Planned Sex

As fun as spontaneous sex can be, sadly, it really turns out that after children, it's out the window until said children are out of the nest...our lives and time are so commanded by them, that THEIR spontaneity is all we will have until they are gone....and, kids are staying longer at home...even though they may be technically speaking, adults themselves, it still feels constraining, or even more constraining than when they were small to have them around when you and your partner are feeling amorous.

So, like it or not, sex, if you are going to have it on a regular basis, needs to be planned. Though planned sex may at first seem to have all the appeal of a planned dental appointment, it has the ability to begin to force partners to be more intentional about sharing the leadership and creativity of their time together in an equitable manner. It also may serve to allow a slower pace and variety to the play, since spontaneous sex can often devolve into rushed sex when there is limited time. Even so called 'spontaneous' sex is not genuinely spontaneous; one partner may consciously or unconsciously begin to think about having sex, and then begins to arrange conditions and situations, then starts flirtatious behavior.

Typically, one partner resists the idea of planned sex, while the other one is secretly (or not so secretly) hoping for it to start happening. Strangely enough, the partner who insists on 'spontaneous sex' is often the partner who has lower desire for sex, or is far more cautious about having sex unless the 'feeling is right' (inside of themselves)...and in both cases, this is the partner who actually controls when sex happens...so 'spontaneous' becomes a cover for 'only when I really want to have sex, and I don't want to be on the spot by having it planned, and then feel uncomfortable (anxious) telling you that even though it's planned, I don't want to have sex.'

Many couples fail to make the change from the mindset of spontaneous sex to planned sex simply because they have not thought about it, or their sexual patterns are so ingrained as to be un-flexible. People simply do not like change…some dislike it more than others! This is one reason why some couples can go weeks (even months) without having sex: there is no time to be spontaneous.


If you are still resisting planned sex, try thinking about it this way: when you were young what was your favorite drink? Cola? Lemonade? Now, since you are older, you might just prefer a specialty coffee or tea, or perhaps a fine wine. As you get older, your tastes change, or need to change to fit your growing maturity and lifestyle. Seen in this way, planning sex is a step in sexual development, growth, and maturity.

And it is genuinely developmental growth and maturity to choose to talk, frequently, about your sexual behaviors, desires, and creativity with your partner. Most people who rely only on spontaneous sex may not actually ever talk about their sex lives with each other. Planned sex promotes such discussion and sharing, and that enriches both your sex life and other areas of couple intimacy.

So how do you pull it off? First, both partners need to make a commitment to a plan. The place to begin is to literally set a date and carve out time to have sex. How much time may be debatable, but it would seem that at least an hour would provide an unrushed time frame. The planning might include a ‘taking turns’ approach to each encounter that is scheduled, including one partner planning a ‘date’ activity, while the other partner plans the sexual encounter.

And what about the children? Most couples likely already have the knowledge of the most likely times of day that will be most workable, but sending the children out to a babysitter or family member should not be overlooked, as well as weekend ‘naps’ for Mom and Dad if the children are old enough and trustworthy enough to entertain themselves for an hour. Yes, the children will figure out what you are doing, but don’t let that stop you. It is not a horrible thing for children to wonder if you are napping or having sex. As long as your door is locked, the statement is that they are being excluded from time Mom and Dad are spending together, and this is healthy for children.

Finally, make use of the time that the children are naturally out of the home for their activities. Being a good parent does not mean that you have to be at every one of their events; you can drop them off at soccer, and go home to play your own game!

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