DEAR ROCKY LOVE: Help us stoke the fires
Dear Rocky Love,
I’m looking for advice for how to keep sex active in my marriage. We have three children under the age of five, and sometimes we’re so tired we can barely even talk to each other at night, much less get jiggy with it. Any tips for how to get the home fires burning again?
– Signed, Tired Mommy
Dear Tired Mom,
I’m glad you wrote in. I received a letter like yours a few months ago, but I’m happy to address this issue again, as it is a common one.
Having young children can put the damper on a couple’s sex life, for a variety of reasons. Tiredness is just one. Mom, especially, might not want one more person pawing her body or needing something from her physically. Also, playing little kid games and toddler bedtime rituals aren’t exactly the stuff of romance. Switching gears instantly into lovemaking after singing “The Itsy Bitsy Spider” for the billionth time may be one hurdle too many.
My advice is to figure out what you need and work with what you’ve got.
Sex fills many roles in our lives. It can provide a mainline to intimacy and connection with a partner. It’s a stress release. It can provide affirmation and love. And it can fill us with a sense of well-being and ecstasy.
So, first find some time that you and your husband can talk about what it is you want out of sex right now. What’s the thing that’s missing without it? If finding time to talk about this is a challenge, then email or text one another with your thoughts. That right there may be a turn on. Sexting is not just for teenagers.
Where I’m going with this is that by identifying your wants and needs you can better fill them. You don’t need to have sex just for sex’s sake, or because Cosmo says you should. Is it physical affection you are missing? Backrubs can work. Do you need to get off? Mutual masturbation could be a kinky little adventure for you.
For any couple needing to, as you say, stoke the home fires, I suggest starting with expanding ideas of what sex is. Let it be anything that makes you feel warm and close and sensual. Take the pressure off needing to have a certain amount of intercourse in a week or a month. Keep the focus on enjoying one another. Maybe all you do is get in bed naked together to satisfy a feeling of sensuality and togetherness.
My other tactic would be to stop thinking you should have sex at night before bed when you are both exhausted. Personally, that’s about the worst time for me to try to get it on with my partner. I’m a sleepy person, as one ex-lover once called me, and I’m pretty useless after 9 p.m. And I don’t have kids! I marvel at parents of young children having energy to do anything at night, much less anything sexual.
So, change it up. Are there other times of the day you could try? Early morning sex? How about a lunchtime rendezvous? Can you hire a babysitter to take the kids to a park on Saturday afternoon?
Combine both these ideas – get creative with what sex is and when you have it – and you may discover the delights of the quickie! I’m also a fan of sex toys, erotic stories, porn (soft or hard), sexual fantasy sharing… little kick-starters to remind you how much your bodies like to be together.
I hope this helps! Have fun!
XO, Rocky Love
Dear Rocky Love is an advice column on dating, sex and relationships in the Tetons. Send your letters c/o JH Weekly, PO Box 3249, Jackson, WY 83001 or email: email@example.com.