Have you ever wanted to ask a sex therapist lots of questions, but without having to make an actual appointment to see one ? Well if so, never fear, because we have done the homework for you. Highly qualified sex therapist Denise Knowles was recently grilled by the Debrief, and sat down to give some friendly answers to the most common questions that people ask in her profession. We have elaborated on a few of the issues that came up, just for your perusal.
We couldn’t help first wondering, what was the most common issue that people come in with ? Knowles states that it used to be questions about painful intercourse from women, and erectile dysfunction from men. But now, the biggest issue seems to be that people (in relationships) have simply stopped having sex, and are concerned about it. They’re finding that their libido is not what is used to be, or that there’s been a change between their own libido and their partner’s. There could be many reasons for this, a prevalent one being changes in lifestyles over the last few decades. What kinds of lifestyle changes, you may ask ? The biggest one seems to be that stress levels are higher—more people are working different shifts than the usual 9-5, and/or working multiple jobs, bringing work home with them, or answering work related emails at home after work hours. If one is constantly stressing himself about work or other issues, he is not likely going to be in the mood for a sexual encounter. Another sad fact is that too many people stay constantly connected to the internet at home—one partner is glued to his iPad all evening, while the other is on his/her phone. People simply need to turn off the electronics, put away the work brought home, and spend quality time with the other person in the room.
Another FAQ was, “What are the warning signs we should look for in a possibly floundering relationship?” Our sexpert noted that if you’re not having sex together, that’s a bad sign. Also, not kissing and cuddling on a regular basis sends up a red flag. Many couples have confessed that they couldn’t remember when they stopped having sex, that over time it gradually happened less and less. Knowles suggests that if this happens, that it’s time to bring up the subject in a nice, non-confrontational kind of way, and see if the problem can be worked out through honest discussion. On that same topic, she notes that the amount of sex a couple has doesn’t have to fulfill a particular quota; it is different for everyone. But it does need to be a mutually satisfying amount for both partners involved.
Our sexpert stated that another question that frequently arises is : “Is it bad if I don’t have time to masturbate, or can’t ?” Knowles answered the question by saying that masturbation is an important part of knowing yourself. It’s important too, because it teaches you to relax, and opens yourself up to your own dreams and fantasies, and can build confidence, not to mention that it is physically healthy. However, it is not something that you have to do, and it should not make or break a relationship, if you are in one. And, one partner should not be made to feel bad for masturbating, if the other partner doesn’t.
These were just a few of the most frequently asked questions that one sex therapist was most often confronted with. So in short, her advice to all is : wanking is great, but not something you have to do; kiss and cuddle the partner that you are with, and put away your iPads and phones when you’re with your partner. Words to live by…