Sexual frustration

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Sexual frustration is often related to jealousy or envy, and is a universal experience felt regardless of gender.

Sexual frustration is a sense of dissatisfaction stemming from a discrepancy between a person's desired and achieved sexual activity. It may result from physical, mental, emotional, social, financial, religious or spiritual barriers. It can derive from displeasure during sex due to issues such as anorgasmia, anaphrodisia, premature ejaculation, delayed ejaculation[1] or erectile dysfunction.[2][3] A sense of incompatibility or discrepancy in libido between partners may be involved.[4] It may also relate to broader existential frustration.[5]

Historical methods of dealing with sexual frustration have included fasting and the taking of libido suppressants such as anaphrodisiacs (food supplements)[6] or antaphrodisiacs (medicinal supplements).[7] It can also affect the sexually active, especially hypersexual people.[8] It is a natural stage of the development throughout youth, when going through puberty as a teenager.[9]

Ways to cope with sexual frustration include engaging in solo sex, meditating, exercising, exploring new techniques, discussing and being open with one's partner about sexual frustrations, or seeking professional assistance through a sex therapist.[10]


Adolescents may experience sexual frustration due to a variety of factors, including societal expectations, hormonal changes, and the complexities of navigating relationships. For some adolescents, sexting serves as an outlet for sexual exploration within a virtual space, particularly for those not yet ready for physical sexual activity.[11]


During menopause, individuals may experience reduced sexual desire and activity. However, engaging in sex remains important for many older people. Couples in their 50s or older expect ongoing sexual involvement, with an emphasis on traditional intercourse over other forms. Common sexual dysfunctions, like ejaculatory issues in males and genital atrophy in females, pose challenges. Lack of awareness about these changes may hinder communication with partners, potentially leading to sexual frustration and abstinence.[12]

Other groups[edit]


People with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) may face sexual frustration far more than most other people due to challenges in social interaction, communication difficulties, and sensory sensitivities associated with ASD. These individuals often struggle to interpret social cues and establish meaningful relationships, leading to a sense of isolation. Sensory sensitivities can also contribute to discomfort in intimate situations. Additionally, the lack of tailored resources and support for sexuality education exacerbates their frustration.[13]

Sexual frustration's impact on aggression and crime[edit]

  • Sexual frustration has been identified as a factor contributing to immoral conducts throughout history.[14][15][16] However, it is not prominently addressed in major criminological theories.[17] This historical oversight can be attributed to misguided perspectives stemming from misconceptions that disregard female sexual frustration, misrepresent male biology, and fail to consider psychological and qualitative dimensions, including the option of masturbation.[18]
  • Sexual frustration extends beyond individuals facing involuntary celibacy; it also affects those engaged in sexual activity. The frustration arising from unmet sexual desires, unavailability of partners, and unsatisfactory sexual experiences appears to heighten the risks of aggression, violence, and criminal tendencies associated with the pursuit of relief, power, revenge, and displaced frustration. While sexual frustration alone is not adequate to fully explain aggression, violence, or crime, recognizing its impact on behavior remains crucial.[18]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Hatzimouratidis, Konstantinos; et al. (2010). "Guidelines on male sexual dysfunction: erectile dysfunction and premature ejaculation". European Urology. 57 (5): 804–814. doi:10.1016/j.eururo.2010.02.020. PMID 20189712. S2CID 4640632.
  2. ^ "Erwin James: Sexual frustration plagues prison life | Comment is free". 2011-09-20. Retrieved 2014-07-13.
  3. ^ Winch, Guy (2011-09-20). "Marriage and Sexual Frustrations: Inevitable or Solvable?". Psychology Today. Retrieved 2014-07-13.
  4. ^ Reece, Rex (1987). "Causes and Treatments of Sexual Desire Discrepancies in Male Couples". Journal of Homosexuality. 14 (1–2): 157–172. doi:10.1300/J082v14n01_12. PMID 3655339.
  5. ^ Sallee, D. T.; Casciani, J. M. (April 1976). "Relationship between sex drive and sexual frustration and purpose in life". Journal of Clinical Psychology. 32 (2): 273–275. doi:10.1002/1097-4679(197604)32:2<273::aid-jclp2270320214>;2-s. ISSN 0021-9762. PMID 1262489.
  6. ^ Al-Durai, F. Z. Sexual behaviour and attitudes of Kuwaiti females and males and their personality correlations. Diss. University of York, 1987.
  7. ^ Larson, Jennifer. "Sexuality in Greek and Roman religion." A Companion to Greek and Roman Sexualities (2013): 214-229.
  8. ^ Stewart, Hannah, and J. Paul Fedoroff. "Assessment and treatment of sexual people with complaints of hypersexuality." Current Sexual Health Reports 6.2 (2014): 136-144.
  9. ^ Zosky, Diane L. (2010). "Accountability in Teenage Dating Violence: A Comparative Examination of Adult Domestic Violence and Juvenile Justice Systems Policies" (PDF). Social Work. 55 (4): 359–368. doi:10.1093/sw/55.4.359. JSTOR 23719710. PMID 20977059.
  10. ^ "Sexually Frustrated? How to Deal with Sexual Frustration". Priority Men's Medical. 2022-05-02. Retrieved 2023-11-27.
  11. ^ Anastassiou, Andrea (2017-08-16). "Sexting and Young People: A Review of the Qualitative Literature". The Qualitative Report. 22 (8): 2231–2239. doi:10.46743/2160-3715/2017.2951. ISSN 1052-0147.
  12. ^ Bachmann, G. A. (1990). "Sexual issues at menopause". Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences. 592: 87–94, discussion 123–133. doi:10.1111/j.1749-6632.1990.tb30317.x. ISSN 0077-8923. PMID 2197956.
  13. ^ Schöttle, Daniel; Briken, Peer; Tüscher, Oliver; Turner, Daniel (December 2017). "Sexuality in autism: hypersexual and paraphilic behavior in women and men with high-functioning autism spectrum disorder". Dialogues in Clinical Neuroscience. 19 (4): 381–393. ISSN 1294-8322. PMC 5789215. PMID 29398933.
  14. ^ Caluya, Gilbert (February 2013). "Sexual geopolitics: the 'blue balls' theory of terrorism". Continuum. 27 (1): 54–66. doi:10.1080/10304312.2013.737193. ISSN 1030-4312.
  15. ^ Kanin, Eugene J. (1967). "An Examination of Sexual Aggression as a Response to Sexual Frustration". Journal of Marriage and Family. 29 (3): 428–433. doi:10.2307/349577. ISSN 0022-2445. JSTOR 349577.
  16. ^ Atkinson, Clarissa; Karras, Ruth Mazo (February 1998). "Common Women: Prostitution and Sexuality in Medieval England". The American Historical Review. 103: 157. doi:10.2307/2650803. JSTOR 2650803.
  17. ^ "Criminological Theories - Ronald L. Akers; Christine S. Sellers; Wesley G. Jennings - Oxford University Press". Retrieved 2023-11-27.
  18. ^ a b Lankford, Adam (2021-11-01). "A sexual frustration theory of aggression, violence, and crime". Journal of Criminal Justice. 77: 101865. doi:10.1016/j.jcrimjus.2021.101865. ISSN 0047-2352.