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Setting the Stage for Sexual Intimacy

“Even people who look foreword to being sexual with their partner must go through a transition from responsibility to pleasure.” ~ Esther Perel

Linda: As the years pass by, the strong desire for making love can diminish. And the competing urgencies of our life can claim more of our time with careers, household tasks and children being the recipient of our best energy. Only a strong intention and a firm commitment to keep the lover component of our partnership alive and well will overcome the many demands of our life.

Interrupting the regular routine to make time for sexual play is a reasonable guideline. Transitioning from the the responsible capable, industrious, self-disciplined, and controlled causer of results, to the playful, creative, out of control, wild, euphoric, wonder filled, passionate adventurer is so good for us. When taking on the challenge of regularly setting aside the roles of roommates, business partners, and co-parents to be lovers to reinforce the pleasure bond, we are making a wise choice.

Taking time to remember the deep pleasure of bringing erotic sensation to each other is a primary way of keeping the vitality of the relationship high. According to research by Muise, Schimmak, and Impett, (Sexual frequency predicts greater well-being but is not always better in Social Psychological and Personality Science 7(4) p. 295-302 -2016) more frequent sex is linked to greater relationship satisfaction. The commitment to transition from the world of responsibility, work and results to sexual play is both physically pleasurable and beneficial for the relationship by keeping the bond strong. Keeping the erotic charge operative can only result from willful intent. If you are intentional, you may already be doing some of the recommendations offered here. There is always more that we can add to spice up the essential erotic connection.

  • a deliberate, conscious choice to not allow sex to slip off the priority list.
  • a spoke agreement with our partner to make the sensual connection a regular feature of the partnership
  • carving out of stone, if need be, to make sufficient time for lovemaking even if other important people and tasks must wait for our attention
  • thinking sexy thoughts to start savoring the pleasure and to prime the pump by perking up sexual energy anticipating being with our lover
  • leaving sexy voice mail messages, email and text messaging to flirt with our partner
  • emotional intimacy and sharing from the heart is great foreplay
  • risking sharing sexual fantasies will give you both ideas to play with
  • adventure is being willing to be experimental and try new things, even if they are a bit edgy because the best long-term romantic partnerships are characterized by continually bringing novelty into their relationship (if things get too edgy, you can always have a safe word to stop)
  • the set and setting can enhance romance, candles, a red light, music, poetry, silky sheets, evocative scented oils and lotions
  • generosity of spirit is finding out what turns our partner on and when ever possible, helping them to get all that they desire
  • being a gracious receiver by being the happy recipient of their generosity of spirit and letting them know our gratitude
  • full body touch and home made massage lengthen and heightens the sensual experience.


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Setting the Stage for Sexual Intimacy


Linda Bloom LCSW and Charlie Bloom MSW are considered experts in the field of relationships. They have been married since 1972. They have both been trained as seminar leaders, therapists and relationship counselors and have been working with individuals, couples, and groups since 1975. They have been featured presenters at numerous conferences, universities, and institutions of learning throughout the country and overseas as well. They have appeared on over two hundred radio and TV programs. Linda and Charlie are co-authors of the widely acclaimed books: 101 Things I Wish I Knew When I Got Married: Simple Lessons to Make Love Last (over 100,000 copies sold) Secrets of Great Marriages: Real Truth from Real Couples about Lasting Love, and Happily Ever After...and 39 Other Myths about Love: Breaking Through to the Relationship of Your Dreams. The Blooms are excited to announce the release of their fourth book, That Which Doesn't Kill Us: How One Couple Became Stronger at the Broken Places. They live in Santa Cruz, California, near their two children and three grandchildren. To view our upcoming events and to sign up for our free newsletter, visit our website at:

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APA Reference
Bloom, L. (2018). Setting the Stage for Sexual Intimacy. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 23, 2020, from


Last updated: 9 Apr 2018
Statement of review: Psych Central does not review the content that appears in our blog network ( prior to publication. All opinions expressed herein are exclusively those of the author alone, and do not reflect the views of the editorial staff or management of Psych Central. Published on All rights reserved.