Motherhood is far from easy, and nurturing a relationship equally so … especially around the holidays. The New Year ushers in a period of celebrations and parties and adds to the usual chaos, and it can wreak havoc on a relationship. All those family events; all the visitors taking up space in the kitchen during that quiet time in which you use to enjoy a few sips of coffee; and all the shopping (no matter how much you love it during the rest of the year)—it’s enough to make you a little crazy.
The holidays should be a time for us to celebrate the people we love. It should be a reminder of how lucky we really are. In a perfect world, we show the people in our lives how we feel about them each and every day. In reality, sometimes that suffers. More specifically, our sex life suffers. Remember the time before you had children, when you didn’t need to go on vacation in order to have hot and spontaneous sex? Well, that time may be over, but that doesn’t mean your sex life is doomed. Changed, yes, but far from doomed.
No one wants sex to be a chore. Sex should be a way of reconnecting with your partner, no matter how exhausted or stressed you are. It’s a time to get back to what you loved about your partner from the start.
So ring in 2010 with a new set of resolutions. Make your “goals” for this year about your emotional, sexual and relationship health. When you check in again in 2011, you’ll be happier, and those around you will be, too.
1. I will feel good about my body.
No more complaining about needing to lose some weight. No more avoiding that second glass of Champagne (or frozen margarita, depending upon your tastes). No more comparing yourself to the women in magazines. In 2010, we are going to enjoy our lives. The fact is, if we don’t like our bodies and are hung up on every little curve or bump, we aren’t going to enjoy sex. We will never be able to let go and enjoy the ride, so to speak. And besides, we are our own toughest critics. Our partners don’t care about a few extra pounds. They don’t even notice them. What they do notice is how often we ask them if our clothes make us look fat.
2. I will buy a vibrator (or maybe buy a new one).
This is the time to take care of yourself—and yes, you know exactly what I am talking about. It’s funny; we spend lots of time and money on our hair color, on making sure that our children have enough mittens or gloves to make it through the winter or on filling our fridge with organic fruits and vegetables, but we rarely take care of our own sexual needs. Pleasure is important, even if you’re flying solo. But sharing that pleasure with a partner isn’t just important; it’s fun. Take your partner on a little shopping trip to your favorite erotica boutique. We have the best ones here in New York City. Kiki de Montparnasse, Babeland, even Trojan have new lines of vibrating products on the market. Needless to say, finding an orgasm has never been easier! And this is the kind of bill that you won’t mind paying when your AmEx charges arrive.
3. I will take time to nurture my relationship.
Though I am not for “scheduling sex” in the literal way, I do believe that date nights are important. We are all busy; we are all overextended. But the benefit of being in a romantic relationship is the physical intimacy. You shouldn’t have a roommate. You should have a lover. And the little things count. Holding hands in a movie theater, kissing in the back of a cab—those small gestures lay the groundwork for actual sex.
4. I am going to speak up for what I want … in bed.
Resolve to have only pleasurable encounters this year. Orgasms are important. And seriously, how is it possible to have pleasure if we don’t tell our partners what turns us on? I mean, is he supposed to “magically” figure it out?
5. I will see my gynecologist annually.
When you’re pregnant, you are in those stirrups every few weeks. For some reason, after we give birth and get our “six-week” follow-up, we forget about seeing our OBs for a while. But it is imperative that we take care of our bodies. Our health (and sometimes our life) depends on it.
But we need to be ready to have sex; we need to be emotionally and physically turned on. So to help you get in the right frame of mind, I present you with a small holiday gift: at left, my all-time-favorite “get in the mood for sex” iPod playlist. Some songs may be obvious; others, not so much. And in case you were wondering, yes, in my fantasies, I am an ’80s hair-band groupie. Here’s to a satisfying 2010 …