Dear Dr. Jane, 

I love my partner, but our sex life is dull. We do the same thing every single time. I manage to get myself turned on enough to perform, but if I’m honest, I need to do a lot of fantasizing in order to make that happen. Sometimes, I think about what I watched on porn to get me going. Sometimes I think about doing it with someone else. I’d like to feel passionate when we make love, but it’s just too repetitive and she doesn’t seem to be into the sex at all.  Our sex life is simply boring. What can I do?

– From Bored

Dear Bored,

Dr. Jane Guyn is an Oregon-based relationship coach | Photos provided.

It’s common for people in long-term committed relationships to get bored with their sex lives. We think that because sex is natural (and because we love each other) that passion will come easily. Unfortunately for most of us, that’s not what happens. 

Day-to-day routines, the stress of living and working together, and other challenges of life often leave us feeling depleted instead of turned on. We have trouble finding time (and energy) for intimacy. Or, the sex we’ve been having doesn’t turn us on enough to rally. It’s tough to get things started. And then if sex is unsatisfying, it’s not motivating — so you opt out for Netflix — without the “chill.”

In addition to feeling stressed about life in general, here are five reasons that your sex life might be boring (or even non-existent) these days. Don’t feel bad about this. This is happening to lots of other people right now, too.

  1. You’re not cultivating your own turn-on in advance of sex. Because you don’t think sex is going to be passionate, you’re not pumping yourself up in advance.
  2.  You’re not offering anything new to your partner anymore. You both know what’s worked in the past. You’re both guilty of doing the same ol’ same ol’ most of the time (and not expecting much).  
  3. You’re making assumptions about how your partner feels without really checking in. You’ve decided that your partner is satisfied with boring sex — but you really don’t know how they feel, because you don’t talk about it much – if at all. 
  4. You’ve been disappointed before, so you don’t really show up as your full self in the bedroom. You’re phoning it in — not sharing your true desires or fantasies.
  5. You’re not carving out the right time or energy for quality sex. You’re doing it in bed at night after a long day at work and a couple of glasses of wine. Or, you’re doing it in the morning before the kids get up. You’re not bringing your A game. Far from it. 

Five strategies to try

What can you do to turn things around? Try these five easy tips and change your sex life starting today: 

  • Think about sex in advance. Look forward to experiencing passion and pleasure together.
  • Focus on connecting emotionally – not just physically. Communicate. Listen. Share how you’re feeling with your partner.
  • Talk with your partner about things you might like to try. It’s best to talk about new things when you’re not actually in bed together, but a conversation about what you want, what your partner wants, and how to make those things a reality is really helpful. 
  • Ask your partner how you can please them. The way to have great sex is to be a great lover. Be generous. Follow your partner’s cues. Watch for eye contact – a sparkle in the eye says everything. 
  • Tell your partner how they can please you. A “yes”, “no”, “maybe” list goes a long way in increasing your pleasure together. There may be things that you’re assuming your partner would never do. Find out. Talk about it. 

By using these five tips, you can take your boring sex life from dull to delish. And if these things seem impossible to you right now, get help from a sex positive professional. This stuff matters.

You got this.

– Dr. Jane

Dr. Jane Guyn is a nationally recognized relationship coach based in Oregon.  Her new monthly “Understanding Intimacy” commentary is made possible through the generous support of Guilty Pleasures, 2992 Ashley Phosphate Road, North Charleston.

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