Question: My husband and I are newlyweds and I can't keep my hands off him. I initiate sex 85% of the time. He usually says "no" because he is tired. Am I being selfish because I want sex more often? Is it normal for the woman to be the initiator most of the time?
Psychotherapist Rachel Morris says the first question to ask yourself is whether there are any other times— apart from when you're having sex— where he gives you his "entire, full, unadulterated attention." "If the answer is no," Morris says, "it may be that you're confusing the desire to have sex with the desire to have him all to yourself—the reassurance that you're still loved. Intimacy and sex aren't necessarily the same things. So pushing him to have sex, when really what you want is intimacy, probably means that you're getting neither.
A Celibate Marriage
Question: In the last two years, my husband and I have had sex once. We've been married 14 years, run a business together and have a daughter. I'm only 38 years old—it's not that I don't have a high sex drive. We just don't know how to get back to being sexual together. Is it normal to have a marriage that becomes more like a brother and sister relationship?
Dr. Lana Holstein says most couples do need a sexual tune-up. Many times "it just fades a little bit—they're paying attention to their finances or to their kids—but they forget that they could pay attention to their sexual connection."
She says although many people believe in "spontaneity," couples should really treat sex and relationships like a business. "I call it 'The Good Sex Division.' It needs everything a new division of the company would need." Couples should set a mission statement that includes goals, capital—a statement of a perfect sex life.
Dr. Holstein also recommends setting a regular time for sex. "It's the only way. Our lives are so busy…you won't get to it often." For a deep, soulful connection, Dr. Holstein suggests the woman sit on the man's lap, face-to-face, and gaze into each others eyes. "When you sit together, you hold hands, you look into one another's eyes, you remind yourself, 'Why am I with this person?' All of a sudden it starts to change."