What makes a “good” sex life? Can marriage and eroticism coexist? Do you even know what eroticism is and what your spouse believes it is?

There are three fundamental elements to a robust sexual connection in marriage, says Ms. Remi Spicer of AnIntimateMarriage.com :

1) Emotional vulnerability & communication

2) Touch without Goals

3) Eroticism

Couples who feel very satisfied in their romantic relationship function as a sexual team. Couples who get gridlocked in power struggles about him wanting sex and her wanting emotional closeness and respect for her “no,” shortchange themselves and short-circuit their marriage.

Here are some tips:

1.) Communication – creating a safe platform for expression, vulnerability of letting go of inhibitions, and requests – never demands; Share turn-ons and be open to going outside your comfort zone, but reserve the right respect a partner’s right to veto anything. *Intimate sex should never be coercive, forced or cause one to compromise their values

2.) No goals – throughout the day engage in pleasurable, sensual, touch that is not tied to expectations of a sexual interlude. Affectionate expressions at “Hellos” and “Goodbyes,” playful inside jokes that denote an intimate relationship that others are not part of, and general “noticing” of the other person throughout the day. This kind of pleasurable touch is an essential ingredient to a general atmosphere that physical connection is welcomed and sanctioned.

If arousal was quantified on a 0-10 point scale, good communication and nondemand pleasuring are steps 0-5, in preparation for the heat of an erotic encounter (5-10).

3.) Eroticism – the OPPOSITE of functional, duty bound sex. Variety in positions and stimulation, enacting fantasy (not necessarily role plays), being open and receptive.

Todays guest is Remi Spicer, LMSW. Ms. Spicer is a Relationship Expert in private practice with offices in Holland and Grand Rapids. Ms. Spicer holds a Certificate in Marriage and Family Therapy, Specializing in Couples and Sex Therapy from the Council for Relationships in Philadelphia, PA and has been helping couples and individuals in an outpatient counseling setting for 20 years. For more information or to reach Ms. Spicer, please visit http://www.counselinginholland.com

(Resource reference Rekindling Desire: A Step-by-Step Program to Help Low-Sex and No-Sex Marriages by Barry and Emily McCarthy.)