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Should We All Try Viagra For Women?

March 27th is World Viagra Day: Celebration of a pill that only works for half of the world’s population. But is there even a need for a “Viagra for women”?
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Viagra for women: is it even a thing?

Like with many medications, the discovery of Sildenafil, more commonly known as Viagra, was a stroke of luck: it was supposed to be a treatment for heart-related chest pain. It works by increasing the blood flow to the genitals, which in turn helps men achieve and sustain an erection. Over 30 years after it came onto the market, Viagra is not only a means of treating erectile dysfunction, but also a popculturally relevant drug that is often used recreationally, available in some countries over the counter. In fact, March 27th is even celebrated as World Viagra Day.

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Pink pill or blue pill?

However, the little blue pill only works for almost half of the world’s population: men. Its effects for treating sexual dysfunction in women remain unclear. The increased blood flow is, after all, just one physiological aspect of arousal. There have been several medications for women popping up that have been touted as the “female Viagra”, “Viagra for women” or – hello, gender stereotypes! – “pink Viagra”. 

Flibanserin, also known under its brand name Addyi, is in fact a pink pill and another surprise discovery that was supposed to be an antidepressant.

It’s aimed at women whose sex drive is lowered to the point where it can be considered a disorder, which can be caused by hormonal changes before or during menopause. But even as a female-only libido-increasing pill, flibanserin has limited effects: women who took it reported up to one more “satisfying sexual event” per month, for the price of not being allowed to drink alcohol during treatment and having to deal with side effects. And of course, in sex shops and on the Internet, you can find a plethora of dubious “lust pills” and herbal supplements for women. Their effect – if there is any to speak of – is usually pure placebo

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Desire is more than just physiology

It actually makes sense that the actual Viagra hasn’t been such a big hit with anyone with a vagina. After all, its purpose is to help men who would like to have penetrative sex, but physically can’t – or in case of recreational use, would like to counteract some drug use or just sustain an erection for a longer time. With women, it’s a bit trickier. The perceived dysfunction is more likely to be a lowered sex drive rather than a physiological inability to get aroused (and if there is a problem with the latter, there is always lube!)

The other problem is that we have come to understand libido as spontaneous desire: this seemingly out-of-nowhere, overwhelming need to have sex.

But there is also responsive desire, as in getting in the mood in response to flirting, caresses, kisses and so on. And although the first is considered to be more typically male and the second more typically female, any gender can experience either form of desire and both are perfectly valid! So for many, desire really does start in the mind. If you ever felt like your libido could use a little boost, “Viagra for women” would most likely not have been the right solution.

Most Sex Drives Are Normal

In fact, there may be no problem with your sex drive on its own. It’s important to remember that there are individual differences in sex drive and some gender disparities (contrary to the popular myth, it’s not always the guys who want more sex in a relationship!) While it is normal to not be constantly horny, it definitely helps to be on a somewhat similar libido level with your partner if you’re in a monogamous relationship, or at least be able to find a happy medium. No one should feel like they are being talked into having sex, but repeatedly getting rejected while initiating sex can also wear on a relationship. But desire is also not a fixed parameter – it can and will fluctuate over time, be it because of the menstrual cycle, the changing seasons, the varying amounts of everyday stress or simply with age.

To not always feel DTF (down to fuck) is perfectly okay,

especially in long-term relationships. It’s usually not a reason to worry, especially if other forms of non-sexual intimacy between partners are still in place. However, if you feel either undesirable or under pressure in your relationship, you should absolutely have an honest conversation about it with your partner! Sometimes the solution can be as simple as slowing down and taking time for good sex: planning, preparing and enjoying it like you would a fancy dinner. Also, the concept of “spicing things up” may seem a bit corny, but new experiences together – sexual and otherwise  – really help you see the other person in a different light, which can make them more exciting and desirable. Or maybe the actual problem is located somewhere else than in the bed, in which case you also have to communicate to pinpoint it.

The Pill: A Libido Killer?

In the past years, one particular culprit of interfering with female lust has come into the spotlight: the birth control pill. Its earliest version pre-dates Viagra by almost half a century and has not only allowed women previously unknown levels of reproductive freedom, but has also been used to treat many medical conditions. The libido-lowering side effect of the contraceptive pill varies from person to person and its intensity has changed over the years with every new generation of the pill, but it has always been there. Nowadays, many women are having none of that and are looking into alternative, preferably non-hormonal birth control methods.

It is quite ironic that a pill that is supposed to allow one to have penetrative sex with no fear of pregnancy can also make you not want any sex at all!

Biologically, however, it makes perfect sense: after all, the pill is supposed to trick your body into thinking it’s already pregnant with its ovulation-suppressing hormones.

Perhaps there is no need for female Viagra?

A quick fix always seems appealing, but perhaps it was the understanding of female desire through the lens of male desire that was the underlying issue from the start. While medication can be somewhat useful in case of rare medical problems, most problems with low sex drive are either caused by some external factors or sexual incompatibility in a relationship. And for the latter, the usual prescription is: communication.

Want to try a natural libido boost?

Watch  Lori and Evanin in “Tantric Sex”. They take it slow and bring in some new moves – admiring each other´s gorgeous bodies.

Or head over to “Hungry for your touch”, a romantic, dream-like fantasy of a woman who after going through a break-up, is longing to be touched, loved and to feel a connection with herself and the world around her.

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