How to Talk about Sex

By

How to Talk about Sex
Can you and your partner talk about sex? Do you get into power struggles about sex?

Sean wrote in the following question on one of my free webinars about sexuality:

"My wife and I have been married now for eighteen years and for the most part are still very happy together. A year or so ago a friend introduced us to Inner Bonding and both together and alone we have become familiar with the Six Steps. My question for you this evening is, what suggestions do have to help us communicate our sexual needs and desires without so much defensiveness and judgments? Our wounded selves have a powerful dynamic in these regards so fear, of course, enters in with its control/protect mode. And so the dance continues…"

If I had had an opportunity to work with Sean, here is what I would have said:
"It's important not to skip over the first level of learning that needs to occur, which is about the very good reasons for the fear, defensiveness and judgments. What are you each afraid of? What are you each protecting against? What are the false beliefs in the way of being able to address your sexual issues openly? You can't just stop this protect/control dynamic without understanding the underlying false beliefs and resulting fears."

What are some of the beliefs and resulting fears that might be in the way of openness regarding talking about sexuality? Here are some possibilities that might apply to Sean and his wife - and to you:

• Are there areas of your own sexual needs and desires that you judge and feel ashamed of?

• Are one or both of you demanding rather than requesting? Does one or both of you feel controlled in the sexual area?

• Do you have a fear of engulfment in the sexual area? Does one of you give yourself up outside of your sexual relationship, causing fear of having to give yourself up within the sexual relationship if you open to learning with your partner?

• Do you have a fear of being rejected if you are honest about your sexual needs and desires? Are you afraid of being judged by your partner for what you want and how you feel?

• Do your defensiveness and judgments come from the past – from dynamics within your family of origin or from a previous relationship?

The bottom line is – what are you protecting against? This is what Sean and his wife need to explore.

Once they open to learning about their protections and spend some time healing their fears and false beliefs, then the door opens to talking about their sexual relationship with caring and honesty.

Two Levels of Communication
There are always two levels of communication:
• The issue itself
• How you are talking about the issue – your intent to control or to learn

This article was originally published at Inner Bonding . Reprinted with permission.
Article contributed by
Advanced Member

Dr. Margaret Paul

Author

Margaret Paul, Ph.D. is a best-selling author of 8 books, relationship expert, and co-creator of the powerful Inner Bonding® process - featured on Oprah, and recommended by actress Lindsay Wagner and singer Alanis Morissette. Are you are ready to heal your pain and discover your joy? Take our FREE Inner Bonding course, and click here for a FREE CD/DVD relationship offer. Visit our website at innerbonding.com for more articles and help, as well as our Facebook Page. Phone and Skype sessions available. Join the thousands we have already helped and visit us now!

Location: Pacific Palisades, CA
Credentials: PhD
Specialties: Anxiety Issues, Couples/Marital Issues, Depression
Other Articles/News by Dr. Margaret Paul:

Are You Addicted To Love?

By

Have you ever felt confused about whether your feelings in a relationship were coming from a healthy place or from a wounded place? This is Mari's concern: "How would you describe the difference between obsession/addiction and devotion? When you are deeply in love and moved to be emotionally and physically intimate with someone, how can you tell ... Read more

How Do YOU Feel About That? Avoiding Projection In Relationships

By

"I think I'm an open person, but Sarah keeps telling me how closed I am. She gets furious when she wants to talk about our relationship and I don't." Matthew, in his late 20s and married to Sarah for 2 years, had consulted me due to relationship problems and was feeling a lot of confusion about their relationship system. "There ... Read more

Get Over Fights Like A Grown-Up

By

Most couples fight at times. Unless they fight unfairly—hitting below the belt and saying very hurtful things or becoming physically abusive—this is generally not a problem. Couples who engage in verbal or physical abuse need to either get help on both an individual and relationship level or leave the relationship. Ongoing verbal and physical ... Read more

See More

Ask The Experts

Have a dating or relationship question?
Visit Ask YourTango and let our experts and community answer.

FROM AROUND THE WEB