Parents overwhelmingly agree that a good sex life is a key to a happy family life, according to a recent survey.
The only problem? It’s easier said than done.
Nearly 90% of parents say having a good sex life is essential to their family’s happiness, but for millennial parents it’s often at the bottom of their to-do list on busy days, according to a recent representative survey of 1000 for organic baby food company Plum Organics “Do Your Part(ner) campaign.”
While there may be some issues in relationships that contribute to people having less sex, often parents simply have too much on their plates, according to Emily deAyala, American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors, and Therapists (AASECT ) certified sex therapist and couples relationship expert at Revive Therapy.
“A lot of couples tell me up and down they want to do anything to get back on track, but when push comes to shove a lot of people realize there are only so many hours in a day,” deAyala said. “We are doers, especially women, and they want to figure out how they work full-time, raise kids, get to the gym and have a meal prepared, go on vacation. The list goes on and on.”
And the first casualty of that long list of commitments is often sex.
deAyala said couples often “cringe” when she suggests scheduling sex or date nights, but if it’s not on the calendar and treated as something special it may not happen.
“I remind people that when they were dating they were scheduling it, but they weren’t calling it that,” she said. “They made plans, so when Friday night rolls around there was positive anticipation building up, and there was preparation – you make sure your legs are shaved, or the guy has cologne on. A lot of preparation and planning goes into dating, but as soon a we get married people forget how to do that.”
And even when parents do spend time with their partner, the pressures of parenthood can still find a way of creeping in on alone time. The survey found that 70% of millennial parents said they felt guilty being away from their children for a night out, and nearly 70% of parents said they talk about kids the majority of time when they are alone with their spouse.
Parents need to find a balance between talking about their kids and also engaging with their partner on other subjects, Ashley Grinonneau-Denton, an AASECT sex therapist and couples relationship expert.
After all, this is a person you thought was pretty interesting at one time.
“There needs to be a balance, [kids] can be connecting, but sometimes that can be the only connecting point that couple with kids have,” Grinonneau-Denton said. “When I see individuals or couples where one or both couples don’t have anything outside of work or the kids — that is their identity. So, for a couple like that I would say figure out something you can have to be your own.”
One-third of parents also reported that the thing they do in their beds besides sleeping is scrolling through social media or reading the news.
deAyala said couples that want to put the pep back in their sex life, should try to keep their phones, tablets and other devices out of the bedroom.
“The bed really should just be for sleeping and sex,” she said. “The bedroom needs to be a sacred place, so in addition to no electronics in bed, no pets in bed and no baby toys all over the place.”
She notes that the bedroom should be a sacred and relaxing place.
“We are very tuned into our environment, so the more we can do to create an environment that is conducive to sex…the better,” deAyala said.
Source: USA Today