Have you ever asked yourself (or your partner) any of these questions?:
“Did it happen too fast?”
“Did it take too long?”
“Did it not happen at all?”
“Am I/are we doing this too much?”
“Am I/are we not doing this often enough?”
“Why can’t I stop doing this?”
“Why does this hurt?”
“Why isn’t this working?”
“Is something wrong with me/us?”
Sexuality and intimacy concerns are prevalent yet rarely discussed issues in our culture. Did you know that over 40% of women and 30% of men experience sexual dysfunction at some point during their lives?
There are several sexual issues that people face. For men, some of the most common sexual dysfunctions include erectile dysfunction and premature ejaculation. For women, a lack of desire, struggles with being orgasmic, and vaginismus (a condition that makes it painful, challenging, or impossible to engage sexually) are concerns frequently brought to counseling. Further, compulsive sexual behaviors (also called “sexual addictions“) are another facet of sexuality that people are often hesitant to discuss but profoundly impact how they view themselves and their partners.
Why do sexual dysfunctions arise?
Our sexual concerns can stem from either physical or emotional causes. Certain physical conditions, such as diabetes, cardiac health, pregnancy, and menopause, can impact the expression of our sexuality. Emotional experiences, including anxiety, depression, and relational issues, can also significantly impact sexual health and satisfaction. Additionally, there are various medications for physical and emotional problems that can adversely affect sexual expression.
What are the barriers to dealing with my/our sexual concerns?
Various cultural barriers can prevent us from talking about our dysfunctions and experiencing more fulfilling sex lives. Culturally, it is important to notice that our media and technologies depict sexual prowess that is unattainable and unrealistic for most people. This contrast can leave individuals and couples feeling dissatisfied and ashamed with their sexuality and embarrassed about discussing their concerns about their bodies and sexual lives. The silence that these feelings of shame create allows for sexual dysfunctions to go unaddressed or unacknowledged.
How can I start addressing my/our sexual concerns?
If you have an unaddressed sexual concern, the longer it goes unaddressed, the more problematic it can become physically, psychologically, or relationally. Happily, the opposite can also be true: if a sexual issue IS addressed, physical, emotional, or relational improvements can occur. Even before stepping into a counselor’s or doctor’s office, you can initiate your path to sexual wellness. Practicing mindfulness or meditation exercises, engaging your body in physical relaxation techniques such as yoga (for women and for men!), and changing your inner narrative about intimacy from negative to positive thoughts can be hugely impactful in shifting your experiences between the sheets.
Fortunately, most intimacy and sexual concerns are within your grasp to make a positive change! The majority of sexual issues are very treatable with a professional therapist’s support alongside other health providers. We at Get Centered appreciate the sensitive nature of intimacy and sex, and we are trained to address this critical facet of our clients’ lives with dignity, respect, and a wealth of knowledge. If you would like to schedule an appointment and get started on your sexual health and satisfaction journey click here to schedule a free 15-minute consultation.