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It’s a hook up without the adrenaline. Dick Richards looks at how we can rewire our sexual habits to keep us cumming back for more.

To think its just a physical action where we experience a mind-blowing orgasm is to diminish the power of sex because its so much more than that. Its not just two or more people bonking; its an act of connection and the way we express love and lust. Its also complicated. Sex creates neurological pathways, and some of those can dictate how we approach the horizontal dance, who we have it with, and what gets us off.

In last months article, I talked about how many of us have split our sexual life from our non-sexual life and have created a sexual alter ego. We become Batman in the bedroom and Bruce out of it, and that leads to the question…

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How do we maintain a healthy sex life in a relationship when weve been so routinely engaged in hook-up culture?

The answer is assimilation. We need to stop splitting our sexual selves off from our sexual wants, desires, and fetishes and integrate the two createdopposing personas. Hook-ups, sex apps, and alt apps are addictive by nature. The anticipation, the unknowing, the escapism, and the hedonistic addictive nature of them are undeniable. It can be like a drug. They have their purpose, and they also have their downfall.

When we orgasm, dopamine gets released into our bodies, and if we are always cumming with strangers in person or online, thats the groove thats getting tattooed into our brains. If the majority of our sexual experience has been in these areas, it can be hard to get that dopamine hit in a relationship setting. We associate adrenaline with sex, and when theres no adrenaline, are we even interested?

Ask anyone whos been in a long-term relationship, and they will tell you their sex life has changed – either its not as exciting, theyre too busy, or its non-existent. And when you ask them why, the answer is always the same. Its become boring, or its too familiar; theres no mystery, no exhilaration, no conquest. Id suggest that theres an association that sex is only good and fun when theres risk or adrenaline involved.

When it comes to sex, weve become so familiar with the unfamiliar. Were so used to fucking a stranger as opposed to the same person, and the unknown is what turns us on. That dopamine hit we get in those situations is so addictive that the thought of a monogamous relationship seems impossible.

So how do we navigate a good sex life with a long-term partner? First, we have to strip away the notion that sex is just for sexual release. Obviously, it is that, but its also an act of connection – its a deep sexual connection with someone who really knows you. The hard one is breaking the ideology that sex and adrenaline go hand in hand. For some of us, that groove is so deep and addictive that it can seem impossible. But the truth is, good sex is possible with a long-term partner. Because sex isnt just about a rush or what we see online, its about connection, trust, and communication, and thats possible inside a relationship, whether its open or closed.

Photo | Karl & Daan from coupleofmen.com

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