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How do I resume sex after years of abstaining?

Dear Bunmi,

My marriage broke up after nine years and I haven’t slept with any man since I got divorced three years ago. I’ve had offers of dates from men and I think this is the time to go on a proper date. My problem is that I’m frightened of having sex.
The thought of stripping naked in front of someone other than my ex terrifies me. Do you have any advise on how to get my sex life back?

Linda, by e-mail.

Dear Linda,

The prospect of disrobing in front of a man terrifies you because you’re imagining yourself having to do it quickly – probably around date three (sex happening on the third date is one of the myths floating around out there along with all those other silly dating ‘rules’).

Dropping your clothes to the floor to someone you barely know would make you feel very uncomfortable.

Take your time and refu~e to be pressured into anything and when the time comes to strip, you might be shy mWYou won’t feel terrified. It’s obvious you’re not out for a fling but a relationship.

Once you find someone you like, you have all the time in the world to explore sex gently and take little steps.

You should have sex when you feel ready – when you know, trust and feel comfortable enough to sleep with the person without being judged. Also remember that, unless you’re planning to date a 20-year-old, your new man’s body isn’t going to be perfect either.

It seems to me your problem has nothing to do with what you look like, but with feeling naked emotionally. So if you’re still hurting, don’t push yourself until you’re well and truly ready.


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