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Im a 26 yr old woman who us attracted to men, wants a relationship,

I'm a 26 yr old...
I'm a 26 yr old woman who us attracted to men, wants a relationship, and has sexual urges but I don't enjoy engaging in sexual activity... never have. I find it very intrusive and demeaning. What's wrong with me, is this common? Is there anything I can do about it?
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Answered in 6 minutes by:
4/10/2013
Doctor E
Doctor E, Social Worker
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 51
Experience: I am a Ph.D-level therapist and college professor with a specialty in couples counseling.
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Doctor E :

Hi there. Thanks so much for writing in with this question. First, I want to acknowledge how difficult this must be for you, and how brave you are to start asking questions about it. I want you to know that human sexuality is a very complicated thing. Especially for women. Unlike men, who usually have a direct physical response to sexual images, thoughts, or touch, women tend to be more interpretive how they view sex, and need to feel fulfilled from a variety of angles. Oftentimes, we let our "minds" get in the way of sexual arousal. Part of the problem is we start to analyze why we aren't enjoying ourselves, or we feel maybe we should be trying something different, and we experience doubt. Then, it gets harder and harder to become aroused.

Doctor E :

There are a number of things that could contribute to this feeling: sometimes, it's really your mind getting in the way and blocking you from feeling any pleasure. Then you judge yourself, and you're not focused on sex at all anymore. And it does feel hurtful and demeaning, especially if you have sexual urges that you'd like to fulfill.

Doctor E :

it's hard to determine if there is a physiological component to sexual arousal, or lack thereof. Sometimes, the blood flow to the vagina can be restricted, and sometimes this can be hormonal. It's very beneficial to consult a physician about it if you're worried that it might be physical. What's important to know is that whether it's physical or psychological, there is hope and things can be done to make the issue better.

Doctor E :

There are medication adjustments that a doctor can make that might be helpful in the situation. Similarly, therapy can help you stop the cycle of self-judgment and worry that goes along with this. This is one of the unpleasant "side effects" of sexual arousal worries: you start to view yourself negatively and focus on being abnormal, and then it's all you can think about, which makes the situation that much worse!

Doctor E :

I want you to know that over the course of a lifetime, a woman's sexual arousal changes. Additionally, things that are happening in your life can affect your ability to enjoy sexual activity: for example, did you know that individuals who experience depression have a harder time achieving orgasm? Their mood here has a very real effect on their bodily reactions. That's one reason why it's called "depression": because it physically "depresses" your body's responses.

Doctor E :

Many more women go through this than you would believe. It's an issue that lots of women face, but few women talk about. I want you to know that it is common, and depending on what the "root" cause of it is, there are lots of different ways of addressing it and making it better. You took the first step today by writing the question in.

Doctor E :

I'd be happy to answer any more questions you have about it. Please take good care of yourself.

Doctor E
Doctor E, Social Worker
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 51
Experience: I am a Ph.D-level therapist and college professor with a specialty in couples counseling.
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Doctor E, Social Worker
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Satisfied Customers: 51
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Experience: I am a Ph.D-level therapist and college professor with a specialty in couples counseling.

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