Intimacy Intervention: ‘Cancer Wrecked My Sex Life!’

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A woman new to menopause needs help feeling sexy again to save the sex life in her marriage. Sexpert Abiola weighs in!

Passionate Living Coach Abiola Abrams gives love, dating and self-esteem advice on the CW's Bill Cunningham Show and all over the web through her hit web series AbiolaTV. Now she wants to help you keep things spicy and fresh between the sheets. Are you in need of an intimacy intervention? Just ask Abiola!

Dear Abiola,

Thank you for your recent Essence.com advice you gave to a menopausal woman. I have never seen such positive and supportive advice around aging and sexuality. I am already researching the erotica hypnosis you mentioned.

My main issue is that my cancer diagnosis is affecting my sex life and marriage. My husband is a 55 and I am 54. 

In addition to being menopausal due to a 2006 partial hysterectomy, I battled bone marrow cancer from 2011-2013. My ovaries and tubes are still intact. After six chemotherapy treatments, I shifted my mental perspective, put God first, altered my diet, supported my health with alternative methods of healing, i.e.(viscum) mistle therapy (which I continue today via injection), mental imagery, and twice weekly dance classes, and I am, thank God, cancer-free. 

However, my flora has drastically altered.  Sex with my husband of 26 years has become a dread because I am always left with an irritation. My gynecologist suggests I am allergic to my husband’s sperm so I insist on condom use. Lubricant has become a necessity. 

Recently, I used a homeopathic soya insert called PhytoSoya for lubrication.  My husband then complained that I am too wet and that he feels nothing.  The end result for me was cystitis and a very necessary 7 day antibiotic therapy. This recent bout with cystitis included fever, frequent urination, diarrhea, headache, fatigue and an emergency room intravenous drip to replenish my liquid loss. The ER doctor thought that I was also suffering from dehydration.

To backtrack, after the last chemo treatments in 2013, any of my husband’s attempts at cunnilingus left him eventually hacking over the bathroom sink. His excuse was that he was trying to cough up any pubic hair, but I felt he was in fear of residual toxicity from my chemo.  So, oral sex stopped…at least,  between him and me.

I am grateful to God for sparing my life, and I am in deep prayer and prepared to take positive steps to spice up our sex life.  My husband’s love of wine, schnapps, beer, and food has added pounds to his frame and he gives no indication of breaking on these pleasures.  Sex always finds me on top because of his girth. Two weeks ago, however, he mounted me. This was unusual and signalled a red flag and possible infidelity.

I still sense a bit of irritation that warrants a urine analysis and perhaps further antibiotic treatment. What more can I do to reduce the fear of irritation, fear of infection? What can we do to enhance the sensual digit without penetration until I completely heal? Or is abstinence the wiser route?

H-E-L-P!

Signed,

Burning South

My Sacred Bombshell Sister,

What a majestic woman you are. You have been through the fire and are still standing. Blessings on you and your journey. You have taken your health and happiness into your own hands and healed your body. You are inspiring -- and you are just getting started!

You deserve to be happy and to have an incredible loving, healthy, and hot relationship with your husband. Have faith that a woman like you can do anything and that life is unfolding for you.

I showed your letter to a medical doctor and while she was in full support of you and your healing, she was hesitant to give advice to a cancer survivor -- correction: thriver -- on paper.

I agree wholeheartedly.

When it comes to possible levels of toxicity and what kinds of products may be healthy for you and your husband, I must direct you to speak with your oncologist.

Here are your sacred healing action steps:

1.    Kathleen Booker is a Breathwork Coach who works with cancer thrivers and other women on releasing stress, trauma, and improving relationships. If you watch Bravo’s docu-series Blood, Sweat, and Tears, Kathleen worked last season with the lovely Daisy Lewellyn through her cancer treatments. Along with members of my own family, I have personally found her work to be transformative. Contact her via BreathingForFreedom.com.

2.    Find a gynecologic oncologist. Go to the FoundationForWomensCancer.org and you may find an expert who can help you more specifically in this area. This does not constitute medical advice or a diagnosis. You must take responsibility for your own well-being.

3.    There are a few highly recommended books on cancer, recovery, and sexuality. You are not alone in what you are going through. Read these with your husband. Check out Anne Katz' Women, Cancer, Sex and Cancer and Sexual Health by John P. Mulhall.

4.    You and your husband should consider going to a sex therapist together. Cancer is difficult for both parties in a marriage. For a time, cancer will consume the relationship. Have empathy for your husband’s challenges, but explain that he doesn’t get to check out, literally or figuratively. Ask him to recommit to loving, honoring, and cherishing you and to renewing your marriage and love for each other. This will feel like a new normal. Accept this -- and ask him to join you on an exciting journey of getting to know each other again.

5.    Know that sex doesn’t just consist of intercourse and oral sex. Your choices are not just between abstinence and pain. There are all kinds of ways that you and your husband can pleasure each other while you figure out the medical portion. Make a game of it! Head over to a women-friendly sex toy site such as Babeland.com or Good Vibrations and find a range of sexy, new adult playthings to explore together.

6.    Balance your sacral chakra. Heal your sexuality like you healed your body. You know how to do this. You are an alchemist! Use the power of visualization as you did in your physical health to improve your sexual health. See your body healthy, healed, and sexy in your mind’s eye. Reconnect with your own sexuality by opening up that sacral chakra. How do you do that? Move it, gorgeous. Take sexy burlesque or pole dancing classes and fall in love with your body. The fastest way to turn anyone else on is by being very turned on by who you are yourself!

You are an incredible woman. Reclaim your power. I am holding a vision of your healthy, healed, hot and in love with your man.

Passionately yours,

Abiola

Abiola Abrams is the founder of The Bombshell Academy blog, online school and web series over at AbiolaTV. Follow her on Twitter to continue the discussion about this week's hot topic, and then email her your burning questions now. Anything you send will be posted anonymously, promise.

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Filed under: Love & Sex