A dinner date with your spouse can teach you a lot about sexual intimacy
Communicating about sex is difficult for many couples. What if you could go to dinner and get a peak into your partner's brain regarding her thoughts on sex? This article tells you why this works and what to look for.
Think about the last time you went to dinner with your spouse. I'll bet you didn't know you were also being given a glimpse into her brain regarding how she approaches sex and intimacy, but you were. Through our body language, what we say or don't say, and how we interact with physical objects around us we constantly convey messages of what we like and what we don't. The key is to pay attention. Here are the things to watch for:
Have her pick the restaurant
All of us begin eating before we learn what we like and don't like. Additionally, our taste buds mature as we age and we may discover foods once ignored have now become favorites. It takes time and experience to even begin to know what we like, let alone to be able to say it. Due to life experiences we may feel uncertain or even selfish when making choices for ourselves. That said, before you even go to dinner, have your spouse choose the location because you'll learn a lot. Can she even pick a restaurant? Does she only pick restaurants she knows you like? Make sure she knows you only want to go to a restaurant of her choosing — and then be a willing partner.
How does that play out in your physical relationship? Does one of you find it difficult to express what you're comfortable with and what you're not? What you like and what you don't? Sometimes we're so concerned about the experience of our partner that we forget about our own needs or maybe feel "selfish" discussing them. However, in a loving, mutually satisfying relationship, both individuals would want the other to feel like their wants and needs are able to be discussed and considered valid.
Pay attention to how she orders
Does she look over the entire menu or does she know exactly what she wants? Would she like to start with an appetizer or some kind of fruity drink? Does she get distracted by talking about the kids, bills, or calendar items? Notice how the server understands this process and doesn't offer entrees or desserts first, but allows time to get settled and comfortable before moving forward.
Sex is more satisfying when our brains can shut off the cares and worries of the day and just be in the moment. For many individuals — women especially — this is a challenge. By taking time to talk for a few moments to clear the day away and then allow for some meaningful interaction — which is not two minutes of quick kisses and moving on — both of you can be more fully connected emotionally and physically.
Eating is a physical activity — as is sex. Does she eat slowly? Does she eat a few bites and then want to talk with you — looking to connect emotionally? How does she show you she's enjoying her food? Does she talk about how it smells? Looks? Tastes? Are you usually so into your food that you hardly notice her? If she notices you watching her, does that make her self-conscious? What could you say to help her with that? Does she try and eat quickly so you aren't having to wait for her?
Satisfying sex and intimacy involves both physical pleasure and, for many, emotional connection. But speaking purely physically, look around your usual location for sex. Is it messy? How does it smell? How's your breath? Smell is one of our most powerful senses and a bad one can quickly turn us off.
A good meal involves hands, mouth, teeth, nose, eyes, and so on. Physical intimacy also involves all senses and more areas of the body then just a couple. Review your pattern and see where you may have become too routine, too concerned about yourself, or too quick to discount the power of the inside of the elbow or the area behind the ears.
What caused the dinner to go well or poorly?
How was the conversation? How was the service? How was the atmosphere? Did she like her meal? Does she want to return? Did you like it? If you didn't and she did, how do you compromise? Or, do you? Would she want to go there every time? Sometimes we find something we like and then we repeat it ad nauseam until we hate it. There are a variety of restaurants for a reason. If she absolutely hated the restaurant, would you pout if she didn't want to go there all the time? What if she went there occasionally, knowing it was mostly for you but still actively choosing to participate, would that be OK?
Keeping track of what your partner likes and doesn't like during intimacy, and respecting that by not berating, belittling, judging or pouting is important. However, it's equally important that you communicate your likes and dislikes as well, and your partner responds in kind. Just because one of you absolutely loves a certain type of intimacy, doesn't mean the other will. How are you going to compromise? What is more important, the kind of sex you are having or the overall relationship? Intimacy is either viewed as an important and integral part of the relationship, and is treated as such, or as an itch to scratch. Think, mindless eating versus meaningful.
I'll bet you never realized how much you could learn about your partner through food. Take this comparison and run with it and see just how many new things you learn about yourself, your partner and your sexual relationship.
Alisha is a Life Coach specializing in Sex and Intimacy as well as the co-author of a recently published book titled Real Intimacy; A couple's guide to healthy, genuine sexuality. Find her at or realintimacybook.com