By Chandrama Anderson
E-mail Chandrama Anderson
About this blog: About this blog: I am a LMFT specializing in couples counseling and grief and have lived in Silicon Valley since 1969. I'm the president of Connect2 Marriage Counseling. I worked in high-tech at Apple, Stanford University, and in ... (More)
About this blog: About this blog: I am a LMFT specializing in couples counseling and grief and have lived in Silicon Valley since 1969. I'm the president of Connect2 Marriage Counseling. I worked in high-tech at Apple, Stanford University, and in Silicon Valley for 15 years before becoming a therapist. My background in high-tech is helpful in understanding local couples' dynamics and the pressures of living here. I am a wife, mom, sister, friend, author, and lifelong advocate for causes I believe in (such as marriage equality). My parents are both deceased. My son graduated culinary school and is heading toward a degree in Sociology. I enjoy reading, hiking, water fitness, movies, 49ers and Stanford football, Giants baseball, and riding a tandem bike with my husband. I love the beach and mountains; nature is my place of restoration. In my work with couples, and in this blog, I combine knowledge from many fields to bring you my best ideas, tips, tools and skills, plus book and movie reviews, and musings to help you be your genuine self, find your own voice, and have a happy and healthy relationship. Don't be surprised to hear about brain research and business skills, self-soothing techniques from all walks of life, suggestions and experiments, and anything that lights my passion for couples. (Author and Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Calif. Lic # MFC 45204.) (Hide)
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Sex is supposed to be a wonderful experience, creating connection between you. Right? Yet it may be filled with anxiety, uncertainty, and vulnerability. When is the last time you sat down -- outside your bedroom -- to talk about your feelings, thoughts, desires, and needs regarding sex?
What does sex mean to you? There are more answers to this question than I can come up with on my own. I'll start a list below. I hope you'll wonder for yourself the many meanings it has for you and for your partner, and begin that conversation with each other -- with curiosity, caring, and an open mind. Your meaning likely changes, both over time, and at any given time.
At times sex is:
Just pure pleasure.
Reassurance that you're attractive.
Expression of love.
Expression of lust.
Currency (if so, for what, and when?).
The completion of touch.
For the good of the relationship.
To ward off feelings or thoughts.
To please your partner.
To be pleased by your partner.
Out of guilt.
To flaunt death.
. . .
If you feel embarrassed, ashamed, or worried to talk about sex with your partner, please know you are not alone. Many couples find it difficult to discuss their sexual feelings and interactions. Some couples assume that the talk(s) they had about sex when they first got together were enough and that nothing has changed.
I have found that when couples do talk about sex in my office they are both embarrassed and glad to have the conversation.
Keep in mind--and this is huge gender bias I've noticed over the years--that sex helps men feel connected, and women need to already feel connected to want sex. Quite a conundrum. More to talk about.