As the housing crisis in Ireland continues to worsen, it's not just our finances that are being affected. The lack of affordable and available housing is also having a negative impact on our relationships and sex lives. Here are just a few ways the housing crisis is damaging our sexual wellbeing:
1. Lack of Privacy
As more and more people are forced to live in cramped and crowded conditions, it's becoming increasingly difficult to find a private space to be intimate with a partner. This can lead to feelings of frustration and resentment, and can put a strain on relationships between couples as well as those with family and roommates.
2. Financial Strain
The high cost of housing is putting a financial strain on many Irish households, leading to increased stress and anxiety. Furthermore, the financial strain of paying high rent and bills, or saving for a mortgage (that they may never attain or be able to afford), means that many Irish couples cannot afford to book hotel rooms for that private and intimate space either.
3. Loneliness & Isolation
For those living with roommates or extended family members, it can be difficult to invite potential partners over, which can lead to feelings of isolation and loneliness. Loneliness and social isolation can negatively affect physical health, increasing the risk of cardiovascular disease, cognitive decline, and mortality. These conditions are also linked to mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, and cognitive decline.
4. Mental Health
The housing crisis is contributing to a rise in stress and anxiety among the Irish population. The effects of stress and anxiety on sexual wellbeing are well-documented. High levels of stress can decrease libido and lead to difficulty with arousal and orgasm. Anxiety can also cause problems with sexual performance and can make it difficult to relax and enjoy intimacy.
5. Future Threat
A decrease in sex lives can also pose a threat to our futures. If people are having less sex, there may be a decrease in the birth rate, which can have long-term effects on the population size and age demographics. This means that people who may want to start a family or have children may not be able to realize that dream due to the lack of stable housing. The housing crisis, therefore, not only affects our present but also our future.
These are just some of the many ways the current housing crisis is affecting Irish people. It's time for the government to take action and address the housing crisis in Ireland. Until then, many of us will continue to struggle with the challenges of trying to find a place to call home.