In this article, somatic therapist Molly Mørch guides those who have been through trauma or shock. How do you dive back in and rediscover your desire?
Trauma and sex
A study from the US has shown that over a period of five years, 95% of us experience a great shock. For some, it is relatively easy to move on after a shock, and for others, there are circumstances in life that can make it really difficult. Some develop PTSD, and others may develop anxiety or depression. But what do you do if you've experienced a shock or trauma and want to start rediscovering desire and maybe even having sex?
Working with a therapist
First, it is important to emphasize that when you've had one or more violent experiences that are somehow stuck in your body, you should work with a professional specializing in this field. No matter how many books we read or what education we may have, deep healing takes place when we work with others. Find a therapist or other professional you want to work with, and talk to them about wanting to restart your sex life.
What you can do yourself
Besides the interaction with a therapist, there are several things you can do yourself. First of all, it's important to give yourself plenty of time (frustrating as it is, it can take months or even years). Next, it's a good idea to start by exploring on your own to find out what you want sexually before you involve others. And it doesn't necessarily start with masturbation. For example, it could start with giving yourself a foot massage, making chocolate fondue for yourself, or taking a really long bath where you focus on the feeling of the water. Sexuality usually starts with sensuality, and it doesn't live solely in your genitals. Invite yourself on a date at home, and show yourself the compassion you would extend to a friend or partner who's having a hard time. When you do these things for yourself, check in with yourself regularly. What's your gut feeling when you treat yourself? Are you responding with a clear yes? And when does it start to become a no? As a professional somatic therapist, I wouldn't advise anyone to start a sex life after trauma until they can identify both a clear yes and a clear no again. That said, things are often different in practice than in theory. But the best thing is to wait and to listen to what you want and don't want. You can even keep a diary about it. That will allow you to get to know the feeling a little better, exploring how your yes feels and how your no feels.
And as with so much else, it's always hard to learn new things, so forgive yourself if you slip up once in a while. If you slip up often, maybe go back a few steps.
When a clear yes turns into oh yes!
At some point, you might feel like you've waited long enough, and then it's time to test the waters. you can give yourself an erotic massageor have a quickie with a toy in the shower, like this one, or maybe this.
It'll come back to you! Even if the road is long. With patience and help.