Posts Tagged "sex"

Hairy kiri…sexual desire and hairs on your chinny chin chin

Posted by on Oct 7, 2011 in appearance, sexual desire, sexual health | 0 comments

Yes, I am taking poetic license with the Japanese term “Hara-Kiri” which literally means to cut or slice the stomach. This phrase has been hijacked by slangers who refer to it as ‘hari kari,’ to off oneself or commit suicide.

I propose that using testosterone in hopes of improving sexual desire is a great way to cut off one’s wellbeing and sense of self Chi, leaving hairs on the chinny chin chin and other undesirable locations.

Hairy kiri? You bet!

Back in 2008, I wrote about Intrinsa, a testosterone patch that was tested in a study of 841 postmenopausal not currently on hormone replacement therapy to test its effects on sexual desire after about a half a year’s use. The results, which were published in the New England Journal of Medicine, showed that compared to a dummy patch, using low or high dose Intrinsa was associated with significant increases in sexual desire and a decline in sexual distress. Overall, the higher dose patch led to modest improvements in sexual function. In other words, wearing a patch was significantly better than using nothing at all but not life-shattering in terms of improving sexual function. However, the caveat was unwanted hair growth, which occurred in about a third of women using the higher dose patch and in about 23% of women using the lower dose.

Once I delved further into androgens and women, I learned that while it has been suggested that local circulating levels of androgens are associated with low sexual desire and sexual dysfunction, the data are contradictory. Moreover, in a fairly recent scientific review, researchers say that no single androgen predicts which women will have sexual dysfunction, making it even harder to address, right? What’s more, they also note that laboratory studies have only limited value and aren’t routinely recommended.

Looking more closely at different formulations of androgens like testosterone, e.g. patches, oral tablets, implants and injections, experts have found that the major side effects are unwanted hair growth and acne. Both are related to dose and how long treatment lasts, and disappear once treatment is stopped. And while rates of hair growth are definitely lower for patches in general (as few as 7%  to as high as 23%), as many as 36% of women who use oral testosterone have unwanted hair growth. Among those receiving implants, pellets or injections the number is also high: 20%.

Let’s face it; the trouble is testosterone is that it may only address a miniscule amount of factors affecting a woman’s libido and in literally leave a trail in its place. Don’t know about you but I think it’s a hairy kiri proposition. A few more notches on the desire scale and a few more hairs in your chin, on your chest and lord knows where else.

Committing hairy kiri ain’t for sissies; that’s for sure!




Read More

Wednesday Bubble: Are you in the moo? Sex and a sense of purpose

Posted by on Oct 5, 2011 in aging, humour, menopause, sexual desire, sexual health | 2 comments

What are we bursting this week? How about midlife and sexual desire. Frankly, I’ve got sex on the brain, sex in midlife, that is. And what we need to do to insure that it continues to be enjoyable, that we desire it and that we please our partners as much as we hope that they please us. Consequently, I am reposting this piece from earlier in the year, with the hope that with a sense of purpose, you’ll become more in the moo. Or mood. Whatever the case may be.


Sexual desire. In midlife, sexual function and sexual desire aren’t well understood, primarily because there are so many factors that enter into equation. This may be why certain silver bullets, like a female viagra, has failed to show any significant improvements in the desire department. And yet, researchers continue to accrue more information about the things that influence desire in women, ranging from the quality of intimate relationships to social support and overall wellbeing. The manufacturer who discovers a pill that addresses all of these will have struck gold. Meanwhile, back in reality, as many as 75% of women in midlife rate sexual health as important enough to warrant further exploration.

Fortunately, we may have another piece of the puzzle: ‘sense of purpose,’ which appears to be associated with greater wellbeing, happiness, life satisfaction, self-esteem, personal growth and optimism. A sense of purpose also appears to improve health, prevent certain diseases and may even improve cognitive function, thereby staving off mental diseases associated with aging. In a study that appears in the online version of Menopause, 459 menopausal women who were sexually active with a partner were followed over three years. Each year, they were asked about their emotional wellbeing (including their general mood, anxiety and depression as well as how often they engaged in and enjoyed sexual activity (specifically desire, type of activity and hugging and kissing). In the final year, they took a test that rated their sense of purpose on a five point scale ranging from ‘there is not enough purpose in my life’ to ‘the things I do are all worthwhile.’

The findings?

A greater sense of purpose equaled a great enjoyment of sexual activities, independent and regardless of other specific life circumstances. In other words, psychosocial functioning, e.g. social support, quality intimacy and overall wellbeing influenced the quality of these women’s sexual lives.  On the other hand, menopausal status and use of hormone therapy did not appear to play a significant role in how often women engaged in sex or if they enjoyed it. This is important, as it means that psychosocial wellbeing may ultimately be more important than hormones.

In so far as the desire to engage? Women who were younger, had more social support, felt better about themselves and weren’t suffering from vaginal dryness tended to want sex more than their older peers who didn’t enjoy these factors.

Not surprisingly, many of the factors that researchers stress may help desire and engagement are associated with greater nitric oxide levels, which Dr. Christina Northrup says can help combat sexual dysfunction and improve pleasure.

When it comes to sex in midlife? It may help to think ‘sense of purpose,’ a real sense of purpose, now. (Poetic license, Chrissie!) I’m all for it if improves activity and desire without drugs.

Read More

Wednesday Bubble: Meno…wait! Don’t. Pause.

Posted by on Apr 13, 2011 in humour | 0 comments


In fact, you don’t even have to. Just two pills daily and  ‘Don’t Pause‘ not only guarantees that you’ll lose weight and inches (and that tiresome cellulite), but you’ll also retrieve those lost energy levels that menopause has been zapping.

Don’t Pause contains a proprietary blend of pomegranate extract and green tea. In addition to weight loss, Don’t Pause will help preserve bone, improve skin tone and muscle, ease vaginal dryness AND improve your sex life. What’s more, it doesn’t matter if you’re 40 or 90, Don’t Pause can help you lead a healthier and more enjoyable life.


Who knew?!

Just two a day and everything (and I mean EVERYTHING) that we possibly find negative goes away. Cellulite, fat, vaginal dryness, saggy muscles, and bad sex.

WHAT are you waiting for?

Another panacea for all that ails? Don’t pause, run, no…

No no.

Bubble? Yup. Burst this one open wide ladies.

Happy Wednesday!

Read More

Wednesday Bubble: Let’s talk about sex…again

Posted by on Nov 24, 2010 in sexual desire, sexual health | 0 comments


True confession: I’ve already posted this video previously but I love the song so indulge me won’t you? And while we’re at it, let’s indulge in these two completely divergent headlines:

Middle-aged Americans unhappy about sex vs. We may be broke, but at least we’re having more sex than ever before!

Um, Okay. So..are we or aren’t we?

The first headline belongs to a Washington Post article highlighting results from a recent Associated Press survey of Boomers (45 to 65 year olds). The findings? In summary, “faced with performance problems, menopause blues and an increased mismatch of expectations between the sexes, middle-aged Americans are the unhappiest people of all when it comes to making love.” For example:

  • 24% of 45 to 65 year olds express dissatisfaction with their sex lives
  • Nearly three in five women and half of men have stopped experimenting and claim to know all they need to about sex
  • 48% of men’s expectations are not being met in the bedroom in terms of their partners not desiring sex however, two in five men in this age group have problems with sexual functioning, compared to 19% of women

The second headline belongs to a piece that appears on an Irish website regarding a Durex survey geared towards a slightly younger age group (25 to 34), but like the AP study, also makes comparisons to younger and older groups. Not only does this piece highlight results of the large study that appeared in the Journal of Sexual Medicine suggesting that Americans of all ages were having more sex than ever, but also reports that:

  • The ‘over-55’ set is having sex at least once weekly
  • Almost three-quarters of respondents believe that sex gets better with age
  • Women are as eager as their male counterparts to have sex
  • A growing number of Irish men and women are broadening their sexual horizons and re-engaging in the Swinger scene

Confused yet? Which of these bubbles needs to be burst?

All three of these reports are surveys, although only one qualifies as a bonefide study (the National Survey of Sexual Health and Behavior). And this particular survey doesn’t necessarily highlight major issues when it comes to sex and Boomers. Even more ironic is that the AP survey appears to have been done for a website that features an article on sex over age 50 that actually disputes the findings.

Wow! So, shall we talk about sex? I mean, really talk about it. I truly don’t believe that the generation that brought sexual exploration out of the closet is driving it back into the closet and abandoning it altogether. Life changes, physical changes, environment changes, relationship changes…sex changes. Let’s talk about something that matters for a change, like the “why’s,” “how’s” and “what if’s.”

I’ve said it before and I will say it again. No matter what life transition you are in, work it, don’t let it work you. That includes sex.

Read More

Designer muffs: cosmetic surgery below the belt – Guest Post by Jesse Mendes

Posted by on May 24, 2010 in sexual health, women's health | 4 comments

A few months ago, I stirred the pot a bit by writing about genital cosmetic colorants and vaginal rejuvenation. The post was mostly well-received, although I did manage to anger one reader who accused me of ridiculing women who actually needed labiaplasty due to vaginal prolapse or stress incontinence issues. Then I met a writing colleague via Twitter who had similarly written labia amputation, clitoral hood removal and distortion of sexual aesthetics.

I am happy to continue the dialogue with this terrific post – Designer Vaginas. Please show writer and journalist Jesse Mendes some love (and a huge thanks for allowing me to repost this piece).

The push toward cosmetic surgery to “mask” the effects of aging is not news, and as the likes of Heidi Montag will attest, its practice is growing at an alarming rate with young women as well. What is talked about a lot less, though, is cosmetic surgery below the belt or, put another way and a lot more specifically, “designer vaginas” – a moniker granted it in a 2005 Globe and Mail article.
Both men and women today have wildly distorted impressions of so-called “normal” genitalia. Research repeatedly shows that women in particular are widely unfamiliar with real genital diversity, so they tend to rely on marketing and images provided by doctors and other professionals with ridiculously narrow aesthetic and sexual ideals. The reality is that the size, shape and form of a woman’s genitalia vary greatly, and change over time – we are as diverse “down there” as we are in our faces or our fingerprints.

That’s what I learned from the New View Campaign when I interviewed them several years ago. A grassroots organization formed in New York about 10 years ago, its purpose is, among other things, to challenge distorted messages about sexuality, and to expose aggressive marketing tactics that normalize women’s dissatisfaction with their bodies.

We’re talking women as young as 15 years old, going in for procedures such as drastic labia amputation or clitoral unhooding, with poor research on the consequences.

My question is this – how did we get here? How did we get to the point where we are so fucked up about our bodies, women of all ages are lopping off bits and pieces of their private parts in order to feel desirable?

The pressure to conform to a commonly agreed upon norm can be a highly oppressive force. We see and allow for diversity in nature much more easily than we do in our bodies, or for that matter, our sexual experiences. We’re always thinking about whether we measure up. Biologist and sex researcher Alfred Kinsey dedicated most of his life to educating people in this realm in the 1940s and 50s, yet we’re still dealing with a lot of the same (recycled) attitudes today.

Why are we so afraid of being different? As we age, and develop a more intimate relationship with our own bodies and our selves, this question might be more relevant than we think.

About Jesse…

Jesse Mendes is a freelance writer based in Toronto who is deeply committed to helping to change how older women are perceived in North America, and to dispeling the stigma around aging. Her blog, SeptemberMay, is dedicated to that. She came up with the concept of a dating site that celebrates the inherent eroticism, beauty and intelligence of the older woman. SeptemberMay will be launching later this year.

Read More