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How to have a Healthy Couples Dialogue in Tackling Sexually Triggering Topics

Updated: Dec 4, 2023

In Episode 204, Mark & Steve take on what is often a very difficult topic for couples—talking openly, authentically and non-defensively about all aspects of their sexual relationship. This episode is in response to a situation and question sent in by a PBSE listener. Her partner is in active, genuine recovery from porn/sex addiction and doing a lot of things right. Yet, there are some aspects of his behavior that she is unsure about. Here's how she describes the situation— "My question today centers around what should our new "normal" look like in the bedroom? . . . My partner has completely stopped watching porn and masturbating and has been strong in this rule since May of this year. He does however still tell me about his fantasies about me during the day. How he will dress me up in his mind and think about me in a sexual way, along with other scenarios he might conjure up . . . I can't help feeling that by doing this he is still living in a fantasy world. I'm not sure this is a good thing. We have a very healthy sex life in the real world and we are both still very attracted to each other. I'm unsure how to bring this up because I don't want to take away from the fantastic work that he is doing, but at the same time if his addict brain is still activated then we will need to address it. I understand this may be a difficult topic to address as every human is different but I would love to hear your thoughts on how an addict's brain in recovery should treat lust towards their partner. Thank you again for all that you do." In this episode, Mark & Steve do not delve into the topic of "What is healthy sexuality." They have covered that subject in many past podcasts. For example, in episode #170 “Why Are Sexual Boundaries Critical for A Truly Connected Coupleship?”, and Episode #144 “Are the Sexual Practices in your Relationship ‘safe’? How Can You Know?” In this episode, Mark & Steve approach this situation from the realm of “advanced intimacy and communication." HOW can a couple talk about deep sexual/intimacy issues in a healthy, collaborate, unifying way? - The Personal/individual work you MUST do in advance BEFORE tackling this topic as a couple. - Specific elements of healthy, collaborative coupleship communication when engaging in this sensitive topic. - The absolute "dont's" when trying to tackle this topic as a couple.

Learn more about Mark and Steve's revolutionary online porn/sexual addiction recovery and betrayal trauma healing program—"Dare to Connect!" You have live access to Mark and Steve in 3 one-hour sessions every week—addicts, spouses and couples! And live support groups on weekends, facilitated by Mark and Steve! To try a free, 2-week trial, visit—

Find out more about Steve Moore at: Ascension Counseling Learn more about Mark Kastleman at: Reclaim Counseling Services

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