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Sex life on hold

Posted by honestabe, on Wed Jul 11, 2018 1:59 pm

Sorry, am enjoying being intimate more than anytime in my life! My partner excepts my colostomy and we have a ball!

Reply by sherileo, on Tue Jul 17, 2018 11:01 pm

I can’t soeak for your partner...but I haven’t entered into, or even tried to pursue any kind of relationships or intimacy since my surgery a year ago. My body has changed, this is true...but psychologically...because it wasn’t my choice and came with no warning...having an ostomy wasn’t something I’d ever imagined. I used to model, and loved my figure.

i lost a lot of weight, gained most of it back, but my shape isn’t the same, and I still have trouble even looking down at my stomach. I’m so uncomfortable with it that I won’t even put myself in a situation where someone can see it. I wear baggy clothes...perhaps your partner is having trouble also accepting this new body despite you being positive. You don’t feel sexy at all, cause you look down and think “I’m sick”.

my ex, who was a doctor, broke up with me after my surgery...while I was still in the hospital...over text. I’m sure that didn’t help my situation either.

Reply by honestabe, on Wed Jul 18, 2018 8:21 am

Hello, you appear to be a very attractive woman! I have had colostomy for 4 years! It has saved my life! Was on 4 dating sites and dated numerous women until I met the one that is moving in with me! Am sorry you feel the way you do about your ostomy! Don’t understand why people can’t accept it and enjoy life! My neighbor is married and has had ostomy for 30 years! I believe your ex was totally wrong if he left you because of ostomy!

Reply by freedancer, on Thu Jul 19, 2018 11:27 pm

If you love him, don't give up.  Continue to read up on the subject and continue to be possitive toward him. He needs you now more than ever as he is in a fragile state with the recent Cancer and temporary ostomy.  Be patient and listen to him. Ask if you can help him in any way. Continue to let him know that you still find him atractive and that the bag does not make you love him any less.  Let him know you are present for him and anything he may need.  The worst thing you could do right now is abandon him physically, emotionally or mentally.  When I had my emergency surgery, I cried for a week.  I felt my life was over but I had the love and caring of my friends and family and this awesome site.  It took a while, but I am doing so much better.  I left my spouse recently but it had nothing to do with my ostomy.  It had been coming for a long time, I just chose to stay with hopes he would change but he did not.  You are lucky because you have someone to love so if you love him, don't give up on him.  Good luck!  I hope things get better for you!!

Reply by honestabe, on Thu Jul 19, 2018 11:32 pm

Agree,  if he loves you everything will be ok! Is with me!

Reply by Grosse Pointer, on Tue Jul 24, 2018 10:34 pm

Don't wait. You should both know now if arousal is possible. It's not too "hard" to find out. If your partner is impotent, there are other options to learn about. I knew an urostomate that was impotent postop but then he had a penile implant that he and his wife were happy to have.

Reply by WilcoFan, on Wed Sep 19, 2018 8:04 pm

I had colostomy surgery done and it pretty much ended my sex life.  It resulted in impotency and I'm at the point now of thinking about getting a penile implant 

Reply by honestabe, on Wed Sep 19, 2018 8:50 pm

No, go to urologist and get trimix injections! With auto injector! Am 67 and sex is better now than in 20s! I have ed with colostomy! Am tired of telling people about this and not agreeing to do it! There is no pain , can go for hours!

Reply by Bryce, on Tue Sep 25, 2018 4:08 pm
You're right Abe!
Reply by honestabe, on Tue Sep 25, 2018 4:15 pm

Yes, it’s sweet!

Reply by HeyHey, on Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:36 am
Get an ostomy wrap to wear. Then it is out of the way. Hope he can get over his reluctance.
Reply by honestabe, on Fri Jan 10, 2020 8:20 pm

Wish I could talk to you in person! Most women don’t even know I have colostomy! Ones that do, could care less! Do what ya got to do! Only problem I have is my back and neuropathy! Your hubby should be glad he’s breathing! No reason not to be intimate! Good luck!

Mertle Dove wrote:

Thank you so much to everyone who has replied to my post - I really do appreciate everyone’s  comments. I would just clarify that I know it’s early days yet, and I do understand that my partner feels unable to participate in sex at the moment, it’s more the fact that he’s told me in no uncertain terms that it will NEVER happen while he has the bag. He’s not even willing to entertain the idea.

I’m also aware that if he does get the reversal, that in itself could cause a lot of issues, which may have the same or worse negative effect on body image. However, in his head, all he can focus on is getting it reversed, and nothing I can do or say can get him to see it any differently right now. So, yes, for his sake, I hope he does get the reversal as it’s what he wants. From my point of view, as long as he were able to eventually comes to terms with it, it would make no difference if he kept the illeostomy permanently .... except maybe if he decided this meant no sex ever again!

NJ Bain - your 2 cents was very frank but certainly not talking out of your arse! You’re right that I do need to make it clear to him that I have needs too. I feel totally rejected in respect of all forms of intimacy - even hugging and kissing are off the menu. I miss just getting close and feel forbidden from touching him at all. Its very lonely.

Hillbilly Bee - I can definitely stay loving and compassionate for a long time yet. I think I need to try focusing on the now rather than the future. My best friend tends to be my “counselling” and she did point out that looking on the good things that have happened, like the fact that he’s had the operation to remove the cancer and it’s been a success, are better than worrying about negatives which may very well resolve themselves in time. 

Jenerprise - I so hope you are right that he probably just needs time to get over it all. I think it just came as such a shock to me when he announced his intention not to come anywhere near me until after the reversal that I never stopped to think it might just be his way of asking for some space to get over what he’s been through.

NewInMexico - My partner’s diagnosis of rectal cancer was approximately 3 months prior to his surgery. He had no symptoms beforehand and only a routine screening picked it up, so yes, massive shock to the system. His late wife died of cancer 18 years ago, so I’m sure he was also thinking of that and the effect his illness would have on his four children. To be honest the last four months have been the worst of my life, worrying what the future would hold, but I seem to react by wanting more closeness in our relationship, while he reacted with distance. You are correct that I am assuming we may never have sex ever again (dramatic!) and I should be viewing it as WHEN, and when he is ready (not if). And thank you for your suggestions regarding sex. I need to get a bit braver myself and go for your last suggestion, if I dare... But nothing ventured nothing gained, so I will try.

Buffi - the reversal and my partner’s high hopes for it is actually worrying me more than the bag. There are so many posts about LARS on-line, but he never goes on the internet or does any research on things the way I do, so he hasn’t read about all the possible issues! He won’t even read the leaflets the hospital gave him!

No Fritoes? - I totally get where you are coming from. Cancer never really goes away, even when you’ve been given the all clear. It’s one of those diseases where just the word has almost come to mean death sentence, even though it’s really not! Do not look on your bag as a smelly unwelcome reminder of impending death, in actual fact it’s your very hope for giving you every chance at being at your 14 years olds high school graduation, and I’m sure it’s not smelly to anyone else, that’s just your being self conscious of it. With regard to your husband, I would really urge you to think about trying sex with your husband again, or at least let him know you just need a bit more time/patience to get there. You don’t want to lose that intimacy altogether. And from the partner’s point of view I really can understand how lonely it feels. I’ll give your suggestion a go and I hope you can give mine a go too!

Immarsh - Thank you for the advice. I will try, but to be honest, at the moment I’m scared to even attempt touching him as I know he doesn’t want it. I also know how rejected I can feel when he rejects my advances, so not sure I’m brave enough until he gives the OK (which he hasn’t). Holding hands is OK but any more than that and he tenses up. Hopefully things will get better in the next few weeks and we can start taking things slowly, as you say, I’d like him to see me as touchable, let alone me touching him.

Mikegnv - thank you for the book suggestion, I’ll certainly look that one up.

Honestabe - I’m assuming from your post that your bowel habits were worse before having the bag? For my partner he never had any symptoms prior to rectal cancer diagnosis, so the bag has been a sudden unwelcome shock. You sound very confident and I think this is what my partner is lacking at the moment. Hopefully it will come with time.


I think for now I’m going to leave my partner be for a few weeks and see how things go. If he still feels the same this time next month, then I’ll try to explain my own needs and see where we go from there. In the meantime you are all wonderful counsellors and I’m sure I’ll be chatting to you a lot!


Mertle x

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