Sex: How To Make it Better (cont.)

That wouldn't even bother me so much but they don't keep it to themselves; they come home from work and as soon as the door is open start making crude jokes about me, about sex in general, etc. I do not think it's to hurt me in any way; its just "guy" talk. But it really bothers me! Its come down to not even wanting to spice things up in bed and withholding just because I feel so uncomfortable about what they are going to be discussing afterwards!

WESTON:
You need to get your husband off by himself with you, over a cup of coffee, where there are no distractions. Look him right in the eye and say, "Darling, I know that you enjoy talking about our sex life with Sam (or whatever his name is). It sounds like it may even give you a thrill. But it is having a chilling effect in my having interest to have sex with you. You guys don't realize that you are fairly merciless in your teasing of me, and I am starting to really dislike it. It has to stop, or I will." Ask your husband if he will promise to stop this. Tell him it is incredibly important to you, and you are not joking.

If he still seems thick headed about it, say something like, "Imagine if I did the same with my friends too, and we razzed you constantly in the same fashion. I'm suspecting that you wouldn't like it very much."

Then, if you feel you need to deliver an ultimatum, do so. Just be sure that you follow through. This doesn't need to taper down; this needs to stop altogether.

MEMBER (cont'd):
I thought perhaps if he was to know how I felt then he would start keeping more privacy between us, but he totally turned it around, called his friend up, and told him what I had revealed, which turned out to be more embarrassing. His friend asked to talk to me, and seriously for five minutes I got to talk to him about how the remarks upset me! I got more understanding from him than I did my husband. He apologized and said he would stop. But it hasn't.

WESTON:
Then it's time for an ultimatum. The next time this happens, you are going to have to draw the line in the sand and say, "Darling, we're not having sex for -- you pick the number -- days. End of communication."

"If you are in a relationship that has issues or difficulties, no amount of testosterone will override that. So be sure that you're not trying to treat a relationship issue with a prescription."

MEMBER QUESTION:
I need to know what natural alternatives are out there for raising testosterone levels in men. I am a 45-year-old male with low testosterone levels and have tried drugs such as compounds, AndroGel, and am now taking a product called Testim. I did not get any results out of the compounds or AndroGel, so my doctor has prescribed Testim.

WESTON:
I'm surprised that the AndroGel didn't work for you. It has a fairly good track record. Were you having your free testosterone measured, your total testosterone measured, or both?

MEMBER (cont'd):
Both those levels were tested and the levels were low for my age group.

WESTON:
The free testosterone is the much more relevant figure. A male who is between 20 and 49 years should look to have testosterone between nine to 43 picograms per milliliter. A man 50 or older looks to have between eight and 35 pg per milliliter of free testosterone. Are you saying that your numbers did not fall in this range?

MEMBER (cont'd):
Correct.

WESTON:
I'm not aware of the exact product called Testim. Is it gel or injectable? I assume it is not a pill. Most pills with testosterone for men are not effective. Or is it a patch? Using bio-identical hormones is the most desirable route to take when trying to get testosterone levels up to "normal" range.

MEMBER (cont'd):
It's a gel. The AndroGel I was told depending on the skin texture of the individual can have good affects on some.

WESTON:
I would give the Testim a try, and then do another blood level in a month. Keep in mind that testosterone levels can and do fluctuate a fair amount. You'll want to base some of your actions on how you feel, in addition to what the numbers say. If you are in a relationship that has issues or difficulties, no amount of testosterone will override that. So be sure that you're not trying to treat a relationship issue with a prescription.

If you are not working with an endocrinologist, I might consider doing that. Supplementing testosterone like you are and not getting results has me scratching my head a little, wondering. So this might be something to take up with an endocrinologist.

MEMBER QUESTION:
Have they come up with anything that can help women with their sex life as they have for men with Viagra? Maybe Viagra for women?

WESTON:
Viagra is a medication that helps men with their sexual functioning. This means that they get an erection with the help of the Viagra. An equivalent pill for women would help women produce lots of lubrication. That's because lubrication is the physical equivalent for women to erection for men. Many women have difficulties with wanting to be sexual, and many other women have difficulties with reaching orgasm. And it's certainly true that some women have difficulty with their lubrication.

My hunch is that your question may not be coming from the standpoint of I want more lubrication. My hunch is based on discussions I've had with many women, and all the interactions I have with women on the message board. It's seldom about lubrication. That's because there are bottles of lubricants already, and many people know about them and use them.

So, is there going to be a pill to help women want to have sex more? Not that I know of. There isn't a pill that makes men want to have sex more. There are hormones, testosterone for one, which can help people be more predisposed to wanting sex, but it doesn't override other issues, as I mentioned in the prior question.

The topic of women wanting to be more easily orgasmic is another issue. There are various gadgets being produced to enhance the likelihood of female orgasm occurring. Some of them are like a small pulsating/sucking device that is place over the vulva to increase blood flow to that area and cause sexual arousal. I get fliers and emails about these types of products from time to time. I'll try to make a list of them for the message board and post what they're about, what they supposedly do, and whether they seem valid. Of course, a vibrator works rather well to facilitate orgasm for women.

Have we got the desire pill? No. Are there pharmaceutical companies busily working on that? Yes, probably. I hope that answers your question.

"It seems that threesomes work out the best when everybody involved thinks that the idea is arousing. It's kind of like blue cheese. You either like it or you don't."

MEMBER QUESTION:
My boyfriend and I have been dating for six months now and he wants to bring another female into our sex life for a few times and I am feeling insecure. We had a long talk about this last night and I am feeling that I am maybe doing something wrong in our sex life and was wondering if the effect will become a bad thing in our relationship. I don't know if I can stand by and let that happen. I thought we were happy. Is this a sign of unhappiness? Does this mean that he is not satisfied with me? I am very confused.

WESTON:
It's difficult to know for sure where your boyfriend is coming from, but here's my best guess. He may have a strong erotic attraction to the idea of a threesome with another woman. It sounds like a threesome is on his "hard drive," sexually speaking, pun intended. That means, to me, that he is not dissatisfied with you as a sexual partner. It's more likely to mean that he wants the experience of sexual activity with two women at one time. That may mean intercourse with one, while having oral sex with the other, or some combination of body parts like that.

It seems that threesomes work out the best when everybody involved thinks that the idea is arousing. Being persuaded into it generally doesn't work that well. It's kind of like blue cheese. You either like it or you don't. Unless you have some interest in it for you personally, sexually, and you wouldn't be doing it just to please him, I can't say I would recommend for you to try it. This might mean that the relationship doesn't go forward. But if a threesome is very important to your boyfriend, then he should probably make sure the person he's dating is interested in this before getting very, very involved.

Sex under duress just generally doesn't work well, and you might be setting yourself up for that. I doubt very much that it has much to do with how good a sexual partner you are.

MEMBER QUESTION:
Dr. Weston, I have been married two years next week, and our sex life is still incredible. However, my husband is still shy when it comes to talking about new things, or trying different moves. How can I get him to loosen up in that area?

WESTON:
It sounds like your husband might think that you are the more experienced of the two of you, and he might be playing it safe over concerns that he might look inexperienced. You might ask him if that's an issue. Second idea, you could ask him if he thinks any part of sexual interaction with you is out of bounds for him, and if so, how he decided that.

Let him know that you care for him, are attracted to him, love him, and wish to go places with him that you haven't been before. Ask him if he's willing to be your companion and co-conspirator in exploring. If he expresses reservations, ask him how you could make it easier and fun for him to experiment a little with you.

"The IUD has gotten a lot of negative press in this country, but it is a good form of birth control for certain couples. It works well for couples with a low number of sexual partners, and who are definitely monogamous."

MEMBER QUESTION:
I have recently started back taking my birth control pills and have noticed a GREAT decrease in my sex drive. Is there a correlation? What can I do to help?

WESTON:
Birth control pills can suppress sexual desire in women. In fact, any of the hormonal approaches (shot, patch, or pills), can have this effect. Unfortunately, the pills that have the least negative side effects, such as headaches, acne, weight gain, are the ones that seem to suppress sexual desire the most.

If they had such a noticeable drop as you've described, I then encourage people to consider another form of birth control. The IUD has gotten a lot of negative press in this country, but it is a good form of birth control for certain couples. It works well for couples with a low number of sexual partners, and who are definitely monogamous. It's used rather widely in Europe without much difficulty. Of course, you can also consider the diaphragm and condoms.

So it's up to you as to whether you want to explore other forms of birth control or cope with the side effects from the pill.

MODERATOR:
Before we wrap up for today, do you have any final comments for us, Louanne?

WESTON:
I hope that you will bring your questions that may have not been answered to the message board. I'm on the message board six days out of seven, and do my best to tackle every question or make sure someone else in the community has given a good answer. I hope you'll join me there.

MODERATOR:
Thanks to Louanne Cole Weston, PhD, for being our guest.



©1996-2005 WebMD Inc. All rights reserved.



STAY INFORMED

Get the Latest health and medical information delivered direct to your inbox!