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The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

The O-Face: Abandoning sexual anxiety

Michael Karp

As I walk over to her house my thoughts are consumed with
nervousness and apprehension.

Am I going to get hard enough? Am I going to be able to keep it up long enough? Am I even going to be able to pleasure her?

Maybe I’m still traumatized from getting whiskey dick while losing my virginity.

Sex is an amazing part of life, but sexual anxiety is a problem that can afflict anyone, whether they are sexually active or not.

Most people feel some degree of sexual anxiety throughout their lifetime. It can ruin part or all of a person’s sex life, which can eventually affect other parts of their life. It happened to me.

Sexual anxiety comes in many forms, both physical and mental.

Anyone can feel anxiety from pressure to perform, reach orgasm, pleasure their partner and be confident in their body.

Sex is not simply a physical act, but an emotional one, according to WebMD. When you are stressed out and feeling too anxious to focus on sex, your body cannot get aroused.

Cleanliness, vaginal odor and the ability to orgasm are common causes of sexual anxiety in women. The most common causes of sexual anxiety in men are erectile dysfunction, premature ejaculation and the size of one’s “member.”

The anxiety is usually a mental consequence of a physical attribute, reaction or ailment.

Handling your own sexual anxiety starts with your thought processes. I have had issues with sexual anxiety, mostly performance anxiety, in the past. Changing the way I thought about my body helped.

I had to build trust in myself. Instead of “I hope I can get it up later,” I would think, “I am good to go. I can handle this and anything that gets thrown my way.”

The change in my mentality made an instant change in my physical reactions.

Anxieties are often communicated through subtle hints and body language, because they can be very embarrassing if exposed.

It is important to notice these in one’s partner and work through them in a healthy manner. Understand their issues and handle them like an adult.

When previous partners have experienced sexual anxiety, I completely stopped what we were doing and asked them to share what was bothering them. Sometimes simply exposing the anxiety, accepting it as a natural human reaction and talking through it resolves the issue.

Any sort of negativity can result in negative consequences for your partner and your relationship with them.

Sexual anxiety is a very real issue. It can be the difference between a joyful dating life and one riddled with embarrassment and self-loathing.

It is up to the individual to handle their own issues, but it is crucial for one’s partner to accept them and guide them through their problems.

Despite extensive efforts to destroy my sexual anxiety, it still rears its ugly head every once in a while.

I have, however, accepted myself and the fact that my bodily reactions are largely out of my control. And I am grateful to have found a partner who accepts me for who I am.

Michael Karp can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @_MichaelKarp.

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