Have you ever wondered if you’re having enough sex in your relationship? Have you and your partner ever gone a few weeks or months without sex, making you wonder if it is normal?
You might be wondering if this means your spouse is no longer attracted to you or you to them.
We all know that sex talk is a very sensitive subject, so you may be too embarrassed to ask your friends how often they’re having sex in their relationship for the sake of comparison.
The simple answer to this question is YES. It is normal to go long periods without sex. The longer answer is that going a long period without sex is only normal in certain situations, and it depends on many factors.
Below, we will delve into some of these factors and discuss how you can bring back the spice into your bedroom again.
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What Are Your Expectations In The Relationship?
Many of us get into relationships without talking about sex with our partners.
Does your partner know your sexual fantasies? The way you like to be touched? Do they know what turns you off and what turns you on? how about how often you like to have sex?
Talking about sex is just as important as having sex. We need to make sure that we’re on the same page when it comes to our sexual expectations.
It will help prevent disappointments in the future.
It is important to realize that if there is a disconnect in our expectations, things will get worse without a conversation.
We will eventually start resenting our partners for not pleasing us the way we expect and the relationship will most likely fall apart.
How Often Should You Be Having Sex?
According to a study published in 2017 in the Archives of Sexual Behavior, Americans in their 20s had sex an average of about 80 times per year, compared to about 20 times per year for those in their 50s and 60s”.
Another study published by AARP surveyed 8,000 people and found that only “31 percent of couples have sex several times a week; 28 percent of couples have sex a couple of times a month, and 8 percent of couples have sex once a month”
So how does this study relate to you?
As you can see, the number of people having sex multiple times a week is lower than you’d think. More couples are having sex a few times a month.
If you’re having sex less than once a week, the key question you should be asking yourself is this. Are you happy with the amount?
Would you be happier if it were more often? Does your partner know your feelings about this issue?
As long as you and your spouse are on the same page about your sexual expectations, then the frequency is not important.
After you’ve discussed what you both want sexually out of the relationship, don’t worry about how many times you have sex.
However many times you both decide is the healthy amount of time, then that’s the right amount for the two of you.
Is It Normal To Have Less Sex In A Long Term Relationship?
At the beginning of any relationship, you experience what is known as limerence. It is an overpowering desire to be close to your partner in every way.
This limerence is supposed to fade over time as you get more comfortable in your relationship.
As the studies above suggest, the longer you stay in a relationship, the less sex you tend to have/need.
To put this theory to a test, I conducted a survey of 25 women in my local mommy and me group. The question I asked them was: How often do you have sex in your relationship?
The result is shown below.
How often married couples have sex
44% – few times a week
23% – once or twice a month
4% – a few times every two months or so
29% – it varies. (I’ll explain below)
Here are a few of their explanations. For the sake of their privacy, their names have been changed.
“ We usually have sex 2-4 times a month. We have gone through dry spells where we have gone months without it, and we have also had wild times where it’s once or twice a week”
“My husband and I have been together for 13 years, married for 4. We have gone through so many different stages of life. We have each had different levels of sex drives at different times and that’s okay and normal! It’s more important to keep the discussion open. Long-term relationships go through phases and take a lot of work and patience.”
“Once or twice a week. Sometimes we’ll skip a week. But that’s just us. Every relationship is different”.
“Our normal is every 2 days, but I’ll say there’s no normal. It depends on you and your partner”.
As you can see from the results of my survey and some of my interviews, there is a wide range of “normal” for most people. It is more important that you and your partner agree to what you’re comfortable with.
Feeling the pressure to schedule sex?
Don’t give in to duty sex
Have you ever felt the pressure to give in to sex even when you don’t feel in the mood? usually, it’s the spouse with a lower sex drive that rejects the advances due to not being in the mood.
In addition, you may find yourself giving in because it’s been a long time since you had sex, and you’re starting to feel the pressure to perform your “wifely or husbandly duty”. If this occurs, then you’re giving in to duty sex.
Women experience this pressure more than men because society tells them that it’s their duty to please a man. Statements like “if you’re not giving it to him, then don’t be surprised if he goes looking for it somewhere else” are very common.
How Can Duty Sex Ruin Relationships?
It breeds resentment.
If you’re the one who always gives in to duty sex, you will feel like you’re being used. Sex which is supposed to be an enjoyable experience will now be equated to a chore.
If your needs are not being met, you will begin to harbor resentment that will eventually bleed into all other aspects of your relationship.
If you’re the recipient of duty sex, it’s easy to know it. It’s not the same passionate sex where your spouse can’t wait to get your clothes off. It’s a “let’s do this quick and get it over with” sex.
Who wants something like that?
Even though you’re getting your sexual desires satisfied, there will always be something missing. What’s missing is the emotional intimacy that comes with sex. Without that connection, there isn’t any point to it.
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How to have more sex without engaging in “duty sex”
To increase your chances of having sex organically, try to engage in more stress-reducing activities. Studies have shown that the more stressed we are, the more we release cortisol (a primary stress hormone).
When you’re more relaxed, you’re more likely to get in the mood. try to get more familiar with your spouse’s love language. A love language is how people show love and how they receive love. There are 5 love languages.
The Five Love Languages
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- Words of affirmation
This involves verbal reminders of how much you care about someone. It can be as simple as saying “I love you” or as grand as writing a love letter.
2. Quality Time
Having quality time with your spouse allows you to have a deeper connection. Quality time may look different for you depending on how much responsibility you have in your relationship.
If you’re raising kids or have a demanding job, then you need to adjust your expectations about how much quality time you can get with your spouse in a day.
When you are together, put electronic devices away and focus on being present in the moment.
3. Physical touch
Physical touch doesn’t always have to involve sex. Someone who experiences love this way wants to be close to their spouse as much as possible.
Hand-holding, kissing, cuddling or even a stroke of the hair are all aspects of physical touch.
4. Acts of service
I like to call this one “chore play”. Acts of service involve doing things for your spouse to lighten the load of daily life.
If the dishes need to be washed, do them. If the kids need a bath, tackle that as well.
Sex may happen organically when your spouse is less stressed. Note that your acts of service should be done solely from love and with no strings attached.
5. Receiving gifts
When you give a thoughtful gift, it lets your spouse know that you’re thinking about them. Gifts do not have to be expensive for them to be treasured.
My husband prefers handmade gifts because he sees them as more meaningful.
In conclusion, don’t worry if you’re not having sex every day. Whatever is okay with you and your partner is what you should consider “normal”.
It is perfectly acceptable for the frequency of sex to be reduced the longer you’re in a relationship.
That does not mean that there is something wrong with your relationship. If you want to have more enjoyable sex instead of duty sex, learn your partner’s love language.
I’d love to hear your thoughts. What resonated with you in this article? Comment below.