while settle into a sexual routine that is entirely predictable and well-known to them. It's easy, predictable and safe. And you're not exposing yourself to any criticism from your partner about what they might see as an unreasonable sexual request.
Whether or not you accept that after a couple has been together for a while in a monogamous relationship there is a natural fading of sexual interest and activity, let me assure you that sex does not have to go that way.
Even if there is a biological force behind the decrease in sexual frequency that we see after about 18 months to 2 years in relationship, actually allowing that to dictate your sexual activity is a choice you are making.
Let me repeat that in another way: the number of times you have sex each week is a matter of choice. If you're not having sex as often as you would like, or if you are bored by the sex you are having, you are choosing that way of being sexual.
The first step in changing this situation is to begin to communicate more effectively. It's almost guaranteed that in a situation where a couple are finding sex boring, one of them is not communicating to the other what they need or would like during sex.
And if you're a woman thinking that oral sex, or some acting out of your sexual fantasy, or some old-fashioned romance would be nice, and that your partner should somehow know this and provide it, then you are just as much to blame as the man who wishes his partner to provide oral sex on him but never asks her for it.
The point is this: if you are not talking to your partner about your sexual needs, you are never going to get them met.
And in that situation it is hardly worth complaining about boredom! You're complicit in what's going on, in any kind of relationship where neither partner gets what they really want because they do not ask for it, not just a committed monogamous one.
It's certainly true that novelty and sexual experimentation can keep the sex in a relationship alive -- and don't misunderstand that point. You don't have to be swinging from the chandeliers or trying outlandish sexual practices to be stimulated and excited.
On the contrary: something as simple as a small variation on your regular sexual position once or twice a week (or even once a month) can provide a whole level of stimulation that makes sex much more exciting.
The reality is this: there are many ways to enjoy sex other than sexual intercourse, different things apart from intercourse as a route to sexual pleasure, and there are many ways to enjoy intercourse other than the man on top position!
What's more, you can try these at any age of life, and you don't have to be inhibited by the belief that the only "real" form of sex is intercourse! There are many suggestions in the sexual techniques section of this website about ways in which you can enhance your sex life with a variety of new sexual techniques.
6 You never initiate sex
There are many reasons why a couple stop initiating sex. Indeed, we've already mentioned a few of them above, in particular the sexual boredom that can arise (that link goes to a male advice site; see some information on sexual boredom for women here) when a couple cease to experiment and so find their sex life no longer so exciting.
There are others, of course, and high on the list of these is the fact that initiating sex needs a conscious effort when you are not especially aroused.
I also mentioned that sex in a relationship can be enjoyed even when a couple are not feeling turned on or horny: sex can be a rewarding and highly enjoyable thing to do with your partner at any time.
There are many other potential problems, too. People are very often worried about how their body looks to a sexual partner, concerned about what their partner will think of them when they ask for sex, and anxious about rejection when they do ask for sex.
Any and all of these concerns can prevent either partner asking for sex or initiating sex. And to further complicate things, when a couple isn't communicating well and has emotional difficulties, refusing sex can be a punishment by one partner for the other.
When a couple's resentful, and the anger is not expressed, sex is very often the first casualty.
A couple can also get into a long-term pattern where it's always the man who initiates sex; he may become tired of this, seeing himself as the person in the relationship who's responsible for the sexual activity of the couple.
And finally people sometimes genuinely don't want sex, perhaps because they really do have a headache!
But most of these "reasons" are actually excuses for not engaging in sexual activity. The simple truth is that very often it just seems too much effort to initiate sex; your partner is always there, you know they are monogamous.....so tomorrow is always around the corner.....
The best way to overcome a lack of initiation is simply to get down to it. Yes, this does require the co-operation of both partners. Yes, this does require a conscious decision to have sex.
Yes, this does require you to schedule sex into your diaries. But even if all of that is new to you, does it really matter?
There is no reason whatsoever why sex can't be something that you incorporate into your lives, just as you do with bathing, showering, or eating! It's just a simple matter of changing the way you look at things so that sex becomes a regular part of your life.
All it takes is a decision to make it important.