By Carly Haeck and Caitlin Hendricks
Not sure if sex therapy is right for you? Perhaps you’ve never heard of it! For a complete explanation of what sex therapy is, check out our sex therapy page. Here are four reasons why you and your partner could be candidates for sex therapy:
1. You’re not having as much sex as you want to.
Many people ask us how much sex they *should* be having. The truth is, there is no magic number- the amount that feels right will be different for every couple/partnership. However, discrepancies can arise that may cause couples to feel disconnected, unheard or stuck. Maybe your partner(s) and you have different ideas about how much sex is desired. Does it feel like enough? Does it feel like too much? Addressing these concerns with the support of a sex therapist can help partnerships develop language to safely communicate concerns, desires and establish a balance that is fulfilling for all. Sexual intimacy can be an important part of a romantic relationship, and like many concerns that we see in this field, can be changed dramatically through positive communication and genuine understanding.
2. It’s difficult to communicate with each other about sex.
Do you struggle to tell your partner what you like and don’t like in bed? Maybe you worry about hurting their feelings, so you hold back, or maybe it feels awkward and uncomfortable to talk about it out loud. Many of us grow up with cultural messages that we aren’t supposed to talk about sex, and even if we don’t actually believe that it’s wrong to talk about it, that message can be deeply ingrained! But here’s the thing: communication about sex is essential to having a fulfilling sex life. Sex therapy can help you find the language to talk about sexual preferences with your partner, learn exercises to explore what you like with your partner, and identify and challenge unhelpful messages that you might have received about sex while growing up.
3. One or both of you is unsatisfied with your sex life.
Some partnerships report feeling that everything in their relationship feels great, except the sex. You go on dates, enjoy deep conversations and feel committed to moving forward. But when it comes to the bedroom something feels off. Maybe it feels routine, disconnected, or lacking passion. Maybe you’ve discovered something new to try, but don’t know how to approach it. Both you and your partner(s) deserve a fulfilling sex life, and as you and your partner(s) grow and change, so may your sex life. Sex therapy can help you communicate and explore these changes with your partner and work towards a more fulfilling experience for all.
4. You’re experiencing pain during sex.
If you’re experiencing pain or physical discomfort during sex, it’s a great idea to discuss this with your doctor to investigate the source of the pain (and this is the first thing your sex therapist will recommend!). There are many things that can cause pain during sex, including female sexual pain disorders. Many people with sexual pain disorders report lower interest in sex- who wants to be in pain, right? Sex therapy can be helpful for you and your partner to learn how to manage the pain, communicate about it with each other, and re-learn positive associates with sex.