Ask Gigi: I’ve Developed ED, Does That Make Me Less Desirable?
Welcome to Ask Gigi, a bi-monthly column in which sex and relationships writer Gigi Engle answers your most intimate questions. Nothing is off-limits! From threesomes to anal, unrequited love to cheating: we want to hear it all.
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I’ve been with my fiancé for five years. Recently, I was in a bad accident that left me with a spinal injury that causes erectile dysfunction; and therefore, the need for Viagra.
Before the accident, we had sex every day -- sometimes two or three times. But since I’ve been home and on Viagra, our sex life has dwindled. My fiancé and I now only have sex once every few weeks.
The truth is, this has really started to bother me. I brought up the issue of wanting to have more sex and she agreed that we should. Yet, nothing has changed. We’re still not having sex on a regular basis. I’m not trying to sound like Mr. Macho or anything, but I'm very accommodating when it comes to our sex life. I always make sure she orgasms whether it be during intercourse or through oral sex. I’m very frustrated by the situation and I guess I'm just curious about what I should be doing to get our sex life back to normal.
Thanks for sharing such a personal story. It sounds like you’ve really been through a lot and I’m so happy that you’re pushing through. I’m sure you feel lucky that you walked away from a terrible accident with your life and mobility, even if you are experiencing ED.
You are a really good example of someone who has taken the hand he was dealt and made the most of it. You haven’t been able to get an erection, so you got Viagra. Many men wouldn’t have felt comfortable taking that step so quickly. You’re dope for doing that.
I find it very interesting that your focus in this letter is on your fiancé, when you’re the one who has been through so much physically and emotionally. It’s wonderful that you want to rekindle your spark. That’s a very important part of healthy relationships. All too often we let sex fall to the wayside in longterm relationships.
Like you, your fiancé has been through a lot. Having a partner face something so scary and life-altering is incredibly difficult. And often, traumatic events like this turn relationship dynamics inside out. It can take time to readjust when you’re used to something so different.
I think she probably needs some more time to get used to everything that is happening in her life. I know you’ve been patient and I know you’re getting frustrated, but there is no “right” amount of time it takes for one to recover from a huge life change. It’s nothing you should feel guilty about or blame yourself for, it’s just a part of the human experience. We’re all different and need to heal in our ways, on our own timetable.
That being said, I think you need to have another serious conversation with your fiancé. She has openly recognized that she thinks you should be having more sex. That’s a very promising first step. Instead of just mentioning it in passing, have a real sit-down conversation with her about the situation. Open up about everything you’ve been feeling.
Then, I want you to set up a date night. Make her dinner, light some candles, and take a bath together. As important as all the sex stuff is, it’s also important that the two of you reconnect on an emotionally intimate level as well. Feeling safe with each other in your newfound world will bridge the chasm that seems to have formed and bring you back together, mentally.
Tell your fiancé about your plans for the future. Talk about what you want out of life. Let her know how excited you are for that future together. In fact, make it a rule to talk about one idea for your future every single day.
I think she just needs to be reminded that even though the circumstances are different, you still love her deeply and want to be with her forever. Remind her how sexy and desirable she is. Reconnect in any way you can. Time heals -- and open and honest communication helps to speed up that process.
You obviously love and care about each other very much. Don’t let your frustrations and emotions get bottled up and explode. You owe it to each other to honor your relationship as future spouses.
Love your favorite internet auntie,