When It Comes to Great Sex, Communication is Best
Which came first: the chicken or the egg?
Most of us can agree it’s pretty hard to decide, but when it comes to sex and relationships we can find ourselves asking the very same question. Or a variation of it, anyway.
In the sometimes testy trials of sexpectation versus reality, it goes without saying there are countless factors at play.
From comfort and connection to chemistry and more, each of these elements pour into the grand-ultimate component of all— satisfaction.
So, what exactly dictates how “fulfilled” we deem ourselves? Turns out, it boils down to what’s in your head.
Sexual Satisfaction: Brought to You By…Personal Beliefs?
When it comes to sexual gratification, there’s often two main schools of thought: those who believe good sex sprouts from communication, time, and effort exerted in conjunction with a partner (sexual growth); and those who are convinced it’s a simple matter of fate and natural compatibility (sexual destiny).
Yes, we all know the glamorous idea of soulmates—perpetuated by fairy tales and bad (ok, great) rom-coms—but science has recently revealed how the infamous concept can affect one’s sex life itself. For better and for worse.
According to a study from last year, those who subscribe to the growth approach are found to have higher relationship quality and sexual satisfaction overall. Couples who worked together to maintain and evolve their intimacy were much happier with their sex lives in general, especially (obviously) when their partner feels the same way. On the flip side, believers in sexual soulmates were found to have more frustration and disappointment plaguing their tragically contrasting journey at any sign of a potentially incompatible partner.
Interestingly enough, men were the ones more commonly found leaning toward sexual destiny than women, who tended to favor sexual growth. Yet we all know the petty pigeonhole of gals being the “hopeless romantics”…
Sleeping Beauty may have had a decent run waiting for Prince Charming to awake her from an unnervingly deep slumber, but let’s face it—standing by for a physical embodiment of all things instantaneously perfect seems a little farfetched. And boring. And depressing. So can we really say these results make anything less than absolute sense?
Like most things in life, those who favor sexual growth see that good sex requires work, exploration and communication above all. Opening up the conversation with your partner about ways to improve your sex life and overall relationship makes for a win-win that extends far beyond the bedroom. Not to mention, heightens appreciation for your partner, too!
While of course a hot connection usually begins with a spark of some kind, you can’t expect a single flare to fuel a raging runaway romance without laying a candid foundation to support it. The good news is most people lie somewhere between the two concepts, and our sexual beliefs are far from set in stone.
3 Tips for Talking:
Although it seems like it would be simple to lay out your likes and dislikes in the bedroom, anyone that’s tried knows the conversation isn’t exactly smooth sailing. For one, you don’t want to hurt your partner’s feelings, and secondly, you may not want your own ego bruised, either. So, if you’re looking for a few ways to jump start the sex talk, here are three rules to stand by:
- Make sure the talk is coming from a place of genuine care in your sex life and relationship and ways to make it better for both of you. Generally speaking, when one person is bored or unsatisfied, the other is on a similar wavelength.
- While sometimes it can be helpful to have a talk in the moment when something isn’t going right, most of the time it’s better to have a conversation in a neutral environment. That way, both people have the opportunity to share their needs and wants without feeling attacked.
- Have the talk more than once. Just like with anything, you can’t expect someone to change after a quick, “do better.” Often times, we forget to implement what we’ve heard until we’ve been reminded time and time again. It’s not nagging, it just shows how much you really want to work on everything.
Hone It To Own It
In the end, don’t be discouraged by the sometimes struggle of sexual exploration. Bad sex does not equate a bad relationship or lack of connection on another level, but unrealistic expectations can be one of the greatest sabotages to any bond.
So before you go sounding the S.O.S. after a less than perfect first whip around the bedroom block, consider slowing your roll before letting sexpectations get the best of you…or your relationship.
Alex Anderson is an LA-based lifestyle designer proactively raging against the cultural grain. By day she works in television production, and by night enjoys writing, sewing and seeking guidance from the stars. She will also one day have a Norwegian Forest Cat named “Cher”. You can follow her website (www.alexjanderson.com) and on Instagram (@AJAndMore)!