Is it possible to have a "brilliant and exciting sex life" after many years together? This is the question that was posed in the comments box of my preceding post.
My answer is yes, if you are prepared to make an effort and not just fuck off with some twonk from the internet as soon as you encounter a bit of a dry spell.
I met the man who would become my husband in November 1984 and we are still together today. It has not always been a smooth journey. Yet somehow, here we are. And I enjoy wriggling around on his love prong just as much as I ever did. More, really, given that the 19 year old version of my husband had bags of enthusiasm yet nowhere near as much skill and stamina as his older counterpart.
"But how do you keep the passion alive?"I hear you ask.
"It's not always easy," I answer, "but I would say the secret is to treat your partner like you would a lover."
Married men may often complain that their wives no longer do all the things they used to - oral sex, shaving their legs, laughing at his jokes - while in turn their wives complain that their husbands no longer do all they things they used to, such as taking them out to dinner, bathing before bedtime and laughing at their jokes.
I often read advice columnists stating that couples should schedule time for making sweet lurve. That's all well and good but I think it is equally, if not more, important to schedule time to just take an interest in your partner. After all, if your husband has had his nose in a book, been engrossed on Facebook or watching football on the telly all night, then him suddenly standing up and announcing it's ten o'clock and sausage time is not going to get your juices flowing.
The heady rush of initial infatuation isn't entirely based upon non stop shagging. A new lover is a source of constant fascination. Texts, emails and phone calls are exchanged in a breathless flurry. Everything they do is interesting. What do they think of the situation in Gaza? What's their favourite colour? What are they wearing? What did they have for tea? What are they thinking now?
There is an assumption that when you have been with a partner for any length of time you know all their opinions, have heard all their jokes and nothing they say or do will contain any surprises. This is bollocks. We don't ever truly know another person fully, we just assume we do because surely we have to by now? So we stop listening, we stop actively looking. We forget who we were first attracted to because we no longer see them, not really.
If you can refocus on your partner, take an interest in them again, it reaps dividends. A major part of attraction is feeling attractive. Somebody actually noticing what you are wearing, laughing at your funny story about your day, caring about your little triumphs and disasters is amazingly alluring. After all, this level of attention is what draws people to infidelity just as much as the lure of sex. "I just wanted to feel desireable again," is the cry you will often hear. "It was so nice to feel interesting!"
There are other methods to employ, of course. You can wear exotic lingerie. You can book a weekend away. You can try swinging, BDSM or sex blogging. You can try cooking an erotic meal of oysters, rhino horn and an enormous saveloy. You can try alcohol, Viagra or Marmite. But I guarantee none will be as effective over the long haul as a simple "I like your hair! How did that meeting with the wanky boss go?"