Lovemaking is one of the most important aspects of a healthy marriage. Yet there are so many impediments and inhibitions to making love once those wonderful Honeymoon years are over.
MF: Several years after we were married we had our 1st child and 4 more in less than 7 years. My life was full -- nursing, sticky fingers, baby drool and at times I felt like a toddler trampoline. Being caressed by Tom when I crawled into bed at night just not on my mind. All too quickly their little lives became even busier and we became perpetually exhausted. The time and energy for lovemaking took a back burner. Now that we are older timing can still be complicated.
Tom: We have developed some skills that helped us keep romance and sexual intimacy alive during those incredibly busy years. And they still work today.
I learned I needed to communicate my needs. Yes, being a man and having needs is not an oxymoron. Sex is not just a physical need. It is linked to a powerful emotional need to be desired. It is at the core of who I am as a man and the husband I want to be for Mary Frances.
MF: Most women crave emotional intimacy and we are typically more upfront when it comes to expressing those needs. When I learned that lovemaking was more than a physical need for Tom, it changed everything. I realized my attitude of "Not tonight, Honey. It's nothing personal" was like Tom giving me the cold shoulder when I was upset about something. Wow!
Our lives were still busy, but our communication and desire to put each other first did a 180. Being attentive and communicating our needs whether it is help with dishes, kids' homework, making love or running an errand for Tom made all the difference. Simplifying our lives and sharing the load helps to ensure that neither of us goes to bed totally exhausted. This is every bit as important today as empty nesters. We don't have to put lovemaking on our To-Do list, because when we tackle that list together we have passion and energy for us.
Tom: Flirting, a wink, or secret pet name, phone calls, notes and texting just to say, "Love you" keep us in the mood. We recently read a post titled "10 Sex Habits that Happy Couples Swear By" (EndThrive.com). I was struck by the statement " . . . foreplay starts at the end of the last orgasm." For us foreplay doesn't have to be physical, but rather me focusing on Mary Frances, satisfying her emotional, physical and intellectual needs until she sweeps me off my feet. And it doesn't have to be a lazy Sunday afternoon. It could be any day that ends in 'Y'.