A Way to Think about Your Sexual Relationship


I continue to read David Schnarch, this time working on Constructing the Sexual Crucible.  It was published in 1991 and is much more of a textbook for therapists than the other books I have mentioned.  If you are looking for something to read about sexuality, I recommend Passionate Marriage and/or Intimacy and Desire by him rather than this work.  I wanted to present to you something he wrote in this work: “Rather than divide people into categories of sexually dysfunctional and sexually blissful, we need to think of the sexually dysfunctional, the sexually functional, and the blessed few” (page 77, italics his). And from much of what he says in any of the three books mentioned above, the majority of people are in the middle group, the sexually functional group.  Also, most of that group has mediocre sex at best.  The good news is, there are things that can be done to make things better, to have a better sex life with your partner.  There are things that can be done even though one of you is a higher desire partner (HDP) and the other a lower desire partner (LDP, his terms), that this is a normal state that happens to the majority of couples that couples therapy and sex therapy can do something about.


Back in the day when he wrote the book, and even with many therapists today, sexual relationships for couples are often seen as being either dysfunctional or else the couple is doing fine.  Only you can say (and your partner can say and even say differently than you) how your relationship is doing.  Do you have dysfunction?  Are you rather normal and mediocre?  Or are you having a rewarding sex life for both of you?


If you or your partner are not happy with the state of your relationship, there are things that can be done (often, usually) to make your sexual relationship better, moving you towards the “sexually blissful” group.  It is up to you.  You could read one or both of the books recommended above.  You could see a good couples therapist with experience and training in sex therapy.  It is up to you to bring about a change if you want it.



About Robert Kraft Ph.D.

Robert G. Kraft, Ph.D., is a career psychologist in Omaha, NE. He earned his doctorate, as well as his bachelors and masters before that, from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln, and has practiced in Nebraska ever since. As well as maintaining his practice, Dr. Kraft is an Associate Clinical Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the Creighton University School of Medicine, where he teaches residents about psychotherapy. He served on the Executive Committee of The Center for Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis for five years, consulted with Richard Young Memorial Hospital for over 11 years and worked as a psychologist for over a dozen years before branching out into consulting and starting private practice. Outside of his work as a therapist in Omaha, he built a website about Vintage Martin guitars and developed software that helps mental health professionals with billing.