No one wants a dead bedroom. Sex and intimacy are integral parts of any healthy relationship, but what happens when your partner says “no” for a length of time? Despite mutual affection in the relationship, can the physical part of it be fixed or is it terminal? All this depends on understanding the causes of your dead bedroom and taking steps to fix it.
In this article, we will explore what it means to have a dead bedroom, the causes behind it, and a number of methods to bring the spark back into your bedroom.
What Does It Mean When You Have a Dead Bedroom?
It sounds like a death sentence for your sex life, and in a way it is. But what really counts as a "dead bedroom"? Is it the occasional dry spell or long stretches of time without any intimacy? Read on to find out.
What is a dead bedroom?
A "dead bedroom" refers to a situation where the sexual aspect of a relationship has slowed or stopped completely. If you and your partner are experiencing a dead bedroom, there are a few steps you can take to try to fix the problem. However, some factors may be at work that can perpetuate a lack of intimacy in your relationship.
What are the causes of a dead bedroom?
There are plenty of causes for a dead bedroom.
- Postpartum depression (PPD)
- Infidelity or the suspicion of cheating
- Lack of excitement
- Busy schedules, including work, children, commitments, etc.
- Low self-esteem, for either partner
- STD flareups
- Medication that reduces sex drive, such as SSRIs and benzodiazepines
Some of these causes are fixable, while others are terminal and will have you looking elsewhere for intimacy. In the next section, we will look at ways of addressing and/or resolving these issues.
What’s the timeframe for when the bedroom is considered dead?
If you believe you have a dead bedroom, the chances are, you’re probably right. However, there’s generally a time frame that occurs that gives you an idea of whether the no-sex issue is temporary or terminal.
The best way to think about a dead bedroom is by using the metaphor of a healthy person.
- No sex for a week? You’ve got the sniffles
- No sex for a month? You’ve got the flu.
- No sex for three months? You’ve got an infection.
- No sex for six months? You’re going to need surgery.
- No sex for a year? Call the undertaker.
There are, of course, exceptions to these rules. For example, a person that is recovering from surgery or enrolled in a Ph.D. program may be under different stressors that affect sex drive.
The Ultimate Dead Bedroom Fix
If you’ve got a dead bedroom, can you bring it back to life? The truth is yes you can - but there are no guarantees.
We’re going to first look at the smartest path forward to fix your dead bedroom: communicating about the dead bedroom. Following this will take a look at other strategies to follow up with that may help you and your partner
Communicate with your partner
The dead bedroom fix that’s guaranteed to be the most successful is to verbally make your partner aware of it. Instead of storming off when your advances are rejected or she’s tired for the third week in a row, you want to address the very real issue you’re facing.
Open and honest communication is crucial in any relationship, but it is especially important when it comes to discussing sexual issues. Talk to your partner about your feelings, concerns, and what you would like to see happen in the bedroom.
Identify the problem: Is there a specific reason why the sexual aspect of your relationship has slowed or stopped? Are there external factors, such as stress, work, or children, that are getting in the way? Once you have identified the problem, you can start to develop a plan to address it.
Make time for each other
Make sure that you and your partner are making time for each other, both in and out of the bedroom. It's important to prioritize your relationship and reintroduce intimacy back into your relationship. Sometimes, this will take planning if you both have a limited schedule, or it can just be planned to ensure that it’s for your mutual benefit. Nevertheless, both partners should be willing to show up willing to try to be intimate - even if it is awkward or you have to ease into it.
While it's not at all romantic or spontaneous, a planned schedule for intimacy can help. This is especially so if your whole sex life has revolved around being "in the mood" at the same time. But with busy lives, this is hardly ever the case. That's why sex therapists highly recommend trying a sex calendar to reintroduce intimacy back in your lives.
Be open to new things
Let’s be honest: Having sex with the same partner gets old after a while.
Be open to trying new things, both in and out of the bedroom. Experimenting with different positions, fantasies, and activities can help reignite the spark in your relationship. The result is that you can re-spark the novelty of the relationship, creating new excitements that can have both partners anticipating this new avenue of romance.
One thing couples do to change things up is going on a quick getaway. You don't have to go far. Even a nearby hotel can be enough to take you far away enough from your everyday routine so you can focus on each other. No kids to worry about, no work emails overtaking your phone--just you, your partner, and the intention to revive a dead bedroom.
If the problem of a dead bedroom persists, consider seeking the help of a therapist or counselor. A professional can help you and your partner work through any underlying issues and develop strategies for improving your sexual relationship.
It's important to remember that every relationship is different and there's no one-size-fits-all solution. It takes time, effort, and patience to fix a dead bedroom. But with open communication, willingness to try new things, and understanding, it's possible to reignite the spark in your relationship.
Seek an arrangement
Sex and intimacy are essential human needs found at the bottom of Maslow‘s pyramid - which means it’s essential for a healthy life. To go without intimacy for long periods of time, you’ll eventually need an outlet.
If your partner isn’t able to provide a sexual outlet, you may want to propose a surrogate. This is very common in dead bedrooms where a partner has undergone surgery, is disabled, or lost their sex drive due to necessary medication. Whether the surrogate is a legal sex worker, a trusted friend, or just the understanding that you’ll be protected and practice safe sex, this may be the only option to prevent a divorce or excessive stress in the other aspects of the relationship.
While it isn’t an optimal scenario for any type of otherwise-monogamous relationship, those who are trying to create a relatively stable home for their children, for instance, may need to work on arrangements for sex and intimacy.
In conclusion, a "dead bedroom" refers to a lack of sexual activity in a relationship and can be caused by various factors such as postpartum depression, infidelity, busy schedules, low self-esteem, medication, resentments, and others. The best way to address the issue is to communicate with your partner about the problem and to make time for each other. Other strategies include trying new things, considering therapy, and seeking an arrangement if necessary. Every relationship is different and fixing a dead bedroom takes effort, patience, and understanding from both partners. However, with open communication and a willingness to try new things, it's possible to reignite the spark in your relationship.