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Behind Closed Doors - FAQ around Relationships and Sexuality

Join me on a personal journey as I delve into the realm of relationships and therapy. I step into the shoes of the interviewer and the expert, offering you a glimpse into my everyday experiences as a relationship therapist. Through thought-provoking questions and personal insights, I'll explore the intricate nature of human connections, challenging common misconceptions.

Do most people say they want more sex for pleasure and closeness?

Sex has different meanings for people. It can bring immense pleasure and fulfill intense desires. However, it's not just about fun. In couples therapy, when partners feel disconnected sexually, it often indicates a more profound longing for emotional closeness. Sexual activity, in its many forms, goes beyond the traditional and helps couples reconnect, strengthen their bond, and show their exclusive connection.

Does talking too much about sex make it mechanical?

Talking about sex does not make it mechanical; it can enhance the experience. Couples who openly discuss their sexual desires and preferences tend to have more satisfying and fulfilling sex lives. By communicating and understanding each other's needs, couples can create a more exciting and intimate connection in the bedroom, similar to how discussing other important aspects of a relationship strengthens the bond between partners.

Are communication challenges a major complaint of couples presenting for counselling?

In my experience, most couples seeking counselling want better communication. They face challenges, but these are symptoms, not the main issue. The real problem is often feeling unloved, misunderstood, uncared for, or unsupported by their partner. Communication is important for addressing these problems, but it's crucial to understand that couples seek counselling because of unmet needs and desires in their relationship, not just communication difficulties.

Is a therapist a super problem solver?

Therapists are not super problem solvers who can instantly fix all your issues. Our role is to guide you through professional experience, ask the right questions, and improve communication between partners, helping you understand and address the underlying problems together. Please think of us as educated guides rather than magicians with a magic wand.

Are small everyday moments of connection bids with a spouse or partner the building blocks of a relationship?

Small everyday moments of connection, like simple gestures of love, communication, and thoughtfulness, are the essential building blocks of a strong and nurturing relationship. These little acts, such as saying "I love you," sending a sweet message, or preparing a favourite meal, may not require much effort or cost. Still, when done consistently, they create a solid foundation of closeness and intimacy, allowing more significant gestures to be even more meaningful and cherished.

Do most people never feel anxious when it comes to intimacy?

Intimacy can make us anxious. It's a deep and vulnerable experience affected by societal and personal expectations. Common worries include sexual performance and appearance. Talking openly with your partner and seeking reassurance can help. Taking small steps, like leaving a light on during intimacy, can also reduce anxiety. If it becomes too much, seeking professional help is an option.

Is it crucial for couples to be friends and lovers for the longevity of their relationship?

In most cases, couples desire to be both friends and lovers. This is important because friendship in a romantic relationship provides emotional support and reciprocity. When one aspect is missing, it can impact the other. However, some couples prioritise starting a family together over friendship, and not all relationships are focused on sexual intimacy. Still, most couples aim to be lovers and friends, seeking emotional support and availability from their partners.

Do couples counsellors have ideal intimate relationships with their spouses?

Couples counsellors, including myself, don't necessarily have ideal intimate relationships with their spouses. We strive for good enough relationships where satisfaction is prioritised over perfection. Living with a counsellor can be challenging for our spouses, as we may unintentionally analyse or therapise conversations. However, understanding relationship dynamics and skills can help us de-escalate situations, adjust conversations, and remember to prioritise small acts of love. We aim for a relationship with respect and care, not perfection, and encourage couples to nurture their own "lawn" rather than seeking greener grass elsewhere.

In this article, I delved into the importance of emotional closeness in sexual connection, the power of open communication, and the significance of small everyday moments. Remember, therapists aren't magic problem solvers but compassionate guides who help you navigate the complexities of your relationship. Ultimately, the friendship, respect, and care we cultivate lay the foundation for a fulfilling and lasting relationship.


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