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Loss of libido a growing issue for Irish men

Major Irish counselling service estimates sexual problems are issue for one-third of couples who seek advice.

Image: Franco Folini via Flickr.com

A MAJOR IRISH relationship counselling service has said that sex – or the lack of it – is a factor in around one-third of the couples who seek their help.

Counsellors with Relationships Ireland say that, anecdotally, they are finding a loss of male libido has also become an increasing problem reported to them in the past two years.

Lisa O’Hara, counsellor with the service, told TheJournal.ie:

Nearly 30 per cent of clients who attend for counselling with MRCS/Relationships Ireland will mention that sex (or lack of it) is part of their problem. In the last two years especially, there seems to be an increase in lack of desire for men in particular, which is contrary to the common belief that women have a lower sex drive than men.

This can be for a number of reasons, regardless of who is suffering from low libido – it may be physical (a hormone imbalance, including use of oral contraception, medication, excessive use of drugs/alcohol, ageing factors, pain or physical illness or surgery). It may also arise from other factors such as current circumstances which might include stress, anxiety, depression, overwork, unemployment, redundancy, pregnancy, childbirth or even death of a relative or close friend.

Relationships Ireland changed its name from the Marriage Relationship Counselling Service (MRCS) this week because, said O’Hara, the nature of relationships in Irish society are much more complex than ever before. MRCS was founded in 1962 as a registered charity.

She said that “although marriage is still popular, the number of people who described themselves in the 2006 census as separated, divorced or remarried following dissolution of marriage doubled relative to 1996″. The rebranding of the service is to reflect the different types of relationships “at many different stages” in today’s Ireland. O’Hara said:

We are living in disposable times and it may seem like the only way out of problems between a couple is to walk away from them, either by separating or a more informal arrangement when the couple agree to live separate lives although they still live together. It is true that some relationships won’t go the distance and will end. But for most relationships, they can improve with better understanding of each other and a generous sprinkling of compassion and forgiveness.

To get in touch with Relationships Ireland, visit their new website here.

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