We all want to enjoy amazing sex with our partners, but what exactly is “amazing sex”? Believe it or not, there are no set rules as to what constitutes a good sex life. According to Vanessa Marin, a sex and relationship therapist based in San Francisco, the idea of “great sex” is really defined by each individual couple. “What feels satisfying and enjoyable to one couple may seem boring or undesirable to another,” she explains. “That’s why it’s important to talk to your partner about what each of you wants out of your sex life. Generally speaking, though, good sex means that you feel connected to and respected by your partner. It’s also one in which you experience physical pleasure and feel comfortable talking about your sexual needs and wants.”
The three “G”s of a great sex life
American author Dan Savage has great acronym for what constitutes a good sex life – GGG. To him, this stands for Good, Giving and Game. “The ‘good’ part means that both partners are willing to put effort into honing their sexual skills,” Vanessa points out. “They are willing to try out new techniques and ask each other for feedback. The ‘giving’ part means that both partners are selfless. They are willing to spend time focusing on their partner, putting them first. And ‘game’ means that the couple is willing to try new things, even if only one partner is interested initially.”
More sex is not the same as good sex
It’s important to remember that great sex doesn’t equate to “more” sex – quality and quantity are two different things. And just because your friends are having sex more often than you are, it doesn’t mean that your sex life sucks. It’s up to you and your man to decide how many times a week is enough to keep the both of you satisfied. Says Martha Tara Lee, a clinical sexologist at Eros Coaching: “Just as some people need to eat once or twice a day, and others, three to five times a day, there’s no ‘right’ number of times per month that couples should be having sex. Our sex drives can vary quite a bit so there’s no ‘normal’ when it comes to sex frequency. The lack of sex is only an issue if it concerns one or both partners. Any dissatisfaction needs to be articulated and addressed, so that the resentment doesn’t build up over time.”
Want better sex? Say it!
Any relationship requires negotiation and compromise, and that includes those of a sexual nature, says Martha. After all, it’s unrealistic to think that either of you will get everything you want without having some kind of discussion first. “It’s more important to communicate your sexual needs and wants, and to be open to starting a dialogue about it. At the same time, you should also know that there’s no guarantee that all the thinking, feeling and talking about your sexual relationship will result in the changes you want. The key words are negotiation and compromise.”
Remember: Your sex life is not a fixed state
While we all aspire to a more fulfilling and meaningful sex life, you should keep in mind that your sex life is not a permanent state of being: Just because you and your husband happen to be in a sex rut at the moment doesn’t mean that your sex life is forever doomed. “It’s always possible to make changes,” says Vanessa. “Improving the situation requires open and honest communication. Encourage your partner to explore new things with you. Give him feedback about what does and doesn’t work for you. Be willing to ask for what you want. You absolutely CAN create the sex life of your dreams!”
6 couples share: “Secrets to our amazing sex life”
If you’re looking to take your sex life from ho-hum to hot, steal a few tips from these couples.
Really pay attention to each other
“With our crazy work schedules and frequent travelling, Danny* and I only have time to make love once a fortnight, so we make the occasion count. It’s never a rush job – we really take our time enjoying each other’s bodies, seeing to each other’s sexual needs at that moment, and seeing how we can further strengthen the emotional bond between us. I’ve found that when our sex ritual is focused like this, it’s so much more enjoyable. And when you have quality sex like we do, once a fortnight is enough. It sure beats mediocre sex five times a week!” – Charlene*, 34, accountant
Don’t forget to have fun
“Sex with Michael* is wonderful because we have fun with it. There’s always a lot of laughter when we’re between the sheets. Yes, it’s an expression of our love for each other but it’s also a time to relax, let go, and just enjoy the sensations that are coursing through our bodies. Nobody wants a sex life that’s serious and clinical!” – Tanya*, 32, editor
Variety keeps sex interesting
“It’s easy to get bored with sex, especially if you’ve been in a relationship for a while. My man and I make it a point to switch things up every now and again, whether it’s sex positions or where we have sex. Occasionally I’ll introduce a sex toy to our routine and sometimes we’ll role-play. Experimenting is not only fun, it also helps you figure out what you like or don’t like in bed.” – Christy*, 33, lecturer
Great sex isn’t always about sex
“Sex isn’t just about vaginal penetration, oral sex or mutual masturbation. It’s also about kissing and cuddling. Some nights, my partner and I are too tired to have sex, so we kiss and cuddle instead. They are good ways to connect and feel close to each other, and sometimes they can be just as fulfilling a way to bond as having penetrative sex.” – Alina*, 28, doctor
Praise and compliment each other
“At times, it’s easy to get caught up in your own sexual pleasure and to completely forget that your partner is even there. My man and I are very mindful of this and always make it a point to praise and compliment each other while we’re making love. We compliment each other on our sexual techniques, remind each other of what makes us hot for each other, and acknowledge each other’s efforts to please. This kind of positive reinforcement goes a long way to having the kind of sex you want, because when your partner feels acknowledged he’s likely to want to pleasure you more.” – Veronica*, 40, marketing director
Tell him what you like
“Even if you’ve been with your man for a while, you can’t assume that he knows how to please you 100 per cent, all of the time. This is because our sexual likes and dislikes can change over time. So when you’re making love, be sure to tell him how and where to touch you, how much pressure to use, and when to do certain things. If you don’t speak up he’ll never know, and you won’t have the kind of sex you want.” – Julia*, 38, flight attendant
* Names have been changed.