When the flame burns low in a man

  • By Team TDO

We generally think in terms of extremes when it comes to male libido. We have the stereotypical Casanova who has more than a fair share of dalliances and then it is the other extreme – the impotent man who despite spirit being willing, cannot evoke the slightest response down south. However, what is amazing is that one out of every 5 men has a low or reduced sex drive in these times. A reduced sex drive is quite an interesting problem as quite a number of possibilities emerge:

  1. Some men could have a naturally low sex drive
  2. It could be a temporary phase (ill health, medication, stress)
  3. It could be due to dissatisfaction with the partner

In the first possibility there is nothing that can be done. Very often, some males might not feel the necessity to have sex as often as possible and are quite content in connecting with their partners cerebrally instead of physically.

Even health wise, often there is nothing amiss yet these males might have sex only when it is absolutely necessary. This could create a rift if partner’s expectations don’t match. Probably why it is could be difficult for men with low sex drives to come out in the open and address their issue. For one, the male might not feel there is a problem with him (and quite often, there isn’t) and there is always this question that’s lurking in the woman’s mind if her man’s low sex drive has anything to do with her.

Quoting Louanne Weston, a qualified sex therapist

“Men who have a reduced sex drive don’t want to talk about it, and the women with them don’t want to talk about it either. The women are afraid if they say much about it, people will think either the man’s really gay, or she’s a ‘bad lay’ or too unattractive to stir his passions. And the man has the myth that you’re supposed to want it all the time, anywhere.”

Physical reasons for loss of libido

There are a number of reasons that can cause a loss of libido like over work, family pressures, lack of self esteem, psychological reasons, sexual rejection, illnesses like diabetes or vascular conditions which create blockages in the blood flow to the penis. Medications like antidepressants and psychiatric medication for certain conditions are infamous for causing a loss of libido. Habits like smoking and alcohol consumption can also affect the nerves in the genital area causing numbness and lack of sexual initiative in a man.

So is a low sex drive such a bad thing?

Mark Epstein, MD, is a psychiatrist in private practice in Manhattan and author of Open to Desire: Embracing a Lust for Life. He says that while men may indeed be preoccupied with their work, that’s usually a secondary reason for a reduced sex drive. “If there is not an illness,” Epstein says, “the main reason for a flagging libido in men is drugs or alcohol.” – quoted in WebMD

If the reason for a low sex drive is not due to substance abuse or any of the other reasons stated earlier then it might not be such a bad thing at all. The pain of a high sex drive and the disasters that it could bring for a man are only too well chronicled. So when a couple approaches a therapist for counseling an evaluation of their compatibility on other grounds is conducted because though the bed is the source of domestic felicity it is not the sole criterion on which a man-woman relationship can be judged. Companionship, camaraderie, honesty, devotion, respect and love for a person could also be significant factors to keep a relationship going. Of course, one can’t really deny it is sex that can drive people closer or drive them away from each other. Some women don’t seem to mind the frequency of sexual intercourse with their males as their relationship could be more cerebral than physical. And again, some women may also be rather relieved at their man not wanting to jump her at every given chance, as some men are prone to do.

And who is to decide what frequency of sex is optimum for a man to qualify as having a high or low sex drive anyway? How does frequency of sex ever decide the quality of sexual intercourse or satisfaction? After all, doesn’t a man suffering from satyrism have frequent sex? But is it all satisfactory?

Then again there might be that ‘Sherlock Holmes’ type who might focus his energies more on solving matters of the greatest import to man and when he is happy with his mental conquest might decide to have a celebratory sexual encounter. (With Irene Adler? We can only wonder!)