[NSFW] Will daily sex cure a low libido?

An interesting post in TimesOnline. Must read for married couples 😉

From The Sunday Times | February 1, 2009

When a new dad’s sex life went out of the window, he resolved to kick-start it, every night for a year

Naked couple in bed looking happy

Two years ago, my wife and I made it our new year’s resolution to have sex every day. The reason was simple. Utterly worn out by the arrival of our first child, we had pretty much stopped having sex. I was 33, she was 30, and our erotic life needed not so much a jump-start as electrotherapy.

At first, we tried to laugh off the decline in our love-making. On the rare occasions we did it, we would say something like, “We must do this more often,” and giggle. But as the days turned into weeks, and the weeks turned into months, broken only by the occasional, desultory shag, it became clear this was no laughing matter.

The absence of sex is a powerful yet subtle foe. It quietly corrodes the most important parts of a relationship — trust, intimacy, passion, respect — and that least analysed of all attributes, fanciability. If left untreated, the lack of sex can even destroy love. I am convinced many people split up because they forget to make love to each other, and love — along with the feelgood chemical, dopamine, that sex generates — dries up.

A sexless relationship quickly becomes a vicious circle. The less we did it, the worse we got at it. As the time between our spells of passion lengthened, so those same spells of passion shortened, until sex was lasting just a few minutes on a good night once in a blue moon — hardly encouraging, as you might imagine.

It’s one of the injustices of the sexes that no matter how poor the sex, we men always get to have an orgasm. And once we have had it, our inner caveman’s work is done and all we want to do is roll over and go to sleep. The answer to this problem, of course, is stunningly simple — bring your wife or girlfriend to orgasm before you shag. But that takes time. And effort.

The fact that you are not having sex is also hard for a man to talk about, because there’s so much pride bound up in it. So, when my wife whispered in my ear on New Year’s Eve, 2006, that our resolution should be to have sex every day, my initial reaction was one of abject terror. That’s not the way men are supposed to feel about sex. Real men are supposed to be ready to go at it whenever, wherever, member joyfully in hand. My first thought was: “How can I get out of this one?”

My wife was ambivalent as well. She recalls: “The first week or so, it was a chore. We worked hard to find the time to fit it in between the laundry and EastEnders. I dreaded it in the way I dread going back to the gym every January.”

I will always remember that first night back in the saddle. The sex was over almost before it had begun. My wife said: “Don’t worry, you’ll get better at it. We just need to practise.” This was, word for word, what the first girl I slept with said to me when I was 18 — but my wife was right. We had sex the next night, and the next, for the whole of January, February and March. As the weeks turned into months, I learnt to control myself again, while my wife, with the confidence that comes from practice, began to reach ecstasy more quickly. It took a long time at first, though. Hours and hours. We started at opposite ends of the time/orgasm continuum and worked our way to the centre.

It wasn’t just an improved physical experience — so much else changed, too. We became better at communicating. Our minds became more attuned to the state of our bodies — I started running, she started Pilates. And then she fell pregnant. At the end of 2008, 15 months after our second child was born, we both noticed the “must do this more often” jokes creeping back in. We had exactly the same problems: a new baby, exhaustion . . . So, you know what we did? We resolved to have sex every day, all over again. And it’s going great.

Practice makes perfect

Want to rediscover passion? Here’s how. The good news is it involves you having more sex. The bad news is it’s with your spouse. Yes, the latest advice is that forcing yourself to have sex even when you don’t feel like it could save your relationship.Isn’t this horribly retrogressive — in the same vein as taking off your apron and making sure you’re wearing lipstick when your husband comes home from work? Not according to the experts.

The Australian sex therapist Bettina Arndt, for one, is a strong advocate of “just doing it”, whether you’re “in the mood” or not. “Desire is a decision. Without sex, a chasm can develop that erodes a couple’s bond,” she says.

Even the church seems to be backing the idea. Last November, the Dallas priest Ed Young urged the married members of his congregation to embark on a “sexperiment”, committing to seven straight days of “congregational copulation”.

Three bestsellers flaunt this “just do it” approach. Charla Muller’s 365 Nights: A Memoir of Intimacy describes how she slept with her husband every night for a year to help re-establish a connection that, post-kids, was on the wane. Similarly, Douglas Brown’s memoir, Just Do It, is a shameless testament to his and his wife Annie’s sexual “marathon” — 101 days of solid sex. Both peddle the same message, that sex with your spouse — good, bad or mediocre — will work wonders.

Why do we need their advice? The reasons married couples give for flagging sex lives range from boredom (the author and sex therapist Dr Pam Spurr calls it the “two-year turn-off”) to exhaustion. Careers often come first, but the arrival of children on the scene is often the clincher. Eight out of 10 new mothers report lowered desire, according to Relate figures. One man, responding to a Times Online sex survey, described sex after the arrival of kids as: “quick, covert, like a military strike”.

So clearly we have a problem. But won’t “just doing it” simply mean going through the (rushed, unsatisfying) motions? Not if you believe Brown. And what’s the alternative? “If you wait for ‘chemistry’, you’ll have sex once in a while, if you’re lucky,” he says.

The problem is that one half is generally more up for it than the other. “Desire discrepancy is one of the most vexed issues in the modern marriage,” says Arndt. As research for her forthcoming book, The Sex Diaries, she asked 98 couples to chart how they negotiated sex within their relationship. And — surprise — in her study, it’s the women who are saying “no”. “Men are terribly conscious they’re on the back foot,” says Arndt. “The wives carry the power of rejection.” By contrast, she heard “a howl of despair” from the men about a lifetime spent grovelling.

Arndt refers to the “damp wood” of female libido (“it can need a lot of firelighters”), but a couple’s relationship cannot hinge on this, she insists. The idea that you could enjoy sex without “wanting” it can be a revelation, but “you just have to put the canoe in the water and start paddling”.

At the end of the 101 days, Brown’s wife proclaimed the sexperiment a success; it literally “screwed us together”. But not everyone feels the same way. One woman lamented, “I did try ‘just doing it’, but began to resent that I was just doing it for John. I felt like I was just servicing him.”

It seems, as in so many aspects of marriage, that the answer lies in compromise. The needs of both people be recognised. “Sometimes that means making love to your spouse even when you’re not in the mood,” says Spurr. “You do it because you know it’ll make the person you love happy.”

Amy, 54, scheduled sex every three days with her husband to potentially marriage-saving success. “On the ‘off’ days, I could enjoy as much intimacy as I wanted, knowing it didn’t have to lead to sex,” she says. Most important, “once we get into it, I always experience orgasm, and I feel that it brings us closer”.

[source: TimesOnline ]
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  1. #1 by Мики on October 21, 2011 - 7:27 pm

    thanks for saving this article..its not available for some reason on timesonline any more..

  2. #2 by DAVID .YOUSAF@YMAIL.COM on May 26, 2012 - 3:26 pm

    I AM DAVID YOUSAF LIVE IN PAKISTAN . I AM AGRY WITH YOU COMMENTMENT YOU

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