I think we can all agree that sexual concerns differ for singles versus those in committed relationships. Single, sexually active people don’t typically have the compounded demands of considering another person in their decision-making processes and life decisions. In my blog entitled Sexual Concerns: Men and Women I discuss common issues people face. There are some very distinct to men such as Early Ejaculation. Others are distinct to women like Vaginismus. Some key concerns that overlap the gender divide are Low/No Desire, Sexual Inhibitions and Body Dysphoria. The approach to addressing these concerns is different when dealing with couples because a relationship is a triangle. You have, for example, him, her and the relationship itself.
The transition from single to couple is different for everyone but it is a process. From the initial meeting, to the first time you are alone together, to the time you decide to become intimate to the actual decision to become exclusive. I acknowledge there are different kinds of relationships but for this article the assertions are based on heterosexual couples. That doesn’t mean this doesn’t otherwise apply.
Based on one source, Gorgeous in Grey, there are “6 things every Black couple should think about before getting into a relationship.”
I agree with this list, but I would also add:
Communication skills including Active Listening
Do you think these are important considerations before jumping into a relationship? What other things would you add to the list?
Committed relationships begin to take on a dynamic of their own as people integrate their lives and the longer you are together the routine sets in. As a sex coach, my focus is helping people make the best of their sex lives however it’s usually non-sexual things that serve as the underlying factors creating the negative space. Based on The Art of Sex Coaching, common sexual concerns of couples include:
Little/No sex in the relationship (4 or less sexual encounters per year)
Aversion to touch/misplaced touch communication
Conflict about uneven desire (UD)
Conflicting values about affairs/monogamy
Body image issues
Communication style conflicts
Negotiation skills deficit
A December 2017 article in Business Insider, “A Relationship therapist breaks down the 5 most common problems couples have in bed” supports the issues above.
Partners have mismatched sex drives (UD)
The couple isn’t having sex at all
The relationship isn’t as passionate as it used to be
One partner isn’t open or doesn’t seem to be open to the others sexual fantasies (For this one I’d try reviewing a Yes/No/Maybe list)
The couple isn’t sure how to pursue an open relationship
Most of the time life just gets in the way. Between work, family responsibilities and all the other shit that happens in day-to-day sex often is the first thing to hit the back burner. And even if you do find time to have sex it’s important to make sure the quality is satisfying. The first step in resolving these issues is honest communication. Couples who are willing to acknowledge issues and work together to find solutions that work best for them both have a much better chance of realigning their mojos. I am remiss to give specific remedies here as a cure all because there are factors about individuals and the relationship dynamic that impact the remedy. One thing to know is that you are not alone. There are a lot of couples that go through these challenges. The issues however persist when they are not attended to.
Let me clearly stipulate that coaching is not therapy. Therapy is a regressive process where people’s pasts are analyzed to uncover a trauma that is impacting you. Coaching is progressive in that your sexual history is used as background information and the objective is identifying your goals and developing an action plan to get you there. We help remove the negative space and bring the couple closer together; or in some instances help the couple realize it may be time to move on. Coaching is also collaborative. It is a partnership where the client’s needs come first, and your coach is your biggest cheerleader.
Check out my other blogs for additional information. Comment below if you have questions or can relate to any of the issues identified.
Wishing You Love, Peace and Great Sex!!