Do you ever notice that you are fully in the moment and ready to have sex and something just pops into your mind that puts the brakes on sex? Or maybe you notice this happening in your partner? Could you have a conscious or unconscious block that prevents you from enjoying sex? Let’s explore some common ones that I see.
Good old Guilt. I have noticed an increase in people sharing feelings about guilt for having sex with their partner. These people may even be in committed relationships/marriages and there is still some underlying guilt that prevents them from being their authentic sexual selves. I used to notice Catholic or Religous guilt, but many people share with me this feeling of guilt that was given to them in childhood. Parents might have told or even implied that sexual pleasure is dirty. We may deny some of our fetishes or fantasies simply because we received these messages during our formative time. The message of guilt has shaped our arousal template and in a way tells us to self destruct when we feel sexual pleasure.
Body Image. We typically think of women having body image but men have this as well. So many people are ashamed of their bodies and allow that feeling to inhibit their experiences. We create these rules around sex and our bodies—only have sex at night with the lights off, only certain positions or some people keep their top on. With all of those restraints, how can you enjoy yourself? How can you have fun?
Performance Anxiety. So many people come to me to help with performance anxiety, sometimes it’s so severe that it presents as erectile dysfunction or pelvic pain. I continually hear questions of how can I give the best blowjob? How can I be the best in bed? As if you have to prove that you are the best sexual partner and that’s why your partner should be with you. When in reality what you want is an intimate friendship, one in which you can laugh and have a good time and accept that sometimes you will have great sex but most of the time you will have good enough sex and that’s okay.
Sexual Trauma or Bad Experiences. Sometimes we have triggers that take us right back to a bad experience or even to a trauma that knocks us right out of our present moment. In those moments we are just seeking safety and our fear is taking over instead of being able to enjoy the moments. Communicating with your partner is very helpful and if you continue to be challenged with the triggers sex therapy can help you overcome those and have a fulfilling sex life.
Modern Day Living. We are in a world of hustle and bustle, with never-ending to-do lists and stressors that never stop. Our bedrooms are no longer a sanctuary and we somehow bring our everyday life into the room with us, not only do we insomnia but that to-do list pops into our head even when we’re trying to connect with our partner. Protect your intimate time by redirecting your thoughts back to the present moment and stay in your body.