Butterflies. Passion. Fireworks. These words are commonly used to describe the feeling a person hopes to experience when they are with their significant other. Certainly, this feeling can signify the romantic and sexual chemistry that people share, which is a great launchpad for a budding relationship. For some, the absence of this feeling is the reason they choose to leave that relationship. “The flame went out.” “The butterflies went away.” “The passion fizzled.”
In long-term relationships, a decrease in this feeling is inevitable. The longer you’re with someone, the less new they are to you, and the fewer butterflies you feel. But that doesn’t mean the butterflies are gone forever.
Nothing New, Nothing Exciting
There are many factors that can negatively impact a couple’s intimate connection. One of the biggest intimacy killers is routine. Monotony is boring, predictable, and uninspiring. Many long-term couples see a dip in their sex life because they become routine in their intimacy; they initiate sex the same way, at the same time and day, wearing the same lingerie, listening to the same music. They’ve learned that this is how to turn on their partner, so they do it again and again.
On the one hand, this sends a clear message to your partner that you would like to have sex. However, this does not always mean that your partner will be turned on simply by knowing you want to have sex. Even if sex does ensue, it’s likely to be the same boring, monotonous sex you’ve experienced repeatedly. This doesn’t exactly motivate either of you to do it again anytime soon, resulting in a decline in frequency and lack of enthusiasm.
Resparking and Maintaining the Flame
Novelty is one of your best weapons to fight against a lackluster sex life. Get creative, think outside your norm, and try new things. Even if you try something new and it doesn’t go as planned (i.e. your partner isn’t into it, or it becomes more distracting than enhancing), it tells your partner that you are putting forth the effort. Don’t know where to start? Try some of these ideas:
Wear a new piece of lingerie
Use mirrors during sex
Strap on a blindfold and focus just on the physical and audible aspects of sex. Bonus points if you’re both blindfolded
Spritz on a new cologne/perfume, or wear cologne/perfume at an unexpected time (such as a work from home day)
Stay at a hotel or rental property for some playtime in a new space
Have sex in a different room than the bedroom: home office, kitchen, stairwell
Cook an unfamiliar recipe together in just your underwear
Record yourselves on video (make sure you have your partner’s consent)
Discuss fantasies that you haven’t disclosed to each other
During foreplay, set a timer for 10 minutes and explore your partner’s body without touching the genitals, then switch
Although there are a lot of factors that can hinder a couple’s intimate connection, with some creativity and an open mind, you and your partner will be well on your way to feeling those butterflies again.