Self, Sex

6 Ways To Have A Satisfied Sex Life When Dealing With Illness

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 6 Points To Have A Satisfied Sex-Life When Dealing With Ilness

Sex is a great stress reliever. It releases the happy hormones, endorphins and oxytocin. Who can't use a little bit more happiness in life?

Having sex and being intimate sounds so simple...until one of the partners becomes ill.

When sex becomes painful (or in some cases, almost impossible), it can put a big strain on a relationship, not only on the person who is sick but also on the partner. They can also become the caregiver, which often translates into low or no sex drive.

You don't want to see your partner suffering and if sex is becoming painful, it is easier not to engage in it. To have a solid partnership, there has to be a form of intimacy. Without that, disconnection will develop between you and your partner.

You are both still people with needs and desires, with the need to feel loved, beautiful, and desirable. That is of great importance, especially when you're dealing with illness.

The illness alone can take your self-confidence down, so don't let it take your intimacy and sex also.

It is crucial for your relationship to keep connecting with your partner. Therefore, talking about sex, what it means for the both of you, and how to deal with the obstacle as the illness, is a necessary discussion. The more open you talk about it, the easier and quicker you may come to a solution.  

When having sex with a chronic illness, open communication is the key, and together with the 6 tips below, you can find yourself enjoying sex and intimacy again:

1. Don't let the illness define who you are and overrule and dictate your relationship. 

This is first and foremost. You are more than your illness. You are a loving human being who wants to be loved in return. You still have a lot to offer even when you can't do certain activities.

Keep focusing on the things you still can do and work around the things you can't. Your value is not attached to what you do for a career or how healthy you are.

2. Make peace with your body.

You didn't ask for your condition so don't beat yourself up about it. Accept the limitations and focus on what is still possible. Take pride in yourself and make sure that you feel confident in the way you look.

Be the best you can be and there will be days that are hard and sex has to wait. Make the most of it when you feel good enough to engage in sex. This helps your health and your relationship. 

3. Attitude is everything.

Each disease has its own challenges and limitations and it is your attitude towards life that can make or break you.  

If you stay upbeat there is less chance that you let fear rule your life and sex drive. Being sexual starts from the inside out. If you give up on yourself, you give up on your sexuality and intimacy. Be bold, be daring, and remember that it is your life that is at stake and not your condition.

4. Make an effort and start planning.

Sex takes energy, therefore check with yourself the best time for you to have sex (is it in the morning or at night? Maybe after a massage or a rest? Sometimes medication is needed).

Become aware of your needs before you take on intimacy, the more in tune you are the more effortless it becomes. A great mood killer is if it feels like a day's hard work. That takes the fun and the special bonding time out of it very quickly.  

5. Become creative.

Notice your limitations and work with them.

If, for example, you enjoy oral sex but that is, for now, impossible due to the fact that you can't open your mouth wide enough, look at licking your partner's body and exploring with your tongue. You may have a problem with one position due to hip problems, so explore a different posture that's comfortable for both of you.

There are hundreds of good books on positions, so go explore and be creative. Nothing is weird or wrong when it works for the two of you.

6. Check your medication's side effects.

Pay attention to your medication. Sometimes, your meds lower your sex drive. If that is a problem for you ask your doctor if there are alternatives you can try.

Self-image and self-worth are the most important ingredients for your sexuality. Don't let anyone or anything take that away from you, including a disease. Yes, it may need some extra planning and organizing but you and your partner are worth it.

You are not brother and sister or parent and child; you are partners and you need intimacy.

Even when regular sex is not possible, you still need intimacy. Cuddling, oral sex, massaging, stroking, and kissing are all things that heighten your closeness. Find things that work for you because your relationship comes first and the condition always second (even when it doesn't look that way).

Celebrate life the best you can!

Ellen Nyland is a Certified Life Coach, her passion is celebrating life in all its forms including your sexuality. For more information on this topic please contact Ellen here.

This article was originally published at Ellen Nyland. Reprinted with permission from the author.