How to Initiate Sexual Activity – The First Steps in a Healthy Relationship

Healthy relationships can look different for everyone. They may involve sex, affection, shared hobbies or values, space or religion.

It is helpful to know what steps a relationship usually goes through sexually, so you can be aware of any red flags. Healthy couples are able to communicate about their needs and concerns in a respectful manner.

1. Getting to Know Each Other

This stage is all about getting to know each other, including your sexual desires. This includes discussing whether you’d like to try a different type of sex, what sexual activities you find most satisfying and what your biggest sexual turnoffs are. Being open and honest about your preferences can help you reach a more satisfying level of intimacy with your partner or partners, as well as give them the confidence they need to discuss their own preferences.

Once you’ve reached this stage, you should have a good idea of what your partner is looking for in terms of sexual intimacy. If you’re not clear about what you want or your partner doesn’t understand your needs, it can lead to miscommunication and frustration. It’s important to remember that love, commitment and sex don’t always go hand in hand and that you can express your feelings in many ways beyond physical intimacy.

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At this stage, it’s likely that you and your partner have started to remove some of your clothing, which can be an indication that you are ready for a more intimate touch. For some couples, this might be as simple as giving a gentle kiss on the neck or cheek. For others, it may involve foreplay and teasing to get the other person into the mood. If you can progress to arm-to-shoulder and mouth-to-torso, it’s a good sign that you are both ready to move forward sexually.

3. Initiating Sex

Whether you’re dating someone new or in a long-term relationship, knowing how to initiate sexual activity can help boost feelings of romance and connection. Often, when it comes to sexual initiation, it’s assumed that men should take the lead. This can be intimidating for some women, and also leads to routine sex, which can become boring. Initiating sex yourself can be fun and exciting, and it also gives your partner a sense that you care about their sensual needs.

It’s important to remember that everyone has different sex drives, and it’s normal for these desires to fluctuate over time. So if your partner doesn’t seem very receptive to sex in the moment, try not to take it personally. They may just be exhausted, busy, or not feeling it that day.

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Initiating sex can be as simple as straddling your partner while playing foreplay games, or it can be more complicated. Using characteristics of your personality like your humor or foreplay style can make the process easier, but it’s also important to communicate your preferences with your partner so they know what to expect.

Initiating sex can also be as subtle as leaving flower petals on the bed or answering the door in a costume. Sometimes, just a little bit of mystery can be enough to get your partner’s blood pumping and their mind racing.

4. Maintaining Intimacy

Regardless of whether or not you’re sexually intimate with your partner, the two of you can still build closeness by practicing intimacy in other ways. For example, you can practice foreplay or other forms of physical intimacy outside the bedroom and talk openly about your needs and feelings. Intimacy also involves sharing your innermost thoughts and emotions with someone, which can be a challenge, but it is important to feel safe enough to do so.

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Often, couples are not sexually intimate with each other because of sexual trauma or their experiences with other partners, but they may be emotionally intimate and have strong bonding. The key is to communicate your needs clearly and be supportive of each other’s feelings. Be sure to listen intently when your partner is speaking and avoid interrupting or criticizing them.

It’s important to take turns initiating sex, so you can both discover each other’s likes and dislikes and what really turns you on. Changing up who initiates also encourages you to step outside of your comfort zones and try new positions. Likewise, exploring foreplay outside the bedroom is another way to increase intimacy in your relationship, such as by cuddling, spooning, or touching each other’s hands. This can also lead to exploring your fantasies together, which is a great way to boost intimacy and increase the likelihood of sex.

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