Never too Late for Better Sex

 

 “Remember, sex is like a chinese dinner. It ain’t over’ till you both get your cookie.”

 Alec Baldwin

 

 A 55 year old man whom I will call Stathis was referred to me by a urologist for psychological treatment because he had difficulty maintaining an erection.

The urologist wasn’t able to detect any medical cause for Stathi’s erectile dysfunction. And

Thus, he  suspected that it may be psychological.

Stathis had never been married but he was presently involved in  a five- month  intimate relationship with a 53- year-old woman who had never married either..

As we talked he revealed that he  engaged in sex with his partner sporadically and that she never refused him when he initiated it.

Although,  he was obviously uncomfortable discussing his sex life with a total stranger,  I had to request a step-by-step description of his sexual activities.

What came to light  following his descriptions was a very unusual pattern. Stathis skipped foreplay altogether, and immediately proceeded to intercourse.

 

Avoidance

However, because his partner was not aroused and lubricated, he was unable to penetrate her.

His efforts  resulted in painful abrasions to the woman and then he would  lose his erection.

They would then abstain from sex for days at a time- avoiding another disappointing performance .

Until the next time.

He was very fond of the woman and wanted to ask her to marry him but he was afraid that she would refuse him because of his sexual dysfunction. Because of his embarrassment in discussing sexual issues, he was reluctant when I suggested that he bring his partner with him in our next session.  Nevertheless, he did.  I realized that in spite of their advanced ages they both were sexually inexperienced.

The first joint session with them was quite straightforward. It  provided  basic education about  sexual functioning, altering deep-seated myths about sex, and increasing communication. Then I asked them to commit to daily sessions over a two-week period.

The goal of these sessions was to eliminate performance anxiety.

 

Just have fun

I instructed the couple to refrain from intercourse  and simply  explore and enjoy each other’s body through touching, kissing, hugging and massaging. After successfully accomplishing this phase , the couple was instructed to move to genital pleasuring but with a ban on orgasm and intercourse. The instructions were clear: enjoy each other and be playful.

Eventually we established that they were ready to attempt intercourse. However, this stage was broken down into two parts. The first entailed partial penetration and both genital and non-genital pleasuring.  And this limitation lasted for a few days.

After their two-week intensive sex therapy program,  the couple was much more relaxed with each other and full intercourse was accomplished on a regular basis.