What causes low libido in women?

The most common complaint that I hear from couples after communication problems, is low sexual desire, mostly in women.  There is no one easy answer to this question.

Low libido in women

Ever since the drug companies found Viagra in 1998 for men, the search for a libido enhancer for women has been on. Nothing worked and eventually after 8 years of trying the drug company Pfitzer, maker of Viagra, gave up. The trouble is, women’s sexual desire is quite complicated. In fact, desire in women is highly responsive to her moods and how she feels.

Below is a list possible causes of low desire:

  • Pain
  • Relationship problems (including feeling overworked at home and work)
  • Stress
  • Body image issues
  • Lifestyle problems (overuse of drugs and alcohol)
  • Mood problems
  • Overall health (includes chronic issues like high blood pressure or diabetes and mental health issues like depression, anxiety, and substance abuse)
  • Sexual history (Including sexual trauma)
  • Side effects of medication, including anti-depressant medication

After checking things out with a doctor most therapists will look to what is happening in a woman’s life and how she feels about it to find out the cause. Since female desire is related to being sought after, if her partner is a heavy porn user it may provide some answers. Many women report, “How do I know he wants me when he looks at porn all the time?”

The number one complaint that I hear is that she doesn’t feel special to her partner. Desire for women is tied up in “being the one” or “being sought after,” think romance novels guys.  Since being special is so important to her arousal, men may want to rethink how they approach her. She wants to feel unique and special and not be an object. This can be especially tricky because a lot of this this is wrapped up in how she feels about herself, physically and emotionally.

If she isn’t feeling safe because of verbal violence that may also result in a decreased libido.

There is no simple answer to this one. After checking out the physical it is important to look at what is happening with her internally and relationally. Therapy can be a great place to figure all of this out.

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