How to Rekindle Romance and Sexual Intimacy in Midlife
During peri/menopause, women may experience extra stress, hormonal changes, weight gain, flagging energy levels, and chronic health issues. All of these can make it challenging to enjoy a healthy intimate relationship with your partner.
Here's a fresh way to look at sex. Did you know that it can help boost your overall emotional resilience during your midlife years? A 2002 study from The Menopause Journal shows that resilience (our ability to handle stress, to recover from tough events) is actually linked to our sexual health.
Getting a handle on your feeling about your body, your partner, and how your desires have changes over the years is the first step.
Here are five tips on how to reclaim your sex life during midlife.
Be comfortable in the skin you’re in
An essential part of enjoying your sex life is to be comfortable in your skin. Take charge of your sexuality by getting to know what you like and do not like and communicating that to your partner.
Embrace the changes that are happening in your body and look for the positives. Yes, your child-bearing years might be coming to an end. But now you don’t have to worry about birth control or pregnancy.
Change your perspective
With the physical and hormonal changes to our bodies during midlife, vaginal intercourse may become difficult and perhaps even painful.
You can seek treatment to help with this. But in the meantime, change your perspective. Sex doesn’t have to just mean vaginal intercourse. Shift your mindset to include other forms of physical intimacy in your sex life.
Getting creative might just be the spark that you need. Be adventurous about your sex life by experimenting with new activities, like:
- Have sex at different times of the day or in other rooms of the house
- Speak to your partner about trying new positions
- Send them sexy text messages during the day
Seek medical advice
If you are experiencing vaginal dryness or soreness and pain during sex, speak openly to your health practitioner. They can advise you on vaginal creams, localized hormone treatments, or lubricants to help ease your discomfort.
It may not be just you!
Your partner may be experiencing the same lack of energy, body issues, and flagging libido as you are. In this case, intimacy just may not be in the cards for the time being. But that's okay! Being frank about the changes to our bodies (the good and the bad) can bring partners closer together.
Intimacy goes beyond sex. It's hand-holding, it's couch-snuggling, it's skin-on-skin contact in bed. Take it slow and build back that closeness.
Can you have a healthy relationship without sex?
Understandably, this can be a difficult time in a relationship, but you don’t have to give up. Meet with a sex therapist if you are at a point in your life where it is difficult to figure things out with your partner and you want to make things work.
There are so many places to receive confidential assistance. A healthy sexual relationship has so many benefits, but you have to make sure it is what you want. This time in your life can also be a window into things that might need change. You just have to listen and make the change that is needed.