While most of us are probably familiar with the more popular phobias regarding spiders, heights or water, we are probably less familiar with phobias regarding things like sex. It seems like sex is everywhere in our society, from advertisements and magazines to TV shows and movies. According to the media, sex sells. But, there are many people in our society that suffer great fear and anxiety when it comes to sex or sexuality.

Erotophobia is an irrational and possibly debilitating fear of some object, person or act that is related to sex. This term can also be used in psychological studies to describe a person’s degree of aversion to sex. This fear can prevent a person from enjoying sex, or even having sex at all and in some cases, can also lead to other psychological problems such as social phobia or social anxiety. The fears and anxieties associated with erotophobia can also manifest themselves into actual physical conditions.

Physical symptoms of Erotophobia:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Rapid breathing
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Increased perspiration
  • Nausea
  • Overall feelings of dread in regards to sex

Causes of Erotophobia

Every individual is different and has had different life experiences, which is why it’s hard to determine a set cause of erotophobia. But, as with other phobias, it is probably a result of a traumatic event experienced earlier in life. Erotophobia can be a result of witnessing or being a victim of a sexually traumatic event. For example, a person who has been raped might develop erotophobia. This phobia might also be a result of a person’s upbringing and family life.

Treatment of Erotophobia

Erotophobia can be a life altering fear, which is why it’s important to seek help if you think you have this phobia. Living in constant fear and anxiety of sex can really take a toll on your mental well-being and can also prevent you from having a romantic, intimate relationship. If you think you might suffer from erotophobia it’s important to seek professional help. There are different types of treatment for this phobia, the most common being therapy or medication. Medication can be prescribed to reduce overall anxiety in a person. Therapy is a more effective treatment to get over the actual phobia. The most common types of therapies used are cognitive-behavioral, psychotherapy and even relaxation or meditation techniques. Seeking help from a professional psychologist or psychiatrist can help you better understand yourself, this phobia and a reason why you may have it. Overtime, a professional psychologist or psychiatrist can help you find ways to cope with this phobia and ultimately overcome it.

View Resources

  • Wikipedia – From this website I learned basic information regarding erotophobia.
  • Wise Geek – This website provided me with basic information about erotophobia and the possible causes of erotophobia.
  • Treatments for erotophobia – From this website I learned what some possible treatments of erotophobia are.

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