While GR and I keep our bedroom as a sexual sanctuary (ie, no clutter in the room) we do not worry much about setting a preliminary, romantic atmosphere with extra props such as candles, music, lighting, clothing, stripping, etc. When it comes to these things he and I tend to lean towards minimalism. This may have something to do with our lack of reliance on romance in general. Perhaps part of it is our history of not having sex for so many years. Maybe our age has something to do with it (ie, in our 60’s and 50's)... I do not know.
It is just that most of the time when we get together we are quickly and easily into each other. If we had to stop and say, "Wait, start the music," or "Wait, get the candles and light them," or “Wait, I’m not wearing the right thing,” it would only slow us down. And this has nothing to do with how fast GR and I sexually wind up or wind back down because we do spend much time on our sexual encounters… probably more than what many couples do.
Often I hear spouses talking about how they usually depend on these props to help them get in a sexual mood. I view couples or individual spouses as falling into 1 of 3 categories with this-
1. those who prefer equal time on both sex and romance
2. those who need/want most of their time spent on romance
3. those who need/want most of their time spent on sex
Are you a 1, a 2 or a 3? Does your spouse fall into the same category as you or a different one? Does it work for your marriage or not and why? If it does not work, if it creates havoc, what ideas would maybe bridge the gap between how you and your spouse view sex and romance?