Welcome to another episode of Your Anxiety Toolkit Podcast. This topic has been a long time coming, and highly requested. This week’s podcast is all about anxiety and sex. In this podcast, we talk about how anxiety and sex can become two peas in a pod and how anxiety can present itself in many different ways. While I am not a sex therapist, I do have a lot of experience talking with my clients about anxiety and sex.
The truth is, there are many ways anxiety shows up during sex, or sex shows up in our anxiety. This is true for many people and this can become very confusing. People often report anxiety impacting sex in many ways. This might include loss of arousal, loss of libido or interest in sex, intrusive thoughts during sexual intercourse, hyper-awareness of sexual-related sensations and many more.
In this week’s episode, we address the following topics
• Social Anxiety: In social anxiety, people are afraid of being judged by their sexual partner and will often avoid sexual interactions in fear of being judged. For people struggling with social anxiety and sex, they must accept the risk of being judged and work to find a partner who respects them and their fears. Finding safety in a partner can help immensely.
• Performance anxiety: This involves the fear of not being able to perform well (or perfectly) in sexual interactions. This is very common and often involves setting realistic expectations for ourselves.
• OCD: There are many ways that OCD can create anxiety around sexual intimacy. This is most common for those who have sexual orientation obsessions, relationship obsessions, or pedophilia obsessions
• Panic Disorder: Symptoms of panic can often come on during all stages of intimacy, not just anticipatory anxiety
• Trauma: Trauma is a very important component to address. We encourage people who have trauma in this area to seek professional mental health care and work through these issues with a safe and caring clinician.
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