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Stress killer: tips from the sex therapist

Stress killer - when we just want our peace and quiet

There it was again: "Aren't we having sex again?" Always this again. With a twist, Katrin frees herself from her husband's embrace. His words echo in her. Why doesn't he understand that she just doesn't have a head for it?
They're actually a top team. They share the housework, both look after their son, have jobs they enjoy doing - and, yes, they love each other. But there are these days when everyone in the office wants something from her, then rushes her to the daycare and answers emails on the way, then she doesn't feel like she is close, and certainly not like sex.

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Stress factor love life

In stressful phases in particular, pleasure often becomes another to-do. Too tense, too tense, simply too tired - many women know that. While men want to relax through sex, women mostly need to be relaxed in order to want sex.

Lust for sex - a question of timing

And that small difference can get quite big when two are waiting for both of them to magically get the right feeling at the same moment. The desire is usually not gone - we just don't want to. How can you feel the right moment?

Sex tips against displeasure from psychologist Sandra Gathmann

The Viennese sex therapist and psychologist Sandra Gathmann knows couples like Katrin and Jan from her practice. She watched that Especially with couples who are particularly keen to achieve equality, lust takes a back seat. These couples are used to organizing their everyday lives together, negotiating things and meeting at eye level. Everything is dutifully shared. Nice for everyday life.

Sex needs selfishness in order not to get boring,

says the couples therapist.Tweet

Only a healthy level of imbalance makes it exciting - and many of these couples find it difficult to allow that to happen.

Good sex takes selfishness

A game of roles, a change of give and take, taking the lead and giving yourself up are what make the appeal. So Sandra Gathmann is not surprised that the hype about erotic sadomasochistic novels continues after "Shades of Gray". "Sex is a zone in which it can be politically incorrect," says the psychologist.

Stress with sex - that's what the statistics say

But that is exactly what couples are obviously not able to allow in their own bed. A study by the University of Göttingen with almost 13,500 respondents who lived in relationships found that every sixth person had not had sex for four weeks. And almost half slept with their partner less than once a week.

Surrender and let go - now !?

Women who have learned to assert themselves at work and who have control over many things in everyday life, in particular, often get into conflict when it comes to sexuality. They find it difficult to allow themselves to surrender because it undermines their self-image. "But why not see sex as a vacation for yourself?" Suggests Sandra Gathmann. A possibility to live out another side, to let go and dive down.
Emancipated men are faced with the question: Can I show myself aggressively with relish, or am I then a cross-border macho? They don't want to see their women as objects of pleasure, but rather treat them with the same respect as in everyday life. But asking every five minutes: "Is that okay with you?" Is not really turning on. Sex becomes a matter of the mind, the flow, the feeling that you simply indulge in, is lost. And suddenly both sides are insecure.
Intimacy arises when one dares to reveal wishes and fears, even at the risk that the other will want something else. Jan now thinks twice about every attempt to get in touch with Katrin for fear of being rejected. But when the frustration is already in the air, not much pleasure is to be expected.

Ways to lust - tips for a relaxed sex life

1. Dating for sex

It is comparatively simple to give pleasure space again by arranging islands of time. "Couples grumble immediately at the suggestion," says Sandra Gathmann: "What, we should arrange to have sex?" But when she asks how much time they both have each other a week, most couples only come for an evening or two. The hours fly by quickly, with things to be organized or with everyone puzzling out. "It's not about having sex at an agreed time at the push of a button," says the sex therapist, but rather about creating moments in which both are relaxed enough to ask themselves: What would be good for me now with you? And that can be anything. Watch the new episode of "House of Cards" together on the sofa. Or go to bed together - and neither read nor sleep.

2. Sex therapy helps couples

In her practice, Sandra Gathmann also tries to convey to open one's eyes, because there is much more sexuality in everyday life than most people realize. Sex is always there. It is expressed in a gesture, a conversation, a look - which does not mean that you have to sleep together. "Everyone has the need to be wanted and to be able to desire," says Sandra Gathmann. Lust never completely disappears. Men also longed for tenderness, only sometimes they confused this longing with the desire for sex.

3. Consciously enjoy pleasure

Especially when you haven't had sex for a long time, it is often difficult to get involved. "It is important to break away from the illusion that lust just arises", explains the psychologist. Sex is a matter of decision-making, which means you have to be ready to give something for it. Emotionally, temporally, physically." And then you have to learn to invite the right people, "says Sandra Gathmann show: Now I'm relaxed, to be curious and to be aroused, to show what you want, and to ask the other person about your needs, to find out how you can touch each other.

4. How imagination enlivens your relationship

At the beginning of a relationship, it all goes by itself. Even before the next meeting, you imagine what could happen. Of course that decreases, because at some point you know what you are getting. But you can keep yourself in the mood for yourself. Allow fantasies.
Scientists have found that the longer a relationship lasts, the longer women become sexually more wait-and-see. They take the initiative less often and wait for the right moment. Relationships with equal rights offer a special opportunity: If love is not a power struggle, there is nothing to prevent being aroused, even if you don't feel like it. Or having sex out of affection because you know that it is good for your partner now. And with excitement often comes pleasure.

Our expert Sandra Gathmann is a qualified psychologist, sex therapist and sex consultant in Vienna.