Entertainment And News, Family

In Bed With Trista And Ryan Sutter

Ryan and Trista Sutter

Everyone who's been in a long-term relationship knows that sex goes from sizzle to fizzle after a couple years. Throw in kids, career, friends, and it becomes even harder. You have to put in some effort to keep things hot in the bedroom, and no one knows this better than TV's strongest reality couple, Trista and Ryan Sutter.

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No, Trista and Ryan aren't suffering from a sexual deficit, and they don't have problems in their marriage (sorry schadenfreude-seekers). They did, however, recently participate in a 10-day challenge presented by KY, called The K-Y® Brand Intimacy Experiment. The program was designed by the experts at Good In Bed, led by our friend Ian Kerner, and is designed to help couples to create (or re-create) sexual intimacy. To participate, visit the KY Facebook page and download the eBook, which contains 10 days of exercises that will help rediscover why you fell for each other in the first place. Why? As the eBook's introduction puts it:

Sex and intimacy are the glue that holds an otherwise great relationship together. And real intimacy means deepening your trust and knowingness of each other, expanding the sensual landscape of the senses, and tapping and sharing your inner fantasies. No matter how dull, routine, or non-existent your sex life seems now, it’s never too late to reignite that spark.

YourTango: Why did you decide to participate in the take The K-Y® Brand Intimacy Experiment?

Trista Sutter: We were approached by them and thought it was a great idea. It's a great thing to want to work on your marriage and this is exactly what the experiment does. I don't know why there's the notion if you go to counseling or do something like this that you are having problems. Marriage is like a marathon. When you sign up, you have to continually train in order to be a success and compete. Even though in marriage there isn't necessarily an end point, you still have to train.

How did it enhance your relationship?

It refocused our attention on our marriage instead of making it all about the kids. It's really hard to maintain other priorities when there are two relatively helpless beings pulling on your pant legs and needing you every moment of the day.

Which was your favorite part of the experiment?

One of my favorite tips was about the importance of creating a love nest in the bedroom. We did it for the Rachael Ray cameras and I think it made Ryan really aware of how clutter is constantly invading our room—laundry, a messy bed, kids toys everywhere—and how cleaning up the clutter will give him a much better chance to get lucky!

Nothing turns a woman on like a man who cleans!

Exactly! I think women really need to relax to get aroused. They need to focus. If there's tons of clutter in the bedroom, then I'm thinking of all the things I have to do. If it's tidy, like when you are in a hotel room, you feel more uninhibited.

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Was there part of the experiment that felt you still needed to work on?

A lot of the experiment requires time together. That's definitely something we need to continue to work on. I'm a stay-at-home mom and the kids are usually my priority, so the only time we can dedicate to being intimate or having our own time is when they're sleeping.

After seven years and with two young kids, how do you and Ryan stay connected?

We've tried this and although we haven't always been hugely successful, having date night is so great! We were in New York doing press for the K-Y® Brand Intimacy Experiment, and we went to a Knicks/Lakers game. I danced for the Miami Heat for two or three years and I've never been to a game with him! It was really fun to get out and feel like adults. When we're with the kids, we're always talking baby talk and watching silly TV shows.

Did it help you stay connected intimately as well?

Oh yeah, definitely. I think the intimacy experiment really hones in on the fact that everything that you do outside the bedroom is going to make everything inside the bedroom a positive experience.

One of my favorite tips is that every successful relationship has a ratio of five positive to one negative interaction. Saying "I love you," giving each other a compliment, sending text—all of those positives add up. If you have one negative thing, it can really upset those positive interactions, so you want to make sure you have an overflow of positives.

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How do you deal with the days you aren't on the same page physically, so to speak?

When we're off, if one of us is having a bad day, you really have to interject those positive experiences to get back on the same page. I think that you need to know your partner and if they are having a bad day, it's important to give them their space, and that might actually be a positive thing. They don't want to feel like they are being nagged. Not doing anything can be more of a positive than doing something.

Want to give The K-Y® Brand Intimacy Experiment a whirl? Visit KY's Facebook page to download the eBook and learn more.