Friday, 2 May 2014

Self protection by repressing libido

This is something I was hypothesizing about this week...

Maybe my low libido is my way of protecting myself from the difficulties of dealing with my super high libido. I had a really high sex drive until my early twenties which caused me a lot of hurt (and rejection from Adam as we weren't married). I was so driven by it, not in a way I wanted to be. Then almost overnight, about a year before we married, it changed so that I didn't have much desire for sex at all. It happened after a build up of rejections from Adam. Our religion didn't permit us to be intimate and I had trouble with this. We both did, but a lot of times, it was me trying to tempt Adam. Of course, I'd feel awful if he was strong and said no. I think it just got to a certain point where the benefit of trying was not significant enough to outweigh the damage it was doing to me to feel rejected and so not consciously, but so suddenly that I did consciously notice it: I stopped wanting intimacy at all. Sex was very difficult when we got married. It took several years before I was able to enjoy it without pain and I never felt in the mood for it. In fact we barely had sex at all four about four years. Nowadays it's better in that we have sex more regularly for the most part but it still has issues for me and I know it's not as often as Adam would like. I know a lot of it is to do with my own trauma history; of course sex can be very difficult because of the memories it triggers. But I think it's not just that. When I first started therapy, T asked me if I was 'punishing' Adam by not wanting sex. I was horrified at the idea that I would be so cruel. I rejected that theory but I didn't acknowledge that it was perhaps not 'punishing him' but 'protecting myself from rejection'. Of course, it doesn't make sense that I'd keep feeling the aversion after marriage when I can now have sex as much as I want, if I want. That is where I begin to hypothesise about the libido theory.

If I subconsciously allowed myself to start enjoying sex again, my libido would perhaps increase to a level that even Adam wouldn't enjoy. If I was to realise my high libido and Adam wasn't able to meet my needs, I would again feel frustrated and rejected and probably other things, so on some unconscious level I have to switch off those feelings. It used to be 100% of the time: I would have happily never had sex again, so being able to masturbate and have sex nowadays is actually progress. About a year ago things started to improve with my feelings about sex; before that the idea of masturbation was about as appealing as the idea of licking a toilet seat. But when things started to improve and I started to enjoy sex, it felt really good. But then it got that I felt sex was so intense that my arousal lasted afterwards on into the days following; which I couldn't handle. I mean, my body remained in a state of sexual arousal right into the next day and days afterwards no matter what I was doing. I couldn't be satisfied. It was very difficult to feel that way especially around family. It meant I was getting triggered so easily as well. Feel aroused when not wanting to be, around someone who abused me... worst feeling ever... nightmare begins again. So I had to shut it down again.

Sex with Adam also now makes me feel worse about our relationship problems, as we haven't been getting along too well recently. If we have sex and then fall out in the day afterwards, it feels worse somehow than if we hadn't had sex. So it's just easier not to want sex. I suppose in a way I could be quite content about how things are now. Adam initiates sex most of the time. I often don't want it, but I can enjoy it once it happens, provided I am not dissociated into a part that hates it. I can't enjoy sex without fantasising about scenarios that I don't see as 'healthy' for me though but that's an issue for some other time. It may not be healthy, but it helps me to enjoy the physical feeling of sex. 

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