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What to Do When Sexual Sparks Fade from a Relationship

Sex_CoupleBored_400Flagging or mismatched libidos. Fantasies of exes. Too tired to feel “in the mood.” These are all common sexual issues couples face. When TV star Lisa Rinna found herself losing interest in sex after pregnancy, she sought guidance from renowned sex counselor Ian Kerner. Together, they created a plan to rejuvenate romance for others in The Big, Fun, Sexy Sex Book.

This month we’re featuring your questions for Lisa and Ian in a weekly sex column. Here’s what they had to say to help our reader Kristen.

She says:
I’m having a hard time getting in the mood with my husband. His libido is always on the go but the past several months I find it hard to get turned on by him, not at all like when we were dating. I find myself thinking of an ex-flame just to keep myself interested during the act. I love my husband so much but the heat just isn’t there for me at all anymore—but I wouldn’t dare tell him! Does this make me a bad person?

Ian says:
Coupledom can be a fragile thing. There are threats everywhere, and even the strongest relationships need to be monitored and protected on a daily basis: From flirtatious friendships and infidelity, to blowouts over friends and relatives, to fights about money, relationships are all too easily toppled by big issues. But it’s not just the biggies we need to worry about. There are also smaller, more insidious threats to relationship satisfaction—threats we take for granted as being a normal part of a relationship.

According to a new study conducted by Good in Bed, (with the support of K-Y Brand), the biggest threat to long-term relationship satisfaction may come in form of boredom. In our survey of 3,341 people in monogamous relationships (1,418 men and 1,923 women), we found that a full quarter of those surveyed were bored in their current relationship. Beyond that, another 25 percent of respondents reported being on the brink of becoming bored. That’s nearly 50 percent of all couples, and boredom is basically like an attack on our relationship’s immunity system—once weakened we’re all the more susceptible to a cascade of ailments. For example, 20 percent of respondents had been unfaithful to their partner at some point as a result of being bored.

So my advice is don’t be one of those 20 percenters. If you used to feel hot and heavy for your husband, and now you’re feeling less interested in him and thinking about former flames, that tells me you crave excitement and that you might be feeling bored. Here are some things you can do:

• Ask your partner to try something new in the bedroom with you. The majority of the respondents (69 percent of men and 50 percent of women) were entirely interested in trying something new in the bedroom to combat boredom. So get going. Start with sharing a fantasy, or try a sex toy such as a vibrator. Nearly 55 percent of our respondents were interested in incorporating toys into sex, and nearly 50 percent also saw lubes and enhancers as viable ways to decrease boredom.

• Ask your partner to try something new outside of the bedroom with you. Be selfish about your relationship. Couples end up having a lot of combined obligations and responsibilities. Don’t stop putting your relationship first: From date nights to vacations to making time for each other, stay selfish.

• Maintain your individuality. From your career, to your friends, to maintaining your own personal passions and interests, being a strong couple requires being a strong individual.

• Keep finding things to talk about. At the end of the day, it’s easy to feel that communication is a chore, that talking to your partner is boring or routine and that there’s nothing new under the sun to possibly talk about.


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