Dear Beatty, I’ve Lost My Sex Drive
I am 65 years old and have been in a relationship with a man that I love for almost 3 years. In the beginning we had a very active sex life. In the last year or so I have found that I have little if any sexual desire. Do you think that I should try Addyi, the new F.D.A approved pill for women with low libido?
I am so glad that you are asking me this very important question. However, before you even think of seriously getting a prescription for Addyi, there are a number of other issues that affect women’s sex drives that I would like you to consider.
Did you know that there are many reasons why women have problems in the bedroom? And unless all of these issues are fully explored and acknowledged, addressed and resolved, sex will continue to be a major source of frustration and disappointment for the majority women and men alike.
- Each of us needs to be in a healthy physical, emotional, psychological and psychiatric state if we plan on having a good relationship, sexual or otherwise with anyone. Issues like depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder and other psychiatric problems including stress, low self-esteem, eating disorders, substance abuse, early child sexual abuse and religious beliefs all can effect our sexual desire and our ability to ‘let go’ . Make sure that you have a thorough physical to rule out anything medical that might be contributing to your sexual problems. Also remember to exercise regularly, eat healthy foods and get sufficient sleep.
- We also need to be comfortable with our own bodies and comfortable exploring our own bodies in order to determine what does and what doesn’t arouse us. How can we expect our partners to know what we like and don’t like if we don’t know ourselves!
- Our relationships must be emotionally healthy and satisfying if we expect to enjoy a satisfying sexual relationship. If we are not feeling close and safe and if we don’t feel that our partner cares about us (sexually and emotionally), most women will not feel like jumping into bed and having sex. This is why it is so important to deal with issues directly and not allow anger, frustration and disappointments to build up.
- You may not know that many people experience sexual side effects from both prescription and over the counter medications including SSRI’s, hi blood pressure medication, allergy medications, cholesterol medications, etc. Many medicines can make it virtually impossible to be able to achieve orgasm. These medicines can take away some if not all of our sexual desire. We need to speak with our doctors if we suspect that the medicines that we are taking may be effecting our sex drives. Frequently, a small change in dose and family of medication can make all the difference in the world. So don’t be afraid to speak up.
- There are also sexual side effects from alcohol, pot, cocaine and other recreational drugs. These drugs do and can affect our ability to experience sexual desire. So be careful what you are using.
- Illnesses including cancer, heart disease, hysterectomy pelvic pain, etc. will naturally effect our sex drives. It’s hard to feel sexy if we are not feeling well. However, we can always encourage non-sexual touch. It can be both physically and mentally healing. And if you’re lucky, you may even feel some sexual arousal.
- Menopause also presents many challenges, including emotional, physical and sexual for many women. As women’s estrogen and progesterone and testosterone levels drop, so does our desire for sex and our ability to achieve orgasm. Please do not hesitate to discuss your concerns with your doctor.
- So what do the majority of women want sexually? EMOTIONAL FOREPLAY is key as is sufficient physical foreplay, including manual and oral stimulation. Most women require between 15-20 minutes of physical foreplay before being sufficiently aroused and ready to have intercourse. But since your partner is not a mind reader, make sure that you communicate your needs, sexual and otherwise and ask for what you want in a sensitive, loving and clear voice.
- And don’t be afraid to be adventuresome. If you are comfortable, try experimenting with sex toys, lubricants and pornography. And if you don’t currently have a partner, give yourself permission to masturbate as frequently as you wish.
- And finally, think about making dates for sex. If you are always waiting for the ‘perfect’ time, it may rarely if ever happen. The Nike commercial’s message is powerful…….Just DO IT!!!! It’s amazing what can happen.
Meet Dr. Beatty at our Oct. 13, 2015 event, “Does Sexy Have an Expiration Date?”