A Kiss is Just a Kiss? Not Necesswarily!

If you haven’t experienced that kind of kiss lately, it’s time to get back to the basics of romance.

I’m convinced that the reason so many married couples have unhappy or nonexistent sex lives is that at some point along the way they abandoned the trappings of romance, such as kissing. They feel it’s unnecessary, even embarrassing, to display their affection in such an uninhibited way after years of marriage. They assume that sexual desire can continue indefinitely without the reinforcement of romance. But for too many couples, once the kissing stops, so does the sex---or at least the kind of sex that those early kisses promised and delivered on.

I’m not the only one who believes that passionate kissing deserves a central place in the lives of married couples. Dr. Sandra Scantling, a certified sex therapist and a faculty member at the University of Connecticut Medical School, has written in a published article that, in her clinical experience, “…kissing satisfaction is a pretty accurate barometer of a couple’s overall satisfaction with intimacy.” Dr. Scantling goes on to say that “kissing can be more intimate than intercourse,” and that intercourse without kissing is for most women---and many men, too---deeply unsatisfying.


Kissing can be more intimate than intercourse? Absolutely. I happen to know a woman who has written a book detailing her former life as a professional escort. She points out that kissing is not part of what you might call the basic services provided by sex workers. It’s considered a “girlfriend experience” that clients have to pay extra for---sometimes considerably extra. In fact, she says that some escorts won’t kiss clients on the mouth, no matter what. They feel that kissing crosses the line, and turns a business transaction into a personal one.


And according to an article in the Chicago Tribune, something similar happens in the world of swingers’ parties. A woman who organizes such events was quoted as saying that the only activity that is strictly forbidden is kissing. “For us, sex is recreational,” she pointed out. “But kissing is personal. You only kiss the person you really love.”


But what if the person you really love reacts to your unexpected display of affection with shock and bewilderment: “Hey, what got into you?” Don’t let that deter you. Just say that you had the irresistible urge to kiss a sexy, good-looking man. Trust me: even a guy who is anything but sexy and good-looking likes to know that a woman thinks he’s sexy and good-looking. Once you’ve done it a few times, his bewilderment will turn to pleasure, and you may never have to initiate the kissing again.


To quote Dr. Scantling, the sex therapist, once again: “Let’s return kissing to its rightful place in lovemaking. Dare to be as intimate now as you were then, and hopefully even more so. And never underestimate the power of a kiss.”

Jim is a graduate of Boston College Law School, and practiced divorce law in Boston for over twenty years. After moving to Arizona, he became a full-time mediator for the family and divorce court in Phoenix. His experience in working with divorcing couples, plus his own life experiences---he was a 20 year-old husband and father, and a single father for several years after his divorce---prompted Jim to write a book (“Mid-Life Divorce and the Rebirth of Commitment”) that helps people avoid divorce by teaching better ways to communicate and resolve disputes.Jim is currently an advice columnist, relationship writer, and personal coach. He also puts on workshops dealing with marriage, divorce, post-divorce dating, and other aspects of men-women relationships. See Jim’s website at www.attorneyatlove.com

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