Bored in bed? Don’t be ashamed — you’re not the only one.

Sexual ennui is more common than people tend to realize — or wish to admit. But it doesn’t have to be the beginning of the end of that part of the relationship.

It’s no surprise that many people, when they first get together, have intense sexual chemistry and heaps of passion in the bedroom. But that can’t — and doesn’t — last the length of a lifelong relationship. Inevitably, after years of being together, the once-burning fire of sexual desire can turn to a cool ash of familiarity.

If we were truly honest with one another, we’d know that it happens to most of us, at different points or phases of being together, even between the most loving of couples. But we don’t think it’s normal, so we don’t admit it to others, let alone discuss it with our partners, whose feelings we’re afraid of hurting.

But therein lies the key to solving whatever created the cooling off — because no matter the reason, if there are problems in the bedroom, there are problems in the relationship. As sex therapists will attest, boredom is merely a symptom; deep down there is some other problem such as a power struggle between the couple, or stress for one or the other partner that’s not being discussed (such as financial stress) or too much time apart through work and going separate ways.

Enough discussion, let’s come up with some solutions. Clearly, the most important — and necessary — initial reaction is to recognize there’s a problem. If you’re concerned about discussing it with your partner, educate yourself first. Try to figure out where the problem lies by asking yourself some basic questions: Is something bothering you? Are you upset with your partner about something? Are you experiencing some physical changes?

Answer honestly or you’re wasting your time. If it’s something at work, or involving a friend or family member, talk to your partner. Tell him or her what’s bothering you. Just sharing may make you feel closer, which can lead to intimacy. Your partner may also be able to help you come up with ways to solve your problem.

If the problem is physical, see your doctor. There may be an easy remedy.

And if you’re upset with your partner about something, discuss it. You may have a big blowout, but at least there won’t be a white elephant in the room affecting every aspect of your relationship. If need be, see a therapist — alone or with your partner.

Finally, if you really feel that the problem is more your partner’s than your own, try to get him or her to open up.

Latest From ...