sexual dreams and hormone issues

Menopause - how it impacts your health, your sexuality, and your life in general.
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sexual dreams and hormone issues

Postby poetess » Wed Jul 15, 2015 7:39 am

This is complicated, and there are multiple spots it could have been posted. Orgasm difficulties, menopause, even low testosterone. Probably more.

When my husband and I got married, I had had a hysterectomy, but I still had working ovaries, still knew when I ovulated each month. Eventually that sense went away, and with it (I know now) probably my best opportunity to learn how to orgasm. But the reality was I thought I had some orgasms in those first couple of years. Reading on here, I realize that probably what I had was more pre-orgasms. Sex usually feels good, and I like doing it, but as far as the actual sensations, a good hug is better.

This is complicated by the fact that my husband, close to 50 when we married and now past 50, seems to be dealing with low testosterone, and it often takes several days of teasing or an overt request to get him interested . . . and sometimes once he is interested, he "needs" it enough that it may end up being a quickie. This is something he and I need to talk about (part of it is a recent development), but I'm including it because it is part of the picture. (Other times we may have several sexual encounters over a couple of days, but those are growing increasingly rare.)

I mentioned to our family doctor my sense that his testosterone seems to be low, and could he have it checked (the doctor was ordering evaluations of some other things, and I thought I'd ask about that one as well), and he didn't even ask me what evidence I have seen, nor did he include that in the testing. I also asked him (on a different visit) for a referral to a gynecologist, mentioning that my hormone levels should probably be checked since I'm several years into surgically induced menopause and had had some symptoms of menopause (I had some mild hot flashes this spring for a month or two), but apparently he isn't a fan of hormone therapy, and he sent me to check out the actual problem I had, but not the hormones. The reality is I'm not sure we can afford hormone therapy, and the only remotely troublesome symptom I myself have is the failure to orgasm.

Anyway, I have been working on my own (with my husband's approval) with a vibrator, a couple of different ones, but so far I haven't had an actual orgasm. (I'll get close and then I'll get too sensitive, sometimes more than once.) Honestly, part of me wonders if it is worth the effort. First, I like sex well enough without it. I never masturbated when I was single, and my only interest now is to enhance sex with my husband. Yet I don't think he cares all that much (he cares about me, for sure, and he cares about sex at times . . . but it hardly wows him to see me naked, and he doesn't touch me sexually unless I specifically ask him to; most of our foreplay is focused on him unless I move his hand to me). With my never having had a true orgasm as far as I know, with my lack of hormones working against me, with his nonchalance about it not actually helping me, it seems like I have a real uphill battle.

I've gradually come to notice something interesting. I think it would probably go back about six months or so, maybe quite a bit longer but definitely to sometime since we married. First, I virtually never dream about sex (when I do, it's the kind of dreams I could have had before I married, when I didn't know what sex felt like--dreams of the sort of what as a teenager I imagined sex would be like, with Barbie-Doll-like positioning). But I have had quite a number of dreams of myself masturbating. I never have an orgasm in my dream, but it feels decently good (better than it feels "in real life").

Other than telling my husband we need sex more often, and I need more sexual touch, I'm truly not sure where to go from here.
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Re: sexual dreams and hormone issues

Postby seeking perspective » Wed Jul 15, 2015 10:42 am

Poetess, although I know I have had real orgasms, I didn't experience one until well after I married. I wondered if it was worth the effort. Then after my hysterectomy, my ovaries never seemed to reboot completely, so I am facing similar hormone issues at the moment--and orgasm is elusive at best these days.

I would say that it is definitely worth pursuing your own sexual pleasure. Even if it doesn't result in orgasm, explore sexual sensations.

Here is what I would recommend:

First, be sure you follow through with asking for more sex and for more sexual touch. Tell your husband to look for opportunities to do this for you.

Second, incorporate sexual touch for you into your regular sexual activity. Spend the first fifteen minutes of making out exploring your own body--with his hands or yours (or both!). Don't think of it as trying to have an orgasm. Think of it as exploring your sexual response. There's less pressure on you both that way. It may be that your husband will need to accept that sometimes things might not "work" so well for him in a particular encounter.

Third, continue working with the vibrator. Here, too, just enjoy the sexual sensations. When you think you are close but are getting too sensitive (which is exactly how I describe the almost-but-not-quite-there feeling), move the vibrator somewhere else for a while. Or switch to your hands for a bit.

Fourth, be very open with the gynecologist about your concerns. HRT might be more affordable than you think. When we were without health insurance, we were part of a prescription club at the pharmacist that gave us a major discount. Even without health insurance, my oral estradiol was only about $8 a month. It might also be worth asking your gynecologist for a referral to a sexual health specialist. (If my upcoming gynecology appointment doesn't address my issue, that will be my next step.)

Sex is such an intimate experience even without orgasm. I will say, though, that when I experience orgasm when I am in my husband's arms, it is the deepest intimacy I can experience with him. Being held at the moment of that boost of oxytocin is heavenly.
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Re: sexual dreams and hormone issues

Postby poetess » Wed Jul 15, 2015 12:34 pm

Thanks, SP. It helps to know I'm not totally alone.

I have definitely pursued just the "good feelings" of sex, and I verbally affirm him "That feels so good." Fairly early on into our marriage, he would work toward getting me to orgasm, and the effort seemed so disproportional to the result (20-30 minutes of work for three seconds of some flutters followed by 24 hours of feeling sore . . . no thanks!). I told him the orgasm isn't really important, I don't need it. I'd also told him, before marriage when we briefly mentioned the subject of toys that "at least for now" I didn't want anything other than his body. A year or so into marriage I told him OK, now I would like to try something. Almost immediately he did some research and ordered an expensive toy, and then we went to the store that same day (before the expensive one arrived) and bought a bullet.

But part of it (probably a male trait) is that he just gets so intense about it. I do best when we hold each other and hug each other and kiss and chat and eventually I'm really getting turned on. And light touches are far more pleasurable than heavy ones. But he'll do this heavy stroking that feels good for a while but gets "too much" but before we really get anywhere he has worn himself out. And then I just can't wait too long to proceed to intercourse/something for him if he is going to have his orgasm. I'm analytical by nature, and a nurturer, but I end up making sure it works for him without really anyone doing the same for me. When I found before marriage that he really wanted OS, for example, after doing it with chocolate syrup a couple of times just to make sure I got it done (I even took the syrup on our honeymoon), I researched on here to find out how on earth to do this task I detested but that my husband loved. I would LOVE it if my husband (who generally likes doing research) were to come to me and say, "I've been reading up on the female orgasm and sexual pleasure. I don't want you to feel any pressure, but I found some things that sound like a whole lot of fun. Today is just for you; I'm in charge and you just have to trust me. And don't worry, if I don't get an orgasm myself, we'll have to work on that another time."

Instead, on those occasions when he does a lot of touching of me (which definitely is not every session), I'm always mentally aware that I have a man past 50 here, and we just can't spend 45 minutes in an unsuccessful attempt for me to orgasm, and lose his own chance. So a few minutes in I'm judging if it's working at all, and a few minutes more and I'm judging whether I have any chance at all of an orgasm or anything close, and eventually I just take over and switch the focus to him, and I can usually tell he is relieved when I do. (He isn't obvious, but I can tell, and it reinforces the inability to relax the next time.) He's pleased that I'm trying the vibrators, but personally I think it would be more sexy if he would use them on me himself, or at least watch, rather than waiting till he isn't home and then telling him later that I used them. And, well, I'd trade 20 minutes with a vibrator for two minutes of my husband's touch below the waist, without my explicitly asking for it.
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Re: sexual dreams and hormone issues

Postby seeking perspective » Wed Jul 15, 2015 12:50 pm

Would your husband be willing to set aside sexual pleasure for himself in order to explore and arouse you? Does he accept sexual direction from you (for instance, telling him to try lighter and slower)? I have found that when we are doing something just for me, both my husband and I can let go of the concern about whether he will lose his, um, window of opportunity. It helps him from some of the urge for intensity, and it keeps me from giving up and switching over to him.
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Re: sexual dreams and hormone issues

Postby poetess » Wed Jul 15, 2015 1:07 pm

I've asked him if we could sometimes do just for me, and he didn't express much enthusiasm. I probably need to ask him again, tell him that I think it's important to both of us learning my body that I not have to worry about whether his erection is flagging (if I don't take care of it, he'll stop focusing on me, and turn to himself for a while; all else being equal, I would rather he be the one to work on me, and me on him) and whether he'll have enough energy left to have an orgasm.

He does accept sexual direction to some extent. If I just tell him softer, he'll oblige. But if I tell him that's too much, move your hand a little to get off that spot, then he usually sees it as a time to stop altogether and move to him. (I've never asked him for any information about whether his first wife orgasmed easily or anything of the sort . . . that just seems like the sort of stuff that was personal, between them. But I do sometimes wonder if he's used to what worked for her, even if it doesn't work for me. And I try to be careful to be really enthusiastic in telling him what works, even though I think sometimes it would work better if I didn't have to talk but could just experience it.)
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Re: sexual dreams and hormone issues

Postby txtwindad » Wed Jul 15, 2015 3:04 pm

poetess wrote:I mentioned to our family doctor my sense that his testosterone seems to be low, and could he have it checked (the doctor was ordering evaluations of some other things, and I thought I'd ask about that one as well), and he didn't even ask me what evidence I have seen, nor did he include that in the testing.

Such an aggravating response. It is belittling to you. He works for you, you are not asking him for favors. Tell him you made a simple, reasonable request and he did not comply. Then tell him to order the testing as you instructed. If he refuses, find another doctor. If he treats you like this on this issue, he will do it on others.
poetess wrote:Honestly, part of me wonders if it is worth the effort.

Further proof that you really have not had an orgasm. I've been married for a very long time. We have had long periods where orgasms were easy for my wife and multiple times when they were very difficult. During those tough years we made sure that an orgasm wasn't the complete goal of sex. But we never gave up on it either. And we learned to be quite successful even when it was very difficult. A matter learning what worked, what did not, and stopping before it became too frustrating. It is WELL worth the effort for both of you.
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Re: sexual dreams and hormone issues

Postby ledgemoor » Thu Jul 16, 2015 8:04 am

Hi Poetess:

Your DH is definitely not normal -- there is little doubt that his testosterone is low.

Instead, on those occasions when he does a lot of touching of me (which definitely is not every session), I'm always mentally aware that I have a man past 50 here, and we just can't spend 45 minutes in an unsuccessful attempt for me to orgasm, and lose his own chance. So a few minutes in I'm judging if it's working at all, and a few minutes more and I'm judging whether I have any chance at all of an orgasm or anything close, and eventually I just take over and switch the focus to him, and I can usually tell he is relieved when I do. (He isn't obvious, but I can tell, and it reinforces the inability to relax the next time.) He's pleased that I'm trying the vibrators, but personally I think it would be more sexy if he would use them on me himself, or at least watch, rather than waiting till he isn't home and then telling him later that I used them. And, well, I'd trade 20 minutes with a vibrator for two minutes of my husband's touch below the waist, without my explicitly asking for it.

Ok, that's great that you take care of him so lovingly and unselfishly. But, he HAS to do the same for you sometimes too. When DW wants an orgasm, the focus is totally on her pleasure. I wait until after she has had her orgasm before I enter and have mine (OK, sometimes I get carried away :D). But the for-her sex oftentimes turns out to be best sex for me too. She will often have a second or third orgasm when we are doing PIV. And second-orgasm or not, the experience of being one with a wife who is still experiencing the high of an orgasm -- an orgasm tthat I contributed to -- is indescribable, not only from a physical but emotional aspect.

If he misses his window of opportunity to have an orgasm, that's OK. There's always next time. It happens to me occasionally especially during long sessions, even though my testosterone levels are fine.


As for you, you are blessed to still have your ovaries. However, it would be good to get your hormones checked -- blood flow to them may be compromised -- or get them checked for no other reason than that you are getting old :lol:. The lack of a monthly cycle may not be because your ovaries are no longer working. It could just be that they have entered menopause. I think you are in your 40's, so that is a possibility.

SO MUCH of your overall health depends on hormones, you can't afford not to do this. Not to mention that you are a relative newlywed, and you really need to experience the bonding that a vibrant sex life creates. HRT itself really isn't that expensive. It's the initial tests that run into money.

Unfortunately mainstream medicine is still in the dark ages when it comes to hormone health. However, there are regular doctors of various types that recognize the importance of hormone health and are trained and certified in bioidentical HRT. Search for one at a4m.com. If you could find a gyn, that would be great. Ours is a gyn, and he treats us both. Anyone who can treat female hormone issues can also treat men.

To add to the discussion on you orgasming:

If you question whether you have ever had an orgasm, you haven't. It's a whole-body experience so intense that there would be no doubt even to a husband who is merely observing. If you want specifics, let me know.

But it does sound like you are close!

Seeking Perspective's advice is great. Start there. DON'T rush it. The longer it takes my wife to get there, the more intense it is, at least up to a point. An hour of direct clitoral stimulation is not excessive.

Oxytocin is important for orgasming. There is nasal spray that the doctor can prescribe (don't waste your money on the stuff you can get over the internet--it is too weak to do anything.) But nipple stimulation works great -- it actually causes release of oxytocin. It is fun, free and doesn't require a prescription. DW orgasms fairly reliably and even fairly quickly if she hasn't had one in a while, but I have to suck her nipples while providing manual clitoral stimulation. It would be next to impossible for her to orgasm without the nipple stimulation.

Trouble getting over the edge is a symptom of low estrogen, BTW.

(I'll get close and then I'll get too sensitive, sometimes more than once.)

One thing we have found, especially as DW gets older or maybe a result of her hysterectomy and oophorectomy, is that she has to push past that too-sensitive feeling. She would get close, then clench her legs together so I would have a hard time reaching her clitoris, then nothing. With her permission, I put my knee between her legs to leave me some space, and continued on GENTLY. Now that she is used to more intense stimulation, when she gets close I will retract the hood and rub the actual clitoris directly. And I don't rub too gently either. Not hard, but definitely a little pressure.
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Re: sexual dreams and hormone issues

Postby poetess » Thu Jul 16, 2015 10:12 am

Thanks, ledgemore. Some good things to check out.

I do try to keep going when I get too sensitive, or move away for a bit to "rest" and then go back. Just that so far nothing has gotten all the way there. I even followed one blogger's specific advice (starting with a bath) for a special long session for pre-orgasmic women to experiment a bit. I'm not discouraged and I haven't given up, but do mentally wonder if it's "possible" since my body didn't learn how to do it while I still had estrogen. I think it's a good sign that I still have a high libido, though.

Last night I told my DH that today I wanted to spend some time today doing naked cuddling "and see what happens." While we were stroking each other this morning, I told him that quickies can be nice, but extended times of being naked together are really nice. I found myself tempted at one point to turn the focus more on him and "turn up the heat," but I made myself simply stay in the moment, and figured I was going to give him time to get to me, and I wasn't going to rush to anything more for him until after that happened. Eventually he initiated several forms of nice touches for me (without my having to ask) and he chose the final position, one we haven't used for a while.

Here's one thing that has puzzled me for a while (since before we married) and I've never heard it explicitly addressed anywhere: the sex-advice books generally say that a man wants sexual touch to be direct; go right for the important parts. But a woman wants it to be indirect, touch her in lots of other places to get her warmed up, and then proceed to her sexual parts, and maybe do indirect touch there before direct. The problem is, how on earth do you do that before having him so hot and bothered for so long that it's frustrating? In other words, if at the same time as he is stroking her face and her hair and her whole body, she is stroking his nipples and thighs and penis and testicles, and once he moves to her sexual parts she is still stroking his sexual parts, how can it possibly not be "too much"? Do some couples that practice "she comes first" start with not even touching him at all, just focusing on her first?

I think part of my problem is probably that one of my sisters told me that our mom told her that the books say women need lots of foreplay, but they exaggerate, and I guess my sister found that to be true for her as well. So when we got married, we'd lie there stroking each other, and I'd go straight to his man parts because that's what the books say (although I also spend time stroking him other places just because I like to), and after a while it would be obvious he's really, really ready to go, and he'd be eager for me to do some oral for foreplay . . . and somehow it simply never occurred to me till we'd been married a year that we often had sex before he'd touched me below the waist even one time. I was so focused on him it simply never even occurred to me he was also focused on his own body and not mine. I did finally tell him that oral on him is not foreplay for me (I don't find it sexy . . . so it's putting the car in neutral rather than moving it forward) and that I need some sexual touching too, and he's trying to remember. But I often have to simply move his hand there myself or it won't happen. And I really think the assumption that foreplay nearly always includes some oral for him has short-circuited things, because his mind is on that part more than anything else.

Baby steps. And truly I know he loves me, and he shows it well. It's just that we're having to relearn some of the sexual stuff, because we missed some steps when I wasn't paying attention to the need for foreplay for me too.
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Re: sexual dreams and hormone issues

Postby seeking perspective » Thu Jul 16, 2015 11:13 am

poetess wrote:Here's one thing that has puzzled me for a while (since before we married) and I've never heard it explicitly addressed anywhere: the sex-advice books generally say that a man wants sexual touch to be direct; go right for the important parts. But a woman wants it to be indirect, touch her in lots of other places to get her warmed up, and then proceed to her sexual parts, and maybe do indirect touch there before direct. The problem is, how on earth do you do that before having him so hot and bothered for so long that it's frustrating? In other words, if at the same time as he is stroking her face and her hair and her whole body, she is stroking his nipples and thighs and penis and testicles, and once he moves to her sexual parts she is still stroking his sexual parts, how can it possibly not be "too much"? Do some couples that practice "she comes first" start with not even touching him at all, just focusing on her first?


Yes, that is what we usually do. Even if it is extremely arousing to my husband to stimulate me, most of the time we remember that even if he loses his arousal, it will likely come back after we turn our attention to him--and if it doesn't, we try again later. It just works better for us that way most of the time. The other thing we do is that when we do proceed with him before I'm done, I have learned to say "I'm not finished" and then tell him what I need from him. Usually, though, we find it works better to pay attention to one at a time.

Baby steps. And truly I know he loves me, and he shows it well. It's just that we're having to relearn some of the sexual stuff, because we missed some steps when I wasn't paying attention to the need for foreplay for me too.


My husband and I have been married for 24 years, and because of the years of my resistance to sex, we are having to relearn quite a bit, too.
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Re: sexual dreams and hormone issues

Postby txtwindad » Thu Jul 16, 2015 11:24 am

The problem is, how on earth do you do that before having him so hot and bothered for so long that it's frustrating? In other words, if at the same time as he is stroking her face and her hair and her whole body, she is stroking his nipples and thighs and penis and testicles, and once he moves to her sexual parts she is still stroking his sexual parts, how can it possibly not be "too much"?


Practice. It's just something a man learns to do. I will sometimes tell my wife to not touch certain parts for a moment or two to let me get back under control. But this kind of thing is not torture. Delayed orgasms for him are much, much better. If you go too long and he loses his erection, you can do oral sex to completion without an erection. Are as Ledgemoor said, he can orgasm next time.

Rushing can become a habit and a bad one. A quickie from time to time is fine, but not regularly.
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sexual dreams and hormone issues

Postby Bear » Thu Jul 16, 2015 4:09 pm

poetess wrote:Do some couples that practice "she comes first" start with not even touching him at all, just focusing on her first?


Yes, this ^ is pretty much what we have evolved to. When I'm 'hot to trot' the foreplay focused on DW is enough for my arousal.

More often than not, though, DW will apply direct attention my way like 2/3rds through her ramp up or simply after her O.

...As I'm (a'hem) maturing I'm actually needing and appreciating more foreplay than I did in the past.

Sometimes my state of arousal at the time of her O may influence if we 'take turns' with MS / OS or move into a more 'mutual / real time' PIV.

Should I go first ;) , I do always 'check in' with DW on her desire / drive to finish. I may not be up for the task, but fingers or vibe can help scratch that itch as required.
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Re: sexual dreams and hormone issues

Postby Learning1 » Sat Jul 18, 2015 7:15 am

poetess wrote:Do some couples that practice "she comes first" start with not even touching him at all, just focusing on her first?

Yes, first 20 -30 minutes DH and I focus on me. During this time, I do not touch his man bits or other sex stimulating areas. Once I have had an "O" , DH lets me know what he wants, usually non verbal communication, sometimes he wants nothing other times some MS , then we move to PIV. Have you tried PIV CAT technique ?

At times we put a zillion pillows on the floor & the liberator throw for a g spot massage. Feather light touch for about 10 to 15 minutes in a come hither motion. Works best if you can totally relax, put everything out of mind and periodically close your eyes.

Works well after a bath. Between 7 to 15 minutes, sometimes an extremely powerful "o" sometimes no "o" it always leads to a high level of arousal and PIV after is wonderful. After the massage DH will occasionally use a Dildo before PIV. Also the "G-spot" massage can be incorporated at the end of regular massage. :D
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Re: sexual dreams and hormone issues

Postby poetess » Sun Jul 19, 2015 1:44 pm

This is, I think, a nice follow-up. I'll stay discreet as to specific details. But a day or two ago we had the house to ourselves, and I went to him to hug him and his body responded to my touch. Eventually we made our way to the bedroom, and I grabbed the bullet and washed it. I was stroking his penis with one hand and also working on myself with the vibe, and he took my hand off his penis. He's never done that before--it was an unspoken request to focus on myself and not on him.

Well, I didn't get quite to orgasm, but I think it might have been a full 45 minutes of multiple kinds of stimulation, including him doing everything I asked him to do (whether I asked him aloud or in other ways), and I never got too sensitive and never got numb. Even though I didn't get over the top, it felt like progress in multiple areas, and extremely intimate and fun for both of us.
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Re: sexual dreams and hormone issues

Postby Bear » Sun Jul 19, 2015 2:00 pm

Nice update Poetess. Sounds like you guys were really getting in sync with each other. Nice. :)
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Re: sexual dreams and hormone issues

Postby seeking perspective » Sun Jul 19, 2015 2:03 pm

Yes, this is indeed a very nice update!
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Re: sexual dreams and hormone issues

Postby mamame » Sat Aug 01, 2015 8:13 pm

We have a very similar dynamic here. Toys have been a great benefit. I get too sore from his fingers and anxious about how long it takes.


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