View Full Version : Lost libido? where'd it go?
02-14-2008, 12:24 PM
I'm wondering how common this is in the post menopause group, of which I am a member. I've tried to read up on this but am not finding anything particularly useful. Most material seems to be aimed at people who are reentering a dating situation after a divorce etc. I don't want to get overly specific but more in a general sense, what happened to you after menopause?
02-14-2008, 12:28 PM
I'm on tamoxifen so theoretically, I should be in menopause...time will tell.
I know that at 50 (soon to be 51--in May), I don't feel like the "bunny" I was in my 20's, 30's and 40's....but then, I have this underlying worry about cancer coming back, so that could also play into it--and of course, no boobs isn't a positive thing either :p ;)
Sadly, hormone levels usually are at work if relationship and health are good.
02-14-2008, 12:49 PM
Mine's been diminished since I had the hysterectomy, and totally gone since they took my hormones away when I had BC! The gyn said that red clover might help, but it hasn't! Luckily, my DH is not pushy...
02-14-2008, 12:53 PM
Well, I can't give any input but had to laugh at such a thread on Valentine's Day. ;)
I hope you ladies are able to find some assistance, I'm sure it's frustrating for both you and your DHs.
02-14-2008, 01:02 PM
I had an abrupt menopause thirteen years ago. I was on HRT since but the last couple years I've reduced my dose so I'm now at less than 1/4 standard dose. as the dose went down, the interest level went down. I asked my gyn about it and she said it's a "common problem" and really didn't have much to offer. My health is good and our relationship is good with this one exception. DH is not so understanding and seems to think "it's all in my head" because I have a "negative attitude". I don't think it's my "fault" any more than it's his fault for losing his hair. and yes, it's sort of humorous that I chose Valentine's day to talk about this!
It occurred to me that this is why older men marry much younger women... one menopause was enough for them and they want to be dead before a second go-round. I really didn't expect that this would happen though.
02-14-2008, 01:24 PM
It occurred to me that this is why older men marry much younger women... one menopause was enough for them and they want to be dead before a second go-round. I really didn't expect that this would happen though.I never thought about it that way, but you're probably right!:rolleyes:
02-14-2008, 01:34 PM
HRT in and of itself is marginal for assistance in that area.
Testosterone is what is necessary.
They do have estrogen/testosterone combos for ladies....
I think Oprah did a show on this with Christina Ferrar(sp?) ....so it is common.
Same thing happens to men as they get older---their testosterone declines but they have more of it to begin with...and they have Viagra !
I have had friends who went on estratest (estro/testosterone combo patches) and swore it made a world of difference.
Sadly, I can't do any hormones and will have to live out my remaining years as a eunich. :eek: :p
I'm lucky I have a VERY understanding DH, plus, the theory of age difference is in my favor too....he is 17 years older and certainly NOT what he was at 50 :D
Frankly, my whole life, I was over-sexed and I'm finally spending less time thinking about it :eek: :o :p I can actually do other things :p
I am sorry you are having the issues and I don't know if you are willing to go the hormone route. They also have topical stuff with the testosterone, you just need to be VERY careful about dosage !!
02-14-2008, 02:21 PM
Is there a doctor in your area who could prescribe bio-identical hormones? They are supposed to be very helpful. It's also good to make sure you don't have any other medical issues which could affect libido, such as hypo-thyroid. It seems that prescription medication for high blood pressure may also affect libido.
There are natural supplements to help such as dong quai or black cohash. Essential fatty acids are very helpful, I eat ground golden flaxseed and take Evening Primrose oil capsules. Good vitamins for this are B-complex and Vitamin E, which I also take.
I read that the liver processes hormones and it's helpful to detox the liver using Milk Thistle extract. (A good one is Liv-R-Actin.) I use that on occasion.
I've noticed that DH and I are just fine until nasty stress jumps into our lives. That's a passion killer. Luckily, that doesn't happen too often, but when we have tough times, then life calms down, our love life returns to normal.
These are questions I'm throwing out there Valerie, you don't have to answer them here, just ask yourself - did you and your husband have a good sexual relationship before meno? Do you miss what you had, or are you relieved not to fake it anymore?
Also, has your body changed much? How do you feel about yourself? Do you still feel attractive and sexual? Sometimes we shut down because we beat ourselves up for not looking 25 anymore. If you have gained weight, or just aren't comfortable with the way your natural 50-year-old woman's body looks, why? Does your husband say anything to you positive or negative?
There are so many things that contribute to our sexual health after menopause, I wish you had better support from your gyn. That's very disappointing. I have one like that too (not for long though) - she is very comfortable answering me with "I don't know" and leaving it at that.:rolleyes:
I think this lady is wonderful: Dr. Christiane Northrup. I have several of her books, they're full of terrific information for all times of a woman's life, most specifically menopause.
Homepage:Dr. Christiane Northrup (http://www.drnorthrup.com/index.php)
Womens Bodies, Womens Wisdom (http://www.amazon.com/Womens-Bodies-Wisdom-Creating-Emotional/dp/0553384104/ref=pd_bbs_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1203023591&sr=8-2)
Wisdom of Menopause (http://www.amazon.com/Wisdom-Menopause-Creating-Physical-Emotional/dp/0553384090/ref=pd_sim_b_title_1)
02-14-2008, 02:44 PM
I just ordered the Northrup book this morning! She was on oprah not long ago. I have read a couple books but nothing helpful, more about technique and dating etiquette for the "after 50" set. I'm healthy, thyroid is fine, no BP meds, or any other meds for that matter. I'm in excellent shape, working on losing 10 lbs but look, feel OK. Very good actually. I'll be 60 next month. the problem is that "passion" has not been there in a long time but I was able to get by. I can't seem to do that anymore. Have no interest and feel that that time for it is "passed".
Wallycat, been there, done that. I take one pill a week that contains testosterone. syntest maybe? Whatever, it didn't help and I've taken it for a couple years. my understanding is that the female hormones keep tissues lubed and pliable but that the libido part comes from the testosterone. but every study that comes out linking HRT to BC the more nervous I get. and that goes for synthetic or bio-identical hormones.
DH is younger than I am so that is a disadvantage for us. and " IT" never was any great shakes for me anyway so I am not upset at the disappearance of interest except it makes DH crazy and we fight about it. Somehow, he equates sex with love and I've never connected the two at all. But I can't see increasing my BC risks for something I don't care about anymore but the relationship part is difficult. We've had some counseling at different times but the person that was helpful has retired and I haven't looked for anyone else. and I'm not sure I even want to discuss it anymore.
02-14-2008, 03:18 PM
I am so sorry you are dealing with this.
I agree that taking hormones to solve a problem you don't see as one isn't something I'd do either.
It is a shame he is equating love for sex, but it is a common misconception.
Sex can be a touchy topic for conversation....I wish I had suggestions.
Not sure if this is an appropriate place to write this but...well....in a round about way, maybe you can fill his needs without concern of yours (if you get my meaning) and that may help restore some of the closeness.
I'm not a therapist and i've always been on the other side, so I can imagine his feelings---but at some point---we have to understand that if all else is good, this isn't necessarily a marker for the state of the relationship.
I wish you well....I'd suggest a new doc and higher dosage of testosterone, but as you point out, there are always risks and you don't want to go there.
I will say that the only hormones I took was in Birth control pills....and the odds were against me.
02-14-2008, 03:27 PM
I completely lost all interest after menopause, it was definitely NOT okay with DH. My doctor recommended some herbal remedies before we looked at something like testosterone. I can't remember which herb in general he recommended, but I found it in a formulation called Hot Plants for women. OMG. I have a totally normal sex drive again. I take two a day, and have been taking it for at least two years now. I order mine through Dr.'s Choice, where it is about half the price of the local health food store.
A couple of times, I have been busy and forgotten to take it for a few days, then find myself wondering what in the heck happened to my interest. Then it dawns on me--haven't been taking the magic pills. I don't know if it would work for everyone, but it was a miracle for us.
02-14-2008, 04:18 PM
Valerie, it sounds like you are a very healthy woman! Good for you!
There is a great article on Dr. Northrup's website:
Sexuality in Menopause (http://www.drnorthrup.com/womenshealth/healthcenter/topic_details.php?topic_id=70) I'm sure there's more on this website.
Cookin4Love, that's a great name for the supplement "Hot Plants.":D It has a couple of the ingredients I mentioned in the other post that are supposed to be good for this time of life; namely the dong quai and black cohash. I notice it also contains Maca, which is recommended for people with hypothyroid. I'm intrigued + I'm going to order some!
02-14-2008, 04:26 PM
I hear you! It wasn't ok with my DH until he had so much pain from the arthritis that anything hurts! Sorry your therapist retired, and I can sure understand how you don't want to talk about it any more!;) Cookin4Love, that pill sounds great, but probably my gyn would scold me, since I have had BC, and sure don't want it again!:rolleyes:
Dong Quai and black cohosh are phytoestrogens, and should be avoided by any woman who has had BC! Unfortunately!
02-15-2008, 10:47 AM
I will look into the "Hot Pants", herbs. Yes, that's what I thought it said until I read it a second time. As I said, I ordered the Northrup book & will take a look at her website for the other article.
Thank you all for you honesty and for validating my feelings on this issue. I know this is NOT in my head and for some reason no one is talking about it in the books I've read. Maybe I've gotten the wrong books? They all sound like if the desire is not there that there's something else wrong with the relationship and that's not the case. anyway, thank you all.
02-15-2008, 07:21 PM
I just wanted to be another one who chimes in and tells you that you're not abnormal. I'm only 32, but have been in medically-induced menopause to treat my endometriosis. Noooooo sex drive. The drug i've been on is approved to chemically castrate sex offenders! Eek! For me, because of this drug, the lack of sex drive was caused by a lack of estrogen.
I'm fortunate enough to have the most understanding DBF in the world. It's been really hard on me mentally, though, because it made me feel like there was something "wrong" with our relationship. A lot of talking about it helped.
Maybe, while you're looking for a drug that will help you, your DH would be willing to do some reading so he could better understand what you're going through?
02-16-2008, 03:25 PM
I lost my ovaries nearly 3 years ago and can agree about the libido problem. There's been a mountain of stress in our lives since then as well so I'm not sure that it hasn't also been a factor. But I've recently realized that a lack of libido doesn't necessarily mean you can't enjoy sex. The problem seems to be that I'm never in the mood, but if I would just stop saying "not tonight" all the time I've found I can still enjoy sex and orgasm, it just takes a bit longer to get worked up. For a long time I thought lack of libido meant an inability to enjoy sex.
My dear MIL and I were enjoying some girl talk a few years ago which she was only about 84, and somehow I managed to ask her if she and my FIL still have sex, and she said, god bless her, that he still tries sometimes and that's okay with her, but she just didn't like him getting her all worked up and then not finishing! So my impression was, she could take it or leave it, meaning libido was gone, but she still had no problem getting aroused and reaching orgasm.
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