Ups and downs happen in everyone’s sex life, but Dr. Bartos has some awesome advice for getting your groove back. This post was originally published on her website, which you can find here.
Have you lost that ”Lovin Feelin’”? Have you looked everywhere for it? Under the table, behind the couch, in the dark corner of the closet you’ve been wanting to clean out for the last 6 months? Is it “gone, gone, gone” forever or just for now?
True story – I get a LOT of ladies who are Righteous Brothering their sex lives. Some of them going months, years, DECADES without it. They just can’t understand WHY they aren’t in the mood for “it” any longer. And before you jump to conclusions – they aren’t all older women. We all can understand that sex drive is expected to take a dip later in life (or earlier if you aren’t taking care of your health) but some of these women are in their 20’s and 30’s – not the stage of life when you would expect a chill below the belt to set in. If you can go up and down 2 flights of stairs without stopping, you are probably healthy enough to have sex. So, now that that’s out of the way, what’s stopping you?
I get the “I’m too tired for sex” or the “touched out” reason a lot; especially from my youngest patients with kids. Why? Having a child, or two, or three….clinging to you night and day is EXHAUSTING. The cuddles, snuggles, kisses, diaper changes, feeding routine – you have another human within 6 inches of you all day long. I know you love it, but your subconscious mind is barking out “BACK OFF” by bedtime. So, when your significant other is looking for a little lovin’ mid The Real Housewives of Wherever you develop instant headaches, narcolepsy or both. While it seems natural for a woman to take care of small children, in our modern context, it’s actually not. Family groups used to live together and help each other rear children. When junior was on your last nerve in 1718 you’d pass him off to your mother. Now you have to find a babysitter who won’t raid your liquor cabinet and have her boyfriend over while you’re out getting a massage. For all our modern conveniences, our lifestyles make childcare much more difficult and isolating.
To overcome the feeling of exhaustion might be difficult, but babies with bad sleep habits – the ones that sleep all day and cry al night- won’t last forever. They also won’t need you as much as they grow – except for cash, they’ll always need that! Try to plan out days where you have gotten enough sleep and lower contact time with the kids. Plan a nice dinner Have your S.O. take you out to dinner, open a bottle of wine and take advantage of its dulling effects on your subconsciousness’ “Back Off” alarm.
It’s Dry – like really, really dry
They say change is good – but they weren’t talking about THE CHANGE. THE CHANGE can put the kibosh on your sex drive as your hormones start wildly fluctuating. And down there feels like a barefoot walk through the Sahara Desert. After a few painful tries at sex, that old subconscious starts barking “BACK OFF” again. Like Pavlov’s dog, your vagina’s response to attempts at intercourse is to close it down like Fort Knox, hang up the “out of order” sign, retire to Florida.
If you don’t use it you’ll lose it. The vagina actually needs activity to maintain its health but you have to give her a little help from time to time. As you start to enter menopause, lubricants and time will be your friend. A good quality lubricant will help sex be less painful and time is a must because your sexual responses won’t be as instantaneous as they were when you were younger. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’tdo it at all – it can be a good thing. Being forced to take your time with your partner can actually grow your intimacy and relationship outside the bedroom. Make a WHOLE DAY of building up to “it”.
Sometimes a medical intervention needs to happen to get your sex life back on track. If you have painful sex without a reason, bleeding, discharge or anything out of the ordinary – it’s vaginal exam time. But, if you are in a stage of life where you have “Lost that Lovin’ Feelin’” and want it back, the good news is that it doesn’t need to be “gone, gone, gone” forever. With a few tweaks, you can get back to having the sex life you want again.
~ Dr. Heather Bartos