When you look into your partner’s eyes, what do you see? Hopefully the answer is love, respect and support.
This article is reprinted from HealthyWomen.org
Next, answer this question: Do you feel that you deserve those feelings? The answer is important because how you feel about yourself—your self-esteem—plays a major role in your ability to maintain close relationships and enjoy a full sexual relationship.
There is even such a thing as sexual self-esteem, defined as how you view your sense of self as a sexual being. Do you think that you are sexually appealing? Sexually “competent”? How do you perceive yourself when you’re in bed with someone? These all play into your sense of sexual self-esteem.
Ideally, your sexual self-esteem should be high. But if you’ve been physically or emotionally abused, sexually harassed, insulted or embarrassed, then your sexual self-esteem may have suffered. In fact, the damage can be so great from these negative experiences-even from being called sexually demeaning names-that one researcher called damaged sexual self-esteem a “disability” that can significantly interfere with functioning.
The whole self-esteem issue also goes in the other direction, with researchers finding that women who have sexual dysfunction also tend to have low self-esteem and lack of sexual desire. The greater their lack of self-esteem, the less likely they were to seek treatment.
Self esteem may NOT be exactly what you have been taught that it is. Learn more about The Two Esteems…