Read these 18 Sex and Intimacy Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Relationship tips and hundreds of other topics.
How do you trust yourself to not have one night stands? Does it make sense to hope for a relationship with someone who isn't interested? Stop creating situations to prove your belief that you are worthless. You have a normal need to feel important and loved. When you try to meet these needs with meaningless sex; however, you feed your feelings of low self-worth. You continue this theme when you fantasize about a relationship with someone who is not interested. Despite never sharing who you are with this person, you interpret his reactions as confirmation that you are not important. Allow others to know you, put yourself in situations highlighting your strengths, take good care of yourself. Remember, your “mistakes” only define you if you believe they do.
You and your partner wake up, go to work, come home, deal with dinner, wrangle kids, do laundry, go to bed. And maybe you make a move. But if this is the first signal you've given all day, it may be no surprise that your partner isn't in the mood.
If you'd like to make love, start sending signals a day or two ahead of time. You know your partner best, so you know what signals are likely to be well received. Some ideas:
-- Offer a more-passionate-than-usual goodbye kiss in the morning.
-- Taking on an extra household chore so your partner can sleep in 15 more minutes.
-- Send a passionate e-mail in the middle of the workday.
-- Make his or her favorite dinner.
-- Offer genuine appreciation for something your partner does around the house.
-- Set a scene in the bedroom -- pick up the socks on the floor, light some candles, put on some soft music.
-- Compliment your partner's looks.
-- Wear something your partner likes.
Romance can lead to sex, but it isn't the same thing. Romantic words, body language, and actions send a message that you desire your partner, but also that you care, that you are thinking of the other person, and that you want him or her to feel special and valued.
For some people, romantic feelings toward a partner are necessary before they can experience sexual desire.
When stress and daily pressures start to pile up, romance can sometimes seem hard to create. Simple gestures -- a gentle touch, a smile, stopping what you're doing to welcome the other person home, performing a household chore the other person hates -- can often be more romantic than expensive gestures.
One of the best ways to ensure a passionate and lasting sex life is to establish a habit of giving and accepting verbal feedback.
Sexual technique is a sensitive subject for a lot of people. So it's very important to ask for what you want in a way that doesn't convey that the other person is doing it wrong. You are the greatest expert in the world on the subject of what will please you in bed. A good partner will not take it personally, but will take your teachings to heart.
Sex with a long-term partner doesn't have to be dull. Indeed, if you build up a pattern of trust and love over time, you may find an unadventurous partner more willing to experiment. A few suggestions:
-- Watch an erotic movie together and talk about what scenes got your attention.
-- Share your fantasies either verbally, or write it down in a letter to your partner.
-- Get silly. Laughing together can be a great turn-on.
-- Experiment with different times of day, locations, and positions.
A lot of relationship advice recommends waiting to have sex with someone new, particularly if you're interested in a long-term relationship. This can be tough when you're in the throes of a new attraction, or if the other person is eager to get you between the sheets.
Waiting has a couple of advantages. First, if the new person is just out for casual sex, he or she may fade away rather than wait you out. Disappointing though this may be, it's easier to bid farewell to a casual date than someone with whom you've experienced deep pleasure and connection.
Another advantage is more time to build an emotional connection. By all means appreciate your date's positive qualities, but also be alert for small signs that could mean this isn't the right person for you.
Talk about what you want before you have sex. If you're interested in a lasting relationship, don't give signals that say you're only looking for a physical arrangement.
No matter when you decide to have sex, keep yourselves safe. If you're not mature enough to take precautions against disease and unwanted pregnancy, you're not mature enough to be having sex.
Women in particular are prone to issues around body image. A person who looks perfectly fine to her partner may be convinced that she's fat or ugly. Taken to extremes, this becomes "body dysmorphia," an inability to see your body the way it is, which is a contributing factor in eating disorders.
Both men and women are attracted to people who are confident in their bodies. This confidence can overcome a great many body flaws. Many fat or ugly people have active sex lives in part because of differences in how they understand and use their bodies.
If your body is imperfect, don't let it get in the way of enjoying your sexuality and expressing your desire for your partner. If you find it hard to let go of anxious thoughts about your flaws, you may want to try a few sessions of therapy to work on this issue.
A large part of how we view other people is based on how that person presents him or herself. If you view yourself as sexy, and act that way, then others will perceive you as sexy. Truly look at and appreciate your own body. Sure, it has faults, just like every body does. Accept the faults, and accept yourself as a work in progress, and flaunt what you have. You'll find that people react positively to your positive self image.
... is the brain. Sexual stimulation starts with sensory inputs that trigger mental associations. Only then do the other parts of the body get involved.
For each person, the sensory inputs that trigger this reaction are different. Seeing an attractive person, feeling loved, hearing a whispered word, experiencing a certain kind of touch, all can set off the human libido.
Sex and intimacy are intertwined -- many people have trouble feeling sexually interested in someone until they have had time to know one another, learning to trust through words, actions, and nonverbal communication such as facial expressions and body language.
Differences in sexual desire is a very common problem, especially for long-term couples.
Sometimes the problem is deep-seated - for instance, if one partner has previous sexual-abuse issues. Other times it's a temporary reflection of stress, hormones (particularly around pregnancy and perimenopause), or medication.
There's no one "normal" frequency of sex. "Normal" is whatever works for you and your partner. At the same time, if you have no interest in sex at all, or if you feel intense urges that are disrupting your life with your partner, it may be time to seek medical help.
If you don't want sex and your partner does, it may work for you to provide support for your partner's pleasures, such as helping to set the scene, or remaining involved through spoken and nonverbal communication.
Sometimes when a couple has children, they begin to think of each other as 'Mommy' and 'Daddy', and no longer as romantic partners. While the mommy/daddy part is very important, your romantic love for each other is *extremely* important as well. Be sure to remind yourselves of that pretty regularly!
It doesn't matter if you're 18 or 88, intimacy is always a key factor in a partnership. Couples stay intimate long into their 80s and 90s. In fact, many couples have increased satisfaction the older they get, because they are more and more skilled! Keep learning and experimenting - the best is yet to come.
Just because someone is single doesn't mean he or she necessarily is hunting for that One True Love.
Some of us prefer to enjoy the single life for its own sake, without the baggage of dating. Others choose busy lives and don't have time for relationships, but don't want to take vows of celibacy at the same time. Others are simply at a stage of life -- college, or just coming off a divorce, for example -- when it's healthy and normal to get to know a variety of different people rather than being tied down.
If you're playing the field, play safely:
-- Take responsibility for preventing pregnancy and disease. Carry condoms with you.
-- Don't leave your drink, your coat, or your purse unattended.
-- Go out with a buddy, and watch out for one another. Don't let a buddy leave a bar alone late at night.
-- Avoid drinking to excess.
-- Don't give out your home phone number or address.
Even though you may be physically capable of having sex as a teenage, you may not be mature enough to handle the strong emotions that a sexual relationship can induce. In addition, sex can expose you to unwanted consequences such as pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases if you're not careful.
Until you're mature enough to handle such a relationship, avoid situations where you may be tempted to have sex. Alcohol and drugs lower your inhibitions and make you more vulnerable to saying to "yes" to things you would otherwise say "no" to. You may be mature enough to have sex if you:
-- Know how to differentiate between wanting love and wanting sex.
-- Can set boundaries and stick to them.
-- Are willing to take responsibility for protecting yourself and your partner from pregnancy and STDs.
-- Can resist pressure from a partner who says things like "You would if you loved me."
-- Can tell the difference between a trusting, honest relationship and a manipulative one.
Forbes magazine estimates pornography businesses earn somewhere around $3 billion a year. Many adults enjoy viewing erotic or sexual images, and spend money and time on this pursuit.
In a marriage, porn can be a turn-on, if both partners are interested in the content and use it to get ideas for creatively expressing their desire for one another. Frequently, though, one partner uses pornography as an escape from his mate, who then becomes angry or hurt.
If porn is a problem in your relationship, begin by speaking to your partner about your feelings, and consider the help of a couples therapist.
In general, pornography is just like any other "addictive" activity (hobbies, computer games, television). It may be fun in moderation, but if it's taking away time that you should be spending with your spouse, it's time to cut back and work on changing your life instead of trying to escape from it.
No matter how open you feel you are about sex, there are undoubtedly some things that you would think were unreasonable. The same is true for each person - only the lines differ. If your partner is squeamish about something, do not try to bluster past this because you feel it is unreasonable. Let it slide, and then later on when you are both relaxed bring up the situation, and ask what it is that bothers your partner about it. Discuss it, and you might get a better insight into what about it bothers your partner, and perhaps reach a compromise.
One of the biggest problems with intimacy and pregnancy or children is simply finding TIME for it! There are so many other demands on your time that you forget how important it is. Set aside a special evening for just you two. Plan a romantic dinner, a long bubble bath, a caring massage. The renewed closeness is well worth the effort.