waning desire

Why You're Not Having Sex: Alone Time

sex therapist portland sex counselor desire and passion in relationship

This is part of a series of posts about sex and desire in long-term relationships.  CLICK HERE to read the full series.

It might seem counter-intuitive, but alone time is essential to maintaining desire in long-term relationships.  

But I don't mean just spending time alone, scrolling social media, or on a netflix binge.  The kind of alone time that fuels desire is all about you spending quality time with yourself, and when it's out of balance, sexual desire starts to drop fast.  

A-Sexual Passion & Exploration

This is far more important than most people ever give credit, but most of us table our personal passions for the grind of daily life to the detriment of our passionate selves.  

Think about it, when was the last time you devoted your full presence for an hour to something you truly love doing?  When was the last time you found flow?  When was the last time you dove into something and learned something interesting or new?

If you can't remember, or if it was a long time ago, you're going to want to devote some energy back in the realm of your personal passions.  Clear an hour this week to learn something new, try a different adventure, or return to a creative craft you've long retired.  

If you can't even imagine which passions you might consider, devote your hour to starting a personal bucket list now.  Make a list of anything you might want to try, and leave room that trying new things might open doors to passions- or at least will get you out having fun.  

And if you're in a partnership have a conversation about how you can support one another in cultivating personal passion.  For many folks having someone else maintain household responsibilities, or provide childcare while you adventure is vital to finding time for this practice.

Here are some examples of the personal passion adventures some of my clients have chosen:

  • intuitive dance
  • researching buddhism
  • collage
  • volunteering at the art museum
  • silent dance party
  • Thai cooking class
  • knitting
  • landscape design
  • cheesemaking
  • tarot readings
  • corset making
  • furniture design

The passion you choose to explore may not seem "sexy" per se, but you might be surprised how much committing energy to a-sexual passions can ignite the confidence, fascination, and arousal you're craving.

Enter your email below and I'll send you a handy guide to create your passion bucket list.



The other area for quality solo time and passionate self-exploration is practicing literal self-love.  

Answer honestly: when was the last time you masturbated?  Many folks in long-term relationships fall out of practice with self-love (many more still never had a practice in the first place).

But because every human body is unique and we are growing and changing all the time, staying connected to your own body's desires, arousal patterns, likes and dislikes is so very important to communicating well about sex with a partner.  

Allow yourself space and time in the week to explore your body, try new toys, fantasies, and sensations along the way to help you stay connected to your sexual body's needs and desires.  Remember, there's no right or wrong way to masturbate, just trust your body and follow it's lead.  

Anytime you want help talking through all this, I'm here to help.  Just set up a consultation so we can chat!


  1. Biology

  2. Time Scarcity

  3. Lack of Self-Care

  4. Maintenance Sex - Break Free of Obligation

  5. Lack of Inspiration - Invest in Creativity, Wonder and Awe

  6. Assumption-Making - Get Curious and Explore

  7. Initiation Hesitation - Live Courageously and Circle Back

  8. Lacking Feedback - Highlights Reel

  9. Poor Consent Practices - Talk During

  10. Sex Negativity - Don't Yuck Their Yum

  11. Routine Boredom - Fantasy Sharing, Find Inspiration

  12. Necessary Repairs - Move Past Resentment with Apology and Personal Responsibility

  13. Desire Maintenance - Invest in Your Sexiness

  14. Alone Time

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

  • rediscover passion in long-term relationships
  • repair trust after infidelity or dishonesty
  • move beyond jealousy, insecurity or codependency
  • resolve sexual dysfunction and disconnect
  • break unhealthy communication 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.