Cracking the Code to Conjugal Contentment by Maya Brash

· By Team PLEASE

Maya Brash

Meet Maya Brash, our newest addition to our Please family, and monthly contributor to our Pleasure Guide. Maya is a wife and mom of 2 hailing from sunny Durbs. With an unexpected oopsie in 2006, she became a mom at the tender age of 18. Subsequently she got married to her High School sweetheart at 19, marking the start of a 17-year-long partnership. Whilst raising kids and being wifey, she was determined to obtain her qualification in Psychology. Studying part-time and working full-time, she obtained her Honours in Counselling Psychology in 2019.
Since then she has embarked on continuous learning ventures, including Sexology, Sports Psychology and Crisis and Trauma. Today, Maya is a Psychology lecturer and High-Performance Mental Coach, specialising in athletes. However, her interests extend beyond the athletic realm, particularly towards the intricate dynamics of relationships. Despite her commitment to a monogamous relationship spanning nearly two decades, Maya embraces the challenge of keeping intimacy alive and thriving in the bedroom, viewing it as a vital aspect of personal growth and relationship fulfilment.



It’s so important to stay honest especially when it comes to the inevitable highs and lows of intimacy in enduring partnerships. Kicking off the first of many monthly columns, Maya Brash is opening up the conversation and advocates for deeper understanding and offers genuine solutions for couples seeking to navigate these complexities.

We are all familiar with those initial stages of a relationship where you cannot keep your hands off each other, the chemistry is electric and very little stands in the way of you and your next ‘smash sesh’. These are exciting times and many married couples or couples in long term relationships look back on those ‘good ol days’ when arousal came so easily. We ask ourselves ‘what happened to that chemistry?’ Suddenly, the electric fizz of early love seems as elusive as finding matching socks in a laundry basket. Well, the truth is, life happened, complacency happened, familiarity happened. Are you as excited about a gorgeous pair of shoes now, than when you first purchased them, no, because the novelty has worn off.

The question is, how do we keep things fresh in the bedroom, after being with someone for so many years? The answer to this question is not necessarily what you do in the bedroom, it’s everything but. I have witnessed numerous couples who have gotten married and whilst the ink on their marriage certificate is still moist they take their foot off the accelerator. They fall in to this mindset that, ‘I’m married now, I don’t need to put in as much effort’. YOU SHUT YOUR MOUTH RIGHT NOW!! This is where relationships/marriages go to DIE. Why is it that in the initial stages we seek to impress our partner, wear a cute outfit, shave all our bits, work out, do our hair, put on some lingerie etc, but with time, these things fall to the way side. Men, I am speaking to you too, general hygiene, ensuring your living space is clean and tidy, dishing out compliments or a sneaky bum grab. Why do we stop doing this???

My husband and I dove headfirst into matrimony with a baby in tow, which meant we skipped the leisurely strolls down the pre-child memory lane. Before our son arrived, I was in Matric and our interactions were confined to weekend visits and Wednesday night “coffee dates” in the car at the beach. We were always chasing that honeymoon phase, therefore, we were intentional about continuing to ‘date’ each other. 17 years later we continue to both make an effort to entice the other, this can look like wearing lingerie (me, not him), sending steamy messages during the day, communicating openly about what we like or don’t like in the bedroom, creating a wish list of things we would like to try, having regular dates even if it’s just a coffee before work and biggest one of all, not allowing finances to impact this dedicated time together. Our kids know that bedtime is non-negotiable because that is our time. Sending the kids to sleep out so we can have a night alone at home. All these little things contribute to bringing your focus back to each other and prioritising that time.

Now, I am not going to sit here and paint a picture of perfection. We have fallen short of these very things several times and rubbed each other up the wrong way frequently (and not the kind of rubbing we were hoping for). Many aspects like poor body image (on my part, particularly following childbirth), mental health and the list goes on, often contribute to these ‘dry periods’. As I am sure you can imagine, 17 years of marriage brings many arguments, disagreements and disconnection, however, we have never used sex as a weapon or form of punishment. Sexual intimacy has been our way of connecting back to each other and finding that familiar space that feels safe, warm and exhilarating.

So, if you have stopped putting in that effort and your partner has too, sit down and acknowledge this with each other in a honest and gentle way. Make a commitment to start dating again and sit back and watch the sparks fly.


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