I started Mojo a few months ago, and I’m still having performance anxiety issues, and to the point it seems to be getting even worse. Every time I come to have intercourse now I lose my erection. I get intrusive thoughts that I no longer want to be here and that I want to run away and hide somewhere. My sleep is affected, I have constant stomach cramps, and I am actually now scared to even initiate sex because it happens every time. I really just don’t know what else I can do.
Thanks for reaching out and being able to speak so openly about what you are going through. It sounds like you are experiencing some physical health concerns. This could be directly linked to the problems you are having with performance anxiety but I think it is important not to assume that. Have you been to see a doctor?
Sex is meant to be enjoyable. If it is not, don’t put pressure on yourself to keep trying. Taking a decision to have a break from sex is a strong decision that you can make for yourself. Don’t rule it out. In some instances sex therapists ask their clients to do this where they think it is appropriate. Are you open to seeing an expert like this? We can happily help connect you.
Many men (including myself) have believed that they need to be having sex because that is part of their identity of being a man. It’s not true. Does that resonate with you? Or are you feeling external pressure to have sex? For example from a partner.
Let me know if there is anything you think we could do to help.
I have just started therapy a couple of weeks ago so really hoping this helps. At the moment we have only had two sessions so still working out the therapy that suits. My therapist has mentioned that “cold turkey” is an option but not in our situation necessarily.
We are trying to start a family and with our ages going “cold turkey” is likely to increase this stress and cause further issues as it does at present. So it is not just from my partner it is more directly the pressure from trying for a child.
My therapist has advised against porn use, viagra use at the moment.
The feelings I feel building up to the point where I know we are going to have sex, I can get an erection whilst kissing, touching and generally whilst touching myself, I get morning erections and have had tests taken that rule out physical issues. The issue arises when I get thoughts of losing my erection when we start to initiate sex or if I do have an erection it goes just as I try to penetrate. I started to use a cock ring which did help for around 6 weeks but this began to fail too as though I was relying on it.
I’m really glad to hear that you are seeking all the help you can. I don’t want to give any advice after only a couple of messages, on a professional or personal basis. That would be inappropriate. However do know that losing your erection at the point of penetration is very common.
Is it a sex therapist you are seeing? If so, they will have a series of exercises for you to do (probably as a couple) that help for this exact type of erection issues. But have faith and they will get to it in good time.
Hey JLA. I’m sorry to hear this. If it’s any consolation, I have had similar issues. Please take a look at a post I wrote a while ago. Can’t say it will help but maybe knowing someone else is going through it might make you feel less lonely!
Dear all. I Thought I’d share my experiences for anyone else going through the same thing, what I’ve learnt so far from going through this and how I hope things will get better in the future. Perhaps just reading my experiences will help someone, reading about your experiences will certainly help me.
Me and my partner have been together for over four years and trying for a baby for about 1-2 years but psychological erectile dysfunction has reduced frequency significantly, to about 1-4 times a month, often with long bouts where it just doesn’t work.
I am currently in a very bad period where we haven’t had successful interourse for over a month and each time these bouts happen, my partner becomes more despondent and I certainly suffer a lot. I beat myself up a lot about it and the vicious cycle of performance anxiety starts with catastrophising thoughts. I worry before each sexual encounter that it will happen again and it has done for the lat few months. My partner has got so fed up and despondent that she doesn’t seem to really want to try because she fears the same outcome.
We started down the IVF route a few months ago which in the UK is very expensive when done privately which brings feelings of guilt and shame for “having” to go down this route even though I think we know that our ages mean that our chances of fertility are reduced. My partner is 41.
I have thrown a lot at trying to fix my ED, especially since it seems to occupy so much mental space each day that it prevents me from really enjoying normal things in life. I started paying to see a psychosexual therapist (we are working through issues related to a relentless inner critic) and I am trying to be much more rigorous with regular meditation. That is probably the only thing I can say is beginning to help just ease the intrusiveness of the thoughts, but it’s still not fixed it.
I am trying to keep positive, knowing that I HAVE had erections in the past with the SAME partner so the issue IS all in my head. It is unlikely this will be FOREVER which makes me think… so when will things stop? That is less easy to say!
My partner is very frustrated, she is less good at talking about this stuff, quite introverted and despite what I say, I think she thinks it’s all about her and her age, her looks etc… which it isn’t.
Sex just feels like a chore now which I’ve read is a big passion killer. Porn erections are unaffected so one I always wonder why can’t it work with my partner but that’s just evidence that the issue lies in my head.
One positive way to look at it is to say well I’ve at least identified the problem and now I just have to find a way to deal with it. The problem being that this is psychological!
I’m sure others have been on this side of the tunnel and come out of the other side. I tell myself this a lot. I think that a persistent approach is what is needed. Regular meditation to try and hold back the negative thoughts and inner critic, psychosexual therapy to help discuss progress and issues with a trained professional and trying to generally be a little bit kinder to myself will hopefully eventually yield results.
We may yet try the Masters and Johnson Sensate Focus psychosexual therapy as a couple but we have not got there yet.
Well, my friends, these are my issues. I hope sharing them helps, if you’d like to write back and just unburden, I’m here and I’d love to hear of anyone going through a similar experience and anyone who improved.
Thanks for your post, it helps a little to know I’m not the only one, albeit when you’re in your own head it is so hard to change they thought process. I find that my head just becomes this fluffy fuzzy mess that I can’t really focus on anything. As we’re kissing and I get a little erect my focus switches to my penis and then I start to question if it’s hard enough etc. then it just starts to go down. There is no reason it’s not in my head, I can get erections 99% of the time on my own, there’s the odd time when it’s not quite as hard as other times but I tell myself it’s fine and stop touching myself. I don’t even know if touching myself is a good thing as this could be reinforcing things. I don’t masturbate to ejaculate very often only when I’m not able to have sex for say a week. I don’t watch porn as I don’t want to desensitise myself and the therapist advised not to.
My wife is very frustrated and feels like we’re never going to have a baby as this keeps happening. I don’t know what else to tell her other than I’m seeking therapy, by the way they are a COSRT and BACP approved therapist for psychosexual and many other things.
I just feel lonely even though I know I’m not, I openly talk to friends about it as I feel sharing it is something that I thought might help. But when you get intimate and aroused and then right at the moment you’re about to penetrate it just goes away the feeling and look of disappointment is crushing. Sometimes I’ve been able to get it up enough to penetrate and then ejaculated and sometimes I’ve not been able to finish, the odd time it’s even started to go soft whilst inside which is terrible.
After we have tried and it doesn’t happen I have a knot in my stomach and feel quite sick. I don’t even know how to talk to my wife about it now as there’s not much I can say that will reassure her as it just keeps happening almost every time.
I’m really glad you’ve started therapy. I think there’s three things possible
1 - you have ED issues that are physical and you need medication
2 - you have ED issues you can solve with a program like Mojo
3 - you have ED issues that relate to deeper issues that only a therapist can help.
That the program works for other people doesn’t prove something bad about you. It just means you probably need more help, and that’s OK
@joyous-lime-alligator It is a seemingly contradictory thing to spend so much time thinking and working on something that really is largely about getting out of your head. I spent a lot of time on ED learning and such and did notice performance getting worse as well. I realized that my wife and I had to fundamentally change our “routine,” starting with taking a break from the high-pressure once-a-week session we had been relying on for years. I’m seeing a sex therapist who has talked about Sensate Focus, which I think is a great option that we haven’t tried yet, but there’s also a plan outlined in a book I’ve read that offers a stepped approach a couple can take to get comfortable with sex again. The book is called “Coping with Erectile Dysfunction: How to Regain Confidence and Enjoy Great Sex” by Barry W. McCarthy PhD and Michael E. Metz PhD, if you’re interested. Chapters 8-9 are where it gets most interesting. I love that the approach starts with conversation about sex and leads to sex being fun/playful, and then even talks about couple styles, which is very insightful as well. It’s pretty comprehensive. It helped me see ED isn’t necessarily just about me, but part of something bigger. And it’s a reminder sex is supposed to be fun and something you want to do, like @angus-mojo was saying.