Are you a horse, elephant, sheep, snake, dog, rat, cow, buffalo, tiger, hare, monkey, mongoose or a lion? And, how about your love interest? Confused? No, it is not about animal instincts. It is about sexual compatibility between individuals. To give some context – Hindu astrology uses an eight factor compatibility system to predict marital compatibility using Kundali. Different factors carry different weights though. For example, “Obedience” carries the least, i.e., 1 while “Health” the most, i.e., 8. Sum total of these weights is 36 (surely, you would have heard of “chhattis guna” before). Sexual compatibility has a weight of only 4 (four), roughly one-tenth of the overall compatibility.
Question is do you agree? At least in the first few years of marriage when compatibility or rather the lack of it is clearly visible, sexual compatibility has a large role to play in keeping the relationship strong and together. And, even after a few years into the marriage, lack of sexual compatibility leave couples dissatisfied with each other and can result in people looking out for fulfilment outside of their marriage. One of the leading relationship wellness firm reports, in an anecdotal way, that majority of their cases are now about high levels of sexual dissatisfaction between couples.
Earlier when arranged marriage was how most people in India used to get married, there was no way to determine sexual or any other compatibility. That’s where astrology became popular which on the basis of the person’s name, time and place of birth could predict marital compatibility with another individual. Many people believed it to be the correct approach and even attribute low incidence of divorces in India to the Ashtakuta (eight guna) matching.
Today when arranged marriages in India have started to incorporate a period of courtship between couples, we now have more ways of finding compatibility, even sexual. The question is how to identify if the good old spark exists and is going to last a lifetime. Here’s how. And, it doesn’t require you to sleep with tonnes of people to figure out.
While it is impossible to know at the first instant whether the other person likes sex thrice a week, thrice a month or thrice a year (by the way, many end up with thrice a year ☺) physical attraction at first sight is a good place to begin.
#2 What sex means to you? And to your partner?
It is important to understand that sex means different thing to different people. Some people use sex as a way to feel connected. Others use it as a way to be silly and playful. Other like constantly exploring new things in the bedroom. Some people only have sex because they think it’s what they’re “supposed” to do. Some avoid sex due to traumatic experiences. If sex means love and intimacy to you, but your partner sees it only as a release, it’s not likely to work out in the long-run.
Communication is a necessary part of any healthy relationship, but it’s especially important when it comes to sex. You need to be able to communicate about consent, your boundaries, and your desires. You need to be able to give feedback to your partner, and be able to accept feedback from them. You need to be able to talk about awkward or uncomfortable moments, and about the good times too!
#4 Quality over Quantity
In sex matters, like in life in general, quality trumps quantity. Stress and other factors make it more difficult to have sex with the same regularity as you can in the beginning. Therefore, it is important that your partner too prefers quality – as in how one felt after that, mood, how active and invested one was. People who tend to ignore quality typically remain dissatisfied and that affects relationship later on.
#5 My Way or Highway
Sex doesn’t just happen. It needs effort. Perhaps the single most important factor to look for in a partner is willingness to make sex romantic and intimate. Is one open about what works what doesn’t? But if someone insists I like it my way, then from a long term perspective you’re likely to lose interest.
So the next time when you interact with a potential partner, do bring up the discussion of sexual health and compatibility once you have reached a certain level of comfort with each other. It is an investment that will help strengthen your relationship in the long run. Don’t leave it for an ‘after-marriage’ discussion. You are not two copulating flowers in a 70’s Bollywood song.
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