Sometimes unpredictability makes life more fun, adventurous, and interesting. But when it comes to sexual dysfunction, unpredictability can intensify the emotional pain and lead to continued avoidance and distance. When you can’t trust that your body and mind will show up for sex the way you hope, it may make you want to say, why bother trying? And that can be a really difficult place.
Here are some examples of how sexual experiences can be tainted by unpredictability:
- If orgasm is difficult on a regular basis and either doesn’t happen or it feels like it’s taking forever.
- There is pain during intercourse, but “only” 50% of the time. (it’s amazing what people can get used to)
- Arousal is hit-or-miss, isn’t consistent, and seems to randomly fizzle for no apparent reason.
- Anxiety during sex shows up sometimes.
- Plans for spending one-on-one time with a partner never pan out.
It’s human nature to be drawn to activities where you feel successful. When sex doesn’t feel successful and becomes associated with lots of doubt and disappointment, it becomes a less appealing activity. On the surface, the excuses around sex not happening may be really legitimate—too busy, too stressed, etc.—but sometimes when we peel down some layers, it can become clear that at the heart of it, the lack of predictably good sex is keeping things stuck.