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Can The Passion In A Sexless Marriage Be Rekindled?

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sex starved marriage | divorce coaching | divorce support

If you’ve been Googling ‘sexless marriage’  or  ‘sex-starved marriage’ then you may also be wondering if you can rekindle the passion in your marriage.

Most people who now have little to no physical intimacy with their spouse will tell you that it’s not how the relationship started. But somehow, at some point, the passion started to fade. The sex became tense, distant, infrequent. Couple that with feelings of rejection, abandonment, not being loved and even talking about the lack of sex becomes challenging, if not impossible.

That obstacle can drive a wedge further into an already strained relationship so that not only has physical intimacy gone but also the emotional intimacy. By then, one or both of you are considering divorce.

The standard response to that is to try marriage counselling but is there something else you can do to rekindle the passion?

My guest for this Conversation About Divorce is Stephanie Pappas. Pappas is a sex and relationship coach who follows the 5 Erotic Blueprints™ coaching method. Contact Stephanie at for a free 30-minute consult.

Listen in below or keep reading.

What Does A Sex And Relationship Coach Do?

Pappas describes her work as focused on the present, uncovering a client’s wishes and where they want to go with their relationship. As a coach, she holds her clients accountable while also being their cheerleader.

This is not therapy so if someone is looking for help with past trauma, then a therapist may be a better fit. And it’s not just people in a sexless marriage that seek help.

People must be ready to open up and allow themselves to be vulnerable. That can be scary especially with the MeToo Movement and on-going accusations of sexual harassment but that’s not usually a problem for Pappas’s clients.

“I think people are actually just dying to talk about it,” said Pappas. “When I’m working with clients, they’re just really excited to open up and have someone they can talk to.”

What Are The 5 Erotic Blueprints™?

According to the method developed by Jaiya, there are five Erotic Blueprints™. We’re each basically wired to fall primarily into one Erotic Blueprint™. Here they are:

  • Energetics – turned on by light touch, anticipation and tease.
  • Sensual – turned on by all of their senses being engaged. Very into ambiance and romance.
  • Sexual – all about nudity and orgasms which is the cultural norm.
  • Kinky – turned one by power dynamics and anything that feels taboo to them.
  • Shapeshifter – turned on by all the above and love variety.

Chances are slim that you and your partner are the same Erotic Blueprint™ because opposites attract. That’s may be why sex is one of the top ten things couples fight about. But all is not lost. You can use that difference to spice things up.

“Once you can understand your partner’s Erotic Blueprint™, I think it is much easier to have empathy for them,” said Pappas. “Then you realize that they want to be touched in a different way than you want to be touched.”

To find out your Erotic Blueprint™, take the quiz here. Then I have a game for you to play… Are any of you watching the Girlfriend’s Guide To Divorce on Netflix? While watching an episode, whenever any of the characters have sex, try to guess the Erotic Blueprint of each party. What happened leading up to getting physical? How does that compare to your desires?

Learn To Communicate

A common problem in a sex-starved marriage is that spouses are just not communicating with each other. It’s as if they’re talking in different languages.

Giving people the language to talk about their needs and desires is one of the first areas that Pappas works on. This entails body language as well as verbal communication skills. It also means learning how to communicate according to your Blueprint and your partner’s Blueprint.

Do You Know Your Desires?

For many of us, our behavior is often confined by societal norms. Here in the U.S. women are raised to be chased whereas men are raised to be the chaser. Rekindling the passion can mean breaking free of these expectations.

“One of the most important things in our relationship is polarity of masculine and feminine,” said Pappas. “Masculine doesn’t always have to be the guy. Feminine doesn’t always have to be a girl. But that pull towards one another is what keeps things exciting.”

Pappas often sees women who don’t know what their desires are and so they are sure of what to ask. That points to working to uncover their desires.

“Once someone discovers they’re an Energetic, then they realize, ‘Wow, I love it when someone is just not quite touching me, and then I can ask then to do that,’” said Pappas.

It Only Takes One Person To Rekindle The Passion

It would be natural to assume that if you want to rekindle the passion, you both are going to have to work on it. Pappas says that would be best, but you shouldn’t give up if you can’t get your spouse to play along. One person can create transformation in a relationship.

“We can’t predict which way it’s going to go,” said Pappas. “But usually, when they see their other partner caring so much about the relationship and working so hard, they’ll start noticing the shift that things are getting better.”

It doesn’t work that way for everyone. Sometimes, working through a program like Pappas’s means someone comes to the realization that they are on a different path from their spouse. That could mean accepting that it’s time to end the relationship.

That doesn’t mean you’ve wasted your time. What it means is that you’ve invested in your future. You have a better understanding of yourself, your desires, and how to communicate. You can take that with you into your future relationships.

You Can Get Too Comfortable

Pappas is a fan of Esther Perel and agrees that when we marry someone we tend to expect them to be our complete everything. Then, if there’s something they can’t do for us; we see them as lacking in some way.

“We also want it to be really exciting and we want novelty. We want the spice, but we also want to feel safe and comforted,” said Pappas. “It’s just two things that are on very opposite ends of the spectrum.”

You can’t have it all at the same time which Pappas sees as one of biggest reasons we get into a rut with someone. We get comfortable and the excitement dies down.

So what’s the answer?

You May Have To Schedule Sex

Groan … anyone who’s been through a dry patch in their marriage and has visited a counselor has probably been told to schedule sex with their partner. Pappas admits that her clients hate it when she makes this suggestion. They want sex to be spontaneous and exciting and Pappas sees no reason why scheduled sex can’t be that. Chances are you’ve been scheduling it all along without realizing that’s what you’re doing.

“When you started in your relationship, you go out on a date and then you get really excited,” said Pappas. “You get ready and you end up having sex. It’s all very planned.”

If you can look at scheduled sex this way, you can make it the flirty fun you had in the beginning of your relationship.

How About An Adventure Date?

One of the ways Pappas works with her clients to create passion is through an ‘adventure date.’

“It’s planning a date for your partner so you can create this passion trifecta and get out of that rut,” said Pappas.

There are three elements to an adventure date.

  • Mystery – this creates intrigue and a hunger for more
  • Obstacle – little challenges to overcome help you create more desire and enticements
  • Naughtiness – adds newness and taboo to help you ignite a spark

The partner who is planning the adventure date keeps the details secret from the other partner. They might tell them some details so they know a little of what to expect, such as what they should wear, whether they’ll be eating. Pappas helps her client plan the date according to their partner’s likes and needs.

“Sometimes, it’s a little bit scary to be on the receiving end and trusting your partner to plan something that you’re really going to enjoy,” said Pappas. “I usually find one person really wants to be the planner and one person really wants to be the receiver. But it’s fun to switch as well.”

Another variation on the adventure date are the listening dates developed by the Gottmans. These are designed to teach couples to really listen to each other on eight key topics that tend to cause breakdowns in marriages.

Be Ready For Some Fails

Adventure dates can’t all go perfectly. Dealing with that is just part of being a couple and being able to laugh at yourself. A key here is having empathy for each other and self-responsibility. If you have a fail, laugh it off and move on.

My guest for this Conversation About Divorce is Stephanie Pappas. Pappas is a sex and relationship coach who follows the 5 Erotic Blueprints™ coaching method. Contact Stephanie at for a free 30-minute consult.


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