beth israel deaconess medical center a harvard medical school teaching hospital

To find a doctor, call 800-667-5356 or click below:

Find a Doctor

Request an Appointment

left banner
right banner
Smaller Larger

Changed Bodies and Intimacy

Posted 10/20/2013

Posted in

  Full disclosure: I adore Joyce Wadler's pieces in the New York Times. Further disclosure, my friend, Barbara, knows this and loyally forwards them all to me so I don't ever have to miss one. I think I would love her writing anyway but, as some of you know, she interviewed us and then wrote a lovely piece about our little Maine cottage a couple of years ago, so I feel a personal connection. The one that I am sharing with you today (thanks to Barbara) is especially relevant for many of us: changed bodies from breast cancer and what that means for intimacy.

  Although I hav seen some pretty spectacular reconstructed breasts, I have also seen some less than lovely ones (and, if you missed, it go to yesterday's blog and follow the link to the photographs). I personally have a flat chest on one side, and many women who had lesser suregery have one breast that looks quite different from the other. For all of us, there is a necessary adjustment and slow acceptance of our changes and, if we are lucky, a similar and loving process with our partner.

  Here is the start of Ms. Wadler's essay. You will like it:

My Body Changed. So Did Intimacy.
I was messing around on the couch with an old boyfriend when he mentioned that he had a new sex
med and that it was stashed in the fridge because it had to stay cold.
This is the sort of info that brings things to a screaming halt, but feature writers like me don’t mind at
all, because it is so weird.
“What?” I say. “I thought this stuff was just pills.”
“They’re new little pills,” the guy says. “You have to keep them cold.”
“What if you have to travel with them?” I ask.
“I put them in a plastic bag with two ice cubes,” he tells me.
“What if you’re Lawrence of Arabia, and you want to have sex in the desert?” I say.
We are both laughing.“You don’t get to have sex in the desert,” he says.


Add your comment