See how a sexological bodyworker and I have similar answers to the same questions, despite having slightly different professions. My work is more insight oriented , hers is more hands-on. Read full Pacific Sun article
What’s the biggest difference between men and women when it comes to sex in a monogamous relationship?
Dr. Claudia Six: “There’s a saying: ‘Women need to feel good to have sex. Men need to have sex to feel good.’ That’s a big difference that can cause friction and distance between a heterosexual couple who may not be on the same page. A lot of my work with clients is to help them breach that divide.”
How does one really, truly deal with the boredom of monogamy?
Dr. Six: “I don’t think there’s any such thing as sexual boredom, and I devote a whole chapter of my book to this. Boredom is the canary in the coal mine of relationships: It’s an indication that something is wrong. People tend to experience ‘boredom’ when uncomfortable feelings are bubbling up to the surface, when they have been complacent, when they don’t want to take a risk and be vulnerable and bring up what is true for them. So they stuff it, play it safe, brush it under the carpet, but it festers and erodes eroticism in a relationship.”
What’s your strongest advice to couples who want to try an ‘open relationship,’ experimenting with other people? Does it ever work?
Dr. Six: “Most people who engage in non-monogamy, open relationship, polyamory, whatever term you want to use, are misguided. That is, they’re doing it out of emptiness rather than fullness. They don’t know how to create more of what they want in their primary relationship, so it’s easier to do the fun, sexy stuff with a shiny new partner than roll up your sleeves and clean up your relationship with the partner you take the garbage out with. To successfully do open relationships you need to have a lot of agreements about things.”
Many people complain about the mechanical, un-intimate pattern of online dating. Is there a way to break the mold and get to better, deeper ‘first dates’ in this new reality?
Dr. Six: “If you keep it superficial on the first couple of dates, the other person has every reason to believe that this is the level of communication you will maintain, which can be pretty uninspiring. You set the tone. If you interact on a level that is authentic and has some depth, you might find it rewarding. And I recommend not spending much time with emails or phone calls. You don’t really know about a person until you sit down across from them, exchange eye contact, hear their voice and notice your experience of yourself in their presence.”
How would you describe an individual who’s fully in touch with their own sexuality?
Dr. Six: “For a start, they’re totally comfortable in their body, and seem happily settled into it, relaxed. An individual who is fully in touch with their sexuality is in erotic integrity—that is they have self-examined and truly know who they are as an erotic being. They accept their sexuality, whatever it looks like, and they express it authentically. They don’t lie or pretend to be something they’re not, and they engage their desires unabashedly.”
What role can sports, yoga and other seemingly non-sex-related practices stimulate sexuality? How does one make these everyday activities useful in a sexual sense?
Dr. Six: “Any kind of physical activity will get you out of your head. And you can’t have successful sex if you’re in your head and not in your body. So whether it’s solitary or as a couple, it will support your love life, from tai chi to skydiving. Taking dance lessons can sound romantic, though all the power and control issues pop up in that context. If you can navigate them successfully, it can lead to wonderful physical contact that can be foreplay for a sexier event, for years to come.”
Finally, any tips and tricks to keep a healthy, loving marriage sexy and playful?
Dr. Six: “Have dates! I know it seems like couples therapy 101, but it’s true: You can’t maintain a relationship without regular and consistent dates, especially if you have kids! Pay attention, appreciate each other and say so. It doesn’t sound sexy, but it’s the foundation to a solid couple, and sexy and playful grows from that.”