How can I get him to cuddle?

Dear Dr. Patti:

My husband is a very good lover and knows exactly what to do to make me perfectly happy -- until the sex is over. Don't get me wrong, he loves me and I love him, but I just want to know how to get him to cuddle more. When he does cuddle, it's great, but the times he does are few and far between. I realize that there is some kind of hormone that a woman has more of that makes her want to cuddle more, but how can I tell him that I just miss being close sometimes after sex?


Dear A:

You are one smart cookie. There is a distinctly female hormone that contributes to your feeling the need for cuddling and nurturing. It's called oxytocin. There's an interesting book that describes the differences between men and women from a sociobiological perspective, A Brief History of Everything by Ken Wilber. It's pithy, fascinating reading and may inform your sense of yourself regarding your experiences in bed.

I suggest that you tell your lover what you need and open up discussion about how your mutual sexual sharing can be enhanced. Be sure to come from a loving place when you talk to him, as often men (and women) feel that they somehow are failing as lovers if they are asked to change their behavior. Use slow, quiet tones and simple language. Just say what you mean and what you would like. Perhaps the two of you can play a little game and share with each other what's great about your sex together and what's missing or could be improved. Yours is not a major request. It's common for women in particular to state to me that they want more of the sensual and affectionate types of touch, rather than "straight sex." The phase of sexual response that you are describing is what I like to call the afterglow. This period of just lying together after an act of love (or lust) can be a wonderful time for reconnecting and reestablishing your bond with your mate. Have confidence that you can get there.

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