A Resource re Sexuality

Hester Hill Schnipper, LICSW, OSW-C Program Manager, Oncology Social Work

APRIL 05, 2018

  First, this is the second of two blogs that I am posting today as I try to meet the week's obligation. I am getting on a plane at 7 AM tomorrow morning and won't be able to do any work.for a while There will be a week's silence, and I will start posting again on Monday, April 16th. Although I won't be writing this blog, I will be intermittently on email, so if you would like to be in touch, please feel free to write to me at hhill@bidmc.harvard.edu

  This topic intimacy and sexuality. As we all know and as I have often written, a cancer diagnosis and treatment is never a sexual aide. In a greater or lesser degree, this experience impacts everyone's intimate relationship. There can be changes due to surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, or other systemic treatments. Everyone is different and the impact will vary enormously from person to person, even among people who have a similar diagnosis and treatment plan. 

  I met for the first time this morning with a lovely woman who is nearing the end of treatment for breast cancer. She expressed a lot of concern about this part of her life as she is recently divorced and hoping to someday have a loving partner. We talked about how dating is never easy, even when you are 20, and how it is more difficult in mid-life. Even without cancer, she would be re-entering the dating world with a family and a history. I reminded her that any age-appropriate man will also have personal baggage and won't have the same body he had in college. It is easy to say that lightly, and much harder to not worry about it.  It was more important to reassure her that I have worked with many single women during and post cancer, and most of them have had positive dating experiences. Yes, I have heard a few stories about men who bolted, but many more about men (or women) who were loving and supportive.

  This is an introduction to a reminder about all the wonderful resources available at Living Beyond Breast Cancer. I am going to give you information about an upcoming webinar. If you scroll further down on their site, you will come to listings of previous programs that are available to download or to hear. Almost all of the information is equally relevant to people who have had other cancer diagnoses and experiences.

Under the Covers: Sex, Intimacy, and Breast Cancer

 A breast cancer diagnosis and its treatments can take a toll on your intimate relationships and sexual function.  

Join us for a free one-hour webinar, presented by our Young Women’s Initiative, to hear from other women like you and from our expert, Anne Katz, RN, PhD, a clinical nurse specialist and sexuality counselor. We will discuss the latest research looking into easing side effects that can impact sexual arousal, comfort and pleasure, and share strategies for improving communication with your partner and health care providers to get the support you need.

We will take questions during the last 10 minutes of the program via phone and online chat.

Join us for a free one-hour webinar, presented by our Young Women’s Initiative, to hear from other women like you and from our expert, Anne Katz, RN, PhD, a clinical nurse specialist and sexuality counselor. We will discuss the latest research looking into easing side effects that can impact sexual arousal, comfort and pleasure, and share strategies for improving communication with your partner and health care providers to get the support you need.

We will take questions during the last 10 minutes of the program via phone and online chat.

http://lbbc.org/underthecovers

Under the Covers: Sex, Intimacy and Breast Cancer

nder the Covers: Sex, Intimacy and Breast Cancer