Having your kids bust in on your in the middle of sexy time is one sure way to ruin the mood. But the kids aren’t to blame for many couples’ lack of sex life… so what’s causing more and more Aussie couples to put sex on hold?
Elisabeth Mandel, a sex and relationship expert, gives us the low-down on why our sex drives are slowing down.
Remember the nights (pre-kids) when it was almost impossible to go to bed without wanting to ravish your partner, when waking up tired (but content) was more than worth the lack of sleep?
Nowadays there are so many things that seem more important than sex – making sure the kids are tucked safely in bed, ensuring everything is clean and ready for another day, getting a decent night’s sleep, watching another episode of Stranger Things…
And while all of these things may interfere with intimacy with our partners, the main thing that is really ruining our sex lives is…………………. our mobile phones.
Phone Down, Pants Off
Last month we reported that the Australian Study of Health and Relationships revealed those of us in a heterosexual relationship are having sex an average of 1.4 times a week, down from 1.8 times in 2003.
And our obsession with our phones is one of the main reasons why this number continues to decline.
According to Elisabeth Mandel, a Manhattan-based sex and relationship expert, the relationship with our phones is actually extremely powerful, addictive and harmful. And it’s taking over the bedroom.
Social Media or Sex?
When choosing to browse Facebook or Snapchat before bed, rather than focusing on your partner, “a lot of intimacy gets lost,” Elisabeth explains. “Your phone becomes like a drug—an easy excuse for people to escape or avoid conversation.”
While sex used to be the way couples switched off and relaxed at night, now they are turning to their phones for this escape.
Sure, the world of Facebook is interesting, funny and engaging, especially after a stressful day, but it won’t ever take the place of a human connection.
Many people (myself included) do not even realise they are addicted to their phones or that it could be harming their relationship. Checking Facebook before bed becomes the norm. And intimacy gets put on the back burner.
“People sometimes lose sense of how much they’re using their phones,” Elisabeth said.
Are Mobile Phones Ending Marriages?
Another major concern with mobile phone use at night is that it can cause paranoia and jealousy. When your partner is constantly on his or her phone, it’s hard not to wonder what they are doing. Who is she chatting to through Facebook Messenger. Who is he texting? What is he planning?
This paranoia can also lead to massive relationship strains and a lack of trust. You may find yourself going to bed angry or jealous or wanting to check his phone to ensure he’s not misbehaving. Over time, this can lead to a relationship breakdown.
The Bottom Line?
The cold harsh truth is that too much phone use not only limits sexy time, it can ruin relationships. And it has.
I will be the first to admit (and not without shame, sadness and guilt) that my obsession with my phone was one (of the many) reasons my marriage didn’t work out.
So what does the sexpert suggest? Put the phone down at night. Turn off the notifications. Set boundaries on how much you use it. And, spend some quality time with your partner. Rediscover that there’s more to bedtime routine than just browsing through funny memes.
Keen to join 10,000s of other women and get in shape for 2017? The next round of the Healthy Mummy 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge starts on Jan 2. Here are the details!