In this continuing series of blog posts about sexual and relationships difficulties, I highlight another FAQ (frequently asked question) that men who contact SurvivorsUK have asked us on our helpline.

Q. What can I do if I have feelings of shame about sex, am reluctant to let anyone else touch me, or if I would like to be more sexual but I have a persistent lack of interest in sex?

A. Many men who have experienced rape or sexual assault find that they have feelings of shame about sex from time to time, or in particular situations, so this is not unusual. Finding someone to talk to about feelings of shame can help to reduce these feelings and make the idea of sex more pleasurable. You might want to consider having sex therapy, also known as psychosexual therapy. A specially trained counsellor or psychotherapist will listen to the problems that you are having and give you some ideas and information about how to improve things. You can ask your GP to refer you to a sex therapist or contact the charity, Relate. The link to their page about sex therapy is here http://www.relate.org.uk/relationship-help/help-sex/sex-therapy. Relate is happy to work with individuals as well as couples. Many men that we have talked to have found sex therapy, which is a talking therapy, very helpful in enabling them to feel happy to be touched and be sexually intimate with others in ways that make them feel good again.

If you do not want to talk to a sex therapist or anyone else right now and you would rather read some information on your own first then our colleagues at Living Well in Australia have produced some very helpful information about sexual intimacy. The link is here https://www.livingwell.org.au/relationships/partners-sexual-intimacy/

Leave a comment below if there is anything you would like to say or add to this topic.

Seán, Senior Helpliner, SurvivorsUK

SurvivorsUK online chat is a helpline for men who have experienced sexual abuse either as a child or an adult. We also speak to their close friends and family. If you would like to access the online chat and get immediate support, please click here.

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