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Discontinued Sex Life

Posted: Thu Feb 20, 2014 5:09 am
There has been plenty of good advice already,   are you able to do exercise.   If you are able to do some sort of physical exercise so you may appear to your wife as not so helpless and prove that the bag will stay on when doing something physical.    I  still ride surfboards and I have had an ileostomy for 15 years.   The stoma never gets hurt and the board is much harder than another persons body.
Its difficult for your wife to get her head around the change, but its worth trying to look more healthy and physical if you know what I mean.

All the best
Posted: Thu Feb 20, 2014 9:06 am
Wow, sorry to hear about your frustration concerning your depleted sexual activity since you have the ileostomy.  I recommend you read Brenda Elsaghers book: "Its in The Bag and Under the Covers."   It is the sharing of personal stories by people with ostomies and their significant others and how they dealt (or chose not to deal) with life with an ostomy.   Sorry you are going through this type rejection when you probably need more feelings of acceptance than ever before.
* Certified Wound,Ostomy, Continence Nurse (CWOCN)
* Registered Nurse
* Bachelor of Science in Nursing
* Creator of the "Anatomical Apron"
Clinical Instructor for WCEI
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Posted: Thu Feb 20, 2014 12:13 pm
OK, I am a 61 year young WOMAN with a permanent ileostomy since 1990.  I am responding because during intercourse, I prefer to be on top.  I don't know any reason you can't have intercourse, just because of the bag.  Only one time in my life, did my bag come off during intercourse, and we just both laughed it off.  If you have no pain, I'd give it a try to see if there are any negative after effects.  I don't believe there will be.  Go for it!
  Past Member
Posted: Thu Feb 20, 2014 1:27 pm
Cat I am not trained in the mental field, but I personally have a permanent attachment so I know all the bad things that can happen. I honestly feel since I am been graced with having a lovely wife and two boys for the last thirty years that my wife saw me when I had to deal with my illness that caused the problems that the attachment is a lot easier on both or us. I did take psychology and psychiatry classes in college, but I leave all that to a friend who has a doctorate in both

I know that you know about the wraps, but I can honestly say since I hate the attachment I think I am more apt to be more sensitive about it then my wife. My sex life because of the damage the surgery caused to my nerves has made it impossible for me to get an errection without drugs which that itself takes away from the excitement for my wife since even though she excites me it doesn't show unless I take the drugs. Now taking it one step further I have MS which made it so the little blue pill wouldn't work so I have to use a shot to get an errection which really makes it harder to make things more natural.

I love my wife, but knowing how bad things were before my colostomy I think you are extremely lucky that you can get a reversal. Wraps work great and the chances of your bag falling off is very unlikely, but conquering that mental block I feel is something you have to deal with yourself. I am sure your wife doesn't like seeing it there, but if you can make things more appealing yourself I am sure you can get where you want to be in your relationship.

I know its difficult, but If you can act like the attachment isn't there then you can convince your wife things haven 't changed. I know you will get the reversal soon, but if I were you I would honestly go to someone in one of the mental fields I mentioned above since I am sure they could help you do things to keep your marriage together.

I am a little crazy since I can somehow find the funnier ways of things that happen to me even when My MS makes things even harder to deal with things. I am alive, and even though I cannot do the things I could when I was younger I just don't let things tear me apart mentally which I know sounds crazy
Posted: Thu Feb 20, 2014 4:12 pm
This isn't what you want to hear, but when I had my original ileostomy, I was 27 and single.  My surgeon said to me "Honey, I know this is hard, but it's going to be your opportunity to separate the men from the boys."
Posted: Thu Feb 20, 2014 7:43 pm
I have completely lost all my sexual urges since I had my surgery 4 years ago.. I actually get physically sick at the thoughts of having sex.. My husband, on the other hand, has not lost any of his urges,, he is not bothered at all by my stoma and appliance.. has anyone else had this happen to them after surgery??
Posted: Fri Feb 21, 2014 12:27 am
beatmaid wrote:
I have completely lost all my sexual urges since I had my surgery

Beat, I am reminded of the old 'post hoc, propter hoc' fallacy which argues that because two events occurred in succession, the former event caused the latter event. I suspect that there may be other factors at play here. Maybe you should consider counseling. Life is too short to waste going down blind alleys.
Posted: Fri Feb 21, 2014 3:10 am
Firstly I think everyone has been very frank and honest. I don't believe that having a stoma would be the sole cause of lack of sexual intimacy, there must be some other underlying reason which has provided an excuse. Primeboy put it very succinctly and I value his opinion, he seems to cut through all the BS and get to the point. We all respond differently and not always correctly, but love should overcome any problems, it should not condemn, nor judge, or keep account of rights and wrongs. I don't have a solution but best wishes and I hope you get to the bottom of things.
Posted: Fri Feb 21, 2014 10:04 am
Cattters...............I have one question........Are you changing your appliance or is the wife changing the appliance?.........Michael
Posted: Fri Feb 21, 2014 10:43 am
lorraine-cooper1960,,THANK YOU for your responses.. I have been to counsellors and am still going,, I feel that I should add a bit more to my history. I originally went in the hospital to have a hernia repaired. All seemed to have gone well. Post op I was walking around, slowly, but up and around. The surgery was on a Friday and the surgeon said that I could go home on Sunday if | continued  on at that rate of recovery. Late into  Saturday, I began to have terrible pain in my abdomen, the pain medication I was receiving was useless. As the hours went on the pain became disabling. I could no longer walk around, or even sit up! the pain was excruciating. I felt the need to move my bowels, but it was an overwhelming pain. Finally, early Sunday morning, a guardian angel of a resident, realized that something desperately wrong was going on, I was transferred to the ICU. As they were prepping me to go back to the OR for exploratory surgery, I told the nurse that I felt like I was going to burst if she turned me on my side. She said she would turn me the other way.. again I said I am going to burst. Being as gentle as they could, they turned me, and the feeling that I was going to burst was gone,,,because apparently something did burst, and I felt a lot more pain, and then no pain, but a warm flood was rushing from my body. My bowel had ruptured!!! I do not have much memory of the next 7 weeks, other than I was rushed to the or. apparently during my original surgery, my bowel was nicked and a clot formed and continued to grow,(the feeling I was going to burst).Any way I had  4 more life saving surgeries over the next 9 days, I was on life-support and in ICU for 7 weeks, in the hospital for 7 months. I had to relearn just about everything from chewing, to swallowing, to breathe on my own, walk, hold a spoon,, etc...I had a open wound on my abdomen stretching from hip to hip, with the ostomy in between. They treated the woun

d with a would vac, from Sept until Jan, when they figured it was closed as much as it would on its own. then I had a skin graft,  the graft site was my left thigh. 4 inches by 8 inches. that should give you an idea of the scar on my abdomen. The original hernia surgery of plugs and mesh, had to be removed because of the infection from my burst bowel. So that area is very nish, and I should wear a protective  hernia belt but it is in the same site as my ostomy.  My entire large bowel was removed, my spleen, my gall bladder, my uterus, and all but 4 feet of my small intestine. I was on dialysis, ventilator, you name the machine. I was on it. I am not telling this story as "Poor me" This is not a story of woe is me,, it is the true life happenings of my life. I am trying to over come my issues, but I haven't found the answer yet.. I asked the doctor was there such a thing as a female equivalent to Cialis,,,his response, "Drink some beer, and let him have his way".. Prior to this all happening to me, we had a very active sex life, I would initiate escapades at the most unexpected times,, as would my husband. My dresser drawer was full of beautiful nighties, etc.. So to go from that to nothing is puzzling to say the least.. talking to the counsellor, going on retreats, hormone patches, etc. has done ZERO to change me... " "Giving in" as the doctor suggests, as did a couple of counsellors, does nothing for me. I do the best I can to accommodate my husbands wants/needs,, but as I said before, the thought of it makes me physically sick,,,I even feel violated after sex that I agreed to have!!!!, and I do my best not to let my husband know how SICK the act makes me.. it is not his fault, I know that.. that is why I try to accommodate him. He is an amazing, patient man and takes what he can get without complaining..but he deserves better than a wife who needs to take something to get thru it and take something else to get over it... I am ecstatic when it is over because I know that I am going to be left alone for a maybe a week,, that is terrible way to feel and live.. I went from planning our next sexcapade, to me, trying to avoid intimate contact at all costs, it horrible, but I can't help it!!
Posted: Fri Feb 21, 2014 1:02 pm
[quote="beatmaid I had to relearn just about everything from chewing, to swallowing, to breathe on my own, walk, hold a spoon,, etc...I asked the doctor was there such a thing as a female equivalent to Cialis,,,his response, "Drink some beer, and let him have his way"..  [/quote]

Since you had to relearn just about everything, Beat, I assume that you had to relearn intimacy as well. This could take time. Your doctor's advice about drinking beer then spreading your legs seems consistent with Neanderthal medical protocols. I am not impressed with the quality of the medical care you have received from the very beginning. If your insurance permits, you may want to have your medical/surgical history and records reviewed by a team of experts at some top university or renowned regional medical center. You have been through a lot and you and your husband deserve better.
  Past Member
Posted: Fri Feb 21, 2014 3:47 pm
I think it is really sad that your wife can't overcome this stigma related to your bag. There are small bags to use for intimacy as well as bag covers that would disguise the bag. My message to her is "GET OVER IT!"  Your still the same guy you were before the ostomy.  It's really her problem not yours. I would do whatever it takes to relieve yourself.
Posted: Sat Feb 22, 2014 6:48 am
Hi beatmaid, oh my Lord you really have gone through it. Most of it I can relate to due to personal experience. As I said before NO ONE not a single sole should judge another person. There are many reasons for the way we and others respond to situations and it is a very complex problem. Primeboy, that was excellent information and I agree. Beatmaid I am going to message you privately as I have some things to share that I prefer not to put in the public arena. But continue to be strong, remember that you are loved and contrary to some people who believe life without sex is incomprehensible, they will have to one day face this due to one thing or another. Some people are extremely lucky and continue to have a very active sex life in to their dotage but most don't. I will message you now, and I wish you peace of mind and soul with whatever you choose or can compromise with. To be content where you are (meaning in our personal life) and to be tolerant of our/others situation and feelings is a precious commodity because all to often we want what we cannot have or hope to achieve, or are not content with our life for many reasons. I cling to my belief in God and I hope you don't find me presumptuous when i quote a couple of verses that give me peace of mind:

Do not be anxious over anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication along with thanksgiving let your petitions be known to God and the peace of God that excels all thought will guard your hearts and your mental powers by means of Christ Jesus Phillipians 4:6&7. Plus:
Peace I leave with you; My [own] peace I now give and bequeath to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. [Stop allowing yourselves to be agitated and disturbed; and do not permit yourselves to be fearful and intimidated and cowardly and unsettled.] (John 14:27 AMP)
Sincerely Lorraine
Posted: Sun Feb 23, 2014 3:52 am
I have pretty much accepted my fate and its time to move forward now. Love conquers all so i will just wait it out and be as supportive as i can. I would still much prefer a loving caring wife without the sex temporarily to a wife with the sex but without some of the caring and devotedness to my ongoing stoma and general health. I just think my wife is having a harder time that me adjusting to the changed circumstances as well as worrying about me being sore and careful with lifting etc til im 100% over the surgery. It must be a big mental burden to carry so i will just try and help her adjust to the situation without any added pressure of me needing sex. No sex for 6-7 months is a small price to pay for a continuing very happy marriage and a long future together. i might just get cranky and frustrated from time to time lol  
Posted: Sun Feb 23, 2014 9:20 am

Catttters, I am very moved that you have reached a place in your life where you can understand your lovely wife's feelings. She doesn't love you less, she is just very confused where the care and nursing part of her day has turned in to an Ooh baby moment.
I understand from a professional nursing standpoint that she had to be your nurse for a period of time. I personally have always discussed very frankly with my patients on discharge if they are able to manage the care themselves, I always say if you feel you can't for any reason, medically, physically or psychological reasons then to have a professional home care nurse visit and tend to the "business". I know this flies in the wind in today's society where health care costs are so high but especially for women the lines can become blurred over roles. I also say this for the reason that it carries over to the bedroom in most cases. I say this to women as well to get help but not from their husband for the same reason. Luckily my ever loving husband has lived with medical journals, papers, research and DVDs for skills maintenance so he thought it was a walk in the park compared to that. I have been guilty of having a medical text book open at the dinner table (yes I know I was wrong in every way) but sometimes to keep up you have to do what you have to do.
It will get better and as you said you are happy to have a wife who loves you and looks out for you, I'm sure that your intimate moments will return, so my freind and your lovely wife, well done and this will soon be but a memory. Lorraine  
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