Sexual Satisfaction

Sexual satisfaction is not just physical pleasure, nor is it simply the absence of dissatisfaction or problems. Rather, sexual satisfaction involves the overall feeling we are left with after considering the positive and negative aspects (or sexual rewards and costs) of our sexual relationships. - -- MacNeil and Byers

Everyone has their own idea of what "good sex" is. Everyone experiences sex and their own sexuality in unique ways. How you think about "good sex" has a lot to do with what you've learned about it, how your society or culture sees it, and what value you place on it as a part of your life.

When we talk about an ongoing sexual relationship, good sex can mean knowing what you want and what your partner wants, knowing how to talk about it, and never being forced to do anything you don't want to do.

The human body can feel sexual pleasure in many different ways - from hugging, kissing or gentle touching. People get sexual pleasure from many activities such as masturbation, touching, intercourse, oral sex, sexual fantasies, and a wide range of other activities.

There are also many ways to heighten this sexual pleasure – by being comfortable with yourself and your partner, for example. You can wait for the mood to be right for both of you or make plans for a candlelight sexual meeting. Being certain that you are protected from unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted infection can help you focus on good feelings.

Changes like having children and getting older, can also affect sex and sexual pleasure – both positive and negative. Dealing with such changes could require you and your partner to be flexible, recognize your limitations, and even shift the way you think.

Having good sex in a relationship can contribute to a person's overall sexual satisfaction, but it's not the only factor. Characteristics that often make the difference between being in a happy relationship and being in an unhappy relationship also enhance sexual satisfaction. These are things like problem-solving skills, realistic shared expectations, and being able to enjoy each other's company in other parts of your life. And it is always important to keep the lines of communication open.

Adapted from SexualityandU.ca