For many people, early sobriety is like learning to walk again — and for me, learning to enjoy sex was part of the package. When I look back on my life before recovery, I realize that for most of the sex that I experienced then, I was either tipsy, high, drunk, or in a blackout. It seemed fucking impossible to think that I could learn to accept and appreciate myself and my desire outside of the male gaze. A year and a half into my sobriety I made the commitment to heal my sexual shame and reclaim my pleasure body, and this decision took me on a wild ride of discovering just how limitless, creative, and abundant sex could be. Although awkward at first, because I no longer had alcohol to mask the vulnerability I felt, I started to explore my turn-ons.
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And while that extra time together as a couple can definitely be a blessing, it might not go exactly how you expected. For those with significant others, something you might have been surprised to see change is your sex life. You may well be, but not necessarily. Others are seeing an increase. This fits with the research, which is that for many people, stress inhibits desire, and for others sex is a way to manage stress so at times of angst, they crave it more. As Dr Gurney explained, stress has a huge impact on just about everything — your sex life, included. For some, that might mean reaching for sex as a means of managing their coronavirus-related stress and others might find their desire completely inhibited.
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Skip navigation! Story from Sex. Sophie Saint Thomas.