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Cathy's Cancer Blog

Getting back our sexuality.

I have been a member of this blog for quite some time and have not posted but have read and learned so much from many of you. Thank you!

I am 6 months post treatment and in remission. :) Which I thank God for every day, but I am still struggling with getting back to my old self. Maybe I will never be, I do not know if any of you struggle with the whole sexuality after treatment , but I am. How do we get our desire back? Do we ever? I know this is an uncomfortable subject for many but it is important. I guess I'm just asking how you all deal with this issue.

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Carmen, Karen sent you a hug.
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Although I am not as far out as you, I too struggle with this. I don't think the docs do a very good job with this. My doc gave me a dilator, but very few instructions and it has been rough going. Daisy posted a very helpful website www.sexualityresources.com. I think I am going to try their vaginal renewal program. Will let you know how it goes 😛
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Hey Cathy, I just sent a PM to a new member about this very subject a few minutes ago and than your blog popped up. I too struggle with this, as I have no desire, and feel bad for my partner who is 8 yrs. younger than me, he is a great guy and very understanding. We had a good sex life before treatment and I miss that too. My Rad. oncologist did warn me about this though. I am 1 yr. out and the desire has not returned yet, so I look forward to any suggestions or answers from others on how to deal with this too.
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Granny here; I've been working on lady parts with the hormone cream and dilators since I was done with treatment end of June. I can just now report a slight improvement. However working with the estrogen and dilators, has a repair cycle. I make some headway and then recovery. In no way would this be referred to as sexuality. I am only looking to stay normal (not allow things to close up). I hadn't had a Pap since 2004, and I would like to continue to be check out, especially after the cancer.
I think you guys need to know this might take awhile with patience and possible pain in very small steps.
Hopefully, you will get some positive stories of success. Let me know if there is a magic pill though. I wouldn't mind having the joy of youth back.
Cathy likes this comment
I have struggled with libido since menopause, the tiny bit of testosterone gel I was using worked wonders, now Blue Cross refuses to pay for it, after 8 years!
I think I have less problems with vaginal stenosis, because I had brachytherapy for the final 6 treatments, but I still need the dilator before sex. I hate being old, but having a loving, caring spouse helps. I truly miss the desire I had in my 30s!
Cathy likes this comment
I have yet to get mine back. I am 17 months out of treatment. Who knows?
Cathy likes this comment
Well I wondering about it too. I know it's different for men, but still. I was told it might not ever be normal since they didn't shield the prostate. I don't think Drs think about that. It's another one of those "being normal" things that you miss I guess.
Cathy likes this comment
I guess its a trivial thing to some people, and you can live without it. But I like to think I'm too young for that part of life to be over. While there's no one right now, I still have hope. LOL
Cathy, Lori like this comment
It's such a sad thing to not have the desire anymore. I make a conscious effort to try hard for my husbands sake but I know he sees a difference. We are still sexually active and I feel fortunate that not much has changed 'down there' for me except I do need oil on the outside not the inside. The outside skin tends to tear and bleed.
Cathy likes this comment
It's been an ongoing struggle for me since treatment ended in September 2008. I'm sorry to say that I have no desire and the times that I've tried to have intercourse, it has been dreadfully painful. I'm really over the whole sex thing, to be honest. Even with regular dilator use, things have not changed for me.
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Martha, your story is my story. It will be 6 years February 18 since my last treatment. My husband has been so understanding. He saw and knows what I went through and is just happy I am still here! We tried to regain our sex life but it just didn't happen. And we are both ok with that. If we were younger it may be a different story.
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Hi Cathy, I am days away from the 2 yr post treatment mark and have been unable to be sexually active. It is hard to even feel sexy when your bladder and your butt leak. It's just one more thing cancer robs us of!
Cathy likes this comment
Additional comment: I think we all mourn for our lost sexuality, this part really sucks! It is especially hard for me since I had a plan that was helping, and the f#@*ing insurance denied it. Ladies, keep fighting for the use of topical testosterone in females, after all, we make it too! Remember that acne right before your period? That was the testosterone, which also made us horny as hell during the fertile time. See, I still remember, LOL
It would be easier if my husband was testosterone deficient, but at age 72, his is normal! Go figure. His doctor is amazed, (and jealous)! It is difficult being married to a sexual teenager. And, frankly, it troubles me, but he tries so hard to understand, and is patient with me. I'm tempted to write a how-to book on the subject of keeping your man happy after AC :-)
Cathy, Lori like this comment
I started to go into this whole dialogue about what's worked for me and realized that your question has more to do with how to get the desire back. I think that getting some kind of estrogen is important. I use Vagifem tablets now. That seemed to bring back some of the elasticity. Things aren't like before, but better with the estrogen.
Cathy likes this comment
Happy birthday week! Any news on the sexuality front? I have given up....
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Vital Info

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August 19, 2015

Indian River, Michigan 49749

March 18, 1971

Cancer Fighter

Cancer Info

Anal Cancer

Squamous Cell Carcinoma

May 11, 2015

Stage 3B

2.1 - 3.0 cm

Grade 2

Yes

July 27, 2015

Lump near anus, constipation, thin ribbon like bowls.

30 sessions of Radiation, skin burns began 4th week

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