Whether you are struggling with erectile dysfunction (or ED) yourself or your partner is, finding a way to talk about it openly in any relationship is important. Not only is honest and regular communication in general important to having a healthy relationship, but when it comes to sex and intimacy those conversations become even more critical. Hiding something like ED, or avoiding it in conversation, only brings you further apart from your partner, which, in turn, adds to more complications in your love life.
Of course, finding a way to talk about ED isn’t easy. Because it’s so personal, and because there’s such a negative stigma around it, many men are embarrassed about it, doing everything they can to avoid discussing it, sometimes even being in complete denial that it’s an issue. That means that, when it comes to discussing ED as a couple, it’s important to recognize that it is common. (According to latest statistics, 40% of men over 40 will be dealing with erectile dysfunction.)
While ED can feel isolating because it’s difficult to discuss, knowing that you have a committed partner who is there to support you makes a big difference. By opening up to your partner so that you can discuss ED, you’ll find that you not only feel better mentally and emotionally, but also that this openness can actually dramatically help the physical effects of ED - so much of our physical lives really is connected to how we’re thinking!
So, while many men will try to hide their struggles with ED, often going behind their partners’ backs in order to get medication to help, the best thing really is to start an open and honest conversation with your partner. After all, intimacy and sex is something that you both engage in, which is why it’s so important to have both people involved.
Want to start the conversation about ED but aren’t sure how? Here are three effective strategies for communicating about erectile dysfunction with your partner…
Understanding that erectile dysfunction takes a toll psychologically as much as it does physically is a great way to start a conversation. Both of you will have an experience to share, which is why making time to allow each of you to be heard is so valuable. You’ll start to notice that the more you talk honestly about ED, the more supported you both will feel - and the better everything will get!