By Jenna Stevenson
It’s an interesting question I know, to which most may have already made up their minds and come up with an immediate answer of no but before you shut the door on this one let me go on.
With a divorce rate in England and Wales in upwards of 150,000 per year (which is more than half the rate of marriages no less) and shows no sign of dramatic reduction is it possible that we are not prescribing the right ‘medicine’?
We all know that marriage should be a union of love, friendship and intimacy; particularly a healthy sex life but it seems that the lack of the latter can often be the major contributor when it comes to marriage breakdown. So with all the information at our fingertips and the ever increasing statistics staring us in the face why is that our sex lives are being paid less and less attention?
One reason has to do with our complete lack of ability to communicate about anything that is remotely taboo and it is this exact loss of communication skills and the ignorant yet hopeful attitude that ‘things will sort themselves’ which can ear mark a marriage for probable separation within 12 months.
Our hectic lifestyles aren’t helping either. Sex is way down on the list of things to do, sadly being replaced by the longer hours at work, the school run, the shopping and the house work. Put frankly many don’t have time for sex anymore and there must be an increase in the popularity of the use of the phrase ‘I’m too tired’ – I’d like to see those statistics!
Low sex marriages across the board often share the same symptoms; you only have sex a few times a month, sex is a chore, you schedule sex, you don’t fantasize about your partner, there is no sense of adventure and neither of you are frisky anymore. Suffering these symptoms? If so a remedy is needed but it might not be what you are thinking.
So what’s the solution?
Step 1 – Start talking. A fundamental concept that needs to be grasped is that communication is paramount. How can you correct a problem if one half of your relationship doesn’t know that one exists? It has been proven time and time again that couples who communicate well and share activities together often have a much more sexually active relationship.
Step 2 – Make time. Often couples that end up going away for a weekend or manage to escape the children for any substantial periods of time find that they have what can only be described as ‘honeymoon sex’. The reduced workload and subsequent lower stress levels seem to remove inhibition and rekindle the slowly dwindling flame.
Step 3 – Spice it up. If it isn’t new, it’s through. Consider spicing up your bedroom. It’s the quickest and cheapest way to give you both a change of scenery and even a subtle hint like changing the usual light bulb for a shade of rouge can make a huge impact.
Step 4 – Look in the toy box. Many still think of sex toys as being scary looking vibrating gizmos that can only be found in the dodgy back street sex shops found in the nasty side of town – not anymore. Sure you can still find these but when it comes to relationships sometimes it’s better to take a more subtle approach.
When choosing any marital aids choose the ones that will offer the greatest chance of increased intimacy and not just the latest craze. Generally the area of sex that offers amplified intimacy levels is foreplay. Concentrate on this area and get to know your partner all over again. Make it fun with a handful of accessories like the classic blindfold, maybe some fluffy handcuffs and some daring dice that dictate an act to be carried out with every roll.
Keeping your choices to a select few will have the desired effect of keeping the focus on you and your partner and not the new additions. There’s no point having the latest toys that receives all the attention and hoping that your relationship will be ok now, the focus should be on what they can add to your sex life, not be the central part of it.
So, can sex toys save your marriage? On there own, no. However, as part of a larger scheme to pay more attention to your sex lives, maybe they are just what the doctor ordered.
Jenna Stevenson is a tester of adult sex toys at Batteries Not Included. Her reviews and opinions on sex toys can be found at http://www.batteries-not-included.co.uk