What's Keeping You From Initiating Sex?

What's Keeping You From Initiating Sex?
Sex

Who's in charge in your bedroom? You? Or Him?

If the answer is him, then you're missing out on being fully present in your sexual relationship, which is not only vital to your relationship but vital to your own health and sense of self. My next question is then: As a woman, why aren't you initiating sex? If you're not sure what the answer is then I urge you to take a closer look for the sake of your own sexual identity.

First of all, women are complex. We have a hard time focusing on just one of our many interconnected parts. This is why a woman needs to feel mentally fulfilled by her partner before having sex (whereas most men can compartmentalize their mental frustrations, yet still be ready and able for sex).

Secondly, we live in a world where women are wearing WAY more hats than ever before. One woman alone can be a mommy, a wife, a professional, captain of the household's social calendar, a housekeeper, a kiddy "schlepper" (aka driving the kids from one activity to the next), a cook/meal preparer, etc. That said, it's no wonder why so many women have put their sexual needs on the back burner, leaving it up to their partners to initiate the sexual connection.

If you are a "multi hat" wearing woman who is hardly initiating sex with your partner, then read below to learn about five common obstacles that may be keeping you from taking charge in the bedroom:

1. Exhaustion: One of the most common complaints I hear from my female patients is how they are simply too tired and too overworked to even THINK about sex, let alone initiate. After a day full of work, kids, errands, etc., the idea of sex can unfortunately feel like a chore instead of a sacred and exhilarating time with your partner.

Solution: If you are a woman caught in the "exhaustion web" then you need to ask yourself: Where in my life can I either slow down, delegate to others, and/or let go of responsibilities that are not as high priority so that I can reserve energy and interest for my relationship at home? Are you a stay-at-home mom who strives to "do it all" with no help? If so, it may be time to hire a housekeeper once a week. Whatever your situation may be, self-care is essential in order to keep your libido alive and well.

2. Poor body image: Women are conscious about their bodies. Period. You may be one of those women who feels the guilt and/or shame that your body just isn't the same as when you first married. Or are you someone who never lost all of the baby weight since giving birth and now find yourself lost in a world of mac-n-cheese leftovers while forgetting what your gym looks like? For many women, poor body image equates to low self-esteem—and if you are not feeling sexy, then the likelihood of trying to seduce your partner is highly unlikely.

Solution: First, it's important to remember that you being sexually satisfying to your partner has little to do with how you feel about your body. Chances are your partner is thrilled to have "sexy times" with you no matter what, so make sure you don't project your insecurities onto him.

Furthermore, if you know that taking time to care for your body will make you feel better (in AND out of the bed), then that must become a priority. Consult with a nutritionist, start a new exercise routine, become more mindful about your relationship with food, etc. If taking charge of your body will increase your self-esteem in the bedroom, then it's time to take action and empower your sexual diva. 5 Steps To Being A Sexier New You

3. Not enough couple time: Once a "child" enters a couple's world, alone time as husband and wife tends to take the back seat. If you do the math it's pretty simple: less time together equals less time to feel connected both mentally and physically. Hence, your sexual relationship will likely take a nose dive. With so much time spent focused on the kids, the ability to switch gears and initiate sex takes effort compared to B.C. (AKA "Before Child").

Solution: Take responsibility for your relationship and periodically get away for at least a night. If it's doable, plan an entire weekend. In order to keep the spontaneity, the creativity and the enjoyment of sex in your relationship you need to get out of your normal routine as a couple and just have fun with your partner. I don't even care if it's a Motel 6! Make a reservation and allow your carefree self to bond with your partner. How To Have Sex Like You Just Met

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4. Resentment toward your partner: Has your frustration toward your husband for not pulling his weight around the house grown to the point where you are not interested in sex with him? Are you carrying around feelings of unresolved sadness because of your husband's tendency to criticize you? If you answered 'yes' to the above or are aware of similar scenarios for you, then your "cut-off" feelings may be fueling your resistance to physically connect with him.

Solution: Understand what is at the core of your resentment. Take the time to crystallize your thoughts so that you can clearly express your feelings. Finally, talk, talk talk to your partner. He can't read your mind and it's not his job to. The person who is most responsible for your needs is you, so without attacking, fully share with him the obstacle you are feeling in the relationship and why. If your partner is able to hear you and ultimately meet more of your needs, then you may feel a spike in your sexual drive.

5. Fear of being sexually vulnerable with your partner: For humans, having sex is truly primitive. Just the simple act of sex puts you and your partner in a vulnerable spotlight. As we all bring into our relationships our "unfinished business" from the past, some people are concerned about reliving those old feelings during sex: "Will he laugh at me? Will I be good enough? Am I pretty enough? Will he reject me?" Therefore, it would make perfect sense why any of those thoughts or others would get in the way of you initiating sex.

Solution: Take the time (perhaps via counseling or psychotherapy) to understand the nexus of your insecure feelings. Figure out what belongs in the past and what belongs to your current relationship. Ultimately, learning to trust yourself, your partner and the relationship will help you move past this major obstacle.

If you are a woman who is struggling with the idea of initiating sex in your relationship, here's what I'd like you to do: