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Libido Disparity, A Common Problem

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Name: Chris
Gender: male
Age: 29
Location:
I’m 29 and I’ve been married for the last 3 years. I was seeing my wife for 5 years prior to being married so I guess it’s been a total of 8 years that we’ve been together. When we first got together everything was great the sex was outstanding ya know 69 all types of positions tons of oral, tons of foreplay and she had an orgasm every time. It seems that just in the last couple of years everything has dwindled away to the point where it’s her on top for a little bit, me on top for a little bit till I finish then we go back to the living room and hang out. Whenever I bring up the subject she gets very uncomfortable and won’t talk about it. And it’s really starting to freak me out in every aspect of our relationship. I love the girl, so I don’t want to go anywhere. I’m wondering if there’s any hope to get things back to the way they used to be that fresh hotness and spontaneity. How can I bring the heat back?

Like I always say, If I had a nickel for every time I’ve heard this same complaint from a frustrated and desperate man or woman trapped in an undersexed marriage, I’d have enough money to lay down my keyboard, give up my status as the most fabulous and revered sexpert in the universe and retire to Maui.

Despite the frequency of the grievance, it still breaks my heart to hear the despair. I mean it’s one thing to have the sexual connection between partners drift away by mutual consent. It’s another thing all together to have one partner dissolve the sexual connection unilaterally while leaving the other partner bewildered and disoriented.

And what gives with a partner who refuses to talk about why the sex has taken a nosedive? That is so wrong. I can understand not knowing exactly what to say about things goin’ south, or even how to say what may be on your mind, but to clam up all together, that’s just unfair. Suppose the problem had to do with finances instead of sex. What if one of you decided to start splurging on major purchases without consulting the other? There’d be hell to pay then, huh? There’d be no duckin’ out of the responsibility by clamin’ up in this instance, I’ll bet. But when it comes to sex, somehow the same rules for accountability don’t always apply. Why is that?

Sexuality is both a personal expression and a means of bonding with another. Thus sexual wellbeing in a relationship is way more than just the old in and out. It means taking responsibility for one’s eroticism as an integral part of relationship. Sex is a way of expressing one’s self as well as our love for the other. The confusion, unhappiness and anxiety that results from the breakdown of this fundamental tenet will, as you suggest Chris, spill over into and contaminate other areas of the relationship. But it doesn’t need to happen.

When I encounter this predicament in my counseling practice, I always build in some individual time with each partner even though the couple is there for “couples counseling.” I often get a much better sense of what’s causing the breakdown in these private sessions than I do when the couple and I work together as a threesome. Sometimes it’s easier for the individual to talk to me privately than to be open, honest and forthcoming about his/her feelings with his/her partner sitting right there.

My experience tells me that more often than not, a refusal to discuss sexual concerns has more to do with not knowing how to express oneself without hurting the feelings of the other. Sometimes an individual simply doesn’t know herself why things are different than they once were. Sometimes there are lifestyle issues at play — family concerns, work concerns, lack of sleep, drugs and alcohol consumption, etc. Sometimes there are medical and psychological issues that impact on a person’s libido — weight gain, birth control, other pharmaceutical drugs, diabetes and depression to mention a few.

There’s also something we in the business call: “desire discrepancy disorder,” which is just a fancy-schmancy way of saying one partner has a stronger libido then the other. But often the simplest and most ordinary explanation is that the partnered sex has become stale, rote and boring.

Whatever the cause of the imbalance, it needs to be addressed as a couple. Once the couple has identified the problem the next step is learning how to talk about it in an effective yet non-threatening way. This can be tricky, to say the least. But it is still so much easier than trying to avoid the issue all together.

Ok, so your wife is reluctant to discuss the matter with you, Chris. That just means you’re gonna have to be proactive in bringing this issue to a head. And I’m not suggesting that you browbeat your wife about her unwillingness to talk about the issue. It’s gonna be all about you leading by example. Here’s what I suggest. Set up a time for you and your wife to have a sit-down. This needs to be scheduled in advance so that both of you know it’s coming. There ought be no surprises. This conference should not immediately follow sex, especially disappointing sex. Set aside at least 30 minutes when you guys are fresh and relaxed and then start preparing what you want to say. Take notes if necessary.

When the time comes for the sit down, I encourage you to use “I” statements instead of “you” statements. Begin by laying out how you feel and owing your feelings. “I feel confused. I feel frustrated. I feel that our relationship is in jeopardy.” Stay away from statements like “you make me feel…blah, blah, blah. These kinds of pronouncements will only muddy the waters. Then I suggest that you invite your wife to do the same. If she can’t, or won’t, move on to what steps you will take to get to the bottom of this. Something like, “I don’t want to continue the status quo. I’ve decided that I am going to seek some professional help for this. Maybe there’s something I’m missing. I can’t get to the bottom of this on my own, so maybe a sex therapist will help me understand what’s going on.” Again, invite her to join you in this effort. If she refuses or stalls out, move on to closing the discussion. You might say something like, “thank you for hearing me out on this. I don’t mean to put you on the spot, but I think our relationship is worth the effort to preserve it. And I’m actually gonna do something to make sure that we stay together. My invitation to you to join me in this effort will remain open.” End of discussion!

Of course, if you take this route, you will have to follow through on your commitment. If you don’t you will sabotage the whole damn thing, which will only make matters considerably worse. I encourage you to find a sex-positive therapist to work with. A good resource for this is The American College of Sexologists. Visit the directory page on their website. You will find listings for certified sexologists and sex therapists all over the world. If there is no one near you, contact the person closest to you and ask for a referral. Often my fellow ACS therapists and sexologists are very well connected to the broader sex-positive communities in their area.

You may also wish to consult me, even if you’re not here in Seattle. Check out the Therapy Available link in the header of my site for all the information you’ll need to make an enlightened decision about working with me.

Whatever you do, don’t settle for the path of least resistance. Your leadership might be just the thing your wife is looking for to muster her own strength to face the facts. Either way, the problem you are facing will not go away simply by ignoring it. Disappointments will become resentments and resentments will inevitably lead to acting-out and that will surely fuck things up royally.

Good luck

You are what you eat

Name: Edie
Gender: female
Age: 52
Location: Galveston
Are there any foods I can add to my diet that might boost my sex drive? Some of which seems to have been lost in my advancing years. Any information would certainly be appreciated.

People first sought aphrodisiacs as a remedy for various sexual difficulties, especially performance anxiety. Aphrodisiacs are also thought to boost both male and female potency. In ancient times nutrition was always an issue. Food hasn’t always been as available as it is today. And of course, nothing pulls the plug on the libido like malnutrition. And hunger radically reduces fertility rates.

Our forbearers believed that anything in nature that looked like or represented fertility, such as bulbs, eggs, snails were considered to have sexual powers. Other types of foods were considered stimulating because they physically resembled male or female genitalia.

The Greeks and Romans believed aniseed had special powers. Sucking on the seeds is said to increases your desire. Or maybe it just freshened the breath enough to get close enough to fuck.

Almonds have been a symbol of fertility throughout the ages. The aroma is thought to induce passion in a female. Arugula or “rocket” has been considered an aphrodisiac since the first century A.D. Arugula was added to grated orchid bulbs and parsnips, which was combined with pine nuts and pistachios for a full-on erotic feast.

The Aztecs called the avocado tree the “testicle tree” for obvious reasons. The fruit hanging in pairs, as it does, resembles a man’s cajones.

Bananas have a marvelous phallic shape. But from a more practical standpoint bananas are rich in potassium and B vitamins, necessities for sex hormone production.

Chocolate is known as the “nourishment of the Gods”. Chocolate contains chemicals thought to effect neurotransmitters in the brain. It also contains more antioxidants than does red wine.

Carrots are believed to be a stimulant to the male. The phallic shape has long been associated with stimulation since ancient times. Early Middle Eastern potentates used carrots to aid in their seductions.

The Arabian nights tells a tale of a merchant who had been childless for 40 years but was cured by a concoction that included coriander. Cilantro is also known as an “appetite” stimulant.

Fennel, like anise, was found to be a source of natural plant estrogens. Use of fennel as an aphrodisiac dates back to the ancient Egyptians.

An open fig looks like a vagina. And traditionally it is thought of as sexual stimulant. A man breaking open a fig and eating it in front of his lover is a powerful erotic act.

The ‘heat’ in garlic is said to stir sexual desires. Garlic has been used for centuries to cure everything from the common cold to heart ailments.

Ginger root raw, cooked, pickled or crystallized is a powerful stimulant to the circulatory system. And what is good sex if it isn’t all about healthy blood flow?

The Egyptian believed that honey was a cure for sterility and impotence. Medieval seducers plied their partners with Mead, a fermented drink made from honey. Lovers on their “Honeymoon” drank mead and it was thought to “sweeten” the marriage.

Mustard, maybe because of its bite, is believed to stimulate the sex glands and increase desire.

Chinese women prize nutmeg as an aphrodisiac. In quantity nutmeg can have a hallucinogenic effect.

Oysters are legendary aphrodisiacs. They of course resemble a pussy, but they are also very nutritious and high in protein.

Tomatoes, known as the “love apple” are considered love food, because they have great nutritional value and their acidity is considered a sex stimulant.

The scent and flavor of vanilla is believed to increase lust.

Good luck

Libido Disparity

No other sexual complaint for couples is more pervasive then that of libido disparity. I’ve heard from hundreds of frustrated and desperate women and men trapped in undersexed relationships. It’s one thing to have the sexual connection drift away by mutual consent. It’s quite another to have one partner unilaterally dissolve the sexual connection leaving the other partner bewildered and disoriented.

Often a partner will refuse to talk about why the sex has taken a nosedive. I understand not knowing what to say when things go south, or not knowing how to say what may be on your mind. But to clam up all together, that’s just unfair.

Sexuality is both a personal expression and a means of bonding with another. Sexual wellbeing in a relationship is more than simply getting off. It means taking responsibility for one’s eroticism as an integral part of relationship. The confusion, unhappiness and anxiety that result when there’s a breakdown of this can spill over and contaminate other areas of the relationship.

When I encounter this predicament in my counseling practice, I always build in some individual time with each partner even though the couple is there for “couples counseling.” I often get a much better sense of what’s causing the problem in these private sessions. It’s easier for the individual to talk to me privately than to be open, honest and forthcoming about his/her feelings with his/her partner sitting right there.

Some people don’t know how to express themselves without hurting the feelings of the other. Or an individual may not know why things are different than they once were. Often there are lifestyle issues at play — family concerns, work concerns, lack of sleep, drugs and alcohol consumption, etc. Sometimes medical and psychological issues are impacting on a person’s libido — weight gain, birth control, other pharmaceutical drugs, diabetes and depression to mention a few. But more frequently than not, the explanation is the partnered sex has become stale, rote and boring.

Whatever the cause of the imbalance, it needs to be addressed as a couple. Once the couple has identified the problem the next step is learning how to talk about it in an effective yet non-threatening way. This can be tricky, to say the least. But it is still so much easier than trying to avoid the issue all together.

When the couple is ready to break open this discussion, I encourage them to use “I” statements instead of “you” statements. I ask them to identify how they feel and own their feelings. “I feel confused. I feel frustrated. I feel that our relationship is in jeopardy.” Avoid statements like; “you make me feel…” Active listening is as important as being honest with one’s feelings.

The couple moves on to identify concrete steps they can take together to address the problem. Making a mutually agreed upon plan of action and sticking to it is essential.

Problems do not go away simply by ignoring them. Disappointments will become resentments and resentments will inevitably lead to acting-out and that will surly fuck things up royally.

Good luck

Overcoming a Fear of Sex: A Step-By-Step Process

All phobias can be overcome with some effort. The same is true for conquering a fear of sex. Here, I walk a young gay man through his trepidation with anal sex. We take simple, easy to accomplish steps to build confidence and dispel his apprehensions.

I’m gay, I’m a virgin, and I think I may be afraid of sex. In all the porn I’ve seen, the bottom guy looks uncomfortable and in pain— why would I want that? I’ve only done anything sexual with one guy, and I was so anxious that I couldn’t even get it up. I liked the guy, he was hot, and I enjoyed all the foreplay type stuff, but I just couldn’t do anything else. Any advice on how to get over this?
Drew

First thing—don’t ever look to porn for your sex education; you’ll surely be misled. Second, that grimace you report seeing on the bottom’s face as he is being penetrated may be a grimace of pleasure, not pain. I think you may be projecting your own discomfort on the guys in the movies.

Let me tell you a little story. Recently I was strolling in the park with my dog. We were each, in our own way, enjoying the sights, sounds and smells of nature in its glory. As we walked along, we encountered a father and son who were deeply involved in what appeared to be the boy’s first lesson in riding a bicycle—sans training wheels. Despite the father’s patient encouragement, the kid couldn’t seem to get the hang of it. He’d start out okay, but just as soon as his dad let go of the bike, it would begin to wobble and the boy would eventually crash. There were plenty of tears, a skinned knee, and the boy’s fear and anxiety were thick enough to cut with a knife.

The boy was convinced that he couldn’t ride on his own. His defeatism became a self-fulfilling prophecy. He finally gave up, sat down on a bench, his bike in a tangle at his feet, and refused his father’s pleading to give it another try. In his mind, the bike was the enemy; another attempt would only hurt and humiliate, and so the lesson ended.

What the kid lacked was self-confidence, a sense of adventure and probably more importantly—balance. I wish I’d had the opportunity to suggest to the boy and his dad that they try another ploy. I wanted to say, “Set the bike aside and work on that balance thing first.” This would surely increase the boy’s confidence, and it wouldn’t cost a blow to his ego or his knee—and it would be fun.

I’d have suggested the dad start by helping the kid walk on curb, balancing himself as he went. Then the dad could increase the challenge to include balancing on one foot, then the other. Once the kid discovered the power within him to accomplish these tasks, the bike could be reintroduced. The father would assist the boy in drawing upon his skill in balancing on the curb to master balancing on his bike.

The same will be true for you, Drew. Sex is nothing to be afraid of. Rather, it is a skill that one learns. Some, obviously, take to it quicker than others, but everyone can learn a happy, healthy sexual repertoire that will build self-esteem and bring great pleasure.

I want you to start exploring and enjoying your bottom on your own. Like the kid in the park, you need to acquaint yourself with the powers that lie within you. He needed to find a sense of balance; you need to find the Big Old Butt Pirate within.

Most all of the discomfort in anal sex is associated with your sphincter muscle trying to resist whatever it is being inserted. When this muscle resists to the point of spasming, things can become very painful. So here’s what I want you to do.

  • Before you start playing with your hole—relax. Take a relaxing shower, a warm bath, and/or try some deep breathing exercises to center yourself.
  • Have a ready supply of a water-based lube handy. Silicone-based lubes are swell for these exercises too. However, this type of lube isn’t recommended for use with a condom.
  • Start with a little self-pleasuring. Stroke your dick with your lubed hand and get into your happy place.
  • Gradually slather some of that lube on to your balls and taint. With legs open, find your hole and play with your rosebud. Gently massage the area around your asshole, but don’t slide your fingers in just yet. Simply get used to the sensations at the opening of your ass.
  • Let your play include the tip of your finger entering your ass.
    If you do this while you’re stroking your cock, you will find that your hole will actually open and invite your finger. That’s the great thing about pleasuring one part of your body while learning to pleasure another.
  • Once you are comfortable with your fingertip inside, try pushing it in further and move it around a little. Try pushing it and pulling it out of your ass. You know, like finger-fucking yourself.
  • Locate your prostate. (It shouldn’t be hard to find if you’re all horned up.) It will feel smooth and hard, like a flat stone. Give it a nice gentle massage. If you’re still stroking your wood, don’t be surprised if this prostate massage gets you to ejaculate. In fact, you will find that your prostate actually enlarges a bit and becomes more firm just as you are about to shoot. As you jizz, you’ll notice that your sphincter muscle will tighten around your finger and pulsate with each squirt.

Continue these self-pleasuring exercises until you’re comfortable inserting a couple fingers in your ass. Then try a small vibrating dildo. In no time at all, you will be ready to jump on your bike and ride…so to speak.

With these exercises behind you—no pun intended—the first time you actually fuck with a partner will be the incredible experience it is meant to be. If you encounter any discomfort, you’ll know what to do: deep breathing to relax and priming your hole with a lubed finger or two.

  • First, attend to your personal hygiene. Make sure you’re clean inside. This will help you avoid an unsightly and embarrassing mishap that might mess up the big event.
  • Remember to take it slow. There’s no rushing pleasure. Remember, you’ll be the one in charge of what goes in your ass, when, and for how long.
  • Warm up with some foreplay, kissing, sucking, licking, rimming, touching and massaging.
  • Have condoms and plenty of lube near at hand.
  • While you’re warming up, start loosening up your ass with your lubed fingers, just as you did in your self-pleasuring exercises.
  • Once you’re comfortable, offer your ass to your partner. Have him replace your fingers with his own. Try some finger-fucking first.
  • After you’re relaxed and loose, lie on your side with your partner behind you. Have him slowly push his cock against your rosebud.
  • Try pushing out like you are trying to take a dump. This will help open up your sphincter for his entry.
  • As he enters you, have him stop so that you can breathe deeply. Give your ass the time it needs to adjust to the new sensations. If there’s pain or discomfort have your partner reverse course and go back to finger fucking before you proceed.
  • Make sure that your partner knows that if you ask him to stop, he will stop. Trust is essential.
  • As he fills you with his dick he will hit your prostate. This will send waves of pleasure through your body and signal your sphincter to open for even more.
  • You may find that you’ll even want to push your ass back to meet and engulf his cock.

By the time this happens you will happily discover that you are riding your bike all by yourself.

Good luck!

Finessing That Ass Fuck — A Tutorial For a Top

This tutorial is for anyone who is considering being a top, regardless of whether the meat injection is 100% prime, or a beef substitute (a strap-on dildo), these words of wisdom are for you.

What Ya Need To Know

Let’s get something clear right from the get-go. And this is for all you sticklers for semantics out there. The word “top” has several sexual connotations. There are of course BDSM tops, but generally they go by the moniker “dom”. And one can accurately say there a “top” in any sexual activity that involves an active and passive partner — such as cocksucking and watersports. But today’s lesson is for the active partner in butt sex. But you knew that already. Because all you had to do is read the title of this article to figure that out, huh?

Some folks just aren’t open to the idea of experimenting with their assholes. They think it’s gonna be painful, or worse, messy.

So first off, prospective tops, you don’t want to try buggering these folks. A good top should know it makes no sense at all to try to force or belittle an unwilling bottom to give up his or her rosebud. This is simply a waste of everyone’s time. Because if you do succeed in getting the unwilling bottom to relent, and the subsequent fucking attempt confirms the bottom’s earlier suspicions that this activity is indeed painful or gross or both, you’ll have won the skirmish, but lost the war. Remember, it takes two to tango.

Secondly. Before a top commences a fuck of any kind, they need to consider whose pleasure is primary in this particular fuck. There is a big difference between fucking for the top’s pleasure, for the bottom’s pleasure, or for mutual pleasure. For instance, if a top is trying to finesse a novice bottom into exploring ass fucking, that top needs to concentrate on the bottom’s pleasure first.

Start by getting the bottom comfortable being touched where the sun don’t shine. Lubricate your hand generously and massage the outside of their hole. Make some lazy little circles with your fingers and drive your bottom wild with desire. When their sphincter starts to quiver, as it surely will, slowly penetrate your bottom’s bottom with a lubricated fingertip. After a few minutes of just hanging out with your finger in there, you can begin to slowly slide your finger in and out. Be sure to take your time. Allow their muscles to adjust to being penetrated. You might want to incorporate a thin vibrating dildo and/or some expert rimming to pave the way for bigger things.

When a top fingers a bottom, they would do well, at this point, to reconsider the width of his dick or her strap-on. Once your bottom can take two fingers comfortably and three fingers with a minimum of discomfort, they’re ready to take a modest-sized cock or dildo. If you’re very well-endowed or you plan to strap on a monster dildo, you’d better adjust this finger-formula based on the width of your fingers and your equipment. And, you know, make sure your partner is aware of the girth of what awaits him or her.

A clean asshole is a fuckable asshole. Hygiene is essential for both tops and bottoms. Bottoms may wish to use a small bulb syringe and plain water to clean out a few hours before the event. And tops, once your cock or dildo has been inside your bottom’s ass, don’t go puttin’ that thang anywhere else until you’ve washed it down with soap and water. Carelessness in the hygiene department will only invite a very serious infection.

Making It Happen

Tops, be sure to use a good personal lube and have your favorite condoms within reach. Getting your bottom into the right position, one that is comfortable for both of you is paramount. There are way too many positions for me cover here, but when choosing a position, consider your preference, the bottom’s preference, your cock and/or dildo size, your body type and the bottom’s body type. You may find that a pillow or two positioned under your bottom’s pelvis will help support and prop up your bottom’s bottom in most positions.

Painful fucking is a sign that something is being done incorrectly. It is not a sign from God that ass fucking is wrong. In most cases, pain is due to a few predictable factors:

  • The bottom is too tense and is tightening up.
  • The top is being impatient and is pushing too hard too soon.
  • There may not be enough lubricant.
  • The cock or strap-on is too big for the bottom’s experience level.

Obviously, both people should be comfortable and feel pleasure from it. However, it’s perfectly fine, on occasion, to concentrate on one person’s pleasure over the pleasure of the other. Just make sure you both agree on whose pleasure is gonna be the focus of any given fuck.

Topping is a skill like any other. Practice will improve your technique. And while practicing, invite and listen to the feedback coming from your bottom.

The Top’s Handy-Dandy Tally Sheet

Ok, let’s review.

  1. Always use a lubricant. Both water-based and silicone- based lubricants are latex-compatible and highly recommended.
  2. Stop immediately if your partner asks you to stop. I’m not suggesting that you stop trying altogether; just don’t push yourself onto your bottom when he or she wants you to stop. Find the source of the problem—lubrication, position, whatever, resolve the problem, and resume the fuck.
  3. Take it slow. There is no need to rush, especially if you’re experimenting with anal sex for the first time.
  4. A bottom’s desire to be fucked will not insure pleasurable cornholing. It’s nice that he or she might want to surrender their ass, but that’s not gonna make it happen on its own.
  5. Always communicate with your bottom. Keep your communication playful and dirty. Tops, be open about what you want and how it’s feeling. “Oh baby, that’s right you’ve got such a tight hole. You want my big meat in your ass? Yes you do! Open up for daddy…or momma…as the case may be.” Get the picture?
  6. Spread the pleasure around. Keep your hands busy on the bottom’s clit or cock, at least initially. If the bottom can make the connection between the pleasure he/she is familiar with (cock or clit) with the new butt related sensations; then the battle has been won.

In Conclusion

Some experienced bottoms can orgasm with ass fucking alone. Women do so through pelvic muscle contractions and G-spot stimulation; men because of pressure applied to their prostate.

Oh, and here’s something you need to know. We all have two sphincter muscles. If you insert a finger about one half-inch into your ass and press your fingertip against the side you’ll find them both. There is less than a quarter-inch between them. The external sphincter is controlled by the central nervous system, which means you can tense and relax this sphincter at will. The internal sphincter is quite different. This muscle is controlled by the autonomic nervous system making it involuntary. This muscle responds to fear and anxiety. It may cause your bottom’s hole to tense up automatically even if he or she is trying to relax.

Tops, remember the rectum is not straight. After the short anal canal that connects the asshole to the rectum, the rectum tilts toward the front of the body, sometimes as much as 90 degrees. That’s way some people are anatomically less suited to ass fucking.

Finally, the best attribute a top can have is his or her sense of humor about the whole friggin’ deal. Fucking ain’t as easy as it looks, at least not at first. But perseverance will carry the day.

Good luck!