9 Fears That Could Be Preventing You From Enjoying Sex — And How To Overcome Them
Sex can be many things: fun, spontaneous, exciting, and relaxing, but for some people, sex is a source of fear and anxiety. We all want to be sexually confident women who feel good about their desires and choices, but not everybody is like that. And there can be many different reasons that women fear sex.
Sex fears aren't always visible, and you may not even know you have them. They can lurk deep down in your subconscious, and you might find yourself avoiding sex and rationalizing the reasons for you not having any such as your time-consuming job or a low sex drive.
You might be someone who has never had sex, had a lot of sex, or someone in between. If fear is getting in the way of you having a healthy sex life, that's a major problem. Sex is an important part of life and relationships, and good sex is worth doing the work for. As humans, we crave intimacy.
The first thing to do is to think seriously about why you may, or may not be having sex. Did you once have a bad experience or have there been consistently bad experiences that have caused you to write off sex as something other people enjoy but not you?
1. Fear Of How You Look Naked
Feeling like you aren't attractive when you aren't wearing any any clothes is a mood killer. Most people have some body part that they don't feel good about: they're fat, they're too thin, they have huge thighs, chicken legs, muffin tops, acne, backne, moles that look like Texas, breasts that are too big, breasts that are too small, and everything in between. We all can be experts on focusing on the negative. No one is perfect; we're all flawed and it's our flaws that make us unique and interesting. Honestly, your partner is probably so thrilled to see you in all your naked beautifulness that they aren't noticing anything that you think is so hideous. Try doing things that make you feel desirable such as getting a massage or doing some affirmations. If you tell yourself that you're beautiful enough times, maybe you'll start to believe it.
2. Fear Of Bodily Functions Happening At Just The Wrong Time
You can picture it — you're right in the middle of sex of nowhere you let one rip, or burp up that last piece of pizza. Not exactly hot. You're humiliated, and want to crawl into bed and hide under the covers. Remember that we're all human, and these things happen. Let go of the shame and don't make a big deal of it. We're not always in control, especially of our bodies, but don't let it prevent you from having some adult fun.
3. Fear Of Not Being Good At Sex
If you're inexperienced, or have had some less-than-fantastic sexual experiences, you might worry that you suck at sex. Try concentrating on what you like, and being sensitive to your partner's needs will help you make feel more comfortable and take you out of the fear cycle. You also may still be learning what you like and respond to. With the right person and a little experimentation (with yourself or with someone els) you can build up your confidence. Practice makes perfect or at least pretty damn good.
Lots of women can't climax from intercourse (roughly 75 percent of women) alone. The best thing to ease your fear is to find out what works for you like hands, mouth, and/or sex toys and masturbation. If you need more help, find a sex therapist that's a good fit for you.
5. Fear Of Disappointing Your Partner
If you put an extraordinary about of pressure on yourself to be the most amazing sex partner on the planet, you could stress yourself out to such a degree that not only don't you enjoy sex, you don't want to inflict your bad moves on anybody else. It's OK to be a little selfish and think about your wants and needs. Ask for what you'd like and don't be scared to check in with your partner about what they want and what feels good to them. If you're asked to do something differently than you're doing it, they aren't criticizing you, so don't freak out. Good sex is about give and take.
6. Fear Of Vaginal Pain
If the thought of something in your vagina makes you clench up, it's no wonder that you'd be afraid. Vaginismus is a serious psychological and physical problem, and you need to seek treatment. One of the symptoms of vaginismus are involuntary muscle spasms in the vagina, so doing Kegel exercises can help.
7. Fear Of Getting Hurt
If people only had sex with the intent of having a committed relationship, then there wouldn't be hook ups or friends with benefits. Not every sexual encounter has to lead to relationship and sometimes we just want to let off steam. If you only want to have sex with a significant other and are still afraid of getting a broken heart, know that sometimes you just have to go all in and say "Screw it." Getting hurt isn't fun, but there are a lot of valuable lessons that you do learn from it. You need to take a chance with being intimate, even if the outcome isn't the one you wanted.
8. Fear Of Getting, Or Giving Someone, An STD
It's not irrational to have a fear of getting a sexually transmitted disease. One in four adults in New York have herpes. Having safe sex and using a condom can help prevent STDs. Also, having a STD doesn't make you a bad person, and shouldn't be a death sentence for your sex life, just be careful, honest, and up front with your partner.
9. Fear Of Going Outside Your Comfort Zone
Human sexuality is ever changing and there's no harm in trying different things (and types of people.) It's also OK to take a sexual break while you figure things out. As long as you aren't hurting anybody, experimenting to find out what you like is always good.
Sex fears are more common than you might think. The first step is to not beat yourself up for having them. Living in today's world is stressful and sex can be a major cause of insecurity for women. If your sex life isn't as mind blowing as it could be, and your fears are getting in the way, try to take a step back, and do something that gives you pleasure and helps to relieve your tension. Don't shame yourself for not feeling as you think other people are expecting you to feel. Take your time, get help if you need it, and remember there's no right or wrong way to have sex. Do what makes you feel good.
Want more of Bustle's Sex and Relationships coverage? Check out our new podcast, I Want It That Way, which delves into the difficult and downright dirty parts of a relationship, and find more on our Soundcloud page.
Images: Fotolia; Giphy(8)