Mary Buxton, LCSW and AASECT Certified Sex Therapist.
Sex and relationship go hand in hand. Learning to manage conflict as a couple can really help your sex life. If you don’t talk through conflict, negative feelings tend to build up inside you and get in
the way of desire. When you are upset with your partner and hold back from telling them about your feelings, distance between you as a couple starts to grow. And in turn, this distance can silently
affect the emotional and physical intimacy for a couple.
Many couples with sex problems are also conflict avoiders. They probably learned it from their past experience. Maybe they saw their parents fight and escalate to screaming matches when they were
young. Maybe their last relationship bordered on being verbally abusive. People are products of their past experience. But, bottom line, couples need to be able to resolve conflict in a close
relationship. And with education and practice, couples can learn to manage conflict effectively.
So, meet the skills you need to do “Conflict”…
The skills you need are being able to express feelings and complaints, listening even when you don’t agree with what the other person is saying, taking a time out to calm down, and problem solving. And if you
miss all of that and have a big fight, it’s good to have a way to do a start over so you can get back to feeling good about each other again.
If you find yourself avoiding sex or just not having any desire, you might want to take a look at that as a couple. Are you in a cycle of holding things in and then exploding, feeling resentful or defensive? It
takes safety, courage and practice to learn to handle conflict as a couple but it’s one of those skills that pays off in an enduring, evolving relationship.