For some women, a low libido comes about because sex is physically painful. This problem is called Dyspareunia, and it seems that no one talks about it. A related problem is when penetration is very difficult, or even impossible, and it is called Vaginismus. It seems obvious that if sex is painful, or it takes such a long time every time you try to have intercourse to penetrate, your libido will suffer.
Painful sex is treatable
Unfortunately, because this problem is not well-known, many women suffer for years in silence. They tell me they feel intense embarrassment and shame – that there is something wrong with them. “Sex should be so natural, so easy” they tell me. Well, not for everyone. Many women are too embarrassed to talk with their physicians about it. But there is help available for this problem. The solution involves getting counseling in sex therapy to resolve the psychological part of the issue, and often seeing a Physical Therapist who specializes in Pelvic Floor work to tackle the physical part of the problem.
Counseling and medical treatment for painful sex
The psychological reasons for painful sex may involve: sexual shame, sexual trauma, being disconnected from the genitals, as well as anxiety and fear about penetration. Therapy with a licensed sex therapist for you individually or with your partner can help you confront and work through these concerns and their impact on your life.
The physical reasons for painful sex can involve a number of issues, from skin conditions to an involuntary spasm of the vaginal and pelvic floor muscles that cause pain and make penetration difficult or impossible. A physical therapist or physician who specializes in these issues will be able to work with me to coordinate appropriate care for your condition.
You can enjoy sex
If you are struggling with painful or impossible sex, don’t continue alone. This is a big problem, but there is help available – if you just reach out and take the first step. It is incredibly rewarding to me when I see couples get past this very lonely and frustrating problem.
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