Soft candlelight falls slowly over her face while his finger gently traces the outline of her lips. They lay side by side gazing into each other’s eyes. Their hearts are open, loving and embracing of each other.
They are attentive and nurturing of their union. This invites more energy, satisfaction and pleasure to grow between them.
Then they start a family. As they increase in numbers, so does their love — and so does their stress, demands and requirements.
The time, energy and attention that they used to have for each other is significantly reduced. Slowly, the couple feel more anger and resentment toward each other as the stress and demands continue to weigh more heavily on them.
They no longer have the time or energy they once did and, eventually, even lose the desire to try to work through their frustrations with each other. Over the years, they forget they even used to enjoy lying in bed, holding one another close as they caressed, talked and shared time with one another.
Have you forgotten what it’s like to be in love with your spouse?
Has sex become an obligation rather than a joy to share?
I am the fourth offspring of a woman who was brought up in a Conservative Jewish household and a man who was literally egged for being Jewish, while his family was Reform.
Basic Jewish values and traditions were what they passed on to me. One of these was the importance of the marital relationship. They believed in nurturing and cultivating their relationship as part of our family, but also separately as their own union.
My parents also always believed that sex is a very important part of marriage, not only a mitzvah on a Friday night. In fact, they “napped” more through my childhood than I ever did as a baby!
Being an apple off my parents’ tree, I have always believed sex in a marriage is a critical element that one should invest time and energy in.
Have you noticed when you are having nice cuddling and great sex with your spouse that the little things don’t bother you as much? So what if he left his towel on the floor, or she left her clothes in a pile on the chair, or her floss never seems to make it in the trash, and he seems to forget to clear his glass from the table. If you’re engaging sexually together, you’re more able to tolerate what could otherwise grow into major annoyances.
Not only can sex smooth the way for a better quality of your daily life, I have also observed how the sexual self is an intrinsic part of our larger whole, reflecting how we are in all areas of our lives.
If we’re feeling angry and resentful, we will probably withhold affection and sex. If we’re being sneaky and spending more on the credit card than we intended, we may be manipulative and give sex to assuage the anticipated negative reaction when the bill arrives.
Perhaps you feel you are too busy taking care of everyone else to have sex. You are too tired. You might also feel that no one ever takes care of you, that you buy clothes for the kids but never for yourself and that sex is simply one more thing on your “to-do” list, along with cooking and cleaning.
However, sex does not belong on a “to-do” list. Sex is a gift. It is a pathway to share a deep and spiritual connection — and love — with your spouse. It is also directly related to sexual energy, which is a creative, passionate, juicy life force.
So, how are you currently valuing sex in your life and your marriage today?
What is your sex life showing you about how you are engaging in all areas of your life?
Answer these questions and the puzzles may start falling in place.
Karen Jayne is a certified professional life coach, specializing in relationships, intimacy and sexual energy, as well as the author of the award-winning 3 Pillows Down.