What I’m re­ally think­ing The Vi­a­gra user

The Guardian Weekly - - Mind & Relationships -

We have had a good sex­ual re­la­tion­ship for nearly 50 years – not bad go­ing when you’re in your 70s. After three chil­dren came the con­tra­cep­tive pill, a won­der­ful pe­riod in our re­la­tion­ship. You felt com­pletely free to en­joy mak­ing love, and the pill re­laxed you so much that reach­ing or­gasm was scarcely ever a prob­lem. Then the menopause ar­rived and the pill could be aban­doned. At the same time my sex drive be­gan to di­min­ish. Since we had both en­joyed sex so much, we wanted to con­tinue. The an­swer was for me to take Vi­a­gra.

At first, it was half a pill. After six months, two-thirds. Then three-quar­ters, un­til fi­nally I had to take a whole one. For a while it seemed that a glo­ri­ous new lease of life had be­gun. But I no­ticed I would be tired out for half a day after tak­ing the pill. One day, I made the mis­take of men­tion­ing this. You were wor­ried sick that I’d sud­denly drop dead as both our fa­thers did: they died with no warn­ing at 49 and 50. You have a men­tal list of women friends whose hus­bands in­ex­pli­ca­bly and sud­denly died. You told me we’d had a bet­ter sex life than most of your friends, and that at my age I shouldn’t put my life at risk. I ar­gued that my tired­ness after tak­ing the pill was no worse than how I felt after a game of squash, a longish walk in the coun­try or dig­ging over the veg­etable plot. I want to go on tak­ing the pill un­til it doesn’t work for me. I’m not ready for such a dra­matic change in our re­la­tion­ship – but you clearly are. The mat­ter rests there, like a huge, in­vis­i­ble wall.

Tell us what you’re re­ally think­ing at mind@the­guardian.com

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