This post is sponsored by Valeant.
Lots of different scenarios come to mind when it comes to women’s sexual health. Just to name a few this includes: annual gynecologist appointments, examining our bodies for anything abnormal, following our bodies signals to have a baby– or prevent one– finding a good partner to have sex with.
But what does it mean when you just don’t have the desire to have sex?
Whether it is a new partner, or someone you have been with for some time, not wanting to have sex for lack of desire could mean that you are suffering from hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD.) In my case, I didn’t have HSDD because it was connected to my pregnancy recovery, however, I feel it’s important to share HSDD education with you all in case it might help others.
Last year, I had zero desire to have sex with my husband for months after I gave birth. A lot of feelings were going through my mind as I had just pushed a human out of my body. With the hormones raging through my body, the aftermath of birth and of course the exhaustion. Oh, the exhaustion. Sex was the last thing on my priority list. But it was more than just making time for it, I didn’t want or feel like doing it at all.
I went to my OBGYN for my check-up at 5-weeks because I had a pretty traumatic birthing experience. She said everything looked fine and I am cleared for sex. I thought to myself, “that’s not happening, it hasn’t even been 6 weeks, maybe I’ll feel better at the traditional 6 weeks.” But 6 weeks came and went. I still didn’t feel any better about having sex. My husband was more than understanding and I couldn’t be more thankful. I finally started feeling like myself again and eventually having desire for sex.
I think a lot of women can relate to my story. I have never really discussed it with anyone, and I am sure a lot of women feel the same at times.
Low sexual desire can be brought on by many reasons. HSDD is when a person has a low sexual desire that causes distress or difficulty being intimate and last 6 months or longer. It is not caused by a condition that you may already have such as depression, a co-existing medical condition, medication, substance or relationship problems.
It can be a topic that a lot of women feel embarrassed to talk about because they feel that they are the only one feeling that way. The condition can also be very confusing, especially as women try to understand why it could be happening and there is help available.
However, women should take comfort in knowing they’re not alone – nearly 4 million premenopausal women in the U.S. may suffer in silence with this condition.1,2 It is estimated that 40% of women experience female sexual difficulties at some point in their lives and I can say that I fit into that statistic.2
But you’re not alone. There is help. There are resources that can help. Luckily for me, my desire to have sex came back after a few months, so it was not HSDD. But if you notice your lack of desire goes on 6 months or more and it causes you distress, it could be HSDD and you should talk to your medical provider about it.
Do you think you might have decreased sexual desire and are distressed about it? Take this quiz to learn more. You can also find resources on the Find My Spark website.
This post was sponsored by Valeant Pharmaceuticals North America LLC, a pharmaceutical company, and should not be construed to constitute medical advice. I received compensation in exchange for writing this post, and my personal story and thoughts are my own. I am not a medical professional and am not qualified to give medical advice. Please talk with your doctor about your individual medical situation.
1U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Survey, Annual Social and Economic Supplement, 2013. Internet release date: March 2016.
2Shifren J, Monz B, Russo, P, et al. Sexual Problems and Distress in United States Women. Obstetrics & Gynecology. 2008; 112(5):970-978.