Many women will experience a loss of libido at some point in their life. Lack of sex drive is often associated with menopausal symptoms, but women at any age and from all walks of life can suddenly go off sex. While there isn’t a set in stone solution, there are lots of different things you can try when sex has gone off the menu for you.
5. Sleep More
Poor sleep can pretty much affect every aspect of your life, so if you’re not getting enough sex, it could be because you’re not getting enough sleep. If you have difficulty dropping off try a warm bath or gentle exercise before bed If your bedroom is full of stuff then clear it out so you’ve got a space that will relax rather than irritate you. Avoid alcohol and if you smoke, be aware that tobacco is a stimulant so having a cigarette before bed can keep you up.
When your mind is occupied with other things, it’s difficult to add sex into the equation. Stress is part of life but it doesn’t need to be debilitating. If you know why you’re stressed (money, weight, job, kids etc) then think carefully about steps you could take to lessen your load. If you feel stressed but aren’t sure why then seek medical advice. Mediation, exercise and laughter are all great stress busters and promote better health too.
3. Hormone Therapy
Whether you’re menopausal or not, your low libido could be due to a hormone deficiency. DHEA deficiency has been proven to lead to lack of libido and replacement therapy can often help. Stress and tiredness can drive your hormone levels down so discuss your symptoms with your doctor but make sure he or she informs you about side effects before you decide to start treatment.
Holistic treatments have a bit of a bad rep in the UK but herbs like Ginseng have been used for thousands of years and are thought to improve stamina and endurance and increase libido. However, if you have a high heart rate, high blood pressure or other heart problems then consult your doctor before taking Ginseng.
L-theanine is a green tea extract that is thought to focus and calm the mind. Many people who find their mind starts to race the minute their head hits the pillow have found L-theanine to be an effective way to eliminate the problem.
Many women believe that when they don’t want to have sex with their partner it’s due to lack of libido, but it could be because you’re not particularly enamoured with what you’re getting out of lovemaking. If sex with your partner is not that pleasurable then it’s completely understandable why you wouldn’t want to do it. Whether or not your sex life has gone off the boil, leaving the subject open for discussion and finding out more about what you and your partner do and don’t like will lead to a better experience for everyone involved, so if the sex you’re having just isn’t cutting the mustard, don’t be afraid to talk about it.
A plate of oysters, strawberries dipped in chocolate, a steamy movie or a couple’s massage can set the mood for great sex. Sooner or later, however, these tried-and-true aphrodisiacs may start to feel tired. Fortunately, science has discovered some innovative ways to rev up the female sex drive. Here are six surprising libido boosters for women.
Forget the sappy chick flick or romantic stroll on the beach. Studies show that a suspenseful movie or high-energy sport can be the most amazing aphrodisiac. When women and their partners do exciting things together, their bodies respond in ways that are similar to sexual arousal. Excitement activates the nervous system and gets the heart racing.
A Glass of Red Wine
According to a study published in a sexual medicine journal, red wine is a natural aphrodisiac. Women who drank a daily glass of red wine reported greater sexual desire and more vaginal lubrication. This is probably due to the polyphenols in wine. These healthy antioxidants open the blood vessels and increase blood flow to the genital region.
Red Clothes (On Him)
Everyone knows that a woman in red can drive a man crazy. As it turns out, seeing this color on their men can put women in the mood for sex. According to one psychologist, the color red signifies status and power. Many women find these traits to be sexually stimulating.
Romantic Finger Locks
Holding hands is a sweet and sexy gesture. When romantic partners touch each other, even with small finger locks, their bodies release a hormone called oxytocin. According to researchers, this hormone draws people closer and increases sexual arousal. Spontaneity is key, however, since unexpected excitement prompts the release of oxytocin.
The Scent of His Sweat
While smelly gyms rarely gets women worked up sexually, the smell of their men can actually accomplish that. According to a popular journal of neuroscience, the scent of male sweat can increase a woman’s level of a stress hormone called cortisol. Elevated levels or this hormone can boost female sexual arousal.
Yoga Exercise Poses
According to a journal on sex and marital therapy, yoga is an awesome practice. It offers physical, mental, emotional and spiritual benefits. It is also an excellent aphrodisiac.
Not only do yoga poses get the body limber, but they also throw the sex drive into high gear. Yoga enables women to become familiar with their bodies. This can help them get in touch with their sexuality. Yoga may also improve female orgasms by increasing blood flow to the genitals.
More Women Want It
A recent report on sexual health noted the percentage of women who wanted a better sex life: 47 percent. What they desire and what happens behind closed doors are usually very different. A low sex drive is a problem for a lot of women.
When familiar libido boosters no longer work as they did in the past, it is time to try something new. These six surprising libido boosters can spark sexual interest for women and their partners and spice up their sex lives.
Allison Hammond is a dedicated researcher and author. She has been researching the complex female libido for more than 13 years. Allison has made it her objective in life to discover solutions that can improve the lives of other people. Her research revolves around a holistic approach incorporating nutrition and exercise. When Allison is not researching a topic such as female sexual dysfunction, she loves discovering new hiking trails with her husband.
Estimated reading time: 2 minutes, 58 seconds. Contains 596 words
When “Not now” is more common than “Yes! Yes! Yes!” in response to sex, low libido could be the cause. While it is hard for some women to admit their suffering, they are not alone. Low libido affects up to 50 percent of all women.
Sex should be exciting for women instead of something they dread. It should improve their health and make their lives better. Many women want this, but their diminishing sex drive messes with their desire.
Luckily, a lost sex drive is not gone forever, and women do not have to go to extremes to get it back. There are many natural ways to increase libido, including vitamins and other nutrients.
What Causes Low Libido?
Before women can treat low libido with vitamins, they must understand why they lack sexual interest. Knowledge is power, and it can give women a better idea of how to boost their sexual desire.
Negative emotions are the biggest libido killer for pre-menopausal women. Because the female sex drive is multi-dimensional, anxiety and depression can have a profound impact on libido. Emotions can change female hormone production, causing vaginal dryness and anorgasmia. For some women, antidepressants are the best solution.
In menopausal women, diminishing hormone levels are the biggest culprit to low libido. Estrogen, progesterone and even testosterone play important roles in the female sex drive. According to the Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, hormone replacement therapy can help.
Female Libido Vitamins
Based on what causes a low sex drive, antidepressants and hormone therapies can be very effective. Unfortunately, they can cause unwanted side effects. Some antidepressant drugs actually worsen libido problems. Hormone therapies can increase the risk of heart disease and cancer.
Because of these side effects, many women turn to natural treatments for anxiety, depression and hormone regulation. Some of the vitamins found in foods and supplements can address these issues and increase the female sex drive. Here are five essential vitamins.
Vitamin E — Vitamin E is known as the “skin vitamin” and the “lubricating vitamin.” Women can use during sex in place of commercial lubricants. Even when they are not having sex, they can use vitamin E gel to lubricate vaginal tissue and increase sensitivity.
Vitamin C — Vitamin C is called the “miracle vitamin.” It is a powerful antioxidant that fights illness and promotes health. Good overall health is essential for a healthy sex life. The vitamin’s mood-enhancing properties may increase sexual desire.
Vitamin B-6 — Vitamin B-6 is part of the B-complex. It interacts with other B vitamins to support health. Older women may wish to supplement their diets with this vitamin it can reduce the dramatic hormone shifts associated with menopause.
Vitamin B-3 — Vitamin B-3, also called niacin, is another B-complex vitamin. Women who are deficient in this vitamin may experience problems achieving orgasm. Niacin aids in the production of sex hormones. It also improves blood flow, which may increase sexual arousal and pleasure.
Vitamin B-2 — Vitamin B-2 is also called riboflavin. It is recommended for women who experience vaginal dryness. Riboflavin restores natural lubrication in all parts of the body.
Female enhancement supplements often contain these vitamins, along with herbs and minerals that support sexual health. L-arginine, an amino acid, works with the vitamins and other ingredients to increase sexual desire and function.
Lyndsay Stafford is a dedicated health and wellness researcher and author. With over 9 years of experience Lyndsay has made it her mission to discover natural solutions that can improve the lives of other people. When Lyndsay is not researching health related products such as female libido vitamins, she enjoys to grow organic fruits and vegetables with her husband.
We can all get a little bored sometimes of the same routine when it comes to having sex with your partner, but there are elements within a relationship that can help you to spice up your sex life.
Certain foods are well known to increase your sex drive and mood; chocolate, oysters, figs, tomatoes and asparagus are classed as an aphrodisiac; in other words stimulate certain parts of the brain that cause you to be excited sexually due to sugar, vitamins and the look. Just think about peeling back a fig – for men this resembles a woman’s vagina, chocolate gives you a boost of sugar and stimulates the brain, oysters also resemble the opening of a woman’s vagina and tomatoes are a sexy red color. Experts say that visual is a key element when it comes to sexual pleasure! This is fantastic news for both you and your partner.
If you’re a little more adventurous, why not try edible and flavored sauces specially made for the bedroom? There are lots of different flavors out there, so if you and your partner don’t like the same flavors, get two or three different tasting ones! This will drive your partner wild in excitement.
Why not just try one or two sex positions that will not only turn you on, but also your partner for the suggestion! One position that is easy to do that you may not have tried before is to put a pillow or two (whichever you like most – try them both) under your backside and let your partner enter you from the missionary position. You will have an even deeper feeling as your partner enters you from a deeper angle, which will give you an even greater orgasm.
If you have tried the pillow and looking for something a little more adventurous, why not try the standing against a wall position? If your partner is strong enough that is – if not try getting him against the wall and have a steamy and passionate kiss and let things follow from there.
Sit on your partners lap and slowly kiss and caress one another whilst looking into one another’s eyes – even if they are watching their favorite program, trust me your partner will put you first and spontaneity is key here.
There are so many other things that you can do to spice up your sex life in addition to trying new sex positions and food.
If you don’t fell like being adventurous or want to try anything new, just go along with your normal sex routine, but with a little twist; go slower, much slower. This will get you both very horny and sexually attracted to one another and what happens next will be explosive, believe me.
Send your partner a saucy or naughty text message whilst they’re at work; say anything you want, one example being don’t work too hard cause you’ll need all of your energy for later. All day, your partner will be thinking about what is going to happen all day, once they are home.
Why do many people dream of having a massage and even pay to have an all over body massage? Well it’s because they are so sensual and pleasurable therefore, just spare a bit of time on one rubbing massage oil into one another, but remember try to take it I turns, if you can hold out that long that is.
No you don’t have to go buy a load of roses to set a romantic and sensual scene for you and your partner – why not try putting your best linen and covers on your bed, have a few cushions and light some candles. If you’re feeling really romantic, have a bath together and lay in each others arms – make sure the lighting is right; candles and dim/no lights is a very sensual scene. Even if you don’t think your partner is sensual or romantic, try it and see.
Sam is a sex industry expert and knows all about facts and history of sex toys for men and women.
Everyone who has ever been in a relationship has, at some point, gone looking for ways to boost their sex drive or enhance the overall experience.
One popular technique for improving a sexual relationship is weight loss. But, does it really work?
Weight loss and exercise do play a role in sexual satisfaction. For example, exercise increases circulation. If you engage in exercises that target the pelvic region and increase blood flow to that area, it will really create some sparks.
Also, studies show that obese men often suffer from erectile dysfunction. The extra weight complicates blood flow and decreases libido.
But other than that, weight loss isn’t as effective as you might think. A much more significant factor is mindset.
If a woman has gained a few pounds and feels self-conscious about her body, it will definitely have a big impact in the bedroom. She won’t feel comfortable being vulnerable, losing her inhibitions or immersing herself fully in the experience. How can she if she is constantly trying to keep covered, preventing her partner from seeing her “flawed” body?
Rather than trying to lose weight for superficial reasons, women should learn to let go of their insecurities instead.
Granted, this is much easier said than done. After all, we are constantly bombarded by the media’s portrayal of the “perfect” women and people around us are uttering hurtful comments like, “Is that your second piece of cake?!”
Changing your mindset needs to be a process. Acknowledge that you don’t need to have the body of a supermodel. Learn to love the body you have. Then, you can begin to enjoy sex more completely.
You may find this difficult, but you need find things you like about yourself. Once you start analyzing your appearance, you’ll probably be surprised to find how many good things you have going for you – your beautiful smile, your sparkling eyes, your smooth skin.
Once you feel confident about certain areas of your body – flaunt them. When you know you have something enjoyable to offer your partner, it won’t be so difficult to surrender yourself to your partner’s far less critical eye.
Focus on these good things and those extra pounds won’t seem as offensive.
If you are bound and determined to lose weight, make sure it is for the right reasons. There are obvious perks to a nutritious diet, regular exercise, and a healthy lifestyle. However, if you are doing these things for the sole purpose of enhancing your sexual experience, you probably won’t be successful.
Without a positive self-image, losing weight doesn’t do much good. Your sexual satisfaction relies more on your mindset than the number on a scale.
If you need even more reassurance, ask your partner about your weight, appearance, and performance in bed. Chances are, you’re perfect just the way you are.
What do you think? Have you been trying to lose weight because you think it will help in the bedroom? Do you struggle with self-confidence? Or, have you learned to accept your body as it is? Sound off in the comment section below – we want to hear from you!
Today, guest author Emily Greene is writing from personal experience. She recently embarked on a major weight loss journey. Originally, her goal was to lose weight to increase her sex appeal. But after a while, Emily changed her aim and strove to lose weight to enhance her overall health. Now she regularly brags about the b12 shots she used to lose so much weight. When she isn’t writing about her experience with vitamin B12 injections, Emily is helping other women enhance their experience in the bedroom by boosting self-confidence.
For men and women everywhere, the news that drug abuse negatively affects sexual performance long-term, even after an extended amount of abstinence from the drug or drugs, is attention-catching.
Although previously thought to recover after a length of not using drugs and alcohol, it is now being proven that sexual performance can be impacted for a long time after substance abuse. A study of 905 men included 549 who had been diagnosed as addicted to either alcohol, cocaine, heroin, marijuana, or several substances at the same time, but who had now been abstinent from all substances for an average of one year. The remaining 356 men were used as the control group.
The results found that the areas of sexual desire, sexual satisfaction, arousal, and orgasm were negatively impacted by the man’s previous substance abuse when compared with the 356 men who had not previously been addicted to drugs or alcohol.
What The Study Revealed:
That study’s implication: substance abuse and addiction at any time in a man’s life will continue having an adverse effect on his sexual performance. The study also explored the impact of each substance on sexual performance. The Journal of Sexual Medicine ran the results of the study, conducted at the University of Granada and Santo Tomas University in Colombia. The use of cocaine or the speed-ball technique, the combination of heroin and cocaine mixed together and injected as a single shot, was shown to greatly affect sexual pleasure possibilities while only slightly affecting sexual desire. During high use times, cocaine abusers and addicts actually have heightened sexual desire.
Sexual arousal is shown to be most affected by the use of, abuse of, and addiction to alcohol, and the ability to orgasm is most impaired by cocaine, heroin, alcohol, and speed-ball abuse. Mainly drugs that have an effect on serotonin production, release, and re uptake influence the four areas of sexual performance. Prescription drugs, and more specifically antidepressants, that work by increasing the level of serotonin in the body and brain, mimic the part of you that would naturally realize that it needs to release more serotonin. For whatever the reason at the time, the body or brain feels that an event in your life is in need of the neurotransmitter, serotonin, so the supply of the chemical is increased and you feel better. Your mood improves.
Drugs & Serotonin:
The same thing happens when you take a drug that does what the body and brain can normally do on its own. When there is a false, unnatural chemical tells your system to up the amount of serotonin available to you, the natural system does not know when it is needed. A break in this system causes the user to feel that only the drug that has been triggering the serotonin release can make them happy, and make them feel good. Without, it the individual’s mood feels extra low.
As the prescription drug, illegal drug, or alcohol elevates the user’s mood, its effects also seem to be triggering, or stimulating, other neurotransmitter receptors that cause a decrease in the libido, or sex drive, of that same user. So, not only is sexual performance at the time of intoxication impaired, but we now know that many areas of healthy sexual functioning are forever negatively influenced by drug and alcohol abuse.
It seems common knowledge that at the time of alcohol intoxication, or during a high from drug use, sexual desire is heightened. Drugs like ecstasy and cocaine are notorious for having an aphrodisiac impact, but now the very appeal of the drug is what will negatively affect sexual performance in the long-run.
What does this mean for the millions of men and women who have used and abused drugs and alcohol at some point in their lives? What can be done?
Sex is an unparalleled opportunity to learn how to work with energy flows and develop awareness of the existence of states of reality that are beyond the physical. Although it starts with the body and appears to arise in the body, sexual energy can take us into a state of awareness that is far greater than our normal daily consciousness.
I refer to this expanded state of awareness as the vastness of being because it is very much a sense of vastness, of taking part in an existence that occurs on many other levels. We might imagine our everyday existence as a narrow band of reality within something that is actually so huge it is beyond our wildest imaginings. We perceive the truth of this in the aftermath of orgasm: a blissful perspective from which our daily worries seem ridiculous and trivial.
However, the fact that it takes us into an expanded state of consciousness is only part of what we can learn from sex. It can teach us how to work with flows of energy through the body, and that is the basis of the art of manifestation, which in turn is the art of choice, which is perhaps the most basic of the various arts of being human. When we really know how to make a choice and then apply it to physical reality so that we can manifest what we want here and now, we are much more likely to be able to be happy. (I am qualifying this slightly, as it’s very common for people to think they want a particular thing, and then find that it doesn’t make them happy—but that’s all part of the process of life).
I’ll explain the basics of this first and then go into it in more detail in another post. The first and most important aspect of choosing something is to allow ourselves to experience desire. We can desire anything—but sexual desire is often more familiar to us than other form of desire. Think of it as a sensation moving through your body, without labeling it. It is simply the sensation of energy (which is life-force) building inside, and it wants to be expressed. In truth, it doesn’t have to be manifested as sexual energy, but the intensity of the feeling is often interpreted as sexual partly because that is what we know, and partly because the intensity can be uncomfortable, so that we sometimes just look for the quickest way to release it in order to get back to feeling “normal.” It’s a good idea to get used to that sensation, because it is about life moving through us, and when we allow it, rather than trying to avoid it, we are more alive. That means we are energetic, enthused, excited, present, motivated, and focused: in short, we are full of life. Doesn’t that sound like a good thing? Especially when you consider that most illnesses can be traced back to areas of stuck energy in the body.
In the process of sexual desire, we experience various stages that might be categorized thus: an initial build-up that demands our attention, an increase in intensity that is very much a physical sensation, a very specific focus, an almost irresistible sense of urgency, and then a powerful and sudden release, followed by a state of bliss which can last a long time if we allow it. In a situation which we don’t define as sexual, these stages can all occur slowly and gradually, but the process may also be very rapid, and the format is often very similar, with the various states I have described above being more or less acute or prolonged. I’ll say more about how this applies to manifesting what we want in physical reality in my next post; meanwhile, you might practice recognizing and savoring these various stages in non-sexual situations, particularly when you are being creative.
Mikaya Heart is an award-winning author and a life-coach. Her latest book is The Ultimate Guide to Orgasm for Women (see mikayaheart.org).
What is sex? I’ve never heard an answer that made sense so I have made up my own. I seems reasonable to define sex as concentrated energy which, when it flows through us, gives rise to very pleasant sensations – that might by some people be called ecstasy or bliss. You’d think from this description, that we would all want to be having sex all the time. Yet many people, women especially, have placed a lot of restrictions (conscious and unconscious) on allowing sexual energy to move freely. Is it simply socially imposed conditioning, or does it go deeper? Do we have the same ambivalence about allowing other kinds of energy to flow? I would say we do, and that is a problem we need to address, because if we want to shape energy into forms of our own choice (that’s what manifestation is) then we first need to allow it to flow. Perhaps allowing a flow of energy is not as simple as it sounds – and perhaps there is something very profound to look at there.
Physics has taught us that everything is energy before (and after) it coalesces into a physical form, so the art of being in physical form is about allowing energy to flow through us and manifest in the ways we choose – coalesce into the kind of form we want, that is, whether a physical thing or an event or a particular state of mind (such as happiness). In other words, when we are really accomplished at allowing energy to flow, we choose something, and it happens. Most humans have become very adept at blocking energy flows, because it can be a very alarming sensation, so intense that we are afraid of being overwhelmed and out of control. An intense orgasm, especially when we are not used to it, can be quite shocking, taking over our bodies, and shaking us from the inside out, bringing up feelings that we would prefer to ignore. All powerful flows of energy, whether sexual or not, can have this effect, and so most of us become very accustomed to blocking them. Even when the attempt to block the flow is producing very uncomfortable pains and illnesses that western medicine struggles to diagnose, we still do it because it is familiar. We don’t know how to do otherwise. Ever remember being told, “Now, don’t get carried away!” by your parents or friends? Yet that is exactly what a powerful energy flow does. Like sexual desire, it carries us away out of our staid, limited, rational personas, into a reality which – once we’re used to it and have stopped trying to resist it — is blissful, delightful, and very much removed from the average daily life.
This is what sex can teach us. In circumstances that aren’t sexual at all, allowing a flow of energy can produce sensations very similar to orgasm. When we transpose that letting go, based on a foundation of trust, into our daily lives, we can learn to let energy flow through us freely and manifest in whatever ways we choose, rather than letting it take form by default. It is our fear of the flow, not the flow itself, which causes discomfort. Sex is a metaphor for life. Learning to be an adept in the art of being human is about allowing a flow of energy, learning to remain relaxed, trusting that the outcome will be beneficial. This kind of allowing cannot be forced. It cannot be artificially induced in any way. It cannot exist in an atmosphere of lies. It is absolutely real, and we must be willing to be absolutely authentic to allow it to happen. That means, being exactly who we are, nothing less and nothing more.
Mikaya Heart is an award-winning author and a life coach. Her latest book is The Ultimate Guide to Orgasm for Women. www.mikayaheart.org
Learning to accept people just as they are is one of the keys to good relationships. If you are not constantly trying to change people, looking for everything that could be made better, and figuring out how to improve everything, but instead accepting, enjoying, allowing, and embracing what is right now, then you will be a much easier person to be around—and I mean that on every level: you will be easier for yourself to be around as well as for others to be around! We tend to learn, women especially, that it’s our job to set things to right, and we have to keep our eyes peeled for anything that might be wrong so we can fix it. We extend that to our loved ones, feeling like it’s our job to make sure they are good people.
In truth, we can never change other people. They will change when they are ready and not one moment earlier. The art of loving someone is to accept him or her exactly the way that s/he is right now. The art of communication is about listening to what someone is saying without critiquing it, without making any judgment about it, just hearing what is said. When we can do that, a person feels really heard—and it’s a wonderful sensation. On the other hand, the sensation we feel when someone wants to change us is not pleasant—and even if it’s never spoken, everyone knows the difference between the two. The desire to change one’s partner creates a lot of friction in a relationship even when it’s never verbalized.
So letting go of judgments is a good thing to do. I don’t mean that we simply accept what we don’t like, welcoming everything into our lives willy nilly. We need to be clear about what our personal preferences are, and that is the second essential aspect of clear communication: knowing what you want and being able to state it. But that doesn’t make someone else bad for wanting something different. Labeling what we don’t want as bad is not useful.
The really extraordinary thing about accepting things the way they are without trying to change them is that they tend to change of their own accord once they are completely accepted. It is a profound truth that what we resist persists; and the corollary of that is that what we accept changes.
We tend to have particularly strong judgments around sexual desire. Arguing about whether it’s right or wrong is a waste of time–it’s just what one person likes and another doesn’t. It’s the same as one person liking to go running, and another liking to watch TV. Because those are not such loaded situations, solutions tend to fall easily in place – you just decide to do them separately. We tend to attach much more importance to what goes on in the bedroom, yet if you can communicate clearly with your partner, it may well be that solutions will unfold easily there too. As in all areas of life, you both need to make a commitment to working together so that you both get what you want. That is the true meaning of the word, partnership.
Mikaya Heart is author of The Ultimate Guide to Orgasm and other books.
When a powerful orgasm surges through our bodies, it reaches into all those dark corners where we may be hiding difficult emotions. As we grow up we are taught that part of being adult is controlling our show of feelings, and we learn to suppress any that are considered inappropriate. But feelngs always want to flow, and although we may manage to hide them, even from ourselves, for many years, we will always be using some energy to prevent them from emerging into the light of day. In order to have an orgasm, we have to allow the body to take charge, and the body isn’t interested in keeping those emotions hidden. When the energy of orgasm releases, it floods through us and can easily carry those old stored emotions out into the open, and then we may find ourselves feeling things that seem quite irrelevant to the moment. For instance, women who have in the past been molested or forced to have sex against their will may experience intense anger at the moment of orgasm even when they are having a very loving exchange. (This can happen even to women who don’t remember any sexual abuse, since we inherit memories and fears from our culture and our families.) It is very likely that those feelings will arise when we are with a partner whom we really love and trust, because it may well be that we originally suppressed them at a time when expressing them would have been dangerous. The subconscious self is very smart–it won’t be prepared to let go of them until it’s safe to do so: when we are with someone who really loves us.
Recognizing and giving voice to those old feelings is a necessary process of healing. First of all, it frees up the energy that we have been using to hold them down. Secondly, those kinds of feelings are literally toxic, and can cause all kinds of deepseated dis-ease which may manifest physically, mentally, or emotionally. We are much more likely to be healthy individuals when we get rid of them. Thirdly, when we are freed from any residue of old feelings, the feelings that do come up for us are always related to the present moment and, since they never lie, they can give us a great deal of useful information which the rational brain might not be able to access.
Loss of sexual desire in longtern relationships is often due to the need to keep hidden feelings under control. Sometimes this is resentment that has arisen within the relationship, and sometimes it is older than that. Once we become comfortable and at ease with our partner, the part of our psyche that wants to release the hidden stuff starts rearing its ugly head; and since sexual desire brings it up, we cannot afford to continue being sexual with that person unless we address the feelings. Of course, this occurs on a level that isn’t accessed by the normal rational thought process, and it can be made much more difficult when we try to use the rational brain to justify what we are feeling. I wrote a blog on feelings about a month ago, which will be very useful to anyone going through this kind of thing.
Sometimes the feelings that come up apparently have nothing to do with sex. It may be very difficult to talk to your partner about them, especially when they are very intense. But if you want to maintain intimacy with your partner, you must be able to talk about what is going on for you. Know that you are not alone. This is a fairly common phenomenon amongst women, and although it can be a difficult process to go through, being on the other side of it is very empowering. If you suspect your partner may be having feelings that she isn’t talking about, encourage her to do so by letting her know that you are sympathetic. And in spite of the fact that I have used the female pronoun here, it is certainly possible for men to have the same problem.
In my last blog, I mentioned some basics around feelings, what they are, and how they affect us. I’m very fond of saying that the rational brain is limited in its value, and when it comes to feelings, that is particularly true, because feelings have nothing to do with the rational brain.
The place where difficult feelings first arose is often our childhood, when we were forced to try to ignore them in the process of trying to be adult. Denying feelings requires tremendous energy in the long run (and many people deny them for many years). Holding our bodies tightly so that the feelings won’t flow is a major source of stress, and trying to block the flow is never one hundred percent effective, so unexpressed feelings leak out in unpleasant ways, which usually makes a person unpleasant to be around. The extraordinary thing is that even the most difficult feelings will transform, often very quickly, when they are expressed – allowed to flow, that is—and the sense of freedom that suffuses us when we do that is awesome. Learning to express emotions as they arise, without dumping them on others, is my definition of what being adult really is about. It is an art, and not necessarily an easy one to learn. Yet the importance of allowing one’s body to express itself (and feelings are integral with the body), of being demonstrative without being violent, cannot be underestimated.
When the need to withhold feelings is strong enough, it will prevent us having fulfilling and rewarding sex, because a part of us wants to stop the orgasm that would otherwise open the floodgates to feelings, as a powerful orgasm will do. In the long run that usually results in lack of sexual desire, and I’ll say more about that in another post, because it can be very valuable to address that. Allowing feelings to flow through us freely, a process that sex can facilitate, has enormous repercussions: it is a huge step in the direction of leading a fulfilling and rewarding life. It’s not that sex in itself is the answer to life’s problems (although research has shown that good sex can alleviate a great deal of pain and illness), it’s more that it clears away blocks to what is possible. It opens doors to an absolutely different perspective, one that is free from worries and concerns, one where we are simply and fully who we are, and that is all that is necessary. What would happen if we lived from that perspective on a daily basis? The majority of the things that take up our brain space would simply fall away, as we grasped the reality that how we feel is much more important than getting things done. We would see with very different eyes and hear with very different ears. We would marvel at the taste and texture of a piece of bread and butter. We would spend a lot of time appreciating the beauty around us, and our judgments of what is beautiful would change radically, as we interpreted our reality from the present moment instead of from our cultural conditioning. We would operate from a place that was free of judgmental preconceptions – and that is the ultimate definition of freedom.
Mikaya Heart is the author of several books, including The Ultimate Guide to Orgasm for Women.
Sex is a big part of any adult’s life. Even if you are not getting any action between the sheets, chances are that you are still thinking about it fairly often. If you are in a relationship, sex may well be the make or break factor. Several studies have shown that when couples have different sexual needs and desires, the relationship does not last very long. In spite of its significance, however, it is remarkable how many myths about sex people actually believe. Here are the top sex myths and their corresponding realities. See if reading through this list eases some of the pressures in your mind!
Men Always Want to Have Sex
A lot of women, especially when they are young, are very nervous about entering a relationship, since they are constantly bombarded with the impression that men are sex-driven maniacs, who will spare no opportunity to get their partners into bed. The truth is that this false image pressurizes young men as much as it does women! Guys are scared to admit to their peers that their libidos are not as super-charged as they are made out to be, and it ends up being the ‘Emperor’s New Clothes’ kind of a situation.
The reality is that anyone’s sex drive, man or woman (young or old), is influenced by a multitude of factors and generalizations rarely ever stick. It is true that young men often have a higher sex drive than young women, but the difference is not always as vast as suggested.
Your Partner Expects You to be a Sex God/Goddess
Especially if you have the idea that your partner is sexually more experienced than you are, you may fear that you will fall short of their expectations. Guess what? They are probably just as nervous as you! Just because someone is more experienced than you does not mean that they have a better understanding of sex itself, what the opposite sex wants and what they themselves want. In any case, every person is different with different sexual needs, so previous experience is not really a big plus point. If you want great sex in your relationship, what is most important is that you overcome barriers of embarrassment and communication with each other. When you understand each other’s fears, needs, desires and turn-on’s, you will enjoy an incredible sex life.
Sex is for Young People
This is one of the most shocking sex myths in the 21st century. Just because older people don’t talk about it as much and they are not featured as sex symbols in the media does not mean that they don’t enjoy sex! Contrary to belief, older men and post-menopausal women are not deprived by nature when it comes to their sex lives. Yes, sex drive does decline a bit with age, but it certainly does not wither away. What matters more is someone’s habits, lifestyle and mentality.
Men Cheat More
This is one extension of the common sex myth that men have a greater sex drive than women. However, once again, this myth has been busted a number of times by psychologists and relationship experts. Recent studies have revealed that one common reason for this myth is that women are better at keeping their affairs secret.
After browsing through this list of common myths about sex, you already have a better understanding about it. Remember, about sex more than anything else, you should be very skeptical about what is projected in social circles, in movies and on the television and your relationship will never be strained.
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There is a lot of talk about love at this time of year. It’s a subject this culture really doesn’t understand; many people believe that as long as they love their partner, it’ll be a good relationship. Life is not so simple. Experiencing deep love is a glorious thing–and it’s important to realize that compatibility and the ability to communicate are what make a relationship flow smoothly. The ability to communicate requires both that a person is able to listen and that s/he is able to express her/himself clearly. But we are not generally very good at listening – most of us are much more invested in making ourselves heard, and we have already made our minds up before the person we are supposed to be communicating has even offered their suggestions. Because people so often operate that way, many so-called intimate relationships are more like battlefields than negotiation grounds. If your prime motivation in life is getting everything to turn out the way you have already decided you want it to be, you aren’t going to be interested in listening to anyone else’s opinion except in order to refute it. That’s very limited: listening to others and being open to new ways of doing things, new ways of being and new ways of thinking is a much fuller way of life. Sadly, an awful lot of people, especially men, have an approach to life that is about asserting themselves as the ones who decide what’s what, and they truthfully don’t want to hear what others have to say. They are not interested in a cooperative partnership, they only think about operating in a competitive mode. No relationship can benefit both partners without cooperation; they must both be operating from the basic assumption that they can work things out to mutual benefit, and they have to want the best for each other. What often happens is that they divide their lives up and choose the particular areas where each of them are the boss, which sometimes works and sometimes doesn’t. This is where compatibility comes in—if they can easily settle into an agreement about who gets to be in charge of what, then they are compatible. If they just can’t come to agreements easily, then they are too different to be able to spend time together easily. That isn’t anyone’s fault, it’s just the way it is, and you hope you fall in love with someone who is compatible with you.
I have had a few people tell me that their most explosive relationships—the ones where they had dramatic fights with their partners–have also been the ones with the best sex. It’s as though all the energy they raised through arguing found a powerful outlet in the bedroom, or the energy of sexual desire sometimes needed another outlet. That’s an interesting line of thought: perhaps we can learn to channel energy in particular directions, learning to be aware of energy building, and choosing whether we manifest it by fighting or having sex. Making conscious choices like that would require a considerable level of self-awareness, and the ability to contain the energy when necessary, but it would certainly be possible. Any healthy relationship requires the ability to negotiate, which is about self-awareness—being able to state your needs, listen to your partner, and then decide together how you can both get your needs met. Most people never even get as far as recognizing their needs on any deep level, because they are too busy avoiding their feelings, which are what tell them what they need. But we can all learn—if we’re willing.
One of the key things in any healthy relationship is allowing room for either or both partners to change, which is, after all, the one reliable constant in our constantly changing world. That’s where the true meaning of loving someone comes in: when you really love someone, you always want the best for that person, to the point that you are willing to encourage them to do what is right for them: even if it means they move on into a new phase of life that doesn’t involve spending time with you. That kind of generosity may seem beyond the bounds of possibility for some of you, yet very often, the only reason we are so attached to making a relationship last a long time is because we have it tied up with a notion of security, and if we had the self-confidence and trust that enabled us to believe we can have very rewarding lives without a permanent partner, we might much more easily be able to let things unfold the way they need to.
The old mode of the monogamous relationship that lasts a lifetime still works for some people, but many of us are finding it outmoded. We want to experiment with life, trying many different flavors. No one has any business judging anyone for that. If your choice of lifestyle involves having multiple partners, I say do what you need to do – just be considerate of others and practice safe sex. There are still social taboos against anything outside the standard model of marriage, even when that clearly hasn’t been working. So we don’t talk about these things a whole lot, and definitions are vague. Monogamy refers to having one partner at any one time. Serial monogamy is having one partner, breaking up, getting together with another partner, and repeating that cycle ad infinitum. Polygamy is usually used to describe men who have several wives. Non-monogamy is a much broader term that also refers to having more than one partner at one time; most people who fit that description would call themselves non-monogamous rather than polygamous. Within these terms, there are many different models. Probably the most common is having a primary partner, and then having affairs which are not considered as important as the primary relationship. In some cases, a couple will take a third lover and all three of them are sexual together. Then of course there is partner swapping between two couples, a practice that is probably less common. Any of these relationships can run the gamut from occasional one-night stands to deep longterm commitments. I know of one couple who have been together thirty years, and still are happily married. A few years ago, the woman became lovers with another woman, who has a warm, loving and nonsexual relationship with her partner’s husband. In many cases, though, the primary partner doesn’t want to know anything about her/his lover’s lover. What works for you is what works for you – there are a million different ways of having wonderful, and not so wonderful relationships.
Mikaya Heart is an author and life-coach. For more information, check out www.mikayaheart.org