18 Signs It's Not Your Libido

Bryanne Salazar | Aug 25, 2019 Love & Sex
18 Signs It's Not Your Libido
Image: Twenty20

18 Signs It's Not Your Libido
Twenty20

When having sex is the last thing on our mind, it's easy to think our libido is to blame. For anyone who's tried to get in the mood but nothing seems to work, before we get convinced that days of naked bliss are done for, it's worth finding out if there might be another, more common culprit behind that dry spell. Women have a tendency to blame themselves for what's wrong in their relationships. But the truth is, it's not always -- or even often -- our fault. Maybe there's nothing wrong with our libido, and instead, there's something the matter physically -- or even emotionally between us and our partner. That's not something to blame ourselves for, but instead, a reason to be understanding and kind to ourselves. It's also a reason to kindly ask questions and communicate with our partner so we can understand what we all need to be happy. 

Once we have an understanding of what's going on with our sex drives and we're feeling back on track both physically and emotionally, that's the time to start experimenting with sex so it can be even more exciting and fulfilling than before. Tips for hotter sex can help us take it to the next level with our partner and really connect. Once those are mastered, take a peek at the 50 Things to Try Tonight to Have the Hottest Sex, which can basically earn us a master's degree in nookie. And after giving birth -- whether we're starting to experiment with a little solo session or are looking to engage in some fun early play with our partner -- we're fans of sex toys to 'get the job done' after we've had a baby. These range from purely clitoral stimulators (great for when the vagina is still closed for repairs, but the clitoris is back to begging for attention) to toys that can help strengthen our PC muscles, which can help us feel more pleasure, and may also help us with all those times we end up accidentally peeing a little bit when we sneeze (ya know what we mean). 

  • Tension

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    Tension
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    A sexually aggressive partner can create uncomfortable bedroom tension, especially if they make us feel disrespected or invalidated. Over time, this tension can translate into a lack of physical desire as both people feel disconnected and resentful. Honest communication about our wants, expectations, and boundaries can help restore balance in the relationship, as well as help fix waning intimacy.

  • Intoxication

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    Intoxication
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    Drinking and taking drugs may feel good in the moment, but they can damage our libidos. Intoxicants make achieving and maintaining an erection and producing enough natural lubrication difficult, if not impossible. Plus, once we're tipsy, it's much harder to reach orgasm. Chronic drug and alcohol use can eventually suppress the sex drive altogether, and may be a sign of untreated depression.

  • Stress

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    Stress
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    Stress is a common cause of sexual dysfunction, but it does more than just damage our love life. Chronic stress is linked to mental health disorders, heart disease, digestive ailments, and even accelerated aging. Who wants to make whoopee when they're feeling the weight of the world on their shoulders? Learning how to de-stress won't just save a flailing love life, it can literally save our actual life, too.

  • Sickness

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    Sickness
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    Any time we're dealing with long-term health issues, our other priorities (like sex) fall by the wayside. For anyone struggling with regular migraines, digestive issues, reproductive diseases, or another issue, getting "in the mood" can be difficult. So it's important to make sure to communicate love and affection for our partner and reach out to our doctor to discuss possible options that can give us back a little bit of our sexual spark.

  • Anxiety

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    Anxiety
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    Anxiety of any kind is bad, but anxiety over our sexual abilities can totally kill our libido. For anyone whose mind starts to race with worries as soon as the mood heats up, it can be helpful to develop skills to slow down thoughts and stay in the moment. Meditation, mindfulness and, if necessary, a trip to the doctor can help derail anxiety and keep that libido on track.

  • Medications

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    Medications
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    A major culprit in sex-drive decline happens to be hiding in our medicine cabinets: Antidepressants, anti-anxiety meds, beta blockers, and pain pills are all known to decrease our libido. Those who have to take regular medication -- and find their sex drive stalled as a result -- should consider talking to the doctor about possible options or alternative treatments to get that engine revving.

  • Hormones

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    Hormones
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    Estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, and more all play a pivotal role in maintaining a healthy sex drive. A drop in testosterone could result in a lower libido for men, as could declining estrogen in women. For anyone who suspects their hormones are out of whack, the doctor can help test hormone levels and, if necessary, develop a treatment plan.

  • Pain

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    Pain
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    Chronic pain is a giant roadblock to a healthy sex drive. Dealing with pain is exhausting, and often medications to treat pain have an additional negative impact on our libidos. Whether it's arthritis, a back injury, disease, or another painful ailment, physical discomfort may be the reason we're just not in the mood.

  • Masturbation

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    Masturbation
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    Masturbation is healthy and normal, but excessive masturbation has been shown to complicate things sexually. Not only does aggressive self-pleasuring desensitize us to other people's touch, it can create a sort of sexual dependency where we can only reach arousal and orgasm by manual stimulation. The answer? A masturbation sabbatical. Abstaining can reset our desire button and eventually make sex with a partner more enjoyable.

  • Obesity

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    Obesity
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    A surprising factor linked to erectile dysfunction is obesity. High levels of belly fat are known to cause dips in testosterone, which can decrease libido. Extra weight can also impact a woman's sex drive, as it can lead to chronic fatigue. The good news is that dropping just a few pounds has been shown to increase our sex hormones and libido.

  • Dissatisfaction

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    Dissatisfaction
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    Nothing drains our libido faster than unfulfilling sex. Repeated poor sexual experiences can make intercourse seem unappealing -- ultimately lowering our sex drive. If recent sexual experiences have been less than explosive, it may be time to speak up. Letting our partner know what works for us and what doesn't is always healthy and helpful, and we shouldn't be afraid to add new tricks into our lovemaking routine, too.

  • Kids

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    Kids
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    As any exhausted parent will admit, having children is a libido-killer. Spending our days catering to someone else's needs can leave us emotionally and physically depleted. The last thing many parents want to do at night is have sex (especially when they could be getting some much-needed rest). One way to boost the ol' post-baby sex drive is to get a babysitter: The extra pair of hands can decrease stress and boost the mood.

  • Distractions

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    Distractions
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    Whether it's the kids, the pets, work, or an endless to-do list, having a life full of distractions can make sex next to impossible. Setting boundaries with both family members and fur kids can keep the at-home interruptions at bay. Turning that smartphone to silent is also important to stay in the moment and, more importantly, in the mood.

  • Attraction

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    Attraction
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    A difficult thing for any person to admit is when they develop an attraction to someone other than their partner. Focusing on the things we like about our partner can help, as can limiting our interactions with the new object of our affections.

  • Abuse

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    Abuse
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    For anyone with a history of abuse, sex can be a tricky subject. Intimacy and physical touch can be incredibly difficult for someone who has experienced any form of abuse, including sexual assault or molestation. It is important that partners of abuse victims understand and support them while also encouraging them to seek treatment (with the goal being their partner's well-being, not a more active sex life).

  • Self-Esteem

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    Self-Esteem
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    Sometimes, low self-esteem can make us more sexually aggressive as we try to find our sense of self-worth in our physical interactions. Other times, it can make us avoid sex, as we don't want to deal with possible embarrassment or rejection. Anyone struggling with confidence should seek the help of a qualified therapist to learn how to silence their inner critic and explore a more healthy sexual relationship.

  • Habit

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    Habit
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    Sometimes, a low libido is simply born out of habit. With our increasingly busy lives, making time for sex can be difficult -- if not impossible. Over time, a lack of regular sexual interaction can decrease our desire. Before we know it, we might feel more like best friends and roommates with our partner, and not lovers. Carving out time for intimacy is an important way to keep the passion alive in our relationship and restart our libidos.

  • Anger

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    Anger
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    Everyone's heard that having sex when angry (or after a big fight) results in some of the best sex we'll ever have. The only problem is many of us don't work that way. When we have unresolved issues with our partner, it's just as likely that the last thing we want to do is touch them or have them touch us. The solution is to work out the anger by talking and make sure there are no lingering frustrations keeping that love life on pause.

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