Menu Style




Your sex appetite: Quality vs quantity

To have sex every day for 30 days might sound like a dream coming true for most male mortals, but one should carefully consider it before you tread on unknown territory. Here are the benefits and consequences of a 30-day sex challenge.

To have sex for 30 consecutive days is a wonderful opportunity for couples to set a goal in the bedroom, but only if they don’t take it too seriously. INTIEM received interesting results with the previous 30-day sex challenge.

According to Cindy*, a marketing specialist in Pretoria, it is the most enjoyable challenge, but she couldn’t complete it. “My husband and I are adventurous by nature and we decided beforehand that we would go for it in full force, but we would not blame each other if we couldn’t do it. It spiced up our love life a lot, but couples need to be careful not to put too much pressure on each other,” she says.

According to James and Cloë* from Benoni, the challenge was child’s play at the start, but by day 14 they hit a pothole, but they persisted. “It was very difficult. It tested our creativity and determination to the utmost. I think that because we don’t have kids and we were very sexually active before the challenge, it made it easier for us,” says Cloë.

What do the experts say?

It is fun, but is it meant for everyone? “I will never encourage a couple to have sex for 30 consecutive days. It puts a lot of pressure on both parties to excel. No one is in the mood for sex 30 days in a row. It means that one of the two will have sex even if he or she isn’t really in the mood for it. Or that, when one is tired or sick, there will be added pressure. A man can have erectile dysfunction because there is too much pressure, which can then lead to performance anxiety and psychogenic erectile dysfunction.

“When the woman isn’t really in the mood, she can struggle to get aroused and it can complicate an orgasm or even cause pain. It can become a vicious cycle that needs to be addressed on a therapeutic level,” says Dr Elmarie Mulder Craig, a reputable sexologist and relationship therapist.

Make time for one another

According to Dr Mulder Craig, a couple should rather plan regular and special alone time together. “It is time that does not necessarily involve sex penetration, but time wherein the couple creates time for their relationship and intimacy on an emotional, sensual and sexual level. Rather choose to touch each other every day, to kiss and massage each other, and as things happen spontaneously and naturally, to let it unfold. It is, however, important to talk about each other’s expectations,” she says.

“It is quite dangerous to hand out recipes and challenges when it concerns the sexual. One can rather focus on being sensual at least three times a week. It is important to work out each step – for example, what is first base for you as a couple and what is second base, all the way to penetration. The idea is to talk about your needs. To give and to receive, and switching roles between who gives and who receives, and discover each other’s bodies anew,” says Dr Mulder Craig.

Do not be concerned about a number

“There are as many plans as there are diets. Just like a quick-fix diet, quick-fix sex ideas don’t really work. Why is everyone concerned about the number? The average Sandton couple (a busy family with kids) has sex every tenth day. So, if you have sex more than three times a month, things are going well,” says Prof Elna Mcintosh, a sexologist.

“Any diet works if you stick to it, but some diets cannot be maintained and then things are usually worse afterwards. There are few people who walk through my door with sex problems. Sex is the symptom, not the ‘sickness’,” she says.

What does the average Jo say?

According to Johan*, a boudoir photographer from Johannesburg, the challenge is unrealistic. “I talk from personal experience. With work, kids and extra work it is incredibly difficult to have the energy and time for any physical contact. I help as much as possible in the house, have three jobs and travel daily.

“It’s not just to keep head above water. I think if there is a different approach, it would make more sense. Something like: ‘Get to know your partner in 30 days.’ It is definitely do-able. To spend ten minutes on communication every day, to reconnect and simply get to know each other, flirt and even just foreplay with the purpose of passionate sex. All the posts on healthy sex and even the comments on Facebook show me that couples yearn for intimacy, but they don’t know how to connect,” says Johan.

“One should, of course, look at it as a fun challenge and not as a life-or-death competition. It becomes dangerous when partners have unrealistic expectations of each other or put pressure on one another to complete the challenge when they are not on the same wavelength,” says Annelize Steyn, editor of INTIEM.

“The reaction to our first 30-day sex challenge was positive. Although many people struggled to complete it, it was a fun activity that couples could attempt together. The challenge also included a number of ‘free passes’ that you could use on the days when it was really difficult to persevere. Many couples said that it made them actively focus on intimacy again,” she says.

“Life often just happens to a couple and it becomes easy to place sex at the bottom of the list of priorities. The challenge can help such a couple to become aware of each other and the importance of intimacy in a marriage.”

There are as many sex challenges as there are opinions about the subject. It might sound like a statement that has been used to death, but communication is the key to success. Talk about what intimacy means for you, and do not assume that all men and women are the same due to stereotypes.

The golden rule is: Have fun, talk about it and try a challenge that fits your lifestyle as a couple. And if life interferes in your goals, see it as a natural flow of circumstances and not as a failure.

*Pseudonyms have been used.


Article sponsored by Matildas -