Sex Counseling For Christian Couples

There are several idealistic ways for a Christian couple to seek sexual counseling. For the couple that feels they benefit from reading, there are many books authored by Christian doctors and writers that focus more on intellectual and spiritual content rather than visual. Many books on sexual counseling and other tips can be found at any major chain of bookstore such as Borders or Barnes and Noble but don’t always carry titles found in the more segregated Christian only stores such as Family Christian Stores. Materials can also be purchased online at shops such as Amazon.com and eBay.com.

Great books to read:

  • Intended for Pleasure – Written by Ed Wheat M.D. and Gaye Wheat. An easy to read reference book with many facts and statistics on sexual health and getting the most out of your sexual relationship as a Christian couple. In the third edition, Intended for Pleasure combines biblical teaching on love and marriage with the latest medical information on sex and sexuality.
  • Sacred Sex – Written by Tim Alan Gardner and Scott M. Stanley. Is a great balance of scriptural truth, challenge to change, practical wisdom, reverence of the Marriage Bed, and God-honoring fun. Christian couples should buy it and read it together to celebrate oneness the way God intended.

Another great way to receive sexual counseling is to speak with a medical professional, face to face. This allows a doctor who has studied both Scripture and sexuality to gear key points directly aimed at a couple’s concerns. You can find a therapist, psychologist, or another form of medical doctor at counseling centers. Many of the larger churches offer a list of sorts where their members can find day to day businesses and professionals that have a strong Christian affiliation. One might find a lawyer, doctor, even a psychiatrist who adheres to Scripture in their career. Search online in your city for counseling centers that are of Christian mind.

However, not all professionals have a degree. Some of the happiest Christian couples experience a healthy sexual relationship the way God intended. Sometimes talking with an older Christian couple in a mentoring environment who has gone through the same struggles as you have can do wonders. They may have had the same questions as you and were able to overcome the same obstacles. They also may be able to guide you in the direction of more in depth help if needed.

The second most important person to ask for guidance and advice is your preacher or pastor. Many spiritual leaders are often mediators to several members of their community and church. Sometimes sitting down with someone and talking things through is the best therapy and medicine.

Of course the most important person to talk to is God. Prayer can do powerful things and a couple who prays together stays together can overcome the most drastic obstacles.

How Does Sexual Functioning Change As We Age?

Aging leads to changes in bodily appearance and organ functioning, lower levels of pituitary hormones, and a higher incidence of illness, injury, disease and chronic pain involving multiple prescriptions for pharmaceutical medications. These bodily changes, along with emotionally stressful life events, e.g., retirement, empty nest, loss of partner, or caring for elderly parents, may adversely affect sexual functioning.

Women

As women enter menopause, no longer ovulate, and their estrogen, progesterone and testosterone levels drop, many experience decreased desire for and arousal during sexual activity combined with less powerful orgasms or even inability to attain orgasm. Physiologic changes may include:

o decreased lubrication leading to vaginal dryness and pain
o atrophy or expansion of vaginal tissues
o decreased elevation of the uterus
o reduced muscle tension with few orgasmic contractions
o rapid decrease in arousal after orgasm
o reduced spread of sex flush
o decreased sexual desire and arousal

Men

As males age, decreased testosterone and testicular function, lowered sperm count, enlarged prostate, and reduced muscle tension often cause men to require greater stimulation to become aroused, have less frequent and more easily diminished arousal, decreased sensation, less powerful orgasms, and becoming tired or exhausted for some time after orgasm and ejaculation. Physiologic changes include:

o delayed and less firm penile and nipple erection
o longer excitement phase and longer interval until ejaculation
o decreased pre ejaulatory emissions
o diminished lifting of scrotum and testes
o more rapid return to pre arousal state
o shorter ejaculation time with reduced volume and fewer contractions
o shortened phase of impending orgasm and expulsion of semen
o more rapid loss of erection and longer refractory period

How Can Sexual Functioning and Enjoyment Continue Throughout Life?

As we age, there are some gradual declines in the response rate and reactions of many of our bodily organs and tissues. However, our bodies continue to respond to stimulation as long as we are breathing, our brain is functioning normally, and our heart is pumping.
Having a sexual problem is not unlike having any other type of physical or emotional problem. There is a cause, either physiological, psychological, or a combination of both.

Recommendations for Treatment to Overcome Sexual Problem

o Make an appointment with the appropriate medical doctor to have an evaluation of your physiology: hormone levels, blood vessels, blood flow, acute or chronic infections or other diseases. Depending on your gender and what the specific problem is, you may choose to see a gynecologist, urologist, endocrinologist, internist, gastroenterologist, oncologist, etc.

o Make an appointment with the appropriate psychotherapist (preferably someone who is also certified to provide sexual counseling or sex therapy) for evaluation of your psychological, emotional, mental and spiritual state. Depending on what you believe is the primary issue (your relationship, your family situation, your own self image or sexual concerns, your own religious or spiritual conflicts), you may choose to see a Marriage and Family Therapist, a Mental Health Counselor or Professional Counselor, a Social Worker, or a Psychologist.

o If your mental and emotional concerns are severely interfering with your ability to function in your everyday life, you probably should consult with a psychiatrist who can evaluate you and provide appropriate medications to alleviate your overwhelming symptoms. Then, you may be better able to gain insight and the capability of overcoming your problems if you also work with a psychotherapist.

o If you are courageous and really want to overcome a long term physical problem (such as a woman having vaginal pain or vaginnismus), you may choose to see a physical therapist who is trained to work with pelvic floor dysfunctions.

o Work with a body therapist, someone who is trained to alleviate neuromuscular tensions and other body dysfunctions. You may be surprised how many physical problems in distant parts of your body are related to your current sexual problem.

Women and Sexual Libido Issues

Libido simply means sex drive. A woman’s desire for sex can vary individually. When a woman is in a new relationship she will experience what is commonly called “the honeymoon phase” where sex is abundant whilst over a period a woman’s sex drive will decrease. The frequency of sexual activity ranges from daily to not happening at all. If you are concerned about the decrease in your sexual libido, you might need to seek professional help.

What causes female sexual dysfunction?

Female sexual dysfunction is caused by changes in the sexual desire of women. Menopause is common to induce a decline in a woman’s desire for sex. This is primarily due to a hormonal imbalance. Dyspareunia can cause pain during sexual activity with women. Women who have given birth can experience a decline in their sexual libidos due to hormonal changes especially with the increase of prolactin which is responsible for decreasing female’s libido.

Infections

Infections can also be contributing factors to female sexual dysfunction. Women do experience issues with achieving orgasm and the underlying factors which cause this can stem from both medical and psychological reasons. Infections such as thrush or yeast infections can take any woman’s desire for sex away in an instant.

Diagnosis methods

There are different diagnosis methods which can be utilized in diagnosing women with low libidos. Doctors can perform physical examinations which consist of family histories as well as checking the overall health of the female who is experiencing a low libido. Blood and urine tests are utilized with diagnosing methods as well as hormone tests.

Treatments

Reduced libidos are treated with various styles. Treatments can include seeking any underlying medical problems which the patient might have. Hormone replacement therapy which typically adjusts the balance of hormones in a female’s body. Anti-depressants and stress management have proved to work with females suffering from low sexual libidos. Counseling aids as well with the emotional factors involved with females suffering from sexual issues.

Counseling

Many counseling options are available for women if first they become accepting of the problem. Counseling can aid women with learning new communication skills which will in return aid them in their relationships with their sexual partners. Underlying issues can be addressed through therapy as well as education on different sexual techniques and fantasies and desires.

Some women are reluctant to seek counseling to aid them with their low sexual libido issue however, it is of the utmost importance that if emotional or psychological factors are the problem for their low libido’s they must seek counseling to realize what these issues are.

Where should women seek help for low sexual libidos?

Where can women seek help for their low sexual libidos? Their first place to check should always be with their family doctor. A woman’s family doctor can provide referrals to sex therapists or psychologist. Urologists can aid women as well if there are some underlying medical problems which are affecting a woman’s desire to have sex.

Things every woman should remember

Some things which women need to know about low sexual libidos is that the desire for sexual activity varies individually. Some of the many factors which can affect low sexual libidos in women can be stress, feeling rushed, not being compatible with your sexual partner and any types of drugs which you might currently be taking. Illegal drug usage as well as alcohol abuse can cause a low sexual libido in women. If you are currently taking prescribed medications, you should check to see what the side effects are. If one of the side effects is a decrease in your sex drive, discuss with your medical doctor an alternative to the medication which you are currently taking.