passionate marriage

Why You're Not Having Sex: Get Inspired

sex therapist portland sex counselor desire and passion in relationship

Couples who share fulfilling sex lives long-term talk about sex in three specific ways.  Today I'm outlining one of the three as a part of my series on desire fatigue in long-term relationships.  

Read the rest of the series here.

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Get the guide I created to have better sex in your relationship right away.  Enter your information below to access the guide (and a bunch of other great tools for successful relationships). 

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portland polyamory counseling online sex therapy couples counseling

Hi!  I'm glad you're reading.  Let me know if I can help you:

  • reconnect with passion in your long-term relationship
  • repair trust after infidelity or dishonesty
  • move beyond jealousy, fear, and insecurity 
  • resolve sexual dysfunction and disconnect
  • change unhealthy communication and codependent patterns
  • open your relationship and practice polyamory with care

Call me for a free consultation to rethink your relationship.


Gina Senarighi, MS, MA, CPC is a communication consultant, sexuality counselor and certified relationship coach specializing in polyamory, open relationships, jealousy, and infidelity.  

Two Questions to Find Passion in Long-Term Relationships

Passion in Marriage | Uncommon Love Relationship Coaching

Yeah, it happens.  Desire and passion fade in long-term relationships.  

Most of us believe terrible myths about desire; that if we're in love, our sex should be intuited without conversation, consistently fulfilling, and if it waxes and wanes there is a problem in the relationship- and one of us is doing something wrong.  

God, it stresses me out just to type that.  It's an awful lot of pressure to put on a relationship.  The truth is desire does fluctuate in long-term relationships.  But if you are unsatisfied with the frequency of quality of sex in your relationship there are some things you can do.  

Yeah, this post if about you- not your partner.  

All too often the couples I support point fingers at one another.

Finish this statement: I turn myself off when...

Not the same question as "I turn myself off when..." or "you turn me off when..."   Both of those questions look outside of you to blame.  We all choose to turn ourselves off sometimes.  Here are a few examples of responses:

  • I don't have time for myself

  • I'm overwhelmed with too much work stress

  • I'm distracted by the kids

  • I feel old

  • I don't believe I deserve pleasure

  • I don't feel safe 

  • I feel dead inside

  • I am too busy hating my body

  • I don't trust you

When do you shut yourself or your desire off?  Knowing when gives you a new access point for the conversation about passionate connection.

Now finish this statement: I turn myself on when....

Take a minute and actually write out your responses.  When are do you turn yourself on?  Learning to turn yourself on will only amplify the desire you feel from others.  Here are a few examples of responses:

  • I am sweaty from a workout

  • I wear special underwear, shoes, and perfume

  • I am well-rested

  • I'm on a dance floor

  • I am doing something I know I do well

  • I make people laugh

  • I'm making music, cooking, painting, or writing

  • I'm the center of attention

  • I feel respected

  • I have space for friends, rest, and play

Learning what fuels your desire is critical to keeping desire alive for two reasons:

1.  It helps you feel strong and confident- not clingy.  Instead of relying on others to get your needs met, knowing how to meet your own allows you empowered independence instead of codependence. 

2. It helps you know what to ask for in partnerships.  Once you're clear when you turn yourself on you can set up a life that fuels your inner fire of passion.  Create space for the things that turn you on.

These notes are based on a video I recommend to most of my clients.  If you want to watch the full TED Talk from Esther Perel check it out below. 

And if you want to talk more about passion and desire in your relationship give me a call, I'd love to help you.

Gina Senarighi Portland Couples Counselor

Gina Senarighi offers non-judgmental sex-positive, gender-affirming, LGBTQ relationship support online and in the Pacific Northwest. 

She often says, “I love love, in all its forms!”

She’s helped thousands of couples deepen their sexual connection, repair trust, and build sustainable lasting partnerships.

She uses her multi-disciplinary professional training to teach communication skills and help her clients handle conflict with compassion.

Gina has supported many couples experimenting with open relationships based in trust and integrity. If you’re considering polyamory you should check out her online resources here.

Although most of her couples are experimenting with less traditional relationship structures, even her more mainstream clients appreciate her open-minded non-judgmental approach and diverse expertise.

If you’re interested in taking this work further contact her for a free consultation.