Get Your Sexy Back
Tips and Advice from the “Love Squad”

LA Parent
February 2007

Work, school, sports, errands, bath time, dinners, dishes – are you in the mood yet? If the answer is “no,” then you’re in good company.
Oftentimes, we’re just too tired or distracted to connect to our bodies, and our partners. Sure, a lack of libido can be a signal of a bigger medical problem, so consult a doctor if you suspect your lackluster desire isn’t from doing too much laundry and changing endless diapers. Otherwise, know that it’s common for healthy women to have a difficult time shifting gears from worker to mommy to sexy and back again.
This Valentine’s Day, make a vow to set aside the chores and deadlines and do something for yourself: Rev up the passion. L.A. Parent has assembled the following “Love Squad” to offer advice, tips and answers to the age-old question of how to get the sensual fires burning again.

The Love Squad

Joy Bergin – Bergin is a Sherman Oaks married mother of a son, age 7, and daughter, age 2. A stylist by trade, Bergin is the co-founder of the Hot Moms Club, which promotes the notion that “there is nothing sexier that confidence.”

Patti Britton – A L.A. based sex coach, Ph.D., clinical sexologist and certified sex educator, Britton is also the author of numerous books, including The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Sensual Massage.

Dr. Ava Cadell – The L.A.-based loveologist is a Ph.D., Ed.D., and board-certified clinical sexologist. She is also the author of numerous books, including Dr. Ava’s Tantra Workbook.

Jessica Denay – A Santa Monica single mother of a 7-year-old son, the former teacher is a co-founder of the Hot Moms Club and author of The Hot Mom’s Handbook: Moms Have More Fun!

Arthur Shapiro – Our sky panelist (who didn’t want to reveal his identity in a photo) is an L.A. film studio executive with a son, age 24 (from a previous marriage), and two daughters, ages 12 and 9. This dedicated dad and husband believes in having a full-size bed rather than a king to “keep in touch” with his wife of 17 years.

A Sexy State of Mind

There are plenty of things about daily life that make us feel anything but amorous. Some issues – like sleep deprivation or marital trouble – need to be dealt with before you can even think about getting sexy. But sometimes you just have to decide on a more sultry mind set.

Britton: Feeling sexy is not partner-driven, it’s you-driven. Fatigue, anxiety, stress, relationship issues, negative body image – these things impede a woman’s ability to feel sexual desire. Taking a pill of getting a patch or learning how to striptease isn’t going to change that.

Denay: It’s hard to feel sexy when you are changing diapers all day, running on only a few hours of sleep and showering so fast the mirror doesn’t even fog. But sexiness is a state of mind. It’s wanting to feel desirable and in turn, allowing others to find you desirable. “I want you” are three great words that are different than “I love you” because they are about being a sexual being.

Shifting Into Sexy

Once you’ve got your mind made up, it will still take time and space to get from “mommy” to “red hot mama.”

Britton: You need the “arc of transition” from normal daily life to sex time. Taking time for yourself is what’s going to give that to you. But that personal quiet time in the shower, a bath, getting that 10-minute neck massage or sitting in the care alone listening to music is necessary. In order to be sexual, you have to be rebooted.

Shapiro: Decompression has to be coordinated. If I know my wife is stressed and getting ready for bed, I will light a candle and put on music so that she can relax and let go of the demands of the day. And that leads to intimacy and togetherness, which may lead to sex.

Denay: Arousal starts in the mind, and anticipation is a huge turn-on. Write a love note and hide it in a book he’s reading. Mark “make love to me” on his calendar a few weeks in advance. Call him on the phone and sing a silly, made-up love song. Come up with secret code words for “I want you.”

Getting in Touch With Your Body

Many experts say that for women, the major part of sex is mental. But let’s face it, your body is definitely involved. Give it the attention it deserves.

Britton: Getting into your body and feeling its juiciness is the gateway to sexual pleasure. Maximize and accentuate the positive, whether that’s a push-up bra or taking the time to get a manicure and pedicure.
Bergin: Spa night is my fancy way of saying I take a nice, hot shower after the kids are asleep. It’s so tempting to just flop in bed after a long day, but taking a pampering shower makes all the difference.

Cadell: The most effective way to go from mommy mode to sexy-woman mode is to stimulate all five senses sexually.
Sense of sight: When you look sexy, you feel sexy.
Sense of hearing: Listen to music that turns you on.
Sense of taste: Eat or drink your favorite aphrodisiacs.
Sense of touch: Put silk, lace, leather or latex next to your skin.
Sense of smell: Try a favorite perfume or scented candles, incense, fresh-cut flowers. Examples of erotic scents are melon, chocolate, oranges, bread, must and sandalwood.
This causes the brain to release neurotransmitters that trigger the mood from mommy to sexy.

A Sexy Setting

If sex is an endangered species in your house, create a sanctuary where it is protected.

Denay: Your bedroom should be a husband and wife’s room, not mommy and daddy’s. It’s hard to feel sexy when you roll over onto a pile of Legos, or when your bedtime conversation consists of how Amy pooped on the potty. Leave the to-do list and the stress at the bedroom door. Make it a sanctuary from you “momminess.” And cuddle the kids in their beds, not yours. Bringing kids into your bedroom is a tough pattern to break but it will wreak havoc on your sex life.

Shapiro: We purposely have a full-size bed instead of a king. It’s impossible for us not to be touching. So in the quiet of the night, we’re in the same place at the same time, and there’s a calm that gets heated up by that touch.