Are your orgasms getting in the way of your close connection with your partner? Conventional wisdom says that more orgasms = better - but the truth might actually be quite the opposite. The good news is that there are ways that you can have sex with your partner, and foster intimacy, that seem to avoid the pitfalls that orgasms can create. In order to explain, my guest today is Marnia Robinson, author of Cupid’s Poisoned Arrow: From Habit to Harmony in Sexual Relationships. I'm moving this week, and so I pulled this episode from the archives, because Marnia Robinsons's work has been, for me, quite transformational. When I was deciding to create the Relationship Alive podcast I knew that I wanted to teach you about karezza, a form of slow sex that steers clear of orgasms - particularly for men - with the benefit of creating an even deeper, more sustainable connection with your partner. In this episode we'll cover all of the ins and outs of karezza and how to bring this form of bonding into your relationship.

Click here to receive the Show Guide and Bonding Behaviors Guide from the Marnia Robinson episode

Marnia is a graduate of Brown and Yale and a former corporate attorney.  She blogs on Huffington Post and serves on the board of the Society for the Advancement of Sexual Health. Marnia is also the moderator of the website where you can find more information about karezza and evidence to support how switching to non-orgasmic lovemaking will actually lead to a happier, more intimate relationship.

Here are some of the details of our conversation:

  • When you have an orgasm, your brain gets the biggest natural blast of neurochemicals possible without drugs.
  • The “ripple effects” of how this blast changes your internal biochemistry can continue for up to two weeks and affect how we view our partner and the world around us.
  • Some of the ripples you might experience are: mood swings, depression, anger, irritability, mental fogginess, boredom, and fatigue
  • While western society has become very orgasm-focused, other cultures have had teachings (many of them ancient) that advocate abstaining from too much sexual climax because of weakened energy. Now science can actually back up this advice.
  • It makes sense in terms of evolution and fostering diversity why you would want to grow tired of one partner and seek out another. However, since we humans are in the rare 3-5% of mammals that pair bond, we have two competing bio-mechanisms at work. If you stick with orgasm-centered sex, then you are going down the road of habituation to your partner. On the other hand, if you practice sex that is non-orgasmic, you activate the pair bonding circuitry more and more strongly over time.
  • When you are focused on bonding activities, you actually become increasingly satisfied in your relationship - and take yourself off the path that would otherwise have potentially led to your dissatisfaction.
  • Bear in mind that there is a difference for new lovers, who are in the “honeymoon neurochemistry” phase for the first two years of a relationship. During this phase you won’t be as susceptible to the same pattern of habituation - but by the time you reach two years you are in danger of rapidly shifting into an orgasm-driven downward spiral.
  • Marnia encourages gentle lovemaking and intercourse without being goal-driven and orgasm-seeking.
  • She also teaches attachment cues or “bonding behaviors” that should be part of each couple’s daily relationship.  If you download this show guide you will ALSO get a link to her FREE GUIDE on bonding behaviors that will foster oxytocin production in you and your partner.
  • This kind of sex brings more attention to each partner’s needs, a stronger connection, more tenderness, lingering contentment, better communication, reduced anxiety, more energy, more understanding, and more balance in life.
  • This kind of sex is also sustainable over the long term. If you’re in a more dopamine (and orgasmic) centered cycle, you will potentially have to always be focused on new ways to create more dopamine. Why go down that rabbit hole when your body already has a mechanism perfectly designed to keep you sexually satisfied and in harmony with your partner over the long term?

Are you intrigued?  I promise that you will learn things you have probably never heard before from Marnia’s practical explanation of these techniques.  Give them a try, and please let us know your results!

Click here to receive the Show Guide and Bonding Behaviors Guide from the Marnia Robinson episode

Resources:   - Marnia’s website

Cupid’s Poisoned Arrow on Amazon

Text PASSION to 33444 to download the pdf version of this episode guide AND Marnia’s Free Guide to Bonding Behaviors.

FREE Relationship Communication Guide

Our Relationship Alive Community on Facebook   (Marnia’s episode page on my website)

Amazing intro/outro music graciously provided courtesy of:

The Railsplitters - Check them Out!