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E.D is obviously not an issue that vulva owners experience first-hand, but often still encounter in heterosexual relationships. As stressful as it is for men, it can also be quite disarming for heterosexual women, and it can lead to putting all the focus on the man’s pleasure and being penetration-obsessed. Two things that do little good for both partners. This week, we got in touch with a men’s health advocate to have a honest chat about E.D. Real tips for no drama.
We’ve established the physical and emotional benefits of a healthy sex life, but most of us can vouch for the fact that sex isn’t always a walk in the park. In order to have a mutually beneficial, healthy sexual relationship with their partner, both men and women need to be one hundred percent comfortable and confident between the sheets, yet issues in the bedroom often get in the way.
52% of men have experienced Erectile Dysfunction (ED) in their lives, which illustrates the fact that problems in the bedroom are both frequent and very common, especially for men. But how does this affect us as women?
For those of you in heterosexual relationships, you know how your partner’s inability to perform can lead to awkward moments, and you don’t always know how to react. But there’s no reason for taking it way too personally. In reality, there are a ton of causes of ED that go beyond your relationship, like stress, sleep disorders, or high cholesterol. Sometimes, ED can even be an early indicator of a more serious health issue like heart disease.
There’s no doubt the symptoms of this issue can have a major impact on the sex you’re having with your partner and your relationship as a whole. ED does not only cause difficulty getting and maintaining an erection, but it can also lead to performance anxiety for both partners.
So what can you do to make the struggle with ED less stressful for you and your partner?
E.D only ruins sex if you let it! If you tend to be very focused on penetrative sex, make this an opportunity to explore more options on the menu.
Divert attention…to yourself. One reason why E.D can feel so upsetting has to do with how heteronormative and penetration-centric the representation of sex is still today. But truth is, if you are enjoying heterosexual sex, there’s a lot of fun to be had solely from outersex. Your partner doesn’t need to have an erection to explore your body and bring you shivers of pleasure. Invite him to do so and indulge into the moment. He will probably enjoy it himself!
Explore other areas. Sex isn’t always just about the penis; there are so many other areas of the body that can get him going. Explore some other erogenous zones for men, like the ears, nipples, and the soles of his feet. Spending more time on different pleasure areas can take some pressure off the penis meanwhile still giving him some sexual satisfaction.
Try something adventurous. Talk to your partner and see if there’s anything you’d both be willing to try in the bedroom. Whether it’s watching porn together, acting out fantasies, or introducing sex toys in the bedroom , a change of scenery can be exactly what he needs to get it up.
Be open, honest, and most of all patient. We’ve all heard that communication is key to a healthy relationship, but it’s especially important for a healthy sex life. Be upfront, offer words of affirmation, and ask what you can do to make the experience better for him.
If this becomes an ongoing thing, encourage him to seek medical treatment. 60% of men refuse or hesitate to go to the doctor when faced with medical problems, yet treatments for ED are both affordable and attainable. Try pointing him in the direction of a doctor who can diagnose the root of the problem or prescribe an ED medication like sildenafil that will relax blood vessels in the groin. It’s no secret that men need a little push when it comes to self-care… and many other things.
Guest author: Capri – men’s wellness advocate at Hims
New additional tips for drama-less erection-free sex:
In collaboration with artist Anne-Laure Herrezuelo and the Spark Fest Asia team, we have asked women and men to talk and draw about sex.
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In collaboration with artist Anne-Laure Herrezuelo and the Spark Fest Asia team , we have asked men to talk and draw about sex. What is their representation of female sexuality? What is their representation of male sexuality? How is it different? Or is it the same. Here’s a sneak peek in 12 drawings and 12 quotes!