Could menopause be the problem?
If you’ve had treatment for prostate cancer, you probably know it can be hard to get hard (or stay hard).
Assuming that you want to have sex, what do you do if your partner isn’t interested? If your partner is female, perhaps her reluctance has something to do with menopause (or perimenopause).
My wife, Fiona, has gone through menopause. You may have watched her interview with Victoria Cullen about sex after prostate cancer. Anyway, she has just finished reading a new book about menopause which she really loved. I’ve included Fiona’s book review below.
Me & My Menopausal Vagina
By Jane Lewis (PAL Books)
What a wonderful book! Thank goodness for Jane Lewis girding her menopausal loins and writing such an enlightening expose about vaginal atrophy.
Why do we need this book? Everyone probably knows about the hot flushes and the dry vagina, right? Well, it’s not until you actually reach “the change” yourself that you discover the not-so-lovely truth. Slathering on some extra lubricant before sex won’t necessarily cut the mustard.
Facing sex after your partner has been treated for prostate cancer can be challenging to start with. Add menopause (or perimenopause, the start of the whole journey) to your existing challenges and sex gets a whole lot trickier.
Vaginal atrophy – ouch
I bought this book because I now suffer from vaginal atrophy (VA) and that causes me pain when I have sex with my husband. Even when I use a lot of lubricant and he is very gentle, my vagina struggles to open as it used to. It hurts and I really want to fix the problem – we both want to keep having penetrative sex.
[Note – since reading the book and writing this review, I am now experiencing pain-free sex again, thanks to an oestrogen pessary used once a week. Remember, this is not medical advice, just letting you know that I’ve found something that works for me.]
Jane’s book is really funny (yes, really) and has some great illustrations. Best of all, Jane is really frank, honest and she has been there.
Nothing beats information from someone who has actually experienced their subject first-hand. The book is like a user manual for women and covers everything from basic anatomy to laser treatments, moisturisers, physiotherapists and HRT.
This book is easy to read and gives lots of helpful advice. Naturally, one size never fits all, so Jane’s suggestions offer avenues to explore.
I recommend this book to all women and many men. Reading about the effects of menopause may help some couples to understand why their sex life has gone off the boil.
Where to get your copy
You can purchase Me & My Menopausal Vagina from the Pelvic Floor Exercise website for AU$24, which is where I bought my copy.
Alternatively, the book is available (in paperback or as a Kindle edition) from Amazon.
If you’d like to find out more about the book and the author, check out Jane’s website.