Suddenly the Man You Once Were is not the Man You Are Now
One Midlife Bachelor’s Experience …
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The Psychiatrist’s Input
If you have never seen a psychiatrist before, then recognize that they differ significantly from psychologists. A psychologist will only talk you through your problems. A psychiatrist will also talk with you – but the psychiatrist has the ability to control things through chemistry. In other words, a psychiatrist will prescribe you specific medications to help you deal with whatever issue you have. I see a truly great psychiatrist. The guy is very understanding and knowledgeable about absolutely everything. I started seeing him roughly five years ago to help me deal with occasional anxiety that I would experience – particularly when I had either very important speeches or presentations to give at work, or when I had a very negative situation I had to deal with at work, or at home. For years (most of my adult life until my mid to late thirties), I had always powered my way through any such presentation or difficult situation. My problem was that when I found myself in such a highly stressful (but self-imposed) difficult situation, I would often get visibly nervous … I would sweat, turn red, my speech would become choppy, my heart would race … I was a nervous wreck at such times, and I didn’t like the way it made me look in front of others.
Five years or so ago, this great psychiatrist knew exactly what to do about my “performance anxiety”, as it is called. He prescribed me two drugs – one was Inderal, and the other was Valium. Inderal is what is known as a “beta blocker”, and it basically removes the “fight or flight” component of stress … so that the person can think and respond clearly in times of stress. I have to say that this particular drug performed a miracle on me – it made me into a relaxed individual in cases where previously I would have been a nervous wreck. Valium is a mild tranquilizer that would serve to simply slow me down if the stress of an impending situation was causing me undue grief. I take these medications very infrequently – maybe twice per month max … so in the opinion of both the urologist and also the psychiatrist, they were not a factor with respect to my issues with E.D. or libido. [Inderal can certainly have sexual side effects when taken regularly – but not once or twice each month, I am told.]
Throughout the entire time that I was going through all the medical treatments with the “quick cure” clinic, then the family doctor, then the urologist … I was also talking to this psychiatrist. From a chemistry standpoint, the only thing he was willing to prescribe for me was Viagra® – but I was already receiving prescriptions for that from the urologist. The psychiatrist told me was that I should consider alternative approaches like sexual counseling, plus maybe exercising more. He asked me if I had ever considered smoking marijuana – which made me laugh because I had done a fair amount of that in my younger years. These days the company I work for would fire me for being a marijuana user – plus my girlfriend is very anti-drug … so politically Mary J was one therapy I would not be able to experiment with.
The Boredom Factor? I visit the psychiatrist roughly every four months. And in addition to what I just described as his input, he also suggested that what may be going on with me is related to the loss of the “newness” of the relationship with my girlfriend. In other words, we talked at length about how I have been a bachelor for an extended period of time … and for whatever reason, I have almost always changed girlfriends every six months or less. He told me that when one has a new sexual partner, everything is new and exciting – and that newness and excitement has a particular brain chemistry associated with it. Over time, that chemistry effectively returns to normal – and the excitement factor diminishes. The result can be that love between two people is not necessarily based on the act of making love … but that sex becomes more incidental to the relationship (rather than the focus of it). The psychiatrist did not explain it to me just this way – that is my interpretation of what he communicated to me over the course of several visits. Quite honestly, I buy into everything he said – as it makes a lot of sense.
How do I know that some part of my problem is simply related to things calming down between me and my girlfriend of three years? Well I tried an experiment to see if I would become excited by a different woman. No – I did not cheat on my girlfriend … that would be bad karma. What I did do was view several adult videos that featured white and Latina women with large boobs and big asses … which is what I’m often most attracted to personally. Guess what? I had no issue whatsoever achieving an erection – without taking Viagra® or anything. One other thing occurred that helped convince me that my hormone problem had been minimized, and that boredom was partly the issue – I visited a strip club for a friend’s bachelor party. While at the strip club, a mid-thirties Latina stripper (with big boobs and a big ass) came up to me, and started dancing around me. Yes – I paid her for a lap dance. And yes – I had an absolutely raging erection the entire time. No – nothing came of it … it was simply some harmless bachelor party fun. But it once again proved to me that in at least some capacity, I was back in terms of my ability to become erect without taking a pill. Praise the Lord!
The main advice that the psychiatrist had for me was to make more non-love-making physical contact with my girlfriend … and see if that generates the intimacy that leads to more frequent sex. Remember the chemistry is different with someone who has been around for a long-time … so there is not necessarily the chemical rush associated with a new sex partner. This whole approach that he suggested was very foreign to me. I had never kept a girlfriend long enough to worry about a possible loss of the newness … and he said that this may be due to some predisposition I personally have. In other words, through either genetics or life experience or both, something makes me lose interest in a woman who has been with me for a long period of time. How do I work my way around this obstacle? I really don’t know yet – it honestly is something I still struggle with. Not understanding what was going on with me medically and psychologically with respect to E.D. over the past two years or so has been an enormous issue for me to deal with. Now I think I understand myself well enough to know that I basically have two choices – either go back to my previous approach of changing girlfriends every six months, or try to navigate my current and very valuable relationship with my girlfriend through this unique period of my life. Everything could change tomorrow, but today I’m going to stick with my girlfriend – she has been so patient and understanding with me … there are few women out there (especially in Southern California) that would have stuck with me throughout this ordeal.
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