Physical intimacy is a normal, expected part of a healthy marriage. You love your husband, want to feel close and connected to him, and hope to keep the romance alive for years to come. While there’s intimacy to be found with your husband outside getting physical, sex is also a healthy, essential way to stay close and in tune with one another.
And yet, many couples will neglect to open up a conversation about their sex life with their spouse when things are going well enough — after all, don’t you only talk about things when there's trouble in paradise?
Talking about sex can feel incredibly scary and vulnerable for many; while it’s certainly a normal part of life with your husband, starting a conversation about your desires, thoughts, and feelings around sex may strike you as far too awkward, uncomfortable, and exposed.
But research shows that couples who are more open about their desires and have conversations about sex actually have more fulfilling sex lives — so it’s safe to say that the awkwardness of beginning the conversation is something worth getting past. So how can we get a good conversation going?
Start Talking before You’re in the Moment
It might feel strange to bring up intimacy outside its own context, but it’s best to begin your conversation when there’s no pressure for him to immediately implement anything, possibly after you’ve already been in a deeper conversation and feel connected and safe. Try getting a conversation going on a positive note, asking him what he’s enjoyed recently, or bringing up a fun time you had not too long ago.
Let Him Know What’s Been Working for You
It’s always advised to start off with positive affirmations, helping him feel appreciated and validated rather than attacked or humiliated. Outline what he does that you love; build him up, maintain connection, and show appreciation. This won’t just help him feel good, but will help solidify in his mind what he can keep doing for you.
Outline what he does that you love; build him up, maintain connection, and show appreciation.
Tell Him Something You Haven’t Shared Yet
It’s important to feel secure and able to share what we’ve been feeling with our husband, especially when it comes to sex. After expressing what’s been working for you, it might come more naturally to ease into expressing what you’d like more of, or what you feel has been missing. Framing your desires as new and exciting by asking, “Would you be willing to try this?” or “I think it would be fun to do this” will help him feel included in discovering a new side of you and your desires rather than make him feel like he’s been lackluster.
Be Open-Minded and Loving While He’s Sharing
It’s not just you who should take the floor. It’s imperative that your husband feels free to share what he’s enjoyed, but also any desires that he’d like to explore with you. While he’s opening up, it’s crucial to stay open-minded, understanding, and supportive; be careful not to shame, guilt, or react negatively — this may make him feel unloved, misunderstood, and avoid getting into another conversation about sex.
Framing your desires as new and exciting will help him feel included in discovering a new side of you.
Keep It Respectful and Consensual
Opening up about your desires isn’t always simple or natural, and it’s bound to cause a bit of anxiety. So it’s crucial to remain respectful of your husband during this conversation, as well as take his consent into account. Approach the conversation as a means to ensure you and he are both satisfied and comfortable rather than feeling pressured into something you’re not interested in.
Make It Part of Your Routine
The only way you’ll start to feel less awkward talking about sex with your husband is to make having such a conversation part of your routine, whether weekly or monthly. It’s important to check in regularly and make talking about intimacy just as normal as being intimate.
Vulnerability isn’t easy. But when it comes to your sex life with your husband, it’s a good idea to take a chance, open up the conversation, be totally upfront and honest, and invite him to do the same.
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