Should You Take A Sexual Sabbatical?
Advice on Whether Taking Time Off From Sex In A Relationship Is Ever Okay
Dear April Masini,
My husband and I aren't going to be able to have sex for at least 6 months due to his health and surgeries he needs. But I've actually heard that sexual sabbaticals can be really good for a relationship, especially a marriage. Is it true that taking time off from sex can actually make us stronger? I'm a little scared that when we are finally able to start having sex again, it's going to be hard to get back into it since we'll be so set in our pattern of not having it. Do you have any relationship advice on taking a sexual sabbatical and any tips for getting back into the swing of sex again?"
No Sex For Us
April Masini's Advice :
Dear No Sex For Us,
Sexual sabbaticals are usually a default decision. When a couple is disconnected emotionally or physically (usually when one person is working out of town), they end up taking a break from sex. If a couple is physically out of touch -- if they're in two separate cities for a good reason like work or caring for a sick relative -- a sexual sabbatical is understandable. I do not, however, think it is a good idea to take a sexual sabbatical because of an emotional disconnect or some other problem in a relationship. People who act like it is okay are people who justify their behavior because they are afraid to face the reason for the lack of sex.
Sex is a way that people express their feelings for each other, and meet physical needs and desires of their own. Nobody gets every need met or every feeling expressed when they want to the way they want to -- but a healthy relationship has a good balance of both partners feeling sexually satisfied. When there is no sex in a partnership, an integral part of the relationship is not being attended to and/or expressed. This is a problem.
If one partner in the relationship is sick, that is a good reason for a sexual sabbatical. If one person in the relationship just gave birth or had surgery, that is a good reason for a sexual sabbatical, but if it's some other reason -- that reason needs to be brought to the surface and dealt with. Sex is a barometer of the health of the relationship.
Ways to get back into sex after a sabbatical:
- Pick up my book, romantic date ideas it's full of proven tips and step-by-step instructions... If you want to know exactly what to do (and exactly how to do it) here's a fail-proof road map to improve or rekindle your sex life, to deepen your relationship and to make your level of intimacy soar.
- Get yourself ready. If you feel sexy, you're halfway to sex! You'll act differently, speak differently, move differently and put out a different kind of energy when you're well groomed, wearing sexy lingerie under your clothes and have your sexual self in the forefront of your mind. This works the same way a "catching smile" works.
- Baby steps. If you haven't had sex with your partner in a while, don't expect fireworks the first time out -- even if you've been married ten years, and it doesn't seem like it should be considered the first time out.
- No pressure. If either one of you feels pressure to "do it" and "do it" at a certain time in a certain way, you're bound to lack enjoyment and the sex won't be great -- in fact, it could easily abort before completion! Keep the mood light. Keep the pressure off.