The Ultimate Christmas Relationship Survival Guide
More than 50% of couples experience mismatched sex drives
The main reasons why women lose their sexual energy, desire or drive, are very similar to the reasons why men lose their desire. These reasons, or "sex stressors" as I call them, for both men and women include:
ü lifestyle issues like out-of-control stress and long working hours
ü lifestyle choices like drinking to excess, smoking, ‘recreational’ drug use, and being overweight that leads to poor circulation – good circulation is important to sexual arousal
ü emotional problems like depression and anxiety
ü relationship difficulties, a lack of communication, or arguments with their partner that leads to unsatisfactory sex or a complete lack of desire and arousal
ü unsatisfactory sex technique and feeling inhibited to ask to try different things
ü certain physical problems like having a bad back, excessive fatigue after childbirth and in the early months of child rearing
ü other surprising things can affect your levels of sexual energy including medication - typically anti-depressants and blood pressure medications lower sex drive and affect arousal, unrelated worries like over financial problems, and even plain old boredom and routine
Do any of these sex stressors apply to you, your relationship and/or Your life? I'd actually be surprised if at least one didn't.
Here are a couple real life problems [names change]...
I’m very stressed out and have anxiety problems. This makes getting in the mood really difficult. And sometimes when we start having sex, I lose my focus and we have to stop. My girlfriend wants a better sex life. What can I do to satisfy her and myself?
Thoughts on solving it:
You can‘t treat the symptoms - which in reality is yours and her sexual satisfaction - you have to treat your anxiety problem. I hope you've spoken to your doctor about your anxiety. If not, you need to do so. In the meantime keep an anxiety diary where you note down the anxious periods during your day. After a week you may find it helps you identify your anxiety peaks.
Most who suffer from anxiety problems have a distinct pattern. Perhaps you worry most at bedtime, on waking, and towards the end of your day when you worry you haven’t finished things. When you've identified your peaks of anxiety, you need to tackle what causes these. For example, do you have anxious thoughts about not finishing your jobs during the day? Try some self-affirmations where you say, e.g., "why am I worrying? I've achieved lots today! The rest doesn't matter!"
Having got to grips with your anxiety, the symptoms of your anxiety - like the lack of sexual desire - will start to diminish.
Does birth control really affect your sex drive? I am at a point where I just don’t want to have sex and it’s becoming a problem. I am fine on my "week off" and then horrible when I am on the pills.
Thoughts on solving it:
It varies tremendously between women how much the birth control pill affects their sex drive and desire, and mood. Some women feel absolutely no effect and others experience strong side-effects that completely destroys their desire for sex. As there are so many options available you'd be best advised to go to your health care provider and discuss trying another type of birth control pill. You might find a different type doesn't affect your sex drive in this way.
It's crucial to let your husband know that you’re concerned over the affect your pill might be having on your desire. You don't want to keep him in the dark about this. Men (and women!) frequently blame themselves for their partner being turned off sex - when there may be another cause, as in your case the pill.
My new book The Emotional Eater's Diet is published in the UK on May 15 - I’m very excited as I hope emotional eaters - women or men will find it helpful. Each year 2/3s of people start a diet and 20% start a new diet each month. Yet 95% of diets aren’t successful.
I firmly believe that emotional eating to soothe difficult feelings is the culprit behind most of this failure. My book has a huge range of practical tips/strategies to help understand your emotions and manage your appetite. There are mini-quizes and real case studies.
It’s available to preorder on Amazon. Please remember that food can fuel your energy needs but not your emotional needs. Take care!
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