Archives

Taking Care of Yourself

How well do you take care of yourself from a social or emotional standpoint? I know that our husbands are our best friends but they do not need to be our only source for social interaction. I talked briefly about the positive effects friendship can provide in “Orgasm, Chocolate and Friends…Oh My!!!” I am now referring to having friends as a support system.

I was thinking about how important friendships are to children. Young children will even pal around with a pet, stuffed animal or have imaginary friends. In our teen years our friends have a big influence over the type of personality we develop. As we get married many women lose their identity. Sometimes we get ultra focused on pleasing our husband that we lose sight of the things we enjoyed before we were married. I am not saying that you should be hanging out in clubs with your girlfriends if that’s what you did with them prior to being married. You can easily connect with a friend on a short walk or over a cup of coffee. All you really need is one good friend. Quality is much more important than quantity. It is great to know that I have friends with whom I can laugh, cry, pray with, vent to or get advice from. My friends are some of my biggest fans as well as my toughest critics and I know it is because they love me unconditionally.

It is a known fact that friendships can lower blood pressure, heart rates, cholesterol and stress. Have you ever become so consumed in an activity with a friend that issues that had been hanging over your head suddenly took a back burner for a bit? It is a great feeling to be able to pray or laugh with a friend when times are tough.

In the past I have become so consumed with trying to be a good wife and a good mother that I lose my sense of self. While it’s true that I am a wife as well as a mother, I am also my own person. It is so important to have interests outside marriage. In the long run they enrich the quality of my marriage. Plus, my husband fell in love with that person so why would I ever want to get rid of her?

original article

Sensitive Skin

Oh man have I had a rough week! I thought I had a yeast infection. I get maybe one every two years. The first day of discomfort was kind of strange. I kept wondering if I was getting an infection. The second day the itching was worse, but everything looked normal (no weird discharge or anything). After the third day of really bad itching, I broke down and took my oral RX that I had left over from last year. I remembered that it could take a couple of days to work, but after a couple of days I was no better. So I took another one and waited. Then when I got into the shower one night I had a startling realization…

Let me start by saying that I have extremely sensitive skin. I have eczema and have to use special soap that costs nearly $6 per bar. I also cannot use any type of bath oils, bath beads, bubble bath, etc., because if I do I will get a UTI, guaranteed. I’ve learned over the years what I can and can’t use, and I usually stick with the things that I know are okay for me.

Well, the grocery store was out of my regular Skintimates shave gel last weekend, so I picked up some Gillette Satin Care. I didn’t really think anything about it. It was a vanilla scented kind and I love vanilla. I used it twice to shave down there. It wasn’t until I was about to use it a third time, that my eyes were suddenly opened…I WAS ALLERGIC TO THE NEW SHAVE GEL! Why did I not realize that before? So I just washed myself with my nice expensive soap, and I rinsed off real good with hot water. I did this again a few times over the next two days, and then my symptoms went away.

So I wasted a perfectly good prescription all because I was allergic to the shave gel. :mad: I really should have known better. It’s very frustrating to be so ultra sensitive to so many different things. I even have to use special laundry detergent (dye free, fragrance free, etc.). My mother is the same way, and I’m already seeing the same issues in my children.

I guess this was mainly written as a vent. I assume there are other women out there who have skin issues like I do, but my girlfriends don’t seem to battle with these issues. I thought that maybe some of you out there may be able to relate to this though…

original article

Are you a visual person?

I had a reader comment come into my email, and I know there are probably many women curious about this as well.
Men are always thought to be visually stimulated.  When a man in visually stimulated, it’s usually pretty obvious, but what about women?  Are women visually stimulated?  Is it OK to be visually stimulated?

Of course it is okay for a woman to be visually stimulated.  If the sight of her husband’s erection really turns her on, there is absolutely no problem with that.  He probably LOVES it!  Now, it’s harder to tell visually that a woman is stimulated visually, but that doesn’t mean in doesn’t happen.

Me?  Yes, I love to watch my husband’s naked body and his erection.    I am not one that is visually stimulated.   My stimulation comes from touch and smell  more than sight.   There is nothing wrong, biblically with visual stimulation.   Reading Song of Solomon or going through the Peasant Princess series (Mars Hill Church, Mark Driscoll pastor) are good resources can give you some insight.

If you are not visually stimulated, there is nothing wrong with you.  Please don’t think you are defective or anything.  If you are visually stimulated, there is nothing wrong with you either!  God created each of us differently and unique, but all in His image.  Embrace the way God created you in your marriage.   Bless your husband no matter if you are visually stimulated or not.   God approves either way!

 

Libido Enhancing Supplements

I struggle with an extremely low sex drive.  My husband saw “Provestra” in an article or something.  Any of you familiar with this or have a better suggestion for a natural remedy?  I also think I have a hormonal imbalance so need that to improve to.

I want to preface this blog entry by saying that if there are spiritual or emotional issues that are causing your libido to be low, using supplements to “boost” your libido will not help or make things better.   Also, if you feel that you have hormonal imbalances, it is best to get your hormones checked by your PCP or your OBGYN before self diagnosing and self medicating.  If you are pregnant, you will want to do further research on which herbs are not recommended for you to take while pregnant and discuss any changes with your doctor.

I received this email from a reader who has a low sex drive.  I have had this problem in the past, and still do at times, so I thought it would be appropriate to do some research into the product that she spoke of, as well as doing some research at “The Vitamin Shoppe” and asking some questions to a friend who is very knowledgeable with herbs and what helps what when you take them.  This will be a culmination of the research I have done.  I HAVE NOT tried any of these products that I will discuss.  I WILL comment on things I am currently using.

First thing I did after reading the email was to Google Provestra and navigate around the website.  Provestra is a daily supplement designed to increase desire in women.   The site suggests that it will help enhance sensations, increase self lubrication, speed up arousal, and help a woman to have regular orgasms.   As I checked through the list of ingredients in the supplement, it looked like what you would find in a regular multivitamin (Vitamin A, C, E, B complex, Folic acid, calcium, iron and zinc) with supplemental herbs.  On their site, they have a money back guarantee if you feel that the product isn’t working for you, but you have to use it for 30 days and also consult their Customer Satisfaction Team before getting a full refund on your money when you return the unused product, but you do pay the return shipping cost.  ($15)

The list of ingredients was very long, so I emailed my friend about herbs that are aphrodisiacs.   I asked her to look at the Provestra list and tell me what she thought.  She told me that the ingredients in the product were pretty standard for women’s sexual health, but she was concerned about the use of red dye #3 and other additives that were listed on the bottom of the ingredient page.    She suggested the use of the following herbs …

Damiana is used to increase circulation to all parts of the body, especially the sexual organs.

Dong Quai helps with vaginal dryness and it relaxes the uterus.  It also helps cramping and symptoms of menopause.

Milk Thistle cleanses liver cells and controls endometritus.

She told me not to go cheap on these either, to make sure they were fresh, high quality herbs.

So after talking to my friend, I went on a fact finding mission to our local vitamin store, thus the trip to Vitamin Shoppe.   My husband had been there before and told me there was a whole section on Women’s Health.  Wow, that shop was overwhelming!  I did find the section on women’s health, and found a few other products there that also were also advertised as libido enhancers.  I found Natural Passion and Cleopatra there, and these both claim to help low sex drive, but ingredients were different in these as well.   The Dong Quai was the same in these as my friend recommended and the Cleopatra had both the Damiana and Dong Quai, along with other herbs as well.   Again, I haven’t tried ANY of these products, so I cannot say whether they work or not.

While doing the research on these drive boosting supplements, there were also pages on the internet that evaluated Provestra.   Women’s Health Weekly ranked Provestra #2 in its recommendations for women’s libido enhancers, 2nd place only to a product called HerSolution.   Provestra-reviews.com had this quote on the product “Relying completely on herbal extracts, it has been reviewed as not only one of the safest, but most effective supplements of its kind on the market today.”   But I went to my hubby’s trusty source for product satisfaction…amazon.com … and found some personal reviews from people who actually bought and used the products for at least 2 months.   “I  see now, 2 people, and now, add me as the 3rd, have rated this 1 star. It deserves ZERO stars.”; “If it worked, I couldn’t tell.”; “After taking this product for a month, I absolutely had no difference in drive or sensitivity. For the price this is not a good product at all. “; “Don’t waste your time or money on this product.”.  There was one positive comment on the Amazon page from a user. “I can’t say the effects have been as dramatic as the Provestra website claims, but my sex drive has definitely improved.”

What’s in my medicine cabinet?  I take a gummy multivitamin daily.  I take extra supplements of calcium, iron, B complex, B12, vitamin E, vitamin K (not in my multivitamin), zinc, Korean Ginseng, Gingko Biloba, and Horny Goat Weed.  I don’t know why, can’t explain it, but I always thought of Horny Goat Weed as a product for men, but it is working for me!   I take it in the morning to help me think about sex during the day, and I take it at night as well.  In about 20 minutes, it gets the circulation going in my clitoris and that gets me in the mood to make love.  Much to my hubby’s liking…   Hubby found me some articles online that say Horny Goat Weed is not just for men and erectile dysfunction, but also helps with circulation in the genitals for women as well.  It works for me!  Just a note that I did try the Dong Quai for a little over a month, and it didn’t really work well for me.  I am premenopausal, and I was really hopeful that it would help with my dryness.   It may work for you, but it didn’t really work for me.

I AM NOT PROPOSING THAT YOU BUY ANY OF THESE PRODUCTS.  I am trying to give some balanced information on the products.  Remember that any website that sells products wants them to sell, so they are going to put them in their best light.   Do the research before you purchase any products.   Some of these products DO have side effects even though the website says they don’t.  Every woman is different, so you want to be sure that you consult your doctor before you start adding things to your daily regime.  Remember, too, if you are suffering from low sex drive, it is not necessarily hormonal.  It may be hormonal, but it also may have emotional and spiritual ramifications as well, which any supplement will not help.  Take your issues to the Lord in prayer.  I did when I had these problems.   It took some time for me to get God’s answer…he was waiting on me to be ready for the truth.  God opened my eyes to the truth, and my awakening occurred.  My problems were not hormonal at that time.   Be sure you include God in all of your plans.  He knows your heart and when you open your heart to Him, he’ll open your eyes to the truth.

Question about clitoris pain and orgasm

I had a question awhile back from a woman regarding orgasm difficulties and clitoral pain as well.  It is my hope in this article to be able to tackle some areas and give some ideas if you, too, suffer from this type of difficulty.

Before you go any further in my article, I suggest you read Cumingirl’s article ”The clitoris” It gives a lot of good information about the clitoris that I will use as reference in this article as well.

The clitoris is one of the most sensitive parts of the female genitalia.When I found the pleasure that could be derived from touching it as a young girl, I also found that there were times when it could become over stimulated and start to feel really odd and even hurt.This is long before I ever knew about lubrication, so much of what I did to stimulate myself was done bone dry.The Discovery Health website says this about the clitoris….” There is a high concentration of nerve endings in the clitoris and in the area immediately surrounding it.The abundance of nerve endings in the clitoris makes it very sensitive to direct or indirect touch or pressure. Stimulation of the clitoral area can be very pleasurable.”BUT what it doesn’t say is it can sometimes be painful, too.

One of the biggest things to realize is that everyone’s clitoris is unique.When aroused, the clitoris swells sometimes to twice its size.Blood flow to that area (like the blood flow to the male penis) causes this swelling.Direct contact to this area can be either pleasurable or painful depending on the type of contact.Too much rubbing directly on the clit can cause it to become desensitized and painful.One of the best things I can recommend to someone who is trying to find the most pleasurable way to stimulate your clit is to experiment with your own finger or a bullet vibe in your own spare time.Find out if your clit is sensitive to direct stimulation or does it feel better when you stimulate around the clitoris (the hood and labia areas).There is absolutely nothing wrong with doing this kind of experimentation.It will help you to later communicate to your husband when something is happening during intercourse that is not working or causing you pain.You need to know your body well down there…what feels good and what doesn’t.Be prepared to talk about what starts to cause pain.During intercourse, you may need to change to another position or maybe add some more external lube to the area.Friction is a big source of pain to that area of your body during intercourse if there is not enough lube.If you use lube during intercourse, it is a good idea to put some on the clitoris as well to keep from rubbing it raw.If you use your own natural fluids, then use a finger to gather some from your vagina and put it on your clit.

But part of the Sister in Christ’s question also included about her inability to orgasm.If you read Cumingirl’s article, women, too can get a “blue balls” kind of feeling with their clitoris when an orgasm isn’t reached.The blood can remain in an engorged clit for several hours as compared to relief in 10 minutes or so with an orgasm!Ouch!If you find that you cannot reach an orgasm or if your husband has already had his release, don’t be afraid to ask him for oral sex or for him to use a vibe on you to release the tension that you still have built up.Your husband may find it extremely erotic to watch you masturbate in front of him to orgasm with your fingers or a vibe.This would be a great time to SHOW HIM what you have learned through your own practice!Show him what area of the clitoris that produces the most pleasure for you.After some study time, your husband will remember how to rock your world, and hopefully be open to volunteering to do this for you in the future.

Our sister, Sugar and Spice documented in her blog “I think I can” ways that helped her to achieve orgasm as well.

I have also read on several websites that clitoral pain can also be caused by vaginal secretions getting under the hood of the clitoris.I know myself that I do at times pull the hood back and use a Q-tip to gently clean away anything that has been trapped under the hood.I use a gentle feminine wash like Summers Eve or Massengil to clean when I shower.

I hope that I have somehow helped you with some suggestions to make intercourse more enjoyable and fun for you!

How do you COPE with all this??

I had a reader send me an email.   Here’s the gist of her concerns….

She is a married mother of 2 young school age children.  She works full time out of the home.  Her previous job left her plenty of time to do all her household chores, but now, working 8-5 M-F she can’t seem to get anything done.   She finds herself overwhelmed and exhausted.    She and her hubby fall asleep exhausted at night, but he wakes her up for middle of the night lovin’.   How do other women cope?

Okay….confession time here.   My house is overwhelmingly in disarray.  If this woman were to walk into my house, I am afraid I would have to call EMS.   I work a 40+ hour work week, have 2 kids (one in HS and one in elementary) and a husband who is a great help.  BUT our house will never be spotlessly clean.  If it were, I would think that the Second Coming of Christ had come and that in heaven or on the New Earth, no matter how hard you tried to mess it up, you just can’t.   We are not neat people.   Now, we can clean it well for guests, and our dogs know someone is coming over if they see us feverishly cleaning, but I have come to the following conclusion…. and this is for me only and not everyone…. it is literally impossible to keep a house immaculately clean.  There will always be laundry to wash, dishes needing cleaned, carpets needing vacuuming…and as soon as I do it, there will be more a few minutes later.

I sure hope I haven’t offended her because I have friends who are extremely neat and really enjoy keeping an immaculate house.   If that is what they want to do, that is wonderful for them.   For me, I have to wait for the weekend.

My house does overwhelm me.   I have to pick and choose my battles during the week.  Two days a week, I only get a load of laundry done, so I don’t have 15 loads on Sunday.   One day a week, I will work on one load of dishes.   (We don’t always need it daily since we use a lot of paper plates and plastic silverware during the week)   I can’t possibly do it all every day, so I delegate duties for different days, and I put most of my housework on the weekend.

Now recently, my DH and I have wised up as parents.   We were very lax about our kids and chores.  Each week, now, our two children have to plan and prepare dinner.  Our son does Tuesday and our daughter does one other non-busy evening.   We help them where needed, but for the most part, they do most of the work.   I have also showed them both how to do their own laundry, so starting on Saturday, my daughter does her laundry and on Sunday, my son does his.   Wash, dry and put away.   It has made my life SO MUCH EASIER.

To the OP, I know your children are too young to do this, but start giving them specific chores.  The older can vacuum your carpet or help sort and fold laundry.  My youngest and your oldest are almost the same age, and I showed her how to do her own laundry.  She does a great job!   Pick a chore that you know your youngest can do…. maybe sort the colors of your laundry (whites in one basket, etc)   Give both kids an old sock, and let them dust till there little hearts content.  My DH and I both agreed on one thing right off the bat when we first got married…. we both will do ONE chore that the other one despises…. for me, I don’t like dirty dishes.  My DH doesn’t like laundry.  So I do all the laundry and he does all the dishes.    Split or share the other chores around your house.  If everyone does a little bit during the week, then much more deep cleaning on the weekend, you won’t feel as stressed out or tired.

As for the middle of the night lovin’, you really didn’t say how often, but I will tell you this.  If it is a night that you are really tired and really need your sleep, don’t be afraid to give him a rain check.  He won’t feel rejected and you won’t be refusing him if you say, “Honey, I am really tired tonight, but how about I set my alarm 15 minutes early and we can ML then?  Would that be okay?”   Another confession time here…. I am REALLY BAD about just falling asleep as soon as I hit the pillow and my poor DH has learned over the years not to wake me.   It kind of saddens me sometimes that I have trained him this way.  I need to do a better job of this.  But there have been occasions that I have set my alarm 15 minutes earlier for just this purpose….to snuggle up really close to him for some first thing in the morning loving.   I feel much better if I have a full night sleep, then if I am interrupted in the middle of my REM sleep.   You might want to try that and see if that helps.

I hope that there are other readers who will chime in and tell us about their experiences and how you handle all the stress of day to day life.   I would love to hear it!

As We Age: Self Lubrication

It took me almost 11 years of marriage to love sex like I do now. I feel like I have lost something though…my body is older now, and it does not work like it used to when I was younger. The one thing that I notice the most that bothers me the most is my ability (or should I say inability) to produce my own natural lubrication. It just doesn’t happen anymore….well, it does slightly when I am ovulating, but that is the time when my husband and I practice our NFP and come up with other ways to satisfy our needs. I decided to do some research on natural lubrications.

It was disheartening at first to read that some women have the opposite reaction to me…they produce too much lube! But then I found one site that I giggled at…Dr. Sue Johanson suggests on her website that when we produce our own natural lubrication, that we are “horny” (her words). SO that is my problem! I am not horny! (Sorry, I just had to giggle there) Estrogen is a major factor in self lubrication. As you approach your late 30’s and early 40’s, the level of estrogen in your body may not be as high and when you were younger. THIS made more sense to me. I am possibly entering in the perimenopausal stage of my life, so changes in the hormones in my body do and will affect my sex life now.

So what am I to do about lubrication? I can tell you that sex without it can be painful for me, so my husband and I went through a process of elimination to choose the right lube for us. We tried KY Jelly and found it very sticky and not too comfortable. We tried Astroglide as well. I like it better than KY. Then we heard about coconut oil.

coconut oil

At first, I was like…”Don’t you cook with coconut oil”, but coconut oil was non greasy, it didn’t stain our sheets, it was inexpensive (we buy Louana coconut oil at Walmart for $3 a tub), and it worked awesome! Since we don’t use condoms, we have no problem with using coconut oil, but if you do use condoms, be sure to choose a water based lube. The oil will break down a condom. Now there are times when I do like to go back to Astroglide or we’ve even tried flavored lubes like Juicy Lube (great for oral sex!!!) , but for the bang for the buck (hee hee), coconut oil is the way to go.

If you would like to read the original comments on this article on ChristianNymphos.org, please click here.