LBD or Lesbian Bed Death, a myth or a reality?
Is a reduction in sexual frequency a natural occurrence in all long term relationships or specific to lesbian ones?
Anyone in a long term relationship will tell you that sexual frequency does decline over time, with the rush of hormones and limerence of the romantic/honeymoon period fading out and long term, deep companionable love taking over, the amount of time spent having sex each week does reduce. Life gets in the way, kids come along, work and stress can impact, as well as illness and changes associated with ageing, it does not mean the relationship is in peril if there is still intimacy in other areas. One of the things that can happen in lesbian relationships is a reduction in sexual activity quite early in a relationship, when this happens there can be several things going on.....rushing into the relationship before really knowing if they are compatible, emotional enmeshment where the relationship is more emotional than physical (really just meant to be mates, but slipped into girlfriends), or just not not being into each other.
Research has shown that generally lesbians have less sex than heterosexual couple or gay men, averaging once fortnight rather than 1-2 times a week. But what it also shows is that when lesbians do have sex they have it for longer, 30-120 minutes, they expect to and do have more orgasms and they often have more oral sex. Whereas heterosexual women may have sex more often, but they often do not expect to have an orgasm or oral sex, and it usually lasts less than 30 minutes.
So may it is a case of looking not at the frequency of sex but the satisfaction that people experience with their sex life, with lesbians experiencing quality over quantity.
But what do you do if you are having sex less than you both want to? Looking at what might be impacting on the lack of sex and dealing with that is a good place to start.
Is there a physical reason, illness, pain, tiredness, medications etc?
Is it a social issue, work, time, lack of experience or education?
Is it a psychological issue, past experiences, mental health, changes in feelings?
What can you change.....can you improve your work/life balance, make more time, change medications, deal with issues of lack of knowledge, change the time of day you have sex, get therapy?
What cant you change and how can you work around it?
If it is important to both of you, make it a priority, schedule time to be together to be intimate, to focus on each other, to communicate thoughts, desires and feelings, explore new things together, have fun.
Richelle has had a passion for sexuality and sexual health since 2001. She has worked in the field since 2006, providing sexuality education in schools, and adult education in the topics of diverse sexualities and gender identities, LGBT health issues, sexual health and LGBT relationships.
This is a space for me to share with you my journey as a Sexologist, the things I learn and the people I meet and what I think and feel along the way.