Archive for 2010

23
Jun


Our emotions affect our sexual functioning. It sounds obvious when you say it, but many people behave as if they don’t realize this.

Sexual response is a reflex. We perceive a physical or mental stimulus (say, a caress or a fantasy). This message travels to the brain, which sends a message down the spinal cord to various parts of the body, instructing them to respond with tingling, extra blood flow, etc.

Emotions are electrical and chemical events in the body. They either facilitate or disrupt the sex-related messages going up and down the spinal column. Thus, if your partner says, “your skin tastes good,” your emotions facilitate a sexual response. But if your partner calls you the wrong name, your emotions disrupt the sexual response. This is how common feelings such as anger, anxiety, sadness and frustration interfere with reflexes such as erection, lubrication and orgasm.

Many people tolerate negative emotions during sex in silence. Most men and women have experienced sex that made them feel uncomfortable. This could be due to anxiety about performance, fear or anger about being coerced, or sadness about having their needs ignored.

Bodies in these situations rarely respond in an ideal way. Unfortunately, people frequently blame themselves, rather than the situation, for their inadequate response. This is often the beginning of believing that they have a dysfunction. That leads to more anxiety during subsequent lovemaking, undermining sexual functioning even more.

Unlike computers, our bodies respond to irrational factors like expectations, memories and emotions. This means that being aware of our emotions is essential for satisfying sex. Your feelings may embarrass, surprise or confuse you, but they’re real, and their impact on sexual function is also real.

Penises and vulvas usually tell the truth: a frightened penis often shrivels; an angry vulva often tightens shut, and sad mouths rarely relax and enjoy kissing.

Admitting to yourself how you really feel may be uncomfortable, and discussing it with a partner may be even more uncomfortable. But there’s no substitute for connecting with yourself–or your partner–emotionally. It’s a key step toward healthy sexual functioning.

Tips: Before, during and after sex, don’t ignore how you feel just because you think it’s unromantic or inconvenient.Talk with your partner about feelings you have about sex, your body or your relationship. If you consistently feel bad about sex or your relationships, consider therapy.

Popularity: unranked [?]

Category : Blog
22
Jun


Instead of thinking about how to improve sex, let’s talk about how to ruin it.

Sex killers undermine desire, arousal and satisfaction. We sometimes invite them around without knowing it; let’s look at some common ones.

  • Food: The traditional big romantic meal (complete with dessert) may feel luxurious, give you a chance to dress up and show you care. But it also slows your metabolism, diverts your energy and can make you sleepy. As food writer Gael Greene once said, “You can have your orgasm at the table or in bed — but not both.”
  • Alcohol: Drinking may look and feel sexy, but after just one glass, it simply isn’t. Alcohol depresses our reflexes, including erection, lubrication and orgasm. It reduces our control over our body; decreases our ability to feel, smell and taste; and makes it harder to sense our partner’s emotional states.
  • Bad breath or dirty hands: Our hands and mouth are what we use to approach and connect with our partner. When they aren’t fresh and appealing, we convey a lack of respect for him/her, eroticism and ourselves. We make it harder for both ourselves and our partner to feel like sex is a special adventure.
  • TV: TV is a black hole, absorbing our time and attention, giving back nothing. Ever notice that people on TV are never shown watching TV? We’d be bored watching them! Millions of people watch TV instead of making love, especially at night. Unplug the set so you have to make a conscious decision when you feel like watching. You’ll cuddle more, talk more and maybe even make love more.
  • Self-criticism: Disliking your body, criticizing your sexual technique, doubting your partner’s affection and thinking you don’t deserve better anyway is extremely unattractive. When your partner says he/she likes your body and you point out all its flaws, you’re insulting his/her taste and character.

There are many more sex killers on the loose. Talk with your partner about the ones roaming your house, and see if you can get rid of a few. When that frees up some of your energy, sex will probably get better — and you may have more energy for other projects, too.

Popularity: 1% [?]

Category : Blog
16
Jun


While an erection isn’t necessary for sexual satisfaction, most men and their partners do like having one around during sex. Not surprisingly, then, erection problems and rapid ejaculation are two of the most common problems in my practice.

One or more of the following common dynamics usually causes such problems:

Conditions: Do you have the conditions you need to get or keep erections? For various men, these include a sense of safety, trust, privacy, affection, relaxation and a partner’s enthusiasm.

Performance anxiety: Do you feel pressured to get erect quickly, or to maintain an erection until your partner climaxes? Do you (or your partner) feel that the dependability of your erection reflects your level of masculinity, or of how much you desire your partner?

The relationship: Does your relationship offer peace of mind, emotional satisfaction, a sense of belonging? Or is it a place of periodic turmoil, in which you feel misunderstood, powerless, resentful?

Internal psychology: How do you feel about yourself, women (men if you’re gay), sex? Do you have unfinished business from a previous relationship, from childhood or adolescence?

When men want my help in getting or keeping erections, I start at the top of this list and work downward until the problem is resolved. And it usually is — erection difficulties and rapid ejaculation are among the most easily resolved sexual complaints.

I accomplish this by de-emphasizing intercourse and other sources of performance anxiety; encouraging communication before, during and after sex to demystify the erotic relationship; supporting self-knowledge and the entitlement to ask for what one wants; and helping clients develop insight into their psychological processes and character dynamics.

If you or a loved one is struggling with getting or keeping it up, see a professional before the month’s out. No man (or couple) should suffer unnecessarily.

Sex therapists, psychologists and physicians are the professionals best trained to diagnose and treat erection and rapid ejaculation problems. Herbs, creams, “aphrodisiacs” and gadgets are worthless for getting it up or lasting longer. Viagra doesn’t work for everyone, and it doesn’t solve psychological or relationship problems for anyone.

Popularity: unranked [?]

Category : Blog
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