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An introduction to libido and how it may or may not change depending on the time or your life and what's going on in it!
Lindsey: I remember being at a sleep over when I was twelve, and I felt my sex drive rev. It was like, "Put something in me now!"

My friend, whose house I was staying at, offered a tampon. Though I didn't take her up on it because it would've been this dry wad of cotton stuck up in there, it gave me pause. Before this, I thought that sex was an intellectual decision like I could just not have sex, or I would given x, y, z, and on/off switch like whether or not to read a book.

I'm not a robot with a tiny control center in my vagina marching me around to find something to lunge my crotch towards. Sex is a decision, but at that moment I realized it wasn't going to be easy or calculated like I thought because of my sex drive.

(Sexplanations intro)

Sex drive, also known as sexual desire or libido is the "psychic drive or energy, usually associated with sexual instinct." It's important to note that sex drive is not your body's physiological readiness to have sex, it's your desire to be sexual. Having an erection or vaginal wetness just like not having an erection and not getting wet doesn't mean you don't want sex.

My sex drive was high at twelve and even higher into my 20's, but it isn't like this for everyone. It isn't just about hormones or age, desiring sex is affected by all things. Like temperature, location, safety, privacy, hygiene, romance, intelligence, politics, religion, the law, appearance, genetics, perception, current events, bowel movements, family life, work, school, diet, health, risks, peers, sight, sound, taste, touch, smell, grief, communication, feelings and the quality of sex available. Doesn't it make sense that you desire sex more if it was desirable sex?

Here's a graph of sex drives, a summary of the average experience starting around age 10. If kids haven't already figured out the bliss of touching their genitals, they may start to explore. Then, puberty hormones release the message "Get it on!" which most teenagers are doing according to these stats from the Guttmacher Institute.

For biosex males, this is considered a sexual peak. Yes! Because testosterone is highest. While biosex females are also influenced by this testosterone, their sex drives seem less connected to it and actually tend to peak in their 20's or 30's. Think about the environmental factors during this time. Fewer household parental restrictions and social shame around having sex, more freedom, more privacy, more accessibility to STI prevention and birth control and hopefully more sex education.

40's, 50's, 60's, 70's, 80's, 90's the sex drive generally continues to decline. Not necessarily because there's something wrong, but if you think about it reproductively, there are greater genetic and anatomic risks. Are people still sexually driven? Yes! Sometimes moreso than before because kids are gone, retirement, increased resources, and privacy, sometimes less.

It may be helpful to re-frame things, to call it an intimacy drive rather than a sexual one. This can of course include sex but it takes away the pressure to feel and perform to the standards of a culture where sex sells. Just because they have libido boosting creams and pills, doesn't mean you need them. Want to increase your sex drive? Kiss your partner 15 seconds a day and/or have sex.

Note though, if it's not awesome sex, sort through why it's not first. Is the relationship healthy? Is there unresolved trauma, body image issues? Are you experiencing depression, anxiety, stress, kids? Are you tired, emotionally disconnected, being dishonest? Maybe distracted by something like YouTube videos. I'm telling you, sex drive, while it changes naturally, is also altered by the realities of our lives.

These lines may represent us, but we aren't lines! We're curious people. Stay curious. What's your libido gonna be like now?

If you feel driven to love on Sexplanations, you can support us by subscribing, Patreon, visiting our store, and sharing our videos. Just do it, just do one of those things.

(sings) Aaaa. Soap opera.