Tips to help you keep intimacy alive

Friday April 13 2018

How do you keep the flame of love burning after many years of marriage? PHOTO| FILE| NATION MEDIA GROUP

How do you keep the flame of love burning after many years of marriage? PHOTO| FILE| NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By JOACHIM OSUR
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The rain came suddenly. It drummed on the roof of the sexology clinic as if to prove that the time of hot spells were gone. I stood up from my seat, drew the window curtains and instinctively smiled.

“Nature never lets us down!” I thought to myself as I observed the cloud of dust that had hitherto ruled our lives fast fade into streams of clear water. It was a great relief from the threat of drought.

“Good afternoon, my name is Rose,” a voice came from behind me. I looked round – the next patient had walked into the consultation room and taken her seat. I quickly recollected myself, rushing back to the doctor’s seat. “I have lost my husband and I need help,” Rose said anxiously.

“So sorry, when was that? Did you already report this to the police?” I asked. Rose smiled. I asked her to explain the issue.

A mother of two, Rose was 35 years old. She had been married for seven years. She and her husband had not had sex for six months and this worried her. They did not hug or kiss. Their communication was poor and they were progressively getting hostile towards each other.

“So he is no longer the man I used to know, he has changed so much. I feel I have lost the man I was married to,” Rose said, her eyes welling up with tears. I met Rose and her husband John severally to decipher what the root cause of their problem was. My conclusion was that the couple, both Rose and John, had lost the skill of seduction, which is critical in maintaining long term relationships.

CONTINUOUS SEDUCTION

Relationships are kept alive by continuously seducing each other. Core to this is that each partner has to maintain some good level of grooming, hygiene and fashion, and present their best both in the bedroom and in public. In other words, you have to love yourself first for others to love you. If you have lost this sense then you are courting disaster. No man or woman wants to live with a dirty, unkempt, careless person.

Then there is attention. Do you give attention to your spouse when they talk to you? Some people are quite dismissive.

The moment their partner starts talking to them they throw in a word to scuttle the conversation. Instead of concentrating and maintaining eye contact, they are busy texting on their phone, watching TV or reading a newspaper. This kills emotional connection.

There is the loss of charm. When people are courting they are fun to talk to and really make you laugh. They converse for hours on end, throwing in jokes and laughing.

It is known that charm keeps intimacy going in 70 per cent of relationships. In those who have lost the art of seduction however, speech is in monosyllables.

They order their spouses around and they will not listen to their partner’s views or allow their positions to be challenged. 

One thing that John had that is common with frustrated couples is that the man never appreciates the beauty of his wife.

Irrespective of how Rose dressed or groomed, there was no comment from John. Whenever there was opportunity to say something negative however, John verbalised it all too fast and repeated it many times. In the art of seduction, appreciation and feeling desired is an important turn on for most women.

And then there was public displays of affection. John would never hold Rose’s hand in public. He always instructed Rose to walk ahead and he would follow at a distance.

To him, doing some of these things was a sign of weakness. It is these small gestures that improve intimacy, confidence in the relationship and emotional connection. Public displays of affection are reassuring and result in deep fulfillment in your spouse.

The peak of intimacy is in the behaviour exhibited in the bedroom. At the beginning of a relationship, most partners aim to pleasure their spouse. They are tender and innovative; they care and do not inflict pain. This changes later in life when the art of seduction is lost. Selfish interests take precedence.

The couple underwent intimacy coaching for three months. We met for the last session last week. “It is so refreshing to feel loved again,” Rose said. “It is like the start of a new season in my life.” I nodded knowingly.

“It is like the storming and thundering of rain to mark the end of a dry hot season settling the dust and making small streams of water to flow again!” I said as I waved goodbye.