All right, Moody Squad -- Let's talk about sex!
Forget self-help blogs that beat around the bush (pun intended). Here at Moodygirl Chocolate, we're all about self-love and self-care practices that treat EVERY part of the mind and body -- including our libido!
We designed the raspberry Libido Lover chocolate bar as a way to pack in those extra vitamins and minerals that really make us *feel ourselves*. In other words, the ingredients your body needs for ideal blood flow, improved stamina and energy, and hormone balancing to make those fun times even more fun.
The reason we created this recipe was to support EVERY part of the month, not just PMS symptoms or other times when our bodies need a little extra help. Libido can be a great indicator of health, particularly if there are drastic changes in your libido -- but don't freak out, if you're less or more interested in gettin' naked than usual, that doesn't mean you need to rush yourself to the ER.
Sexual health is all about mental health. (Physical health too, but we'll get into that in a minute.) And part of taking care of your mental health involves all kinds of self-care. Today, we're breaking down some of the specific practices you can incorporate into your self-care routine that are healthy and wholesome for your libido.
As an important note, we're STILL not doctors! (And yes, we're going to make that joke every time we talk about something even vaguely medical.) If you're concerned about changes in your libido, difficulties during sex, or anything else, make an appointment to speak with a doctor or OBGYN you trust. Then treat yourself to some Moodygirl vitamin-enriched vegan chocolate and enjoy yourself. ;-)
Libido Self-Care When Things Hurt (That Shouldn't)
First off, let's talk about an issue many people face -- and not just the ladies! Pain during sex can be an indicator of a lot of things, but one of the most ordinary (and under-discussed) causes is a disconnect between mind and body. Lubrication is particularly important during sex, especially for women/AFAB folks. Feeling dry -- even when you're in the mood -- is often linked to anxiety, but could also be a simple hormone imbalance.
Self-care for pain during sex might include practices like warm baths and aromatherapy for relaxation, massage (with your partner if you want to make things interesting!), or simple self-touch. For women/AFAB folks dealing with vaginismus, an STD, or other conditions that can cause pain during sex, chatting with a doctor or sex therapist (they're a thing!) can do a lot for improving your confidence and making a plan to enjoy yourself.
(Important note: Self-touch doesn't necessarily refer to masturbation, although it totally can -- we're talking about fulfilling, love-language style touch, which could be as small as applying lotion to your arms and legs or as complex as exploring your body's pressure points with essential oils.)
Libido Self-Care When You Want To Spice Things Up
Long-term couples, we're looking at you! After a while, sometimes you just want to "spice things up". Self-care here partially becomes couple care -- and communication is key. It's a good idea to explore the things you like and want during sex, and explore positive and collaborative ways to share your findings with your partner.
Self-care practices for couples could include things like taking a couples' massage class, starting a special project together, taking time every day to talk about your goals and the things you like about each other, or taking a bath or shower together. Remember -- it's about exploration and fun. Sometimes, discovering a new bedroom adventure together can be inspiring and educational -- and even if you discover that you both really DON'T like whatever you tried, you can laugh about it together -- and that's just as fun.
Libido Self-Care When You're Not Sure About Your Sexuality
This one is complicated, and we understand that. Everyone's journey is different, and if you're questioning your own sexuality, take the time to honor that in yourself. If you're starting to explore your sexuality -- same-sex love or ethical non-monogamy, for example -- it's equally important to explore how you feel about those explorations.
Libido self-care for questioning your sexuality might look like journaling daily, writing down the questions you have for yourself and the things that you want to explore. Think about it like a (super fun) grown-up science fair project -- form a hypothesis, test it, and talk to yourself about your findings. Remember that sexuality is a journey -- whoever you are is who you are, and that's beautiful!
Another excellent self-care practice here is speaking with a licensed therapist or other mental health provider. Sometimes all you really need is to get your thoughts out in the open -- and speaking with a trusted friend, a therapist, or a mentor can do a lot for examining those thoughts in a safe and healthy environment. And when you're ready to take the plunge and experiment, knowing you have a care team in your corner ready to listen and acknowledge your experiences goes FAR toward boosting your confidence.
Libido Self-Care When You're Just Not Feelin' It
Sometimes, you might just not be in the mood, and that's totally okay! People have different paces and wants/needs in their sexual journeys, and the most important part is that you're happy, healthy, and comfortable. If you're not having fun, there's no point!
Generally, low libido from a lack of interest in sex can be tied to a lot of things. For many people, libido practically disappears when we're stressed out (or others see a sharp increase instead, needing to let off a little more steam). Lack of interest can also come from things like smoking and drinking alcohol that throw off our bodies' hormones and homeostasis. When you just feel blah, you're probably not going to be feeling "in the mood".
In terms of self-care, the best thing you can do for yourself to build libido (only if you want to) is to explore. And no, we're not here to tell you to go ____ yourself (unless that's what you're into, of course!). What we mean here is that it's important to know what you like and what you want, as well as practice communication with your partner so that you are both having a good time and feeling comfortable, supported, and desired.
One of the most empowering things you can do is educate yourself -- there are so many books and blogs out there that talk about the "how-to's" of sex without needing an X-rating. This is especially true if you're exploring your own sexuality, considering ethical non-monogamy, or recovering from trauma. Learn about who you are and what you want, and you'll help yourself become a better lover -- both to your partners and to yourself.
Remember -- consent is sexy. Wherever you're at in your sexuality journey, you're exactly where you're meant to be. Learning what you love about yourself, what you like and don't like, and what it means to connect with a partner are all critical to practicing self-care for libido.
The best way to enjoy yourself is to love yourself -- and by practicing self-care every day (not just the kind for sexy times, but everyday self-compassion), you can boost your confidence, build a connection with yourself, and find the person -- and the lover -- you're meant to be.
And seriously -- sometimes chocolate helps! We all know that it's an aphrodisiac, but a square or two of chocolate can also be a great way to settle a fluttery stomach or lead in to a romantic evening. Whether that means snacking on a raspberry Libido Lover chocolate bar while you journal or enjoying some Chill Out mint chocolate shavings in your hot cocoa while you take a bath, adding chocolate to your mental journey can do a lot for your libido and your self-love.
Take things at the pace you're comfortable with, honor yourself and your journey, and HAVE FUN!