Updated: Jul 11, 2022
Your desire for your partner, your desire for yourself and your desire for life can be reignited by:
Two years ago when I was anxious, stressed, overwhelmed, a chronic people pleaser, unable to cope generally - with even the small things, and more (!)… my desire for my husband, for myself and my life in general was low, or even, non existent.
My husband and I had sex very infrequently. Months would pass. He very rarely made advances due to the continuous rejection. It just became normal to not have intimacy in our lives. I would get a hug and a kiss when he came back from travelling for work. If I was upset I would get a hug, but other than that, there was no touch. There was no passion. It was something that we had grown into, saying that parenthood was tiring us out. That we didn’t have time. That it wasn’t important to us.
Then last year when I started stripping back and unearthing patterns, traumas and began working on my self-development, I felt like I was making good progress. My desire for my husband had started to creep back in. I had begun to value myself more. I had begun to recognise my worth. I had begun to rekindle the spark within me and also within our relationship. So in August 2020 I began researching how I could improve our sex life.
I came across Layla Martin’s VITA coaching and thought to myself, ‘Well, I don’t really want to be a Sex, Love & Relationship Coach as that’s not me, but I can improve my sex life, then learn the skills for coaching and support people in other ways.’ However, it seems that’s not the way things unfolded…
I had already learnt about boundaries before the course started. But only when starting the course did I begin to apply them in the bedroom too. My husband had become used to ‘being responsible for his reaction to my boundary setting’ outside the bedroom - so I felt that I could start asking for what I wanted in bed. That I could invite him to touch me differently or in a different place. I felt safer in bed. I felt safer talking about what I wanted. The talking, the openness, the honesty, knowing that any discomfort was his conditioning and not my responsibility meant we were able to really begin talking about desires. I was able to open fully, surrender and feel held that a gentle form of ‘no’ would be lovingly received instead of being felt as a threat. The surrender supported my nervous system to fully embrace desire.
I had been working on self-love since I had come back from the Morocco retreat In January 2020 where I had made the intention to change my life. I had let friends go who no longer supported me, who projected their own fears onto me and who did not fully celebrate me. It created space for new friends to enter my life who are committed to our friendship, who see all of me, who I can tell the most intimate of feelings and details and know that they are aware enough that any projections they have, that they will own for themselves. Conscious friendships. Doing shadow work and learning to lovingly accept all parts of me and how those parts have been there to protect me, to keep me safe. I fell in love with my imperfect self. The self-love gave me a spring in my step and I felt I could begin to ask for what I wanted. For what I desired. For what felt good. So I asked. And I received.
This summer, when I took time out for self-care I began to realise the importance of pleasure. I gave myself the opportunity to experience joy. To feel the sensation of expansion in my heart. To look at how I could make my life enjoyable in any way. I went out dancing. I stay home and danced. I asked my husband to make love. I self-pleasured without shame and guilt which I had been carrying for years. I fell in love with life. I looked for opportunities for belly laughs, for playing with my boys and letting my inner-child guide me without worrying about what others might think. I took time to spend with friends. I gave myself permission to fully live my life.
To support me in this I put self-care as a priority. Pleasure is easier to experience when we are rested, when we give ourselves what our minds and bodies are asking. When we ask for help and support and recognise that our needs and full cups mean that we can also be there for others too. That receiving is as important as giving. That I am allowed to have my own needs met and still be loved.
My decision to take the step in working towards our relationship by increasing my desire meant that we were both positively affected and my husband also had the opportunity for growth and to feel desired. As all the points I mention are important for our partners to work on too.
I could have waited for him to make the change. To do something to ‘make me feel more desire’. To wait for him to ‘whisk me off my feet’. But ultimately, my desire comes from me. It’s something I create. It’s something I nurture. It’s something I decided to be responsible for.
Because what I am learning is that if I have a relationship, if I want it to change…
I have to be the catalyst for that change.
I have to show up differently.
I have to be the one that that takes responsibility.
Because I am the only person who I can control.
Have you lost your passion for life?
Are you feeling disconnected from your partner on all levels?
How are you making changes to bring more desire and pleasure into your life?
Are you using self-pleasure as a support to increase your feelings of self-worth?
Do you value self-love?
What are your favourite self-care practices?
Let me know!
Carla Crivaro is a trauma-informed and certified Sex, Love & Relationship Coach, she works with men and women internationally to reach their goals in delicious sex, profound love and authentic relationships. Carla helps men and women understand themselves and each other, sexually and relationally, in and out of the bedroom. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.