No other area of a couple’s life offers more potential for embarrassment, hurt, and rejection than sex. It’s no wonder that couples find it such a challenge to communicate about it. That is why we’ve selected sex as this week’s #AskGottman topic.

Sex can be such a fun way to share with each other and deepen your sense of intimacy. But when communication is fraught with tension, then frustration and hurt feelings too often result. As Dr. Gottman explains in The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work, “a major characteristic of couples who have a happy sex life is that they see lovemaking as an expression of intimacy but they don’t take any differences in their needs or desires personally.”

In his Relationship Alphabet column “S is for Sex,” Zach Brittle argues that talking about sex is more intimate than having sex. Are you comfortable talking to your partner about your sexual preferences, dislikes, fears, and fantasies? Research shows that only 9% of couples that can’t comfortably talk about sex with one another say that they’re satisfied sexually. It’s tough. We hope that our answers to your questions this week will help you to feel more comfortable and confident talking openly with each other.

Do you have a question related to sex, intimacy, and passion in your relationship? Please submit it using the form below for the opportunity to have it answered in a posting on Friday, February 6. You can also ask us on social media using the hashtag #AskGottman. 

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#AskGottman: Sex
Michael Fulwiler

Michael Fulwiler is the Editor in Chief of The Gottman Relationship Blog and Director of Marketing for The Gottman Institute. A proud University of Washington graduate, Michael is an avid fan of love, live music, and Seattle sports teams.