Sex, no matter how stigmatized and alienated it is in the society it remains one of the most important, common and favorite of all the life experiences across species. Great sex doesn’t come easy it takes some Chit Chat Sessions.

Sadly this much needed practice barely exists in the bedrooms. Talking about sex becomes essential if a couple wishes to have an enriching and mutually satisfying sexual relationships. Sex Therapists have frequently documented a lack of or even absence of communication about sex between the partners. Partners usually introverts and female partners feel shy, guilty and even scared when it comes to expressing their needs, likes and dislikes. For the most part these feelings are the result of the social taboos, and gender role stereotypes.

Sradhanjali Dasgupta

As a Psychotherapist I keep receiving messages and emails asking various questions. Some of the most common questions are about how do I understand my partner’s needs? How can I make my partner talk about sex? How to inquire if she likes what I do or how to make her speak about what she wants me to do with her?

After reading numerous emails two things suddenly struck my mind, first there are those who have trouble interacting freely with their partners. second, there are many responsible partners struggling to establish an open, respecting and comfortable relationship.

This article is for all those wise people who believe in effective pillow talk that may work wonders with their sex lives. Read to find out how:

OPENING THE DOORS: If your partner is reserved, shy or isn’t comfortable discussing sexual matters give him/her some time. One may resist the urge to jump start the discussions about the wild fantasies, or the reckless sexual experiences and begin with casual talks, asking about your partner’s mood, health, day, work etc. Make your partner comfortable, and give them the required space. This facilitates warmth in a relationship and brings people close. This way partners get to know each other better, and feel emotionally connected which in turn makes it easier for both of the partners to know each other deeply, feel open and concerned about the other partner and enjoy the conversations with each other. This opens the door for frank, free and intimate conversations.

REMAINING PATIENT: Patience is the key to bedroom discussions. Sometimes a partner doesn’t respond to the other partner’s initiatives. This is usually perceived as indifference and disinterest which may not always be the case. One may expect their partners to respond and be spontaneous in conversations however depending on your partner’s thought process and emotional state it may be helpful to give them the required time to verbalize their minds.Patiently waiting for their responses and even changing the topic to something else if your partner isn’t comfortable are subtle cues that help your partner realize that you understand them, care for them and that they’re with a safe person. This feeling of security helps them respond and even initiate the discussions freely.

DISCUSSING THE FEARS, FEELINGS & TABOOS: It is essential to understand what makes your partner shy away from discussing the sexual matters. A young couple in distress came for marital therapy. The man felt dissatisfied in the relationship because his wife didn’t respond to his seductive and erotic moves, she didn’t guide him when he asked her about how she felt and remained like a dummy. On interview with the wife it was found that she was overwhelmed by shame whenever her husband asked her about how she felt, she also felt confused if she should respond to her husband’s questions and if she has the right to feel the pleasure, she admitted “I try to be blank when he is close. I think he might think bad of me if he gets to know I enjoyed sex” Taking a dive into your partner’s mind to understand their fears, insecurities, and confusions saves a relationship from unwanted troubles.

GAINING TRUST: A man recently wrote to me about his relationship difficulty with his girlfriend. His issue was that he wanted to keep his conversations, meetings, fights and makeups with his girlfriend personal whereas his girlfriend used to tell everything to her friends and even post the details on the social media. He had requested her to cut down on this practice and keep the personal affairs private but she didn’t seem to understand. This left him frustrated and even confused about continuing with the relationship. Sometimes the partners are not able to discuss their deep desires and not willing to go forward in the relationship due to the perceived lack of trust or insecurities. The fear that you might share their secrets with others thus partners should be sensitive enough to each others emotional needs. It is the responsibility of a partner to make sure that the other partner feels safe in a relationship. Some people wish to keep their private lives secret and thus ensuring the need for privacy (not discussing your bedroom lives in public, and avoiding to record intimate scenes etc.) should be the top priority for both the partners.

BEING RESPECTFUL & ACCEPTING: It is important to remain respectful and accepting. I remember a male client who was utterly disturbed after an interaction with his girlfriend a night before. The couple started playing the game wherein they had to share their intimate details. Gathering a lot of courage this boy shared a very personal detail with his partner. Contrary to what he had expected the partner started laughing at him, made fun of him and even called him names. This experience was so humiliating for the client that he started avoiding girls, fearing relationships and staying quiet. One should be very careful about their actions and reactions when your partner shares something private with you. Respect the faith that they’ve shown in you and appreciate their courage.

SHARING SEXUAL FANTASIES & PREFERENCES: This involves spending a good time together simply telling and listening to your partner about the sexual fantasies, likes and dislikes. This is the process of knowing each other however you or your partner shouldn’t feel obliged to act on the fantasies immediately without being sure about them . Such conversations allow better understanding of each other, their comfort zones, figuring out common interests, feeling emotionally connected and concerned, cooking up your thoughts for the night and even spicing up your mood to try something new.

PROCEEDING WITH MUTUAL CONSENT: Whatever you try in your bedroom, make sure both, you and your partner are comfortable doing it. Also remember to ask your partner if they are willing to proceed or not. Such inquiries communicate concern, respect and help your partner open up and feel free. On the other hand anything forced may lead to emotional damage and rupture in the relationship.

OVERCOMING DISABLING EMOTIONS: Shame and guilt are common emotions. All of us experience them at some point or another, especially in the bedrooms between the sheets. It is not rare to feel anxious before, during or after you undress in front of a person, fear their judgments about you, your skills, your body, feeling ashamed in expressing yourself, guilt of not being able to match their expectations etc. Shame, fear, anxiety and guilt together complicate the matter and make it difficult for a person to feel the passion, enjoy the moment and use creativity. It may take a while for your partner to overcome the burden of these disabling emotions and enjoy the ride of candid conversations with you.

Sex is much more than just a biological act. It is the manifestation of your Psyche, it gets better with deep emotional connection and desirable understanding. Couples plan some cozy pillow talk sessions and experience the difference. Don’t Just Have Sex, Make Love!

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