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Are you having any non-sex sex?

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Are you having any non-sex sex?

A question I often ask couples are, “what kind of non-sex sex are you having?” They typically look at me perplexed not sure what I am asking and of course not sure how to answer. After I explain what this is, they still seem to look at each other lost for answers. They clearly are not having a whole lot of non-sex sex which may explain why they aren’t having sex altogether.

So, what is non-sex sex? It’s the non-sex that goes on between partners in between each sexual encounter; its another form of foreplay. For example, leaving a sweet note for your honey in the morning as you leave for work, cooking their favorite meal, doing the laundry, giving them a backrub, telling them you appreciate them- doing things for your partner because you know they love it. Essentially, it is the connection that the people in the relationship create and continually build in between the sexual encounters.

I realize that life is busy, things get pushed to the side, yet it is monumentally important to make time for these gifts. I call them gifts because they are, you are giving your partner attention, love, and telling them, “you are important to me” with your actions.

Another piece that is necessary in accomplishing this is knowing what it is your partner would like. Ask yourself, what is it that they would appreciate? What would make them feel special? This can be tricky if time has not been made for this and we may no longer know the answers to these questions. Its ok, we can always improve especially when the intention is set. Create space to talk with your partner and begin the conversation. Perhaps think back to the beginning of the relationship and do some of the things you once did.

By taking the time to acknowledge your partner and your relationship it helps create connections throughout the busy days. When we feel special and connected to our partners, when we have intimacy, sex [and I mean all kinds of sex, not just intercourse] will often become more frequent. If this doesn’t help much, it can indicate that resentments and deeper hurts are present and need some tending to. If this is the case, it will help to find a Marriage & Family Therapist.

Regardless of where you are in the relationship, it is always helpful to devote time to making your partner feel special, acknowledging them, and loving them in the midst of the busy-ness of everyday life. Make non-sex sex a part of your daily grind and see how it impacts your sex life. I bet it’ll do wonders, I know it sure does for mine!

Until next time,


headshotAbout the Author:

Dr. Lily A. Zehner, MFT-C is a therapist who specializes in sex, intimacy, and relationships. Her private practice is located in Denver where she helps others reach their fullest relational and sexual potential. To learn more about her and her services, please feel free to take a look around her website.


About the Author