As sexual beings, we will at some time in our lives, experience sexual pleasure and sexual distress. At some point in our lives, we start being sexually active and sometimes because of lesser sex education we often have sexual distresses and sexual problems. When there are sexual problems couples tend to also experience relational issues that complicate matters and build resentment. Sometimes it’s the relational problems that lead to the sexual distress. These relational issues increase the sexual problems. I would say it works like water to trees. But these problems and issues can be solved with proper guidance. Let’s look at the sexual disorders and how they manifest themselves.
Delayed Ejaculation – A marked difficulty or inability to achieved desired ejaculation lasting more than 6 months during partnered sexual activities. Often this problem makes the patient cheat on their partner thinking that their partner is not capable enough. And the partners of the patients sometimes think that there is something wrong with them as well as people don’t understand it to be a problem.
Causes include -Injury to the pelvic nerves that control orgasm, urinary tract infection,hormone-related conditions, depression, anxiety or other mental health conditions,relationship problems, poor communication, body image issues, strict religious teachings, cultural taboos, alcohol abuse, some prescribed medications e.g. antidepressants and high blood medications.
Physical examination, psychotherapy, sex therapy could cure the patient with the help of professional therapists.
Erectile Disorder – Failure to obtain or maintain erection during partnered sexual activities. This threatens the confidence of a man thinking that he is not capable. A few failed intercourses affect him with distress. The partners could think that they have been cheating on them, presuming that they are doing something outside. These doubts create relational issues which later on becomes a matter of distress.
Causes include – High blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, tobacco use, alcohol abuse, some prescribed medication, prostate problems, anxiety, depression or other mental health issues, stress, relationship problems.
Physical examination, oral medication, psychotherapy etc are helpful under prescribed treatments of professionals.
Female Orgasmic Disorder – Delay, infrequency or absence of orgasm or reduced intensity of orgasm sensations lasting more than 6 months, having multiple orgasm during the whole day without even having sex- this is a very rare condition.
Causes include: Medical ailments, spinal cord damage, hormone disorders, alcohol abuse, anxiety and concerns about pregnancy, lack of experience with self-touch, strict religious teaching on sex, gender role expectations, sexual abuse, boredom with sexual activity, relational problems.
Psychotherapy to address relational problems, teach couple sensate-focused exercises.
Female Sexual Interest/Arousal Disorder – Absent/reduced interest/arousal related to sexual activities, thoughts.
Causes include: Depression, anxiety, stress, relational problems, painful sex, and unpleasant sexual experience, antidepressants, and alcohol abuse.
Hormone replacement, therapies, oral medications could be some solutions. But patient must consult a therapist before pursuing any medications.
Genito-Pelvic Pain/Penetration Disorder – Difficulties with a vaginal penetration during intercourse, pain during intercourse, fear or anxiety about pain or penetration, or contraction of pelvic floor muscles during sex lasting more than 6 months.
Causes include: Inflammation, infection, or injuries in the genital area, thinning and drying of the vagina during intercourse, involuntary contraction of the vaginal muscles, endometriosis, relationship factors, cultural and religious factors.
Antibiotics, anti-fungal drugs, or other drugs as appropriate, pelvic muscle relaxation exercises, use lubricants and estrogen creams, couples to exercise patience and gentleness during sexual intercourse
Male Hypo-active Sexual Desire Disorder – named also as inhibited sexual disorder, persistent deficient or absent sexual thoughts, fantasies, or desires lasting more than 6 months.
Causes include: Relational issues, other sexual dysfunctions such as premature ejaculation or erectile dysfunction, strict religious teaching, sexual abuse, side effects from medication, arthritis, coronary artery disease, diabetes, low levels of testosterone etc.
Partners should engage in individual and or couple therapy to address unresolved sexual traumatic events and relationship challenges.
Wherever we happen to fall on the spectrum of sexual disorder the good news is that there are treatments available for most condition whether medical and or psycho-therapeutic intervention. It must be noted that treatment of sexual problems in relationships is not an individual problem and so both partners must co-operate to address the issue. It requires humility to admit you have a sexual challenge and no one should be ridiculed or chastised for what’s going on.The couple needs to embrace the TEAM approach Together We Achieve More. The couple should work like a team to overcome the challenge of sexual problems and issues. Giving up on partners is never a solution to these problems. Only supporting each other and professional help can solve the issues.
Before the situation gets worse everyone should get immediate help. Depending on the severity of the condition people should find a way to deal with it. It is not too late yet. The psychotherapist would engage you in talk therapy and help you restore a sense of harmony and mental stability. And the address of getting help from any professional is Seeking Shalom. Seeking Shalom has trained and experienced therapists in the area of dealing with such conditions. Seeking Shalom works with children, adolescents and adults. It offers you two contexts to help you come out from the unstable and uncertain life and will help you to overcome. You can engage in weekly individual/family therapy or in a twelve week group setting where you get to interact with persons like yourself and together learn helpful strategies and techniques to deal with the problem. To pursue any of these options you can contact us via telephone at 212-655-9605. We would be happy to help you on this journey to healthier living.