The 8 Signs You and Your Partner are Sexually Compatible

E.B. Johnson

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by: E.B. Johnson (Image by @crystalmariesing via Twenty20)

Sexual compatibility is an important part of most relationships, yet we often overlook it or push it to the side. When it comes to sexual intimacy, we have a tendency to downplay its importance or rank it lower than concepts of romantic love or romantic gestures. While, for some, this prioritization might work — for others it can lead to a major divide in their partnerships. We have to take our sexual needs seriously and part of that takes exploring our sexual compatibility early on in our relationships.

Intimacy is important in relationships.

While not every relationship requires a strong level of sexual intimacy, most partnerships do. As humans, most of us have a drive to reproduce and to connect on a really deep and vulnerable level. Good sex lives allow us to reconnect when times get tough, but it also allows us to enjoy one another and see one another in a way that is both transformative and hard to deny.

Sex makes a big difference in most relationships, whether it’s good sex or bad sex. When we ensure that we’re sexually compatible — and when we work to compromise in the bedroom — we unlock new powers of connection and intimacy that hard to replicate through more platonic shows of affection.

Likewise, bad sex lives can leave us disgruntled, unhappy and otherwise trapped in relationships that make us resentful and bitter. If sex is very important to your style of attachment, a partner who can’t match your stamina is one who might leave you feeling insecure. You have to be honest about what you want, and you both have to be honest about exploring your needs. Want to improve your relationship? Work out your sexual compatibility early.

The 8 signs you and your partner are sexually compatible.

Still wondering if you and your new love interest are really sexually compatible? These are the signs to look for, and what they could mean for the longevity of your relationship.

Aligned intimacy profiles

Do you and your partner already have established similar tastes when it comes to intimacy? Do your patterns and sexual habits align well? When you have similar ideas on sex, or similar sexual backgrounds, it makes your intimacy profiles more alike. The greater the similarities these profiles hold, the greater natural connection you’ll find in the bedroom, and the serendipity you will find within your intimate relationship in general.

A show of sparks

Do you still get those explosive sparks and tingles any time your partner walks into a room? When we’ve got a natural chemistry, we don’t have to do much work to get the gears going; we turn one another on automatically and without having to put in on a great show. There’s an undeniable pull between the two of you, and it doesn’t matter whether you’re on other sides of the room, or other sides of the country. Though this magnetic draw may come and go, its power is tangible to you both. When it strikes, it strikes hard.

Going the extra mile

Though our sexual attraction should be strong and automatic — at the same time, neither partner should sit on their laurels and wait for the other one to come running. When you want them, you should have no problem communicating that desire with them, or otherwise letting them know that you’re “open for business”. This indicates a certain comfort level, as well as a conscious desire to get frisky and explore the boundaries of your intimacy.

Personal exploration

Have you done a lot of sexual exploration of your own? Has your partner also led a sexually free life that has allowed them to identify precisely what they want and how they want it? The more free you both are when you come to your partnership, the better you will be able to come together in alignment in a sexual relationship. That is because you both have fewer hangups around the issue and find being open about sex a much easier affair. (Been there. Done that. Got the t-shirt.)

Open communication

Communication is key in any relationship, but it’s really important when it comes to communication about sex. Not only do you have to communicate with one another, you also have to show a willingness to listen to one another and make some compromises when it comes to the bedroom. This isn’t to say that you put yourself in places you aren’t comfortable with, but it does mean that you make an effort to branch out and help your partner explore their sexual interests (within set boundaries).

No need to overcompensate

You don’t feel pressure to put out more than you want, nor do you feel as though you are getting shortchanged in the bedroom. This means attentive partners who see to your needs, as well as partners who don’t pressure you for sex and partners who have similar sexual drives. When you’re with the right person, there is zero need to over-compensate — but that’s something that can only happen by getting intimate with our spouses and significant others.

A natural fit

Things flow and balance naturally from intensity to calm; chaos to slow passion. Whatever pace you set for yourselves, the two of you seem to always be able to get in-sync and find the middle. Things don’t just come with an easy amount of effort, they come with a natural flow that helps you both stay connected and on the same page when it comes to sex and intimacy. Natural flow is indicated by an easy falling-into-place, but it can also be indicated by a partner that always just seems to know what you need.

Feeding into fantasy

Do you find that you just want more, more, more of your partner? If you’ve found someone that stirs passion in you, or you’ve found someone that fuels your fantasy — it could be a sign that you sexually compatible. Our subconscious has a funny way of guiding us toward the things that are a good fit. So, a nagging desire to get down and dirty with your new flame can be your brain quietly telling you that this is the one that makes things go BOOM in the bedroom.

The best ways to explore sexual compatibility with a new partner.

Getting our intimacy in-sync isn’t something that happens by accident. It’s very much something that happens with conscious effort and commitment. If you want to establish whether you’ve both got it in the bedroom — you’ve got to explore your sexual compatibility honestly and openly.

1. Be ready to communicate

When it comes to our romantic relationships, communication is key no matter what facet you’re attempting to work out. When we talk to one another, we open up and allow ourselves to be seen. More than that, however, we give our partners a chance to be seen and we give ourselves a chance to listen explicitly to them without distraction. Getting to the root of your sexual compatibility requires talking about it and doing it with both candidness and compassion for one another’s needs.

Talk it out. Find a comfortable and relaxed time to sit down with one another and have a discussion about what makes you tick in the bedroom. Let the conversation happen naturally and keep it light-hearted and fun. It’s often a good idea to have the conversation at the end of a good night together, or on the back of some other happy casual experience. Talk about what you like and don’t like. What feels good and what doesn’t.

If you can’t even have a frank and candid conversation about sex, you either aren’t ready to have it — or you aren’t ready for one another. That means opening up about what makes you tick, but also making sure your goals are aligned when it comes to what could result on the other side. What are you going to do if the sex results in a pregnancy? An STD? Talking about our sexual compatibility isn’t just about what feels good…it’s about the “what-ifs” too.

2. Tap into your open side

A big reason why we end up in sexually unfulfilling relationships is because we have so many of our own hangups around sex and sexual intimacy. These hangups keep us from talking about sex, but they also keep us from being honest about sex with our partners and ourselves. If we want to move forward and find a new way to enjoy one another, we have to find our open side and dig deep to find our sexual truths.

If you’re still facing discomfort at the thought of facing up to your sexy side, then take some time apart from your other-half to get comfy on your own. Ease into the waters. In the silence of your own uninterrupted safe-space, think about what turns you on. When you’re comfortable there — expand it.

There’s no right or wrong way to go about exploring your own sexuality. Let your fantasies roam free and don’t put a cap on them. There is nothing shameful or guilt-worthy in your sexual preferences or interests, so long as they don’t harm or infringe on the natural rights of others. Explore ethical pornography, or find a way to spend some time alone with your body and your thoughts. Be open and be willing to explore if you want to tap into your truly sexual side.

3. Find the fun in experimentation

Although we almost have to explore our sexual compatibility systematically, approaching it in that manner will guarantee a flop every single time. Intimate moments with our partners — whatever we’re into — should be enjoyable, exciting experiences that leave us feeling better for having had them. When we’re done, we should feel like we had a good time. We can do this by making a game out of it and ensuring we keep these light and without expectation.

According to Emily Morse, a sexologist and host of the Sex with Emily podcast, playing games are one of the best ways to explore sexual compatibility with a new partner. This is because playing games is fun, which make us more comfortable and therefore more open. Board games like Oral Fun or Monogamy are a great place to get started.

Keep it lighthearted and curious. Don’t ever make it rigid, scheduled or otherwise daunting in nature (lest you scare one another off). The more light we are in our approach, the less we feel the daunting weight of one another’s expectations bearing down on us. This is a highly effective way to get to the bottom of what you want in the bedroom vs. what they want in the bedroom. And it’s a great way to create fun and lasting memories with the person that you’re falling for too.

4. Create an intimate bucket list

We don’t often think of lists as a part of the sexual journey, but it’s a great way to address any sexual compatibility issues you want to get settled early on. This isn’t to say that you should make a minute-by-minute checklist of all the sexual tasks we want to get accomplished in a session. It’s more about prioritizing the things we want to explore and figuring out what’s truly in our wheelhouse.

Don’t save your bucket lists for the end of your life. Get into making a sexual bucket list and top it with the first 3–5 things that you want to try out the most. Be honest. Don’t throw “orgy with the neighbors” at the top of your list if you’ve never even had the courage to go skinny dipping.

Creating these lists in-tandem with your partner can be a fun exercise in getting aligned in the bedroom. Set each other with the task of coming up with a list at the start of the week, then trade your final lists with one another just before the weekend. This is a great way to open up to one another without having to directly express your explicit desire (if that’s still a bit uncomfortable for you).

5. Keep working it out

While sexual compatibility should come with a measure of natural flow and ease, things don’t always have to start out that way. Some of the best things in this life come only after years of practice and hard work. While good sex doesn’t take years, it can take a little practice and “wiggling of the knobs”. Once we get the calibrations right, though, watch the sparks fly.

Don’t give up on your partnership just because the first or second thing you try doesn’t work out. Don’t throw out the baby with the bathwater. Be willing to work, but also be willing to compromise and come (always) from a place of respect and reverence for one another and your bodies.

Make some of your intimate experiences more about your partner. Make others more about you. Find equilibrium in the bigger picture, and within that find your sexual compatibility too. Don’t downplay your needs, but don’t walk away if your partner doesn’t get it all right the first time. Give them room to experiment and give yourself room to adjust too. Good sex is like mastering an instrument. We have to both the right fit and our own personal artistry.

Putting it all together…

If sex is important to us as individuals, it’s important that we build relationships that have a strong base of sexual compatibility. Getting that compatibility, however, requires us to get intimate with the people that we’re interested in building lives with. Once you’re comfortable, it’s important to explore the sexual compatibility that you and your new love interest share. The sooner you know what makes one another tick, the more potential aggravation you can avoid.

Talk it out. The first step in getting closer to your true sexual compatibility as a couple requires you to both open up and be honest about your sexual desires and your sexual needs. Don’t shy away from the brutal truth and don’t downplay your needs. Find your open side and get into “sexual bucket lists” so that you and your partner can start to crack the code of what sexual intimacy looks like to you. Make a game of it. The more light-hearted and expectation-free you keep it, the easier it will become for you both to open up and enjoy yourselves (and one another). Be willing to work. Don’t walk away the first time you try something that doesn’t work, or the other person can’t compromise. There’s so much fun and excitement to explore when it comes to our sexual compatibility. Allow yourselves to explore without fear and without judgement.

  • Mark, K., Milhausen, R., & Maitland, S. (2013). The impact of sexual compatibility on sexual and relationship satisfaction in a sample of young adult heterosexual couples. Sexual And Relationship Therapy, 28(3), 201-214. doi: 10.1080/14681994.2013.807336

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Writer. Host. Certified coach. Host of the Practical Growth Pod. Master Practitioner NLP. Get all my books and resources at the link below.

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