I don’t often spill the deets of my sex life. But seeing as you’re here, and I’m sure you’re just a teeny bit nosy about what was up with my muff, here’s a little about me…
Settle down, put your feet up with a cuppa- it’s story time….
My name is L.
I’m a massive (guilty) feminist. I have a great bunch of mates, a woefully small vinyl collection, delusions of grandeur about being a hipster but also loudly condemning that aesthetic to anyone within earshot.
AND, I experienced a low point during my late 20s where my sex drive just completely gave out on me.
When I say low point, I’m talking maybe two years.
There was sex, people, but during that time I didn’t have one ounce of desire to bother doing it.
I felt grey, stagnant, numb- my sex life was so routine, so lacking, so just…. dead.
So, it was pretty chronic. Or at least, I thought so.
Now, don’t get me wrong- EVERYONE experiences sex drive highs and lows. Whether you’ve got a temporary case of cystitis (the devil! Read my post here on that episode), or a stressful time at work, recovering from an operation, or simply pissed at your partner, we all sometimes just don’t fancy bonking.
But trust me guys, this was different. This was hard core, literal winter is coming style self-imposed but non-consensual celibacy. And it was shit.
I felt like this:
And I told a few mates who were basically like this:
And my boyfriend was like this waiting for me to feel better and stop making excuses whenever he shuffled over with a glint in his eye:
And I floundered about what to do, where to go, or who to talk to.
It was embarrassing, right? It felt like everyone was having sex, and not wanting it made me feel like an alien.
Was it me? Was it him? How long would this last? And most importantly, what could I possible do to kick start my fanny back into action?
How to sort out a sad vagina?
Obviously, as any self-respecting millennial would do, I checked out Dr Google for help.
It was a horrific mess of viagra adverts, penis enlargement sites and dodgy looking sex therapists that offered to do a “yoni massage” to reinvigorate my sex drive.
I also read “quick fix” articles that in 5 steps promised to cure all of my problems, or advised drinking turmeric milkshakes or “sex coffee” (yup, that’s a real thing) to ramp up my desire for sex.
But I knew it ran much deeper than that and wouldn’t be an overnight cure.
I felt annoyed at the lack of resources out there for women considering some stats put this issue at nearly 50% of us having experienced it.
And I also began hating myself because I knew something was missing in my life, and it left me feeling empty, lacking, beige, and with less than any joir-de-vive.
Whatever it was, I knew in finding it, I’d find my vulva-voom again.
Random french thrown in always makes people sound so much smarter. Don’t you think?
So, what did I do?
First I stumbled across some articles that explained sex drives to me in a way I understood, and others that talked about the way that as a society we give women the wrong messages about their bodies, pleasure and desire.
Then, I read more and more and more. I joined forums, spoke to friends and strangers, signed up to the Scarlet Ladies and found a community of bloggers, and did some more shit on the internet.
And then, I got pissed.
(Not actually pissed, I mean pissed off. Royally. I did an MA in Gender see, and I get on my high horse about anything feminism related. And this my friends, is a feminist emergency).
We medicalise, prescribe pills and pathologise women for their lack of desire to have sex, when infact our ideas about sexual response have always been defined in terms of a model made for men. So it’s no wonder the female sex drive is such a mythological creature!
We actually know verrrrry little on women’s sexuality in general.
AND our lives are so bombarded by images of a certain type of sexy, there’s an epidemic of women out there hating their bodies. And negative body image is a sure fire way to turn you off sex.
And don’t get me started on the amount of women who aren’t having good sex because they don’t understand their own bodies, how to receive pleasure, ask for what they want (I struggled with ALL of this too!), with partners who also have no clue! If we’re not having good sex, Great Britain, why would we even want to bang anyone ever again!
AND (this is my final “and”)- lets heap on top of this the high levels of anxiety, stress, depression and other mental illnesses that we experience, as well as the burden we face as women in providing emotional care and doing more unpaid domestic labour, AND (ok, not last “and”) the sexpectations that exist and double standards for how we women perform sexually. Its a frickin recipe for disaster and low libidos!
So, I realised I needed to give myself a new sexual education. One less this:
And more this:
Learning about sex, pleasure, gender roles and models of sex drives has opened my eyes to a whole new way of understanding my own sexual self. And when I realised this, I started to feel better.
I started to look at myself in a different way, and used different tricks to learn about myself and what I like. And, after analysing the shit out of my life, relationship, mental state and knicker draw…. my sex drive started to increase.
I did it because I developed my own tools and basically “sex coached” myself back to sexual happiness.
It’s kind of like life coaching, but for your vagina. So new-age, I know, but it’s great! She’s worth it!
So now, I want to open up the conversation on low sex drives and help people see they’re not broken.
Having a low sex drive doesn’t mean you’re going to be stuck in a perpetual sexual winter.
So, if this is you too, you can also do just as Justin says:
And become that sexual firecracker you were before. I know you can do it.
And this blog is my way of sharing that knowledge with you.
Let’s do this! Begin here- the secret to improving your sex drive.
P.S. I’d love for you to join in the chat/let me know your thoughts in the comments, or submit your own story via the #sexdrivestories hashtag.