According to the American Medical Association several million women in the US suffer from low libido (or lack of sex drive) something they now call “female sexual arousal disorder” or FSAD. Some estimates according to netdoctor.co.uk even put it as high as 43% of women. That’s an F (excuse my French) SAD statistic if so!
Funnily enough, very few men suffer from this condition, so what gives? Is it just that they are wired differently and sex is a more fundamental need, as necessary as food and water (or just about)? Probably!
That makes for some very frustrated couples out there.
Some problems with libido are not easy to resolve. If your lack of sex drive is due to psychological issues or sexual trauma in your past, you may need professional help to get over these.
Luckily, for most of us, the solution is more straight forward and the problem is totally curable without drugs or outside intervention.
Of course, you have to want to solve the problem.
If you don’t care whether you have sex or not, then you might be quite happy to be free from feelings of lust. Just make sure that your partner (if you have one) is lacking in those feelings too, or that you are happy to be free from him as well, because those differences in sexual desire will put a huge strain on your relationship.
If you like sex when you actually have it, but never feel like it these days then help is at hand. The answer (or answers) to cranking up your sex drive may lie right here – simply tackle any of these things that are adversely affecting it.
Too much of the same old routine in the bedroom can destroy all the excitement in a sex life and kill your libido stone dead, especially if the excitement wasn’t that great to start with.
Don’t put up with a less than fantastic, varied sex life but don’t expect your man to do all the work either in putting the excitement back into the bedroom. If he hasn’t done anything about it so far, it may be because he thinks you’re quite happy with the sex you do have and would be shocked if he suggested trying something new.
It’s time to talk about expanding your repertoire without making it seem like an accusation that he is doing something wrong. Take a look at some of the strategies in the series on Putting The Spark Back Into A Relationship, particularly the articles on playing games and using erotic books for ideas. You might also like to start a Sexy Bucket List to give you a joint pool of new activities to try.
It has to be said that many women decide to beat boredom by having an affair and inevitably their sex drive returns in spades in those circumstances (proof that there was no real physical reason for the lack of it). But if there’s any love left in your current relationship, surely it’s far better to bring back the spark there than cause a lot of heartbreak for everyone and constantly seek the excitement of someone new?
Lack Of Privacy
In every society, sophisticated or primitive, couples seek a space away from others when they want to get it together. So if you never get time with just the two of you, if you always have kids creeping into your room or you can hear next door through the thin walls (and are therefore sure they can hear you), it can be a real passion killer.
Find practical solutions to whatever is bugging you. Get a lock for your door so the kids learn to knock. Stop them sleeping with you by always putting them back to bed when they arrive at your bedside in the night. Book a babysitter to take the kids out or swap babysitting with a friend so you get time alone. And make the most of the times your neighbors are away on a trip (or you are). Alternatively, move the position of your bed, bedroom or love making so you can’t be overheard. There’s always a way!
Conflict And Resentment
If you’re feeling resentful towards your partner then you’re unlikely to feel loving and giving in bed. Unless you get off on the spark of an argument and make up sex, you have to work through any issues outside the bedroom to have a chance to have great sex in it.
Conflict occurs over money, kids and chores more than anything else in relationships and petty differences can often end up destroying any chance of good times between the sheets. See Conflict Over Chores for an example of how to tackle conflict so that it doesn’t destroy your sex life.
If you’re ill then sex is probably the last thing on your mind and with good reason. Give yourself a break and take the time you need to heal. Just don’t ignore how your partner is feeling or shut him out. Kisses (unless you are contagious) and hugs are always good and can make both of you feel good, and sometimes giving and receiving sex, even in a limited way, can make you feel better.
Imagine you are in bed with your man and in the mood for love, when you hear an intruder downstairs. Fear, worry and anxiety can dissolve sexy feelings in an instant. So if you have a high level of stress and anxiety going on all the time, it makes sense that it’s likely to drive your libido through the floor.
You have to tackle this issue at source. If there’s anything that you are anxious about that needs to be tackled, like a debt crisis, then the best thing you can do is take action together with your man and get any help you need from experts. Sort it out as best you can.
But if the problem is more generalized constant stress, then learn to switch off those anxious feelings and relax. Regular meditation and yoga are great for relaxation, and aerobic exercise helps burn off the hormones produced by stress and anxiety. They’ll have added benefits of making you look and feel better in many other ways too.
Too Focused On Work
If you’re climbing the corporate ladder or wrapped up in making your own business a success, you might find all your thoughts tied up in making a success of your work, and forget to give enough time and attention to your home life, even when you actually are at home, or even in bed.
Women have complained about guys doing this for years, but now in some couples the tables are turned. You have to make sure you spare the time and energy to focus on your partner and your love life, and not make work your only priority if you want to enjoy a healthy sex life and be able to look forward to great times in bed with your man rather than reading a report.
We women, even the most beautiful (apparently), are really an insecure lot. We think our breasts are too droopy or too small, our thighs are too wobbly, and our stomachs are too big even in clothes and so when we reveal all, we suspect he might recoil in horror.
You should make the most of yourself, for sure, that’s not a bad idea. Everyone can look better with attention paid to diet, exercise and grooming. But don’t let your insecurity over your looks stop you having fun in bed. Guys rarely notice the details that we do. He’s oblivious to a few extra pounds, laughter lines and cellulite but he WILL notice if you never want to have sex with him.
To feel your sexiest ever, and increase your willingness to bare all see Body Confidence: How To Feel Sexy.
One of the primary causes of not feeling like sex is a feeling of fatigue or exhaustion. If you’re tired all the time you’re unlikely to feel like using up more energy between the sheets. To get your libido back, it’s essential to tackle the reasons why you feel tired. See Passion Killer: Too Tired For Love for ten possible causes of feeling too tired for sex and what to do about them.
Apart from the hormonal changes you experience after giving birth and the soreness “down there” with bruising and stitches a not too distant memory, you are likely to feel less than your sexy self with a stomach like a deflated balloon and leaking sore breasts. Childbirth is really not geared up to making you feel like a sex goddess. Add to that the exhaustion of caring for a demanding infant – and all the new parent anxiety – and you can forget feeling sexy for a few months after the birth. In fact, it’s just as well sex is completely off the agenda until your post natal checkup gives the OK, so you don’t even have to think about it!
The answer is really just to give yourself time to recover physically and emotionally from the trauma of birth, to claw back time for yourself (see the Too Tired For Love article for this) and then to take things gently, using lots of lubricant if you need it the first couple of times. It’s important for the sake of your relationship not to let the sex-free period go on too long, so persevere and you’ll soon get back in the swing of things.
Don’t worry if you think you’ll never feel sexy again. If that was the case, no one would ever have a brood of children.
Not Having Sex
With guys the less they have sex the more they crave it, but for many women abstinence seems to work differently – the less sex they have, the more they get used to not feeling sexy and they put it out of their mind.
Sometimes you just have to start having sex to kick start your libido. Give yourself a target of having sex three times this week and see how quickly your sex drive returns. See also Feel Sexy, Have More Sex for more about this.