Not making time to cultivate physical intimacy even during stressful seasons of your relationship has untold consequences, even more so if this becomes a way of life. Many couples, usually one partner, ultimately lose interest in one another and could even pursue that interest outside the marriage.
Often the idea of scheduling sex, whenever we suggest it as an option to couples, is met with resistance. The argument is generally as follows:
“Scheduled sex isn’t romantic”
There is this notion that scheduled sex isn’t sex. Basically, it’s missing something. But whether you know about it or not, you schedule sex implicitly throughout the year. Birthdays, holidays, anniversaries, Valentine’s Day and date nights generally come with an expectation of sex. If you are unromantic anyway, don’t blame it on scheduled sex. You don’t just show up to bed and say “OK, I’m here… let’s check this ‘to-do' item off the list.” Deliberately find ways to connect first. The anticipation and delay might enhance sex once you get to it.
“Scheduled sex isn’t spontaneous”
There’s nothing as close to a myth as spontaneous sex. You are supposed to be swept off your feet without notice, taken to the bedroom and be ravished, right? We don’t know about you, but with three kids, that doesn’t always work. Actually, “spontaneous sex” happens extremely rarely in a long-term relationship like marriage. It’s unsustainable, if it even exists. If you waited for spontaneous sex, you would be back in the sexless marriage club. It’s very rare that you would both want to engage in sex simultaneously. Often sex happens because at least one partner has “scheduled” it anyway, without talking about it with the other in advance.
“Scheduled sex feels like duty sex”
There are two things to remember about scheduling sex. First, the schedule should represent a minimum, not a maximum. If your spouse starts initiating on an unscheduled day, it’s wrong to reject them purely on the basis that it is not a scheduled day. This is not a quota. This is a declaration of a priority in your marriage. Second, the schedule should not be thought of as cast in stone. Things are going to happen. You will get sick, throw your back out, a child won’t sleep, you will have to work late, there will be a function that ends later than expected, life is going to happen. Don’t get bent out of shape about it. Tomorrow is still another day.
Here are some of the practical benefits we find in scheduling sex.
Removes the risk
All of us struggle from time to time with the fear to initiate or more so the fear of rejection when we initiate. Scheduling sex allows for both spouses to be on the same page in advance so that when initiation takes place, intimacy follows.
Amplifies the anticipation
There’s no reason to hold back your thoughts, feelings and fantasies about your spouse when you have sex scheduled on the calendar. For the spouse with the higher sex drive, anticipation is a huge factor, especially when you get to anticipate something that you know is sure to happen.
Naturally, you anticipate it that much more when you know it’s coming, versus just hoping it will happen. For the spouse with the lower sex drive, this also allows them time to mentally prepare themselves in advance, so that they are anticipating times of intimacy as well.
Feeds the foreplay
Foreplay can play such a huge role in the success of sexual intimacy. When sex is scheduled, you can more easily get frisky and physical throughout the day as you use daytime to prepare each other for playtime.
It also makes it easier to get ready. Knowing sex is on the schedule for tonight gives you a chance to get your spouse’s mind prepared throughout the day. That way your spouse doesn’t have to be like, “Oh… you want sex… let me see if I can get out of the house chore mode”. That, in fact, is what’s actually unromantic. You could physically prepare, girl-boy parts pruned and you could set the stage with candlelit bubble bath, romantic dinner, music, and aromatherapy.
Powers the pleasure
When you are intentional in advance about your sexual intimacy, sex becomes more than just a few minutes act in the bedroom. It actually becomes a pleasurable process as a lifestyle of becoming intentionally closer to your spouse. And, naturally, this begins to affect your relationship in many positive ways outside the bedroom as well.