Don't have an appetite for sex ?

Charlie - posted on 04/12/2011 ( 15 moms have responded )

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If you experience one of these you could be sexually anorexic !


. Persistent fear of intimacy, sexual contact, sexual pleasure, sexually transmitted diseases, etc.

. Preoccupation, to the point of obsession, with sexual matters, including the sexuality, sexual intentions, and sexual behaviors of others, and their own sexual adequacy.

. Negative, rigid, or judgmental attitudes about sex, body appearance, and sexual activity.

. Shame and self-loathing over sexual experiences.

. Self-destructive behavior in order to avoid, limit or stop sex.

"Sexual anorexia" is a term that was made popular by sex addiction expert Dr. Patrick Carnes. Carnes used the term to describe the compulsive avoidance of sex and sex-related matters, although he was not the first to write on the subject or to use the term. It may surprise you to learn that Carnes presents sexual anorexia as a form of sex addiction in his book, Sexual Anorexia: Overcoming Sexual Self-Hatred.

They may have concurrent problems with other addictions, such as food addiction, substance addictions, and other obessive or anxiety-driven problems.

People who strongly identify with cultural, social or religious groups that involve sexual oppression, repression or other negative approaches to sexuality may be particularly vulnerable to developing the obsessive avoidance of sex that characterizes sexual anorexia.
Do Sexual Anorexics Ever Have Sex?

Carnes describes how sexual anorexics may be prone to occasional periods of sexual promiscuity, or "sleeping around," a bit like bulimics -- people who periodically starve themselves of food, then binge and purge what they have eaten. An example of how this can happen is when a sexual anorexic abstains from sex except when he is intoxicated. The boundaries around sexual expression are excessively rigid, but crumble when inhibitions are lowered.

Despite their aversion to sex, sexual anorexics may be engaged in "sexual" relationships, including marriage, although the quality of the relationship is likely to be impaired by the sex avoidance of one or both partners. Ironically, a sexual anorexic may even form a relationship with an "acting out" sex addict, as one partner loses control over their sexuality while the other has excessive control. In a situation like this, one partner may be promiscuous, while the other abstains from sex.


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Is this a bonafide disorder or another label ?
When does not wanting sex become a problem the individual needs to address or do you feel there is no need to address it at all .
If you do not believe this is a real disorder do you also not believe sex addiction to be a real disorder ?

15 Comments

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AHLondon - posted on 04/13/2011

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It is quite easy these days for an exhausted mom to resist sex, then to resent her husband for wanting sex, then to start to hate sex, etc. I'm not a doc, so I am cautious about stating that there is no such thing as sexual anorexia, but anorexia is about control over natural drive, food. It isn't that difficult to imagine a woman controlling her drive for sex to the point of obsession. As for us tired moms, my best advice is sometimes you just have to jump back in the sack, whether you really want to or not. I wrote a long post about this recently:
http://americanhousewifeinlondon.blogspo...

Amber - posted on 04/12/2011

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I think for some people it is probably a real disorder.
There is a difference between being too tired to have sex, but still wanting it if/when you aren't exhausted and not wanting it no matter what the circumstances.

If it's something that you have positive thoughts about but no energy to follow through with, this wouldn't apply. But those who absolutely abhor sex and would be happy to remain asexual regardless of energy level, I think this would apply to them.

I guess the need to address it would depend on their relationship. If both partners feel the same way, there wouldn't be an issue. If one partner no longer felt satisfied, then they should attempt to seek help for the sake of the relationship.

Johnny - posted on 04/12/2011

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I think that being too tired or busy is very different from having an aversion to sexuality. I like thinking about sex. I do it all the time. But it takes too much work to actually have it all that often. It cuts into sleep too much. I suppose I could give up COM for sex...

[deleted account]

The line for me was a very blurry one. Being tired was the reason at first but it quickly turned into an excuse.
For every woman that line and when its crossed would be very different. For me it has become apparent that it was my own issues that lead to my feeling about sex with my ex-husband because since he has left like i said i'm literally climbing the walls!

Charlie - posted on 04/12/2011

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I absolutely agree being tired can get in the way , sometimes there isnt time but when does it cross the line from being a reality to being an excuse ?



From what I have read it isnt so much about being tired it is the mentality towards sex in general I see it often mentioned by mothers on this site that they dont like sex , they avoid sex as much as possible these are more in line with what the OP is saying when these points are metioned .



. Persistent fear of intimacy, sexual contact, sexual pleasure, sexually transmitted diseases, etc.



. Preoccupation, to the point of obsession, with sexual matters, including the sexuality, sexual intentions, and sexual behaviors of others, and their own sexual adequacy.



. Negative, rigid, or judgmental attitudes about sex, body appearance, and sexual activity.



. Shame and self-loathing over sexual experiences.



. Self-destructive behavior in order to avoid, limit or stop sex.



Yes being tired is a reality , it is for many a genuine reason but I dont feel it is healthy to never want sex with your partner and go out of your way to avoid it .

April - posted on 04/12/2011

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I do believe that most woman who don't really want to have sex are just tired, and you can't blame them taking care of kids, a house and a husband is tiring! I don't believe it's a disorder necessarily although i have read of some women just suddenly not wanting sex anymore so who knows? but i do believe sex addiction is a disorder. I'm glad my husband and i still share that bond after 4 years, that department is still very much alive with us ;)

[deleted account]

I agree with Tara.
I Have always had trouble with intimacy. I loved being pregnant because my ex wouldn't hassle then when the kids were born i was always tired or thats what i was telling myself. My ex didn't leave all that long ago and right now i'm literally climbing the walls. For me i think it was a mix of a few things like us being incompatable and my own insecurities.
I don't think it is something that needs to be labled but it is something that if you feel you have a problem you should get help for because maybe thats part of why my marriage fell apart.

Brandi - posted on 04/12/2011

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I honestly am too tired for sex anymore. I am 26 and I feel terrible about it. It seemed like in the 1st 6 months of our relationship I was all about it. Now after a year and a half we may have sex once every 2 or 3 weeks. It is frustrating for him, but I just could careless about it anymore. I honestly think I have a problem. This also happened with my ex-husband... maybe it really is a disorder. Who really knows?

Minnie - posted on 04/12/2011

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This 'disorder' describes the mentality of my former church to a 'T' for all of their avoidance of sex and sexual matters to as to remain 'pure' they sure seem obsessed with the concept. Constant preaching against pre-marital sex, homosexuality, masturbation, women covering themselves with swaths of fabric to hide their shape so as to not cause a man to lust after her, placing the sins of a man's mind upon her, circumcision, women being subject to their men in all things and being the result of his straying if she's not 'good enough' in bed...

it's really a toxic atmosphere and definitely had negative consequences on how I view myself, my comfort in intimacy with my husband and my self-confidence as a woman and wife. Thankfully things are looking up.

Mel - posted on 04/12/2011

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I wouldnt say its a disorder for everyone, I am much too tired for sex, I have it usually once every couple weeks to couple months. I dont have the energy for it, not that I wouldnt feel for it if I didnt have kids though so I dont consider it to be a problem. I do believe there is such thing as sex addiction

Desiree - posted on 04/12/2011

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I call it nonsense. Really if you are tired just say so don't make excuses.there are far too many "disorders" in this world whihc someone came up with to avoid doing something they don't like or want to. Rubbish!!!

Tara - posted on 04/12/2011

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I wouldn't call it a disorder I would call it an aversion. I do believe in sex addiction, but I believe it to be environmental in nature.
I think sexual anorexia would also be something environmentally induced.
My best friend thought she had a sexual aversion problem. She had no libido for the last 6 years of her marriage, she though it was her fault entirely, she thought she was frigid and prudish. She thought she had a disorder.
She ended up leaving her husband after 15 years of marriage, partly because she thought bad for him because he hadn't had any real sex in the last 6 years together, she felt she had a serious problem. (they had a myriad of other marriage issues too).
So they split, she found a new guy a little while ago, and she was terrified that she wouldn't be able to perform.
Well she is now approaching sex addict state with the new guy. It's been 6 months and they still fuck like rabbits every day and every night. lol
I just hope they don't start over medicating people with this "disorder" if anything talk therapy should be implemented.

Tara - posted on 04/12/2011

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I wouldn't call it a disorder I would call it an aversion. I do believe in sex addiction, but I believe it to be environmental in nature.
I think sexual anorexia would also be something environmentally induced.
My best friend thought she had a sexual aversion problem. She had no libido for the last 6 years of her marriage, she though it was her fault entirely, she thought she was frigid and prudish. She thought she had a disorder.
She ended up leaving her husband after 15 years of marriage, partly because she thought bad for him because he hadn't had any real sex in the last 6 years together, she felt she had a serious problem. (they had a myriad of other marriage issues too).
So they split, she found a new guy a little while ago, and she was terrified that she wouldn't be able to perform.
Well she is now approaching sex addict state with the new guy. It's been 6 months and they still fuck like rabbits every day and every night. lol
I just hope they don't over medicating people with this "disorder" if anything talk therapy should be implemented.

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