“Dear Dr. Eve
Maybe this sounds weird, but after sex, I often feel anxious and
sometimes get depressed. I am confused by this as I really want to be
sexual with my partner. Currently, I am with a man whom I badly want to
please. My partner tends to lose his erection which makes him so upset.
It’s important that I sort out this anxious feeling that I have so I can be
sexual with him more often and help him feel like a man. However, I
know that I have felt anxious with other men after sex too.

Can you help me?

Dr.Eve Answers:

“Hello Pumla,
What a burden you carry! Trying to make a man feel masculine and
manly in bed is not your responsibility. Ensuring he has an erection is not
your job. One hopes that a partner is sexually aroused whilst with you,
and if not, then of course a difficult conversation must happen. A
respectful, caring, and compassionate conversation.

Bare in mind that you’re up against a whole patriarchal system that says
an erection is a sign of masculinity. So for starters may I invite you to
resign from your job as Masculinity Make Over of your man. And if
possible, get your man to a health care provider to check out his health.

Let’s focus on your post sexual anxiety. Other than your role as a sexual
surrogate, perhaps there are other factors that cause you anxiety. I’m
going to give you a list of probabilities and invite you to tick off those that
apply to you.

Once you have identified your specific causes, please ditch your partner if
he/she is the cause of your anxiety, and seek out professional assistance
to focus on your own relationship with attachments and intimacy.

  1. Because sex is hyped to be “natural”, “easy”, it is easy to feel
    anxious when things get real: smells, silences, noises, juices.
  2. Comments made by current or present partner/s about your body
  3. If you suffer from depression /anxiety, you avoid sex, so when you
    have sex it can feel awkward, distant, and pressured.
  4. A past history of sexual violence or trauma can make you anxious in
    the present and trigger past memories
  5. Monthly hormonal fluctuations can cause anxiety, sadness,
  6. Shame or guilt around sex
  7. Daily stresses/to-do list settles in immediately after sex (or during
  8. Cannabis may worsen anxiety
  9. Alcohol is a depressant that may allow you to have sex but makes
    you feel depressed afterward.
  10. Fear of intimacy can get you to feel anxious or sad after the
    the tender vulnerability of sex
  11. Partner makes you feel unsafe: no respect of your boundaries
    before, during, or after sex.
  12. Partner is self-centered and does not tend to your pleasure or