I get a lot of mail asking if it’s necessary to role-play in order to have a passionate marriage.
t As the author of Cheat On Your Husband (With Your Husband) I also get mail asking why I’m encouraging infidelity. (The parenthetical part of my title is integral to the book’s theme; but in tiny letters on the cover, of course!) The answer to both of these questions is: not really.
t With the movie Sex Tape coming to a small screen near you, you may have also wondered if making a sex tape with your significant other is a crazy good idea or just… crazy.
t My rule is what’s normal in a relationship is what’s normal and appealing to the couple involved. So if you want to role-play in costume or strip down and press “record” during one of your sexual rendezvous, I’m not here to tell you not to do it! But… rest assured, there are plenty of other ways to spice up your relationship that don’t involve elaborate plans or recording devices.
t Here are three ways to get your spark back:
1. Talk techy
t Long-term couples tend to use technology for very practical purposes, to send an “I’ll be late” message or to coordinate drop-off schedules for the kids. I’ve heard a number of people say that technology is killing romance; but there’s a way to use it to your relationship’s benefit.
t Ever notice how daters and cheaters use technology to flirt? (If you don’t believe me, dig up an old email you sent your partner when you were dating. You’ll want to hang out with that person again.)
t Sending your partner a sassy email or a sweet text to say you are thinking about him will inject fun and romance into an otherwise busy day. Laying down the groundwork hours before you’ll see each other will amp up anticipation and get you both excited to hang out later.
2. Be novel
t What the couple in “Sex Tape” missed the most, years into their marriage, was the sense of adventure, spontaneity and sexiness that they experienced when they first hooked up. This feeling isn’t uncommon among long-term couples.
t There’s a difference between falling in love and being in love. When we’re falling in love, the pleasure centers of our brains are activated and almost everything is sexy, new and exciting. After a few years together, this natural high wears off (this is a good thing or none of us would be too productive), and we settle into a more stable routine with our partners. This doesn’t mean, however, that we have to settle for a life of boredom.
t The antidote to monotony is novelty.
t Doing new things together, exploring an undiscovered neighborhood, taking up a new hobby or trying something unexpected in the bedroom will get your pleasure circuits going again.
3. Touch, kiss
t And speaking of the brain…
t Touching releases oxytocin, which will help you and your partner feel more connected. Greet each other at the door with a hug and/or a kiss each day after work and make snuggling mandatory before bed.
t Kiss! It’s amazing how many long-term couples go straight for the sex and forget how sexy kissing can be. If you haven’t had a good make-out session in a while, try kissing your partner for just a minute. It’s one of the quickest ways to rev up romance and passion.
t You don’t need to swing from the chandeliers to feel sexy in your marriage again. It’s often the smallest gestures that lead to the biggest changes. Use technology to flirt, introduce novel activities and don’t forget to touch each other. You’ll get your spark back in no time.
t Andrea Syrtash is a dating and relationship expert, published author and on-air host. She has contributed to over a dozen relationship advice books and is the author of He’s Just Not Your Type (And That’s a Good Thing), Cheat On Your Husband (With Your Husband) and the co-author of It’s Okay to Sleep with Him on the First Date: And Every Other Rule of Dating Debunked.
tDisclosure: This post is part of a collaboration with Sony Pictures Home Entertainment and SheKnows.