By Nicola di Trevi

Sex and marriage. Karl Lagerfeld, the German fashion designer who recently passed away at 85 once claimed that marriage was invented when people died at 30. “Now they marry at 30 and have to do it for 60 years.”

60 years of having sex with only one person? 60 years of wanting only that one person? Of even only thinking of that certain human being while masturbating? That is what society might expect of us – at least one that does not shudder at the thought of people making love at 90.

I have been married for more than ten years and can safely say that I still love my partner as much as I think I can ever be in love with someone. Also, my partner and I are still enjoying having sex with each other; I even believe that we have managed to steadily improve this part of our relationship over the years while at the same time maintaining a satisfying average frequency of “it” per week.

And yet I want more. I want variation. I want something new. By “new” I do not mean a new position; I think that by now my partner and I have figured out the ones that give us the most pleasure. Also, I am not thinking of a different location; maybe it’s utterly uncreative but I really like to do it in our warm bed or on the cozy couch in our living room. And lastly, I am also not talking about sex toys, although there are some which I should finally try because they might take my intercourse sensations to a whole new level and increase the intensity of my (already quite satisfying) orgasms.

And yet I want something else. I want someone else: a different beautiful mind to explore; a different body to touch, feel and taste; and a sexual experience that I won’ t have with my partner even if we tried every possible position, location or sex toy on earth. Because we already know each other.

Having said that, of course you never really know everything about anyone else, and with a small variation in the way you are making love you can spice things up for a while. But I simply want to get between the sheets with someone new. Not every day and certainly not as a replacement for my long-term partner. Should I really have a bad conscience for wanting something that is not accepted by society? Isn’t it a sad truth about human nature that we get used to even the best things in life after a while? And isn’t it part of our permanent pursuit of happiness to be searching for the next “kick”?

You do not eat your favorite dish every day, nor do you wear your favorite shoes or listen to the same music all of the time. So why would you want to have sex with one and the same person every day for all of your life? I have no doubt that indeed couples exist where the partners sexually desire only each other all through life (Remark: if you belong to this group of people then you can stop reading here). After all, nature (or for that matter: god) created all varieties of sexual orientations and preferences. But if you – just like me – are one of those who are in an actually healthy relationship and yet dream of having sex with someone new every now and then, then you have what I call the “infidelity dilemma” as you can pursue only one of the following pathways:

You remain faithful. Downside: you condemn yourself to an unremarkable sex life and you might start thinking of someone else while you’re doing it with your partner (I would call that “mental infidelity”).

You have sex with somebody else without prior agreement with your partner on “opening” the relationship (aka “cheating”). This approach is very dangerous as you risk destroying the trust your relationship is based on if your partner learns the truth.

You and your partner agree on “opening” the relationship with or without the promise of telling the partner everything immediately afterwards (but with the mutual commitment of always playing it safe). The agreement itself is the relatively easy part. The hard part is how to deal with jealousy. How will you really react when you find out (or suspect) that your partner is having sex with someone else? If you think you are immune to that kind of emotion let me remind you that even the famously promiscuous French author Catherine Millet fell victim to it.

Are you also faced with the “infidelity dilemma”? If yes, how do you deal with it?


Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this blog post are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the “Schwelle”.

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Image: Pop E. Popp (Creative Commons 3.0 License)