VICTORIA and David Beckham looked like loved-up teens at son Brooklyn’s 21st birthday bash – despite having been together for 23 years.
Here, sex and relationship expert Kate Taylor gives her top ten tips to finding the spark in a romance that’s spent years gathering dust.
1. Get busy with the PDA
When was the last time you publicly told your partner you loved them? If it was during your wedding speech, you might need to up the Public Displays of Affection.
Over time, couples easily fall into the trap of teasing each other in public and only showing real affection when alone.
Switch it up. Rave about your partner within their earshot, or send them a mushy public message on social media.
Letting them know you’re proud to be with them boosts your feeling of being united against the world, and encourages them to live up to your high opinion.
2. Keep the sex going any way you can
Every long relationship has natural peaks and troughs in the bedroom.
Sometimes (usually at the start), you’ll make time for weekend-long humpathons, and gasp with delight at every part of your partner’s body.
Fast-forward five years and you might struggle to fit in a ten-second quickie, and could not pick their bits out of a naked line-up. Does it matter? No, as long as you keep the passion going somehow.
If you have a year of quickies when the kids are small and life is hectic, that’s fine. Just don’t stop. Once you stop sex, it’s far tougher to restart it. So focus on fun ways to satisfy each other when you’re busy, then enjoy longer, more intense sessions when you get more time.
3. Look objectively at your sleepwear
No poet ever wrote, Your old T-shirt is red, Your eye-mask is blue, I can’t wait to rip those stained sweatpants off you . . .
You might be super-comfy in your relationship, but you should never get too comfortable in what you wear to bed.
Take it all out and ask yourself, “Would I feel good wearing this with a new partner?” If the answer is no, bin it and treat yourself to something a little less comfortable.
4. Keep your own life going
The more content you are in your own life, the happier you’ll feel in your relationship.
So don’t ever cut off your ambitions, friends, dreams or goals, whether you’re newly-weds or nearing your Diamond Wedding Anniversary.
Posh and Becks combine the teamwork of raising a family with their separate careers. They also have their own circles of friends. So any moment they do have together (like at their son’s 21st) are even more precious.
If you’ve fallen into a rut in your own life, begin carving out time to pursue your own hobbies or meeting your friends. Similarly, if your partner has dreams and passions you don’t share, cheer them on anyway.
5. Learn your partner’s love language
Everyone has their favourite way of giving and receiving love, as revealed in US marriage counsellor Gary Chapman’s bestselling book, The 5 Love Languages.
If you and your partner speak different love languages (as you probably do), you will accidentally leave each other feeling unloved and neglected.
A quick way to learn your partner’s love language is to notice how they show love to you – do they say loving words, initiate sex, buy gifts, do thoughtful chores for you, or arrange time together?
Whatever they do most is their love language. Use that method to show love back to them. They’ll feel appreciated and adored, and the affection in your relationship will increase rapidly.
6. Go to bed on an argument
Don’t feel you have to resolve all your issues before turning in for the day. Sometimes, going to bed can be a great way to resolve issues.
Sex lowers our stressy cortisol levels as well as our blood pressure, while releasing happy endorphins. This makes the post-nookie afterglow the best place to discuss any issues that have been annoying you. If you can even remember what they were by then . . .
So when you start getting annoyed at your partner, snog them instead of shouting.
7. Touchy feely
Keep your libido simmering all day by touching your partner regularly.
I’m not talking a Becks-style bum grab, just holding your partner’s hand, brushing their shoulder, rubbing their leg or stroking their hair occasionally can keep feelgood bonding hormone oxytocin flowing.
Then, when you hit the sheets later, you’ll be feeling warmer and more affectionate towards each other.
8. Switch up the timing
Don’t leave sex till the end of the day. Try a new time, like first thing in the morning (when men’s sex drive peaks), or the afternoon (women typically feel most aroused around 3pm).
If you can’t get together till the evening, sext each other naughty messages and photos until you can hook up.
9. Surprise your partner
One of the reasons sex is so thrilling with a new partner, is that our brains release feel-amazing dopamine whenever we do new, exciting things.
If you want your partner to keep finding your sex life exciting, surprise them.
Slip a new toy under their pillow, learn a new position, try a new sex technique, plan a weekend away, talk dirty to them during the weekly food shop, seduce them during the TV ads . . .
Breaking out of your bonk-routine will boost your arousal back to newlywed levels.
10. Pucker up
Kissing is the first thing to go in a long-term relationship. But it’s vital. It increases arousal, releases oxytocin, raises blood flow, focuses your mind on sex and prepares your bits for action.
If you’ve stopped snogging, your sex life will suffer.
So start it up again. Swap every peck on the cheek for a five-second snog, then make time for some full-on tongue-rugby at least once a day.
You’ll both feel happier, sexier and much more up for action all the time.
CELEBS' SECRET TIPS
Victoria, 45, & David Beckham, 44
Together: 23yrs; Wed: 21 yrs
Victoria wrote in Vogue: “In marriage: have patience. Bite your tongue. Be supportive. And preserve a bit of mystique. Never let yourself go completely.”
Catherine Zeta-Jones, 50 & Michael Douglas, 75
Together: 22yrs; Wed: 20yrs
Catherine said: “You’ve got to be open and honest and share things people at the drug store wouldn’t share over the counter.”
Chrissy Teigen,34 & John Legend, 41
Together: 14yrs; Wed: 7yrs
Chrissy said: “We still have that passion for each other, but are we doing it randomly in a dressing room? No!
Ozzy, 71, & Sharon Osborne, 67
Together: 41yrs; Wed: 38 yrs
Sharon said: “He’s like a rabbit and I’m like, you know, birthdays, Christmas. At this point in my life, special occasions.”
Sting, 68, & Trudie Styler, 66
Together: 38yrs; Wed: 28yrs
Trudie said: “I enjoy my independence and Sting’s never been a partner who’s held me back from following my dream.”
Rod Stewart, 75, & Penny Lancaster, 48
Together: 21yrs; Wed: 13yrs
Penny said: “If we’re driving into London, that hour-and-a-half journey, we always have a kiss on the back seat.”
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