If you have Erectile Dysfunction (ED), you are not alone. ED affects more than 18 million men in the United States. Although some men in their forties and younger may experience ED, the majority of cases occur in men age 50 and better. I specialize in aging and sexuality, and I see many couples where this is an issue.
ED is emotionally significant and often traumatizing for both you and your partner. If you experience this change in your functioning as a “failure to perform,” you may begin to question your masculinity. You may find yourself avoiding the topic, and as a result you may stop being affectionate in the process.
Your partner may express fear about how ED reflects on your relationship – that you no longer find your partner attractive, or the suspicion that you might be having an affair. Estrangement sets in. Sex becomes a stressor for both of you.
I can help you with strategies to break this logjam. I’ve noticed that men are doers, problem solvers. I encourage you, if you have ED, to talk about it. It’s a great first step on the journey to coming to terms with the condition. I have also found that when your partner is motivated by ED to improve sexual communication, you’re able to work together you find ways to embrace your situation and improve your levels of satisfaction.
Often the catalyst for better communication is my ease with therapeutic sex talk in our sessions. I am comfortable with all sexual topics and I create an environment where you and your partner are free to open up and begin talking more frankly about sex.
I help couples get these matters out on the table. Reassurance and clarity sometimes follow. Many couples report a great sense of relief at finally being able to discuss sex directly, both in our sessions and in your private discussions at home.
There are other significant factors that may affect possible treatment options.
Antidepressants can cause a low libido. Common side effects include problems with desire, arousal, and orgasm. In this area I collaborate with an MD or an ND to find a solution for depression meds without the sexual side-effects.
ED medications like Viagra can help, but this is a “couples’ problem”; therefore, sex therapy can be useful. What I’ve noticed is that ED pills might result in better erections, but not necessarily in better sex for either partner. I want to help you with improved communication in and out of the bedroom. I can and do inspire playfulness and resourcefulness when there’s no hard-on.
Through Sensate Focus Homework, I help many couples focus on foreplay, or “outercourse.” This involves thinking strictly about sensation and asking your partner what feels good. By giving you “homeplay” assignments, I help you map your partner’s body and not rush to intercourse. Slow down…two words I use often. I provide techniques to help you focus on pleasure, not performance – and later to apply the principle to intercourse.
Click here for details on Client Sessions