NYC Psychotherapist Blog

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Tuesday, February 2, 2021

Understanding Women With Healthy High Sexual Desire - Part 1

In prior articles, I discussed sexual pursuers and sexual withdrawers in relationships (see my articles about this topic: Part 1 and Part 2).  In this article, which is another sex positive* article in a series about sexuality, I'm focusing on high desire women who approach sex in a healthy way (also known as female sexual pursuers).  

Understanding Women With Healthy High Sexual Desire

Understanding Women With Healthy High Sexual Desire
When high sexual desire is discussed, the narrow stereotype is often about men who have strong sexual desire and women with lower sexual libido.  

To complicate matters, a lot of the research focuses on women who have problems with low sexual desire (e.g., hypoactive sexual desire) or, on the other end of the spectrum, unhealthy, impulsive/compulsive sexual desire (e.g., impulsive and compulsive sexuality is often associated with the emotional insecurities of borderline personality).

Aside from the problems with research, there are also sexist cultural stereotypes that complicate matters, including portraying women with healthy high sexual desire as being "whores" and "sluts."  

Even women with healthy high libido can be denigrated in this sexist way.  This is in sharp contrast to stereotypes of men with high libido who are admired for being "manly" or "viral."

More recent research challenges these sexist stereotypes and reveals that women can have healthy high sexual libido.  

Their high libido doesn't emerge from emotional insecurity, impulsiveness or compulsivity. Instead, these women are confident in themselves and they enjoy sex.  And, contrary to sexist views of women, there are more women with healthy high sexual desire than is commonly thought.

Women With Healthy High Sexual Desire and a Secure Attachment Style
Women who have a healthy high libido usually have a secure attachment style (see my article: How Your Attachment Style Affects Your Relationship).

As children, they developed a secure attachment with one or both parents.  They received love and emotional mirroring from at least one parent that allowed them to feel loved and emotionally secure.

Often, as young girls, they experienced at least one parent who delighted in them.  At the age of four or five, these girls' parents delighted in their healthy behavior.  For instance, if the young girl happily twirled around while she was feeling good about herself, her parents encouraged her rather than telling her to "stop showing off."

These girls grew up seeing the gleam in their parents eyes reflected on them so, not only did they feel secure in their attachment to their parents, they also felt loved and lovable.  So, when these girls mature into women, they feel their desirability.  

Rather than being shamed or made to feel guilty for masturbating, their parents reinforced self pleasure as being healthy.  They grew to be women with a solid erotic core.

As I've mentioned in prior articles, these women often experience spontaneous sexual arousal (see my article: Spontaneous Sexual Arousal).  

According to Dr. Emily Nagoski in her book,  Come As You Are: The Surprising New Science That Will Transform Your Sex Life, women who experience spontaneous sexual desire (as opposed to context-dependent sexual desire) represent at least 16% of all women.

I'll be discussing this topic further in future articles.

Also, see my articles:

*Sex positive refers to having or promoting an open, tolerant or progressive attitude towards sex and sexuality.

Getting Help in Therapy
If you have unresolved problems that you have been unable to work through on your own, you could benefit from seeing a licensed mental health professional.

Rather than struggling on your own, contact a skilled psychotherapist who can help you to overcome the obstacles that are keeping you from leading a more fulfilling life.

About Me
I am a licensed NYC psychotherapist, hypnotherapist, EMDR, AEDP, EFT, and Somatic Experiencing therapist (see my article: The Therapeutic Benefits of Integrative Psychotherapy).

To find out more about me, visit my website: Josephine Ferraro, LCSW - NYC Psychotherapist.

To set up a consultation, call me at (917) 742-2624 during business hours or email me.