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  • Jessica Holfeltz

Sex {in the time of a pandemic} Part I




If you've been experiencing changes in your desire of partnered sex during since we've all been impacted from COVID-19, you're definitely not alone. There have been some interesting articles and studies that have taken place {that you can find here and here} that suggest many individuals' desire for sexual activity has gone down. There is also evidence that in some cases sexual desire has risen.


This can be taking place for several reasons.


Maybe the anxiety and stress you've been feeling has made your sexual desire skyrocket because sexual pleasure is one thing you can control. Maybe you and your partner have been able to spend more time together while working from home and your emotional connection has deepened, which has lead to more intimacy and sexual connection. Maybe the sex you're having is connective and vulnerable. Maybe sex helps you take a break from all the fear and anxieties. Maybe the sex you're having is numbing. Maybe you've had more time and energy to explore your own sexuality and are finding a deeper connection to yourself. Maybe to cut through the mundane of quarantine, you and your partner have been exploring new possibilities within your sexual relationship.


OR.


Maybe, since your partner and you have both been home, tensions are higher, physical boundaries are less than optimal, and you are operating on your last nerve, so being sexual is the last thing on your mind. Maybe, there was a lot of stress in the relationship already, and the pandemic has just heightened feelings of sadness, depression, loss, or betrayal. Maybe the lack of social interaction, the feelings of isolation, and the growing darkness of depression has all systems in your body in survival mode - and sex didn't make the cut. Maybe you desperately long to be touched by another human being, but you're living alone and the silence is overpoweringly deadening.


OR.


Maybe you've been experiencing both. All. In waves.


Whatever you are going through - whatever you have been going through - and, whatever comes your way, may I suggest that you allow space for it? What I mean is, don't be 'judgy' with it. Don't should it away. {I should be having more sex. I shouldn't be having this much sex. I should make myself more available to my partner. I shouldn't be exploring sex on my own.} Allow and get curious.


With allowance comes processing. Allowance helps us move through whatever we are going through - and we are all in our own grief process. We are grieving our old way of living. We are grieving our social lives. We are grieving the loss of life - in general as well as personal losses. We are grieving smiles now covered up with face masks. We are grieving a sense of calm. We are grieving peace. We are grieving our children's childhood. We are grieving a sense of control {or at least a perceived sense of control}. We. Are. Grieving. And, grief affects our desire to get emotionally and physical close to ourselves and others.


Allow and get curious. Process your thoughts - out loud, on paper, to your partner/friend or therapist. Seek help if/when you need it. We've got this. You've got this, especially when you think you don't. You've got this.

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©2020 by Jessica Holfeltz, LCMHC, LLC. The contents of this site are for informational and educational purposes only. Nothing found on this website is intended to be a substitute for professional psychological, psychiatric or medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.