Female sexual desire has been discussed a fair amount recently, with the press drive on Female Viagra (http://www.femaleviagrapills.com/) and the ongoing tiresome discussions on work/children/modern life affecting levels of desire.
Long have people perpetuated conversations around women’s sex drive waning as they become ‘settled’ in relationships, and men’s remaining the same. Some theorise that male desire remains high in evolutionary terms, in order for them to produce many offspring. While female desire is believed to decrease as their attention turns, stereotypically, toward children and families.
This makes a little bit of sick appear at the back of my throat. Yes,male/female biology will have some affect on natural instincts, for example, pre-pubescent boys start to feel and commence sexual interest before girls. However, given that stimulation and desire is as much about the neural…desire is not just a biological response. Focusing purely on M/F biological factors is insulting to everything that makes us human. Whether we’re in a safe, loving, supportive relationship, or stimulated by the excitement of a casual fuck will create different neural links and responses as a result.
It’s complex. For some it is the sight of a foot encased in hosiery, others an armpit with it’s delicious day long smell and combination of smooth skin and hair, or the vibration of someones voice that you can feel through the back of the sofa you share…. The triggers are many, varied and utterly unique in their combinations and strength, to each person experiencing them.
It’s no surprise women will be subject to desire fluctuations through the biological changes such as menstrual cycle, pregnancy, lactation, menopause, and fatigue….so far, so predictable. We know this, we understand that biologically, as women age and testosterone decreases, desire goes the same way. Studies of women given low level does of testosterone have been found to have improved sexual desire. I found personally, that when taking certain forms of the contraceptive pill my own desire changed and became more ‘predictable’ depending on where I was during my cycle.
So what about those who don’t feel any sexual desire, and are ok with that? As someone rightly stated on Twitter yesterday ‘I always find myself wondering why not wanting, what I don’t want, is a problem!’
There are a couple of areas of study I’d like to mention here, Sexual Desire/Interest Disorder (SDID) which is defined by low sexual desire, absent sexual fantasies, and a lack of responsive desire; and is Sexual Aversion Disorder (SAD). SAD is defined as “persistent or recurrent extreme aversion to, and avoidance of, all or almost all, genital sexual contact with a sexual partner. What I find interesting, is that looking online, these are referred to as ‘disorders’. I don’t think everyone who has low/no sexual desire will identify with this. Asexuality (or nonsexuality) is the lack of sexual attraction to anyone or low or absent interest in sexual activity. So is there anything ‘wrong’ with that?! Why are we so focused on sexual desire and ‘normal/healthy’ levels?
Does having a full, engaging, salivate-at-the-thought-of sex life make us feel that socially we are successful? The fantasy of the perfect wife/partner who is happy, well groomed, successful professionally, great social circle, ambitious, supportive to her partner, child-rearing, cake-baking, who is happy to drop to her knees as he walks through the door; is ever present. In literature, cinema and the media generally, the propaganda used to reinforce social ‘norms’ around womens sexual desire is prevalent. Honestly, there’s nothing wrong with that. Equally, having little/no sexual desire is no ones business either. It’s not my experience, I don’t relate to it, but it’s nothing to do with me.
I’m so tired of the perpetual images of the sex-enjoying whore, or dutiful, reluctant good-girl. Sexual desire is no ones business. There’s nothing wrong with your own, unless you hold the obvious anti-social and illegal preferences. Whether you fap away at yourself multiple times a day, have several partners, one monogamous one with once-a-week sex, or no sex life at all. Truly, it’s fine. So long as you and those you are/aren’t doing it with are consensual and content, who is anyone else to judge?