Defining a Normal Sex Life

sexualityAll people have different opinion on what can be considered "normal," especially when it comes to sex. They often argue on whether deviations from the usual sexual intercourse such as erotic spanking, oral sex, bondage, foot fetishes among others can be considered as abnormal; or if the frequency of sex can be measured as part of a normal sex life.

Normal sexuality can be defined in context of a person’s capability for physiological orgasm. However, what can be normal sex for one may not be considered normal to others.

Also, what a person considers as part of normal sex would vary throughout the course of his or her life. For instance, he may enjoy frequent sexual intercourse during his youth, but due to biological changes and environmental stress, he may not be able to have sex as often as he wants to.

Meanwhile, psychiatrists often follow the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, more popularly known as DSM, when defining what can be diagnosed as "abnormal" when it comes to sex. However, the list undergoes several revisions throughout the years and not everyone agrees to what is written as a sexual and gender identity disorder.

For instance, the first version of DSM in 1952 declared homosexuality as a mental disorder. By 1973, after a much heated debate and over objections from religious conservatives, homosexuality was excluded from the list of such disorders.

Some health experts believe that the change in culture affects what can be considered as normal sex life. Back in the day, oral-to-genital sex was considered deviant, while masturbation was part of an out-of-control behavior. Nowadays, the two acts have been acceptable in the mainstream society, with some doctors even recommending masturbation as part of a healthy sex life.

Sex life and marriage

Married partners should agree on what terms they can consider as normal when it comes to sex. Just like marriage, sex is about meeting each other’s needs. What is acceptable to one person may not be the case to the partner.

However, one should not accuse his or her partner as "abnormal" if the partner’s concept of a normal sex is different. Doing so would only drive the lover away rather than increasing interest in meeting the needs of his or her partner.

Also, the quality of sex in marriage is more important than how often the couple does it. As long as both partners enjoy and feel satisfied by each other’s sexual connection, then it is functional and normal for them.

Sex life and changes in the body

Hormonal, environmental, and emotional stress can affect one’s sexual expression. People with cancer may lose their interest in sex, while feelings of self doubt and fears can make a person feel like a lesser being. Also, concerns about one’s health may overshadow sexual interest. However, once he or she returns to the routines that he or she is used to, interest in sex may begin to return.

But contrary to popular belief, sex is not only for the young. Older people are expected to lose their appetite for sex and their ability to perform, but that is not the case. Men and women can and do remain sexually active throughout their lives.

No one should ever have to apologize for still being interested in sex at any age. A man may lose his ability to have a quick erection, for instance, but that can be remedied using medicines, therapy, surgery, and other treatments.

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