#BloodCancerAwarnessMonth Q&A: "What's with all this sex since my hubby's diagnosis?"

Over the years, I've received thousands of emails about Bald in the Land of Big Hair, a memoir about my experience with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. A cancer diagnosis brings a firestorm of questions, and as a survivor, I can sympathize, but I'm not an expert; many times I just don't have the answers. So this year during Blood Cancer Awareness Month, I've asked Ashley Rodgers (Masters in Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling), to respond to some FAQs about the emotional and psychological aspects of the cancer journey. 

Q: Since my husband's cancer diagnosis we've been having sex at least once and sometimes two or three times a day. Is there something horribly wrong with us?

Ashley says: First and foremost, there is nothing wrong with the two of you. It is natural for your sex life and patterns of intimacy to change, especially during a major life event like being diagnosed with cancer. Sometimes couples find that their sexual interactions become less frequent and they rely more on emotional comfort and support from one another; others find that sexual activity brings them the strength and comfort they are looking for.

Specifically regarding your situation, is this frequency uncomfortable for you? Often times people will neglect their own feelings or needs in order to take care of the needs of their loved ones. This is a characteristic of the term co-dependency, which can often be considered a dirty word in society but it means that you care about fulfilling others’ needs before your own. It is important to recognize what your needs are and communicate them to your partner. That way you can come together as a couple with what works for you both equally.

As far as how much is too much or too little, right or wrong does not factor in here. What is right is how much is comfortable for you both as a couple. Communicate with each other and share what you need from your partner. Perhaps your magic combination is sex once a day, and lots of hugs and handholding, or maybe the Do Not Disturb sign never comes down. The idea is to have a happy, healthy sex life full of respect and communication.

For more from the American Cancer Society on how your sex life can be affected by cancer.

Joni says: That's such a sensible approach to a topic that can be kind of powder-keggy for a lot of people. Over the years, that part of the book has generated the most response from readers--both love and hate mail! Thanks for the wise words, Ashley.

We welcome your questions and comments.

*No part of this blog or the book Bald in the Land of Big Hair should be misconstrued as or substituted for medical advice.

Popular Posts

Do not compromise, for only the valiant can create. ~ Frank Capra

Browse by topic...

#Alzheimers #BloodCancerAwarenessMonth #dementia #howilibrary #MothersDay #sxsw #yougottohavefriends alternative cancer treatment Amazon American Cancer Society anger art ask ashley astroid galaxy tour autotune Bald in the Land of Big Hair bee gees bernie blood cancer Blood Cancer Awareness Month blue mercy blues brothers book review boxer rebellion cancer carnet de voyage CASUAL VACANCY cat stevens chemo brain chemotherapy chevy ssr City of Dark Magic climate change coping with cancer craig thompson Crazy for Trying crazy on you dave brubeck declaration of independence deep cotton did you feel like going like that dinah washington Django rheinhardt Dune dwight okita earth to joni english Enough About Me environment erica jong europe family far enough from heaven farewell summer fear of flying feminism First You Write free book gabby gifford garden of your mind ghostwriting gloria estefan gloria gaynor go with god gore vidal gotta get a message to you graphic novel grateful dead great words hanging by a thread happy holidays have a listen heart HIPPIE BOY homeopathic care hunger games hurricane isaac I feel better now I'll Have What She's Reading I'm So Effing 50 IFTTT iggy pop indie love Indie Pub Adventure Ingrid Ricks Instagram J.A. Konrath James Joyce jeff zaslow JK Rowling Joni's List just sayin kenton nelson kickstarter kill smartie breedlove kindle freebie lead zep League of Extraordinary Authors led zeppelin legitimate rape Leukemia Lymphoma Society life life in general lisa hamilton literary fiction love love and other natural disasters lymphoma Lymphoma Reasearch Foundation Magnus Flyte mavis staples memoir Merry Christmas most awesome thing ever mother daughter movie mr. rogers Music My Memories of a Future Life mystery Nancy G Brinker nerdgasm nina simone non sequitur nora ephron orna ross Orts and Excerpts parenting with cancer people being people photobomb Planned Parenthood poetry politics Promise Me prospect of my arrival publishing news random loveliness ray bradbury red cross Relay for Life remix research rabbit holes richard III richard linklater robin gibb Roz Morris sex shakespeare slide whistle social support Something Awful stairway to heaven stella link books stella's umbrella Sugarland survivorship Susan G Komen for the Cure sxsw sylvia plath that explains a lot The Book Biz The Hurricane Lover the last lecture The Secret Sisters theme song du jour todd akin Trailer Park travel unfairly awesome waking life william Gay woo woo writing craft yeats you've got mail