Celeste and Danielle, Creators of the Somatica Method of Sex Therapy and Relationship Coaching

The best word to describe passion is animalistic. It is sex that is a bit out of control. In modern western society, we spend years socializing our children out of animal-like behavior in order for them to behave. When the self-conscious part of your brain that tells you to be a good girl or boy shuts down, passion begins. Out comes the part of you that wants to bite, grab, growl, and satisfy all of your senses. In our sexually repressed culture, many people fantasize about having passion overtake them and their lovers. The passionate sexual movie is very common because it allows you to go beyond the constraints of being nice and compliant and makes you feel truly alive in your body.

In this series we introduce the ways that finding the genre of your “hottest sexual movie” can bring infinite pleasure to a relationship. Last week we detailed how “the romantic movie” plays out in fantasy and reality. Whereas the romantic movie is about feeling deeply loved, the passionate story is about intense, insatiable desire. Rather than appealing to our very human need to feel seen and understood, the passionate story is about unexplained, uncontrollable animalistic desire taking hold.
No action captures the essence of the passionate story more than a passionate kiss, by now depicted in so many movies that it might appear cliché. However, when done right, it doesn’t look or feel cliché at all. We have helped many clients reignite passion on multiple levels just by nailing this one important experience.

Here are the basics of delivering a killer, Passionate Kiss:

  1. The Look: It is important to begin with a passionate look, letting all of the animalistic desire come into your eyes and holding it.
  2. The Build Up: Waiting before jumping into a kiss builds tension and lets you sit in the uncertainty of whether or not all the passion will be met. If you go too quickly to the kiss, you don’t allow tension and excitement to build. By waiting, you allow yourself and your lover to build to a frenzy of desire where you can’t rip each other’s clothes off fast enough.
  3. The Delivery: Don’t be afraid to grab hair, a collar, or the back of their head and really let yourself express your passion with your mouth and tongue but also with your entire body pressed against theirs. If you feel like giving a little lip nibble- got for it.

We promise you won’t regret where this kiss can lead. Here is a story one of our male clients told us about his girlfriend’s passionate approach to sex:

“Usually my girlfriend seems to be more into romance, but every once in awhile it’s like she’s possessed. It sometimes happens on vacation or when something really great happens in her life. I know it’s happening because she gets this look in her eye like I’m just a piece of meat. I know women might not like feeling like a piece of meat and, to be honest, the first time I saw it I was a little surprised, but I definitely don’t mind feeling like a piece of meat. This one time, she walked in the door wearing this really tight, sexy dress and she had that look in her eyes. Before she even got to me, she started taking her clothes off, and she just pushed me down on the bed. She started kissing me and grabbing me and taking my clothes off. She took my hands and started moving them all over her body, encouraging me to grab her ass and her nipples really hard. I could feel her grinding on me…”

Anyways…we will leave the rest to your imagination. After all, this is all about finding your own Hottest Sexual Movie. As you start to see what genre most appeals to your deepest desires don’t forget that you can always incorporate various elements of each into your special mix. Romance and passion often go hand and hand, and in our recent book, Making Love Real, we give you a template for how to seamlessly integrate multiple fantasy types into you sexual encounters. Stay tuned for our next post on the “Dominant/submissive” movie and how to bring your power play fantasies to life.

In our previous blog we introduced the ways that finding and sharing your “hottest sexual movie” can turn up the heat in your sex life. In this series we will tell you about the most common sexual movie genre’s we see with our clients in order to help you begin to identify what you want from your sexual interactions.

Let’s start with romance. Most women were fed romantic movies throughout their entire life- starting from cartoon Cinderella and moving right on up to The Notebook. It is not surprising that most women respond in some way to romantic words or gestures. Even women who have passionate and/or dominant fantasies often want some kind of romance in the mix. Many men also have aspects of the romantic movie as part of their desires or sexual repertoire. While the romantic movies we see on the big screen almost never end in explicit sexual activity, it can take a bit of imagination to discover what romance looks like in the bedroom when it is not PG-13.

The romantic movie is about being deeply loved and cared for—it’s the soul mate fantasy. And although certain aspects of this fantasy are unrealistic, like the idea that you will always have the exact same kinds of transcendent feelings about someone forever. When you can see romance as a fantasy as opposed to expecting it to be a steady-state in relationships, you can surrender into the pleasure of playing out the romantic movie in the moment instead of focusing on the disappointment of it not being forever. In this way, you can still experience the longing and pleasure of romance, which is about holding each other as eternally precious and uniquely important. There is nothing wrong with wanting to feel swept up in a connection that is profound and all-encompassing. It is about the feeling that you know and understand each other deeply and pay attention to each other’s wants.

For every type of movie, there are four basic elements that need to be included – energy, touch , words and gestures. In working with clients whose primary fantasy is romantic we have outlined the romantic expressions of each of these elements that are most likely to fulfill the romantic appetite.

Romantic Energy: This is what you feel in your heart when you experience the warm glow of love and connection. The energy that comes from the heart can be adoration or admiration. It is often what people are talking about when they refer to the feeling of falling in love.
Romantic Touch: The most romantic touch is a light touch. Light touch is very arousing to the skin and body and therefore wonderful to use as warm-up touch, regardless of the movie you are playing out.
Romantic Words: These words have to do with beauty, preciousness, abstract sentimentality, fulfillment of dreams, and eternal connections. Think ““You are the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen.” “You are the man of my dreams.” For some these might sound hyperbolic, for others they are exactly what they long to hear.
Romantic Gestures: Because romance goes beyond the boundaries of the sexual experience, you can bring romance into your day-to-day life through both romantic words and romantic gestures. Romantic gestures include sending letters, cards, emails, or texts with romantic messages and giving gifts like flowers, a tie, chocolate, or a ring. Other romantic gestures are remembering special days like birthdays, anniversaries, first times (like the first day you kissed or the first time you met); dressing up to go out to a favorite restaurant, the theater, or dancing; or visiting a romantic place with beautiful views or stars. What these gestures express is that you are on your partner’s’ mind no matter what else is happening in life.

A Romantic Fantasy: In Our Client’s Words

We could make endless lists giving examples of romantic energy, touch, words, and gestures, but often our clients say it best when they begin to put this all together into their ultimate fantasy. We want to share one client’s description of her romantic sexual movie that was so beautiful it made us cry:

“We both get dressed up – you’re in some tight jeans that show the shape of your ass and that black coat I bought you, and I’m in an elegant dress. We go out to a restaurant together and you open and close the car door and the restaurant door for me. While we’re at the restaurant, we touch each other across the table and you tell me how beautiful I look to you. When we leave, you put on my coat for me. At home you light some candles, turn on some of that music that has no lyrics, and invite me to dance. We start to sway together as you look into my eyes. You lean in and touch your lips to mine, barely kissing me, and then you whisper in my ear how much you love me. You move behind me and hold me close around the waist. Still dancing and swaying, I can feel your breath as you gently kiss my neck and ear. You unzip my dress and slowly take it off of me, caressing my body as it falls to the floor. You’re surprised at my lacy white bra and underwear and you admire my body…..

Anyways…You get the picture. We will leave the rest to your imagination as we continue to guide you in discovering your own hottest sexual movie. If you want to hear more from what we have learned from our clients check out our new book, Making Love Real. And stay tuned for the other popular genres. Next up, find out about Passionate Fantasies…

You can stop searching Netflix, because your hottest sexual movie is still in the making. Nearly everyone walks through the world with one or more sexual “movies” circulating in their imagination. These include images and ideas of how they want sex to look, what feelings they want to have, and what kind of experiences they want to live. The characters may change, but the themes generally stay the same. While most people have the ability to enjoy multiple forms of seduction, a person’s primary sexual movie generally brings them the most pleasure and intensity. People often try and suppress these fantasies, in order to fit them into their realities. We encourage our clients to go all the way in fleshing out their fantasies and getting to the bottom of what these ideas say about their actual sexual needs and desires.

The process of finding and articulating your Hottest Sexual Movie has 3​ steps.

Step 1: Become a Self-Detective
We can spend endless hours of our lives studying, guessing and gossiping about everyone else’s motives and desires. But, how much time do we actually take to figure out what OUR motives and desires are, especially when it comes to our sexual desires? For most people, the answer is “Not enough!” The most important part of self-detecting is taking a non-judgmental attitude, you may find that some of what turns you on is more accepted by society and other parts of what turns you are less accepted. If any of your thoughts make you feel ashamed or guilty, remember, they are just desires not actions and, as long as any enactment of them is between consenting adults there is nothing to be ashamed of!

This is your chance to figure out what makes you tick in bed and the way to do that is to gather some data from your own life. Dig into your fantasies, whether they are overtly sexual or not is unimportant, just start to pay attention to what you think when you start to drift off. What are your daydreams about you and anyone to whom you are attracted? What kinds of thoughts get you turned on?

Next, think back on the books and movies that have gotten you most aroused as well as the sexual experiences that you’ve had that were most arousing. (Remember, no judgments!) They might be romantic, full of passion and intrigue, torture or other types of BDSM, or any sorts of themes from porn that you watch or erotic stories you read. Think of the scenes and the moments in those scenes that are the real zingers. You may want to do some writing on all of this to really pinpoint your turn-ons.

Step 2: Identify the Underlying Feeling You Want to Have
As you explore the data you have gathered try to identify the kinds of feelings that you or any of the other people in the fantasies are feeling and see which ones seem most relevant and exciting to you. For example, you or others in your fantasies, books and movies might want to feel powerful, taken, degraded, surprised, in danger, cared for, precious, teased, indulgent, loved, denied, adored, abused, seen, desired, powerless, known, punished or accepted. If you fantasize about sex in public places, this might be a fantasy of being so desirable your partner would have sex with you anywhere. It also might be a fantasy of wanting to be seen (exhibitionism) or of being in danger (of being caught). If your fantasy is of your partner surprising you with a five-course dinner at your favorite, fancy restaurant, it might be a fantasy of being cared for (they planned it) or known (they knew it was your favorite restaurant), or it could be a fantasy of indulgence (five-course and fancy) or of surprise. Make a list of the feeling or feelings that seem to be most linked to your arousal.

Step 3: Draft your Hottest Sexual Movie
It is one thing to passively fantasize, watch, read or allow others to do their best to give you what you want, but we want you to take it one step further. With everything you now know about what turns you on, write your own scene (or, even better, many scenes), that will invoke these feelings in you. We don’t want to experience everything that we see in movies or fantasize about but all of this can be incorporated into our sex life in one way or another. See what you actually want to experience, what you want to share in bed with your partner (for example, what you’d like to say to them or have them say to you) and what you want to keep in your back pocket to fantasize about here and there during your sexual experiences to give you that extra arousal bump.

Think about how you want your partner to look at you, talk to you, touch you and how you want to look at them, talk to them and touch them in order to get some of those feelings you so desire. Imagine how you would like your movie to start, what are some experiences that you’d like for the middle part of your movie. How does your movie end and what do you want from your partner once sex is over? Take some times to write out some hot scenarios!

For a more in-depth exploration of your cinema worthy sexual fantasies check out our recent book Making Love Real where we dedicate several chapters to walking you through this process. Also, keep following this series where we will share what we have seen are the most prevalent sexual movie genres and what they say about your desires. Finally, we will give you some pointers on how to communicate them to a partner in order to have the unbelievably amazing sex you deserve.

It seems that everywhere we look we see couples in long term relationship suffering from challenges in their intimacy and sexual connection. More than half of all marriages end in divorce and a large number of those who stay married report feeling dissatisfaction in their sexual and emotional connection.

At the beginning of a relationship, also known as the “honeymoon period,” it may be possible for you to have super hot sex even you have not shared what you want out of sex and intimacy with your partner. Simply being with someone new upon whom you can project all of your fantasies, combined with the uncertainty of new romance can be enough to fuel the fires of desire and arousal and lead to a lot of sexual fulfillment.

The sexual honeymoon period doesn’t happen for everyone. For those who do get to experience it, a majority will see it fading as the excitement of newness and uncertainty wears off. It is then that the important question arises: “How can you keep sex hot in long-term relationships?” It seems like everywhere we look, we see new one-size-fits-all approaches to answering this question.

Therapists, coaches, sexperts, popular magazines and new age teachers have offered a variety of potential solutions. New age teachers will say that there needs to be polarity between the masculine and feminine. While this will help some couples whose desires include the need for polarity, others will be turned on by a feminine-feminine or masculine-masculine dynamic. Leading sexperts might tell you that there needs to be more mystery and distance that counters the domesticity. Yes, for some, that might be just the thing. For others however, less mystery and more safety will be what allows them to open to another. Some couple’s therapists advocate the idea that deep attunement and good communication will automatically lead to good sex, but that’s only true if what you need in order to get off is someone who is attuned to you. It is just as possible that what gets you off is that someone wants to use you for their pleasure.

The reason these approaches will not necessarily fix your sex life is because they are very simplistic and one dimensional. The truth of sex and intimacy is that there isn’t a cookie cutter answer that works for everyone. There is, however, a way to find out what will work for you and in your relationship.

If we have learned one lesson in our years of working with people around their sexual desires it is that people are extraordinarily diverse and unique – in other words, there is no one-size-fits-all fix. What people don’t realize is that each person has what we like to call their own unique Hottest Sexual Movie – a compilation of erotic and emotional experiences that elicit what they most want to feel in sex.

In order for sex to be hot, it must fulfill a good deal of each partner’s Hottest Sexual Movies. Those couples who have complimentary movies will generally stay much more satisfied with their sex life in the long term, but the majority of couples don’t get their movies met with the un-communicated, spontaneous sexual encounters that populate Hollywood movies. For couples who have less complimentary Hottest Sexual Movies, creating a sex life that fulfills both of your desires can be a feat!

Bottom line – what you don’t know about your own and your partner’s desires and what you haven’t shared may be killing your sex life and we hope you will begin to explore, experiment, teach and share your Hottest Sexual Movies. For a much broader look at some of the most common movies, check out our new book Making Love Real: The Intelligent Couple’s Guide to Lasting Intimacy and Passion.

Stay tuned… In our next blog – Discover Your Hottest Sexual Movie 101 – you will find out how to understand and share your own and your partner’s Hottest Sexual Movie and learn how your sex life can fulfill (as opposed to kill!) your partner’s desire.

In case you are not familiar with the acronym AFGO, it stands for Another F****** Growth Opportunity and New Year’s resolutions are just that. Instead of making an epic list of daily life alterations that will likely overwhelm you until you rebel against all of the them around January 15th, we have an idea for how you can make a resolution that can enhance your sex life and strengthen your relationship potential.

Instead of taking stock on a basic level, how about doing some self-searching this year to see the ways in which you would like to focus on your own erotic growth and emotional responsiveness. Heightening your emotional responsiveness, as opposed to allowing emotional reactivity to take over, is a life change that will reverberate into all elements of your life. As we discuss in our recent book, Making Love Real, we have worked with countless clients who have resolved to push their sexual pleasure beyond what they believed was possible.

It is not as complicated as it may seem to make these life-altering changes. In fact, this resolution also involves simply making lists. First, we suggest to start by finding the edges of your sexual comfort and jotting them down. This way you can take stock of where you would like to explore and expand. Simply doing this part of the exercise can offer a means of self-acceptance that leads to growth.

Next, make a list of the things that can be challenging about being in a relationship with you and see which one you are most interested in facing this year. Facing these challenges could mean finding deeper acceptance for yourself as you are, might mean learning new tools to replace old habitual responses and it might just be coming to it with your partner so that they know what they’re up against.

These lists may seem epic. The more honest you are the longer they may be. That is actually a good thing. But this year you will simply choose one from each list to tackle. We find that so many of our issues are interrelated, and that by truly paying attention to these two issues you select will allow you to experience erotic growth and increased emotional responsiveness in other areas as well. We know you can do it! Can’t wait to hear about your amazing 2016!

Over the years as Sex Therapists and Relationship Coaches, so many of the couples we’ve seen have shared their experiences of rough patches during the holiday season. Holiday gift giving and family visits can add emotional and financial stress. We came up with this list of pointers that can help you and your partner stay connected during the holiday season so that you can experience the love and joy of the holidays instead.

Make a “Naughty” and “Nice” gift list

There can be something pretty unsexy about the list making/gift giving process. In long term relationships where finances are collective, gift giving can really fall flat as you watch the funds leave your joint bank account and go to presents you might not necessarily want to spend it on. In new relationships it can feel like a test of weather you know someone well enough. Instead or in addition to traditional gift-giving, why not make a list of sensual or sexual favors you would like to receive. You might want a “nice” long massage or perhaps a quick “naughty” trip up the chimney? Sharing your gift list is a fun way to supercharge your intimate connection over the holidays.

Learn the family dynamics

Whether this is your first time spending a holiday with your partner’s family or the 145th family holiday (but who’s counting?), we have a hunch that there could be a bit more communication leading up to the events. Instead of having an every person for themselves survivalist approach to the holidays, it is important to ask your partner what they need from you during this time. Even the closest of families can fall into damaging patterns this time of year, and by coming up with some strategies beforehand you and your partner can find ways to enjoy the good parts. This goes both ways, of course. It so important not to take for granted that your partner will intuit your needs around family and holidays, but to give them a chance to support you.

Steal moments beyond the mistletoe

By all means steal a socially-sanctioned kiss under the mistletoe as often as you possibly can. But, also take time to slow dance in the kitchen, take a bundled stroll arm and arm, whisper a compliment or sneak away for a car makeout session that might lead to more. By creating lots of small moments of connection you can ensure your relationship heads into the new year strong. We have many suggestions for intimacy boosting exercises in our new book, Making Love Real. So, if you plan on purchasing something, might as well make it our book ;).

Create your own Sexy Traditions

Think of ways to infuse the traditions you already have with a sexy twist (i.e. Don’t wear panties to that holiday matinee). Or, create new traditions like enjoying a seasonal shag on a blanket in front of the fireplace where you can feel the heat of the flames. We had a couple who would always have a Thanksgiving quickie after they put the bird in the oven and before everyone else woke up. Instead of feeling like they had an annoying chore they got to get away with something. Whatever it is, come up with some annual events that will keep the holidays exciting and special for you as a couple.

Take Space When You Need It

We can not stress this enough. Between holiday parties, family obligations, shopping, work and sleep it can feel impossible to have any me time. During this time of year it is so important to find space to do what keeps you feeling like you even if it means missing an event or two or not helping with a family meal. This will allow you to be present for your partner and actually experience and enjoy moments of connection with family and friends as well.

As you move through the honeymoon period, you start to see the person for who they really are, which is never exactly the person you hoped or imagined they would be. This is the beauty and challenge of a relationship – the differences between your fantasy partner and the person sitting in front of you create an opportunity for interpersonal and personal growth.

In the long-term love phase, you get to see your partner’s endearing and annoying day-to-day habits, as well as your own, and you also get to experience your partner’s and your own vulnerability and defenses. As you let someone in more deeply and they let you in, you begin to see and feel your strengths and challenges. Each of you starts to gain access to the other’s buttons that trigger the fears of the inner child, the fight/flight/flee response that comes in the face of these fears, as well as the accompanying defensive strategies.

We believe true and lasting love is about developing a solid, loving base supporting each other’s attachment needs and giving each other mutual care. It is also about personal growth, following your own dreams and desires, and celebrating and supporting your partner in growing and actualizing their dreams and desires as well. In our book Making Love Real we teach you all the steps to building a satisfying and fulfilling relationship that last.