In this week’s episode, I’m answering questions on topics such as libido mismatch, how to cope when your partner has an affair, performance anxiety, and much more. I’m explaining the importance of creating a safe emotional and physical environment for sex, and why managing your thoughts can help improve general intimacy.
Tune in this week for part two of my recent flower side chat and learn why sexual intimacy is built upon a foundation of communication and trust. I’m sharing ways you can value yourself more, and why sexual intimacy is less about the orgasm, and more about the satisfaction, connection, and pleasure.
You are listening to The Midlife Sex Coach for Women Podcast, episode 10.
Female Announcer: Welcome to the Midlife Sex Coach for Women Podcast, the only show that combines a fun personality, medical knowledge, sexual counseling and life coaching together. To create unique sex coaching that helps busy women awaken their libidos, address intimacy issues and learn how to express their sexuality for the rest of their days. Here is your host, certified life coach and sexual counselor, Dr. Sonia Wright.
Hello Diamonds. It’s so good to have you back with me. I’m so excited to bring you the second half of this flower side chat with the questions, and answers, and coaching just for you and I hope that you enjoy it.
But before we get started, I just wanted to take a moment to thank all the Diamonds who have been reviewing my podcast on Apple podcast. I’ve been getting some excellent reviews and I’d love to share some of those reviews with you. Abduls says, “Dr. Sonia has brought so much insight and improvement in my life. This podcast is a great brief overview of important concepts with action items to help out in just 15-20 minutes at a time. I highly recommend listening as a good way to invest in yourself without that much of a time commitment.”
Thank you, Abduls, so happy that you’re enjoying the podcast. Beth says, “Great podcast. I’m so excited to learn all I can about creating and increasing physical intimacy in my marriage. And Dr. Sonia has so many great insights. I love her coaching style and great examples, keep it coming.”
And Checksir says, “Goodbye to do list sex. Dr. Sonia has a gift for talking about sex in a way that makes it comfortable, revealing and helps you solve the number one problem with your sex life, your brain. I’ve loved these first few episodes and I can’t wait to see what she has coming up next.”
Thank you so much to all the Diamonds that have reviewed my podcast. Keep the reviews coming, I really appreciate them. And remember once you’ve submitted the review, email me and let me know that you posted a review. I’m going to put the email link in the show notes. Now, let’s get to the flower side chat, enjoy part two.
So, let’s see. I feel so minimized by the other women all so much younger, I started to feel unwantable. Okay, so now we’re going to deal with an issue specifically about you and lovability, this concept of you and valuing yourself. So your partner or your ex partner has made a choice to have affairs with other women. That’s their choice and their decision and that’s something that you two can discuss privately.
But you don’t have control over anybody else’s actions and what choices they make. They may not be making the best choices for your relationship, you two would determine that. But what you do have control over is how you view yourself and how you think of yourself. And you are 100% valuable and lovable right now. And the only reason you’re feeling that you’re not is because you’re making a decision and you’re having thoughts that you’re not as desirable, or attractive, or whatever compared to these other women.
But you get to choose how desirable, and how beautiful, and how wonderful you are with your own thoughts. And this is something that’s very important to listen to and to understand. And so I’m just going to take a minute to slow down with this. You get to choose your thoughts about yourself, nobody else has the right to – they can think thoughts about you all that they want to. But you have the choice and you make the decision to think choices and think thoughts about yourself.
And you get to choose, do you want to continue to keep this thought? Is this thought serving you, this thought that you are unwantable or that comparing yourself to these other women and coming up short? You are fantastic and amazing and if you choose to let somebody have power over your thoughts. It’s your thoughts and these are your choice, it’s basically your choice to make in terms of how you want to think about yourself and how you want to value yourself. And so I ask you how do you want to value yourself? How do you want to think about yourself?
So those are some questions that I’d like to ask you. And do you think these thoughts are serving you at this point in time? And do you think these thoughts are helpful? And so journaling on this, you can put it in the chat here and I’m more than happy to ask you, and talk to you more about it, and coach more on it. Because this is important that you recognize that you are amazing and wonderful right now.
And nobody else can take that from you unless you make the decision in your mind that you’re not valuable or you’re not lovable. So you get to have that choice, you get to decide what you want to think about yourself and how valuable you want to actually be.
Alright, let’s see if there’s any other questions here. “My husband feels that he gets shut down too often, no matter how much sex we have is not enough. Even when it’s twice a week he says he feels bad if I ever say no but he asks every day. He said I have to initiate from now on. I’ve never initiated in 22 years. It was never a big issue. But now he changed everything. He’s stopped initiating. I’m angry about it by the way, I just don’t want to initiate with him. I have with other people. Also he never touches me without it leading to him asking for sex.”
Okay. There’s a lot that’s bundled in here. And so we want to break this down a little bit here. So I’m hearing that my husband feels that he gets shut down too often. So maybe we’re dealing with a situation where there’s a mismatch of libido or one person in the relationship wants sex a little bit more often than another person. And this can happen. And actually this happens more times than not because the odds of people being matched at an exact same level, that doesn’t happen.
So, usually one person’s libido will be a little bit higher than another. And because it is you might get into this situation where one person is interested in sex less than the other person. The other person may ask quite a bit of times and then when one partner says no then the person that has the higher libido may shut down and may get to this place where they want to protect themselves. They interpret the no as a rejection of them as opposed to the one partner just not being interested in sex. But they take it in terms of a rejection of them.
And then they get to this place where they start to put up barriers and they don’t want to be asking and initiating for sex because it gets to this place where they don’t want to be rejected anymore. So essentially what your husband is doing is trying to figure out a way in his mind where he can protect himself emotionally from getting that rejection. And so now he’s kind of put it all in your court and is basically saying, “Hey, when you decide that you want to have sex, let me know. And you initiate it because I don’t want to feel this pain of rejection anymore.”
Now, in terms of the life coaching sides of things, he gets to choose what he wants to do. We don’t have control over that. We don’t have control over if he chooses that he wants to keep asking for sex, or does not want to ask for sex anymore. Hopefully you two could come together and have more of an open communication around this and get to a place of maybe compromise or whatever. But it sounds like he’s in the zone where he does not necessarily want to feel this pain anymore that he’s interpreting as rejection when you say no around this.
But then we get to this other area that you’ve never initiated in 22 years and now you’re angry about the fact that he’s no longer initiating. So in terms of the anger what do you think you are thinking? What are your thoughts leading to this anger? But now he’s changed everything. He’s stopped initiating and I’m angry about it. So I would imagine that maybe your thoughts are something to do with why is he changing everything? He shouldn’t be changing things, it’s been working fine. Why is it changing?
So I’d be interested in knowing what your thoughts are around that. And sit with that anger. I’m not one that wants you to just jump to the happy place. Sometimes we have to sit with this anger and look at our thoughts around this. And see if there’s room for communication around it. But also what exactly is causing the anger? Is it because he’s changing things? Is it because now the shifting of the responsibility in the relationship in terms of the sexual intimacy is changing? What exactly is it that’s causing you to be angry about this?
And then take some time to look at that and decide how you would want to be able to express your sexual intimacy. And how you would like to express that in this relationship in particular and see if you two can discuss it and come to a place of a more mutual agreement. But if this situation is not going to change then what ultimately is your goal that you would like for this situation as it is at this point in time? And you only have control over your thoughts, and your feelings, and your actions.
And so if this situation is not going to change, how do you want to be in this situation? How do you want to show up in this situation? So those are some things to think about in terms of this situation. And then it says something about, “I don’t want to initiate with him, I have with other people.” And I would also wonder about what you’re making it mean about initiating. And why are you resisting having to initiate? If it seems that if it’s once or twice a week, but you don’t necessarily want to initiate, what does that mean to you if your thoughts are around having to initiate?
So these are some questions that I’d love to work on with you, if you want to put it in the chat, we can talk further about it. And then it sounds like there may be some resentment over, “He never touches me without it leading to him asking for sex.” So maybe that’s another area that you two might want to talk about in terms of affection, and touch, and how that’s being interpreted. And if it’s the place where you would like touch that’s not always sexual in nature then part of it is a matter of communication as well.
But I would also journal on this, what it means when he’s touching you and how it makes you feel when the only touch that you feel like you’re receiving is related to sex and initiating sex.
So we’re going back to the person that was talking about oral sex and it’s making them gag. And they get really sad about it because their partner really wants them to engage in oral sex and it’s not necessarily where they want to be. So there’s a follow-up to that which is, “My husband is trying to decide if he wants to stay or go. He blames me for his unhappiness.” Well, first of all, he’s responsible for his own happiness or unhappiness, like it’s your thoughts and feelings about a situation that make you unhappy.
But another person can’t make you unhappy because then you’re giving your power away to another human being. Then you’re always expecting somebody else to make you happy, which never really works. But okay, “So he doesn’t feel that I’m sexual enough. I’m struggling with the self-betrayal of sleeping with him and working on becoming more sexual at the same time that he may still judge me as not enough and leave anyway. He’s doing no work on the things I feel are missing and the things that make me feel connected to him.”
Okay, well, this is interesting. So there’s a lot going on here and let’s unpack it for a moment. So he’s blaming you for his unhappiness and there’s some judgment that’s here. He’s saying that you’re not sexual enough. He gets to choose to say whatever he does, but this is impacting the relationship and it’s impacting how you are feeling about the relationship. And so part of you wants to see if you can become more sexual and see if that’s going to help. But the connection, the underlying connection with him is not there. The underlying trust is not there.
And I always say sexual intimacy is built upon general intimacy, which is built upon communication. And I’d love to put in there, trust as well. So you have the communication and the trust, and that’s on shaky ground. And then it’s no wonder that the sexual stuff and the intimacy on top of that is in a place where you’re not sure what you want to do and where you want to be with that. So, very often if you’re coming from a place where you’re not feeling this connection with your partner then that’s the place to start.
So how do you get back to that place of feeling a connection with your partner? This is the important part. There’s a physical connection but there’s the emotional connection and there’s the emotional trust that needs to be there and the open communication. So it may not be the easiest thing to do but sometimes it is to put aside the sexual intimacy side of things until you can work on that foundation of trust, and communication, and connection. It is a pretty complex issue and so it may also be something to look into.
I don’t know if you have tried couples counseling or marriage therapy, sex therapy. But there is a place for if it’s more of a longer issue then it might be something to bring to a sex therapist. So that might be an additional issue. A sex therapist has the extended part of couples’ therapy but then adds in the sex therapy as well. And it may be something that both of you need to because it sounds like we need to work on the connection, the communication, the intimacy.
Because you are right when you say, “I am struggling with the self-betrayal of sleeping with him and working on becoming more sexual at the same time that he may still be judging me.” So the trust is not there. It’s not a safe environment for you. So somehow this needs to be a safe environment for both of you before you can work on this issue in terms of trusting enough. Sexuality, and sex, and sexual acts, it comes from a very, very vulnerable place. And you have to have a trust there in order to be vulnerable.
So I would look as to what you would need in order to have this be a safe place for you to be vulnerable. I love the idea that you are there for yourself, how can you continue to be there for yourself during this experience? “So he says he doesn’t feel safe unless there is sex, so has no interest in setting it aside and this is how he connects.” And I can hear that.
So for him the physical touch and the sex is an important part. But there are two people involved here and so he’s focusing on the sex side of things. But the environment needs to be safe for both of you, emotionally and physically safe for both of you. And so if there’s not necessarily an understanding on his part that there needs to be that safe side for you as well then this might be something that needs to be addressed in a couples’ counseling type of situation.
Because if you don’t feel safe and you don’t feel like you can trust then you’re not going to be able to engage in the sexual activities. And it’s not going to be a good experience for you. And always with sex and sexuality, hopefully could be a good experience where there’s connection. I always say it’s satisfaction, connection, pleasure, those are the three things, satisfaction, connection and pleasure. And I’m not sure how much of those three things that you’re getting right now out of sex.
And sexual intimacy is a wonderful thing and so I would say that focus on your pleasure, satisfaction and connection and work on making this a safe place for you.
Alright, let’s see if there’s any other questions or comments. I wanted to talk a little bit about performance anxiety and that they seem to be in their head a lot during sex and they’re not in their body, they’re not enjoying themselves. And they’re worried about how good they are at sex and if their partner is thinking that they’re good enough and comparing them to other partners that their partner’s had in the past. And so all this goes under performance anxiety. So let’s talk a little bit about performance anxiety.
So, performance anxiety usually has to do with feeling that you’re not doing something right. You don’t know what you’re doing, you’re not good at it or under the subheading of orgasms then there is this concept that you’re not having an orgasm fast enough. It’s not the right type of orgasms. And let me just say that pornography can be fun but it’s not real life. It’s a story, it’s a movie. It’s whatever that’s put on. So when we see squirting and multi orgasms and people having simultaneous orgasm or whatever that we’re seeing in pornography.
This is setting us up to feel that somehow we’re not doing it right or something’s wrong with us. Or we’re comparing ourselves to past partners, or girlfriends or anything like that; this puts us in a place of performance anxiety. You can imagine if you’re in this place of performance anxiety and you’re up in your head wondering if you’re doing this right. You’re going to get to this place where you don’t necessarily want to engage in sexual intimacy.
You’re focused on I’m doing this wrong. I’m not doing this the way I should. Something’s not right. I’m not as good as somebody else. All those things are thoughts up in your head and they take you away from enjoyment and pleasure in your body. And so talking about performance anxiety, if you get to this place where you’re feeling like you should be better, it should be different or something like that. Then you’re going to be in this place where you’re just not feeling and you’re not in your body experiencing the pleasure and the joy that comes from sexual intimacy.
And you’re not having that connection with yourself or with your partner if you’re sitting there thinking I am taking too long to come or to have an orgasm. When you’re out of the bedroom situation look at your thoughts around this, and your thoughts around sexual intimacy, your thoughts around your performance, and write those thoughts done, the ones that are getting in your head. When you’re supposed to be relaxing and enjoying yourself, there’s thoughts in your head like it’s taking too long. I’m not good at this. I wish I knew how to do this better.
When you have a minute later on, write those thoughts down and spend some time with those thoughts. You get to decide if you want to keep those thoughts and if those thoughts are serving you. But recognize that if you’re in this place where you feel like you’re doing it wrong or something’s not right, then you’re going to get to this place where you might start avoiding sex and sexual intimacy. You might disconnect from your partner. If you’re solo partnered then you might get to this place where you don’t even engage sexually with yourself.
And so if you’re solo partnered and you’re thinking it’s taking me too long to come, or I’m not doing it the right way, or I don’t know how to use a vibrator, or whatever those thoughts are. When you stop having sexual intimacy with yourself, you stop self-pleasuring or you stop having intimacy, you start avoiding and you stop being sexual, then you’re shutting down a part of yourself.
And so I’m always going to go back to the thoughts because I’m a life coach. So I’m always going to go back to the thought. And I’m always going to go to that place where you deserve pleasure. You deserve pleasure. And it’s okay for you to have pleasure. But in terms of getting to this place where you’re avoiding sexual intimacy because you’re concerned about your performance, just shift the focus and shift the focus onto satisfaction, connection with yourself and with your partner. Satisfaction and the experience, and just the pleasure overall, you don’t have to put the focus on orgasms.
I’m just going to look, there’s a couple more things that we have in the chat here. Alright, will this recording be available to us to listen to again later? Yes, it will be. Yes, I’m recording it right now. And then I will be sending it out in the next 24 hours to make sure that people have access to this.
And this is how my calls go in Own Your Sexuality Now. You can ask me anything. And so this is why I like to do this, so people have a chance to recognize that they can get the coaching that they need. They don’t necessarily have to come on video. You can come on audio with me in the course if you want to. But I just want you to know that you can get the coaching that you need. You can get your issues addressed. And I’m here to help in whatever way.
And if you need to just ask me something separate and you want to just email me then it’s email@example.com and I’m here for you as well. So, yes, the video is going to be available after this. Will the course, all the coaching via chat or will a coach be via voice? So you can do it either way?
So in my course, Own Your Sexuality Now, you can do it through the chat, and I can coach you that way. Or you can come on with the video on or off, whichever way you want to and you can also coach with audio through voice as well. So it does not have to be all through the chat. Some people like it that way. But you can feel free to come on whatever way you want to, you just raise your hand and then I would bring you on. And we can coach by audio as well, so voice as well.
Then I have another question which says, “I don’t always want to have an orgasm when having sex, is that a problem or strange?” Absolutely nothing, I always say that’s absolutely normal. You don’t always have to have an orgasm, and that’s why I’ve put the focus on that connection, satisfaction and pleasure. And pleasure just being overall pleasure. Pleasure is not like equals sign orgasm. If you want an orgasm, I am all for orgasms, I think they’re fabulous and fun.
And hey, everybody gets to have an orgasm. You can have one, and you can have one, and you can have one. But they’re not necessary. If you want to put the focus on relaxation, physical connection, you can put the focus wherever you want to. So this is a fun thing, a question to ask yourself is what do you think the purpose of sex and sexual intimacy is? Do you think it’s for the end all, be all? Society has a tendency to say that if you don’t have an orgasm then it wasn’t really good sex.
Good sex is whatever you want it to be in whatever way. It doesn’t have to have any penetration. It doesn’t have to have any orgasms. It could be cuddling. It could be kissing. It could be tantric sex where you’re just breathing and being with yourself or with another person. There’s so many ways to experience sex and sexual intimacy, and it does not necessarily have to specifically have an orgasm. If you want to, go for it. But it does not necessarily have to.
And so the question to ask is what do you think the goal is for sexual intimacy? What would you like your goal for sexual intimacy to be? And I always put it on the satisfaction, connection and pleasure. And so that kind of relieves the pressure of it has to have an orgasm, but feel free to have one if you’d like to because they’re fun too.
Alright, let’s see, we’re getting close to ending. But I really like this format. How often are the coaching calls in your course? So the coaching calls are weekly. The course is Own Your Sexuality Now; it’s a 12 week course. We have different modules. We go from the beginning of your sexual situation, you’re a sexual being. We talk about libido. We talk about body image, anatomy. We go to the place where we’re talking about sexual smorgasbord where we come up with a list of fun different activities to do.
And then we also work on your protocol which would be your plan to make sure the sexual intimacy is in your life. So that’s the course, it’s 12 weeks. And we have weekly group coaching calls. There’s also mini videos and then there’s also a worksheet for every week’s module. And then when that course is finished, I actually have a continuation course called, YES Your Empowered Sexuality. And we have biweekly, so every other week we have a coaching call and then we have a module, continuing new modules.
And right now we’re working on the getting ready to believe as we shift and change your sexual intimacy. So there’s so much good stuff that we have together and we can continue to work. And I would love you to join my course. It actually starts on November 11th, and we’re going to get started then. And I would love to have you in the course.
So let’s see, any last questions that anybody might have for me. I am here so this recording is going to be available. If you have additional questions, feel free to reach out. In the group we have a book club. The book club is Come As You Are, it’s a monthly book club and we actually go through this in addition. So the group calls are like this with webinar format. The Come As You Are book club is a different format where we have the video on and we can connect that way. It’s a smaller group usually. And so it’s a different way of connection within the group but it works pretty well as well.
Alright, so let me see if there’s any last questions, let’s see. Do I coach couples? I coach the women mainly and I do group coaching and I do individual coaching. And so in the individual coaching, I mainly coach the woman, but I do have sometimes the partner come in and we coach together. We have a couple of sessions, but the majority of the time I do coach just the women.
It looks like we’ve covered a lot of different issues. And if you have any further questions for me, feel free to reach out. I am here for you. I am Dr. Sonia. Thank you so much for joining me this evening in our flower side chat. It’s so good to see you all here. And if you have any more questions or if I can help you in any way, feel free to – feel free to. And I’ll be sending this video out. Have a great evening, so good to see you. Thank you for joining me. Take care. Goodnight.
Okay Diamonds, that’s all for this week’s episode. I hope you enjoyed the flower side chat and Q&A session. I’m going to be doing another flower side chat in December as well. So feel free to email me any of your questions and I’ll address them in next month’s episode. Take care for now, Dr. Sonia out.
Female Announcer: Thanks for listening to this week’s episode of the Midlife Sex Coach for Women Podcast. If you enjoy Dr. Sonia’s fun and caring approach to sexual intimacy, head to soniawrightmd.com to learn more.