Sexual Frustration: Part Two
Sexual frustrations are the negative, powerful feelings that occur when one’s sexual needs and desires are not being met in a satisfactory manner. These feelings are different for each individual but can negatively impact daily life.
If you haven’t already, check out our article, Sexual Frustration: Part One, to learn the basics about these feelings.
Symptoms of Sexual Frustration
For many people, stress and tension build up in life can cause sexual frustration. One must begin by evaluating their current mood and mental health. If the negative emotions they are feeling are not linked to a nonsexual reason or cause, then those feelings could relate to sexual frustration.
Some of those potential symptoms might include:
- Frequently fantasizing or daydreaming about sex
- Engaging in unhealthy coping behaviors such as binge drinking or binge eating
- Feeling irritable, restless, and edgy
- Experiencing rejection from recent sexual advances
- Arguing with partner more often & steering argument topics back to sex
- Feeling less confident or less interested in sex
- Having less sex, masturbating less, or both
- Being too stressed or tired to have sex or masturbate, even when there is a desire to do so
- Having sexual expectations that partners are unable to fulfill
- Performing risky behaviors to fulfill sexual desires
- Watching porn or movies with numerous intimate or sexual scenes
Potential Causes of Sexual Frustration
There are numerous potential causes of sexual frustration which could include a lack of intimacy or sex, unsatisfactory intimate and sexual acts, or those facing anorgasmia, or the inability to orgasm. Understanding the causes behind the frustration can help to better work through these roadblocks and issues. Here are some of the more common causes:
- Lack of sexual partners. Single folks, or those in long distance relationships, may struggle finding a partner to have such intimate acts with.
- Unmet expectations. Certain partners may have standards in place, be critical of their partner, or want to engage in sexual activities their partner does not agree with. These things can bring feelings of shame, self-blame, and frustration.
- Communication issues. In many cases within relationships, communication issues arise as the sexual frustration and needs grow. Differences in sex drives or desire, along with not openly communicating needs for negotiation prior to sexual events, can cause a disconnect within the relationship.
- Medical conditions. People who struggle with poor overall health or struggle with mental health may also face more sexual frustrations. There are numerous medical conditions that also directly impact one’s ability to be or feel sexual in any way. Some of these are:
- Sexual dysfunction disorders like erectile dysfunction, vaginal atrophy, or anorgasmia.
- Anxiety and Depression
- High Blood pressure
- Heart disease
- Long-term illnesses
- Hormonal Imbalances
- Adding to the list of causes, many prescription medications also cause side effects that hinder desire, ability, and drive. Some of these are:
- Birth control
- Antidepressants and anxiety medications
- Cancer Medications, radiation, and chemotherapy
- Body Image issues. For various reasons, people often have body image issues that hinder them from wanting to be, or being able to be, nude or vulnerable in front of another person- even their long-time partner. Men and women face struggles with body image issues at various points throughout life, and with any major life event or challenge.
How to Treat & Prevent Sexual Frustration
If you or someone you know is stuck in a rut with sexual frustration, they might consider other outlets to help release pent-up feelings, tensions, and sexual energies. This could include:
- Focusing on health. Someone who meets their nonsexual life needs, like nutrition and sleep, can find better focus through the days when it comes to dealing with sexual frustration.
- Connecting with friends. Humans are social beings who need and thrive off of connection. Meeting up with friends or coworkers can help to ease the physical and emotional needs to connect with other humans in a non-sexual way.
- Exercising. Physical activities are an excellent way to release energy, get healthy, and boost your overall mood.
- Masturbation. Self-discovery and self-stimulation can help to release pent-up physical and mental tensions of a sexual nature.
- Virtual sex. In long distance relationships, getting creative about the methods of participating in virtual sex can be exciting and daring. Utilizing this like sexting, video sex, or phone sex can add a new layer of intimacy and sexual activity one may have not tried before.
- Communication. Openly expressing and communicating your sexual needs in an open, honest, and kind way can help to avoid dissatisfaction within the partnership.
- Initiate sex. Those people in long-term relationships often stop initiating sex or sex acts. Spontaneous sex just does not occur as it once did, helping to keep the relationship light and flowing. Verbalize your desires for sex with simple notes, simple words, or small gestures.
- Listen to music. Music can improve moods, ease tensions, and release pent up stress.
- Try medications or support devices. If your issues with sexual frustration lean on sexual dysfunction issues, consider trying medications or holistic devices designed to help restore lost function in the privacy of your own home.
- Explore & add variety into your sexual routines. The “same ole” routines can become tedious and boring over the years, which is why adding in new elements- sexual devices, vibrators, “toys,” lubrications, etc.- can help to ease that monotony.
When Sexual Frustration needs a Professional
If your or your partners’ sexual frustrations begin to affect other areas of life, consider reaching out to a counselor or therapist. Whatever your relationship status, anyone can consult a sex therapist or counselor with a specialty in dealing with intimacy issues, sex, body image, sexual shame, and sexual frustration. These experts can help you to better understand and deal with these feelings of frustration.
If you or your partner are experiencing sexual frustration that is impacting your relationship, do not hesitate to reach out to our Reclaiming Intimacy experts, your doctor, or a counselor today!