Losing interest in sex
Michele is just 32 years old and says that she has lost all interest in sex. She is just no longer turned on by her husband of five years and doesn't know what she should say to him, or even what she should do.
She cannot imagine living a lifetime like this and wonders if her marriage is over. She does, at times, wonder what sex would be like with an attractive male friend of her husband and feels guilty about this.
Loss of sexual desire is a big female problem. Life has become so stressful and, for many women, its effect is seen quite early in the bedroom. Job stress, relationship issues, falling hormonal levels, childbearing and subsequent child-care duties often affect close relationships with male or female partners. Studies show that nearly one-third of women age 18 to 59 suffer from a loss of sexual interest. Their problems are multifactorial and complicated and cannot all be cured with medication.
When a woman experiences a decrease in sexual desire that affects her, life and causes distress to the relationship or even just to her then this is a problem which needs attention.
Sexual drive declines with age because of falling sex hormones in the body; however, interpersonal problems and problems with intimacy often play a larger part where sex urge has fallen or failed. Most females, when upset with their partner over some matter, do not want to have sexual intercourse with them.
For this reason, it is best to get to the root problems in intimate relationships rather than allow the matter to just pass. If not dealt with, then it just becomes compounded when other issues occur, leading to the death of sexual drive. When you are upset with a partner, your body might very well still have a sexual urge - just not for that person.
A woman's sexual desire is based on very complex interactions which involve intimacy, physical and emotional well-being, life experiences, beliefs and current relationship. Any problem in any of these areas can affect sexual desire.
Common causes for loss of sexual desire include:
• Lack of emotional satisfaction with a partner
• Birth of a child
• Caregiving for a loved one
• Job stress
• Peer pressure
• Low female testosterone
• Sexual abuse
• Betrayal by partner
• Thyroid disease, arthritis, cancer, diabetes
• Surgery for breast cancer
• Medications such as newer antidepressants and some oral contraceptive pills
• Age with falling blood androgens (hormones)
Treatment is often multifactorial and may address several of the above-mentioned causes in any one female. Treatment involves:
• Sex therapy
• Medication change
• Addressing medical problems such as uterine fibroids which causing pain during intercourse.
• Occasional off-label use of testosterone (hormone) prescribed by gynaecologist
• Lifestyle - A glass of wine in the evenings can promote amorous feelings, but too much alcohol can actually decrease sex drive.
Michele should try counselling and therapy with her husband before giving up. If walking out is considered a choice, then there is nothing to lose by being honest about the situation with your spouse and seeking help.
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