Here’s a question someone asked.
Which is more important, being best friends or lovers?
My husband and I have been married for almost 30 years. We have had our ups and downs, but we are very happy together and I think of him as my best friend.
However, our sex life isn’t what it used to be and I wonder if it matters. I’m happy with the way things are and he doesn’t complain so I suppose he is too, but I wonder if it means we aren’t attracted to each other anymore, Should we try to “spice” things up, or just leave it alone,
This is a pretty common situation for long-term married couples, so it’s great that you’re asking the question.
You’re the experts – together
The bottom line here is that the experts on your relationship are you and your husband – together.
To be clear, you can’t do this separately or by making assumptions separately without talking about it with each other.
But together you can decide what works for you.
Over the years of a marriage there will be seasons of time when sexual attraction and sexual activity declines. Life can be stressful. Having children, elderly parents, careers, hormonal changes and aging can all be obstacles.
There are different ways to approach this issue. It is possible for people to reconnect sexually and to bring that spark back into their relationship
But, there’s not a manual somewhere that says you have to do that.
It’s up to the two of you to decide.
Don’t rely on assumptions
The big danger here is in making assumptions. It seems like you are making a few assumptions about what your husband thinks and have not talked with him.
Marriage is about sharing and intimacy. You can’t have that if you are holding back on talking about something as important as this.
Even though you’ve been married 30 years you can’t read your husband’s mind
After so long together, it’s easy for two people to get into their habitual ways of being, and of being together. From there it’s easy to assume they know the person and overlook how they are changing.
Talking about it may be uncomfortable, but is best for a strong relationship
The challenge and the big opportunity here is to talk about the question with your husband.
I call it an opportunity because an honest conversation like this could be a doorway to deeper intimacy. Worst case you will have more facts and know what you’re working with.
The most important thing is to talk about it. As long as you do it with positive, loving intention then it’s much better to talk about it than to delay trying to do it perfectly.
It’s helpful if you approach it in a low-key way, without making a confrontation or drama out of it.
See if you can make it an inquiry, “I was wondering about this. Can we talk about this together, Can we explore it,”
The mark of strong friendship and a good marriage is open, honest communication
Here’s something to consider. Can you truly be best friends if you don’t talk about something this important?
If you say yes, there’s a good chance you’re deceiving yourself. There’s likely a deeper issue in the way of intimacy with your husband.
Of course, for a lot of people the problem is that it’s uncomfortable to talk about even though you’ve been married for many years. Even for people who say they have a great marriage or are best friends
This is partly because the models we see in the media and sometimes among family and friends, teach us the misleading message that couples always have great sex and they don’t need to talk about important things, especially sex.
As a result, most people have not built their relationship on the sturdy foundation of honest, heartfelt discussions about the things that really matter in life.
Consider that what good marriages and strong friendships have in common is honest sharing. In a strong, healthy relationship of either kind people are free to be themselves and to talk about their feelings.
At a fundamental level, the truth is you cannot be “best friends” with your husband if you don’t talk with him about this important question in your mind. It’s an important part of a long-term intimate relationship.
Of course, there is a matter of timing and balance – that this not become the only thing you talk about.
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However, if you don’t talk about it, you’re holding an important part of yourself back from your husband. You’re not being open to him.
By not talking with him about this you are treating him with disrespect.
You’re not giving him a chance to be himself and talk about his feelings regarding this.
And if you don’t talk about it, you make it harder to reconnect sexually.
Talking about these questions might open the door to some sexual intimacy, but even if it doesn’t it can bring you closer together emotionally
Ask the experts about your relationship
I encourage you to bring this question to the experts on your relationship. That would be you and your husband talking about it together.
Let go of the assumptions. Keep in mind that even though it can be challenging to talk about, it’s the best thing you can do for your marriage.
The benefits can far outweigh the short-term stress of bringing it into the conversation with your husband