We all know that it’s important to make time for intimacy with our partners if we want to have lasting, satisfying relationships. But with our busy lives, work, family, homes, and all the jobs that need doing, sometimes we can get out of the habit of making time for one another.
Let’s think about what makes this difficult, and how we can overcome the challenges.
Too Tired For Intimacy?
Two of the main reasons I hear for couples not having as much closeness and sex as they would like are time and tiredness.
It’s true of course that when you have young kids you have less free time and you’re more tired.
But if you let tiredness become a regular reason for not having sex, you will probably find yourselves feeling less connected as a couple over time.
If your sex life is important to you, you need to find a way to work around the challenges of time and tiredness, rather than letting them be a reason not to have sex.
There are two main ways to do this:
1. Make time when you’re not tired
Don’t leave sex until the end of the day. When you have a baby, any time the baby is asleep is a good time for the two of you to have a kiss and a cuddle. As the kids get older, make connecting with each other the first priority for your evening together rather than the last.
2. Do it anyway when you are tired
The uncomfortable truth is that you’re likely to be tired for some time. Are you willing to put your connection with your partner on the back burner until that changes?
What Else Might Be Going On?
Sometimes when we say “I’m too tired” there’s other stuff going on too.
If you’ve noticed that you’ve been letting tiredness be a reason to avoid intimacy, try asking yourself what else you’re feeling.
Yes, you’re tired. Are you also feeling worried, angry, sad, anxious, distracted, resentful…?
What might those feelings have to tell you about your needs that aren’t getting met?
If you want to get your sex life back on track, check out my new workbook Back In The Sack.
It will help you to shift your mindset, change your habits, and communicate better, so that you can stop feeling stressed and overwhelmed by the state of your sex life and get back to feeling connected to your partner.
Making Time For Intimacy
Some people find that scheduling sex works for them – in which case, go for it!
But others find it makes them feel a pressure which is ultimately a turn-off, or makes them want to avoid connection.
If you don’t like the idea of a sex date, how about planing ahead some time for intimacy, when you’ll give each other your undivided attention, cuddle, kiss, and connect emotionally? (And if if leads to sex, great. If not, you’ll still feel closer for it.)
But What About Spontaneity?
Sometimes I hear, “But it won’t be the same if it’s not spontaneous!”
To which I respond, “Well it really won’t be the same if it doesn’t happen!”
Because, let’s face it, life after kids demands a lot more planning than life before kids.
(And actually you probably thought ahead about when you were going to have intimate time together before kids, you just didn’t say it out loud to each other in as many words.)
Let’s be practical about it. Time alone is limited, and it gets even more limited when we turn to our screens the minute the kids are in bed.
Do you have regular date nights?
Weekends away together?
Do you ever take a day off together when the kids are in school or childcare?
Do you say things like “let’s go to bed straight after the kids tonight”?
What it means when we schedule time for intimacy
The thing about planning is that it communicates that we value the thing we are booking in.
You’re saying “this matters to me”.
You’re creating a chance for something to build.
Making some space for anticipation, for talking, kissing, joking, looking at each other.
If you’ve been avoiding sex and want to get back to deliberately building anticipation of it, my workbook Back In The Sack is for you.
It’s packed full of information, reflection questions, and communication examples.
It will support you in finding a way back to feeling physically and emotionally close again.
My website is going to be closed for maintenance next week, so if you haven’t ordered the workbook yet, get on and do it today.
Get In Touch
If you would like to join my waiting list for counselling (on your own or with a partner), book a relationships after kids coaching call, or find out more about online courses, you can contact me here, or hit reply if you’re reading this on email.