Synchronized Sex: Getting on the Same Schedule With Your Partner

How many nights have you spent on your side of the bed awake with passion, while your partners curled up next to you deep in sleep? Or maybe youre the one whos OK with having sex every week or so, while hes looking for it every other day.

You used to do it all the time. What happened? Has the thrill packed up and gone? Not necessarily. The problem is that youve got what therapists call desire discrepancy—youre out of sync sexually with your better half.

If youre worried that you and your partner have fallen out of lust, consider this: You may never have been in sync at all. It just seemed that way because the novelty and excitement of having a new lover boosts the hormones that inspire desire. As a relationship continues, though, the initial infatuation disappears and each partner returns to his or her “normal” level of sexual desire—which may be high, moderate, or low. And libido may wax and wane at different times in a persons life.

The upshot is that desire discrepancy is part of a committed, long-term relationship. “I call it normal,” says Austin, Texas–based marriage and family therapist Pat Love, EdD, co-author of Hot Monogamy.

Still, experts agree that desire discrepancy is nothing to shrug at. If its not acknowledged, it can lead to feelings of rejection (if one partner begins to take the others lack of interest personally), guilt (if the less-interested partner begins to see intimacy as an obligation or a chore), and frustration all around.

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Afi-Odelia E. Scruggs
Last Updated: February 08, 2008

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