Sad senior man sitting at table

I’m a 46-year-old heterosexual man. I met my ex-wife when I was 19. We were together for 24 years, married for 20. We were sexually active with one another throughout the first 19 years. We grew sexually together while exploring on different things we liked, both as givers and receivers.

There was something in our relationship that always disturbed me. She was sexually abused as a child. I was immature and thought I could be her knight in shining armor and save her. So, everything I did in the marriage was so she didn’t trip and stumble. With the mindset of, “If I kept her side of the street clean for her, then my life would be easier.” Boy was I wrong. That turned into a 20-year mess.

Our struggles left left me emotionally bankrupt and physically exhausted. I developed erectile dysfunction. That happened 10 years ago when I was 35.

I want to share something very intimate with you. I am now diving in deep inside myself in an effort to heal and to try and win back my manhood and sexuality.

One night 8 or 9 years ago, my ex-wife and I were “fooling around.” She grabbed my erection and stroked it. In that moment, she got REALLY turned on and aroused, and squeezed my shaft as hard as she could. To me, it felt like ALL the blood in my penis was forced to the tip and I thought I was going to look down and see blood oozing out of the pores on the head of my penis. In short, it hurt like hell. I pulled back and said, “What the hell was that for?” She replied, “Oh, suck it up,” all nonchalant. I brought it to her attention one other time (a few years later) and I got  the same response: “Stop being a baby.”

Well, I’m now 8 or 10 years past that incident and have struggled with erectile dysfunction through my late 30’s and 40’s to the point where I lost my morning erections as well.

My urologist prescribed Cialis, which worked, but I want to TRULY heal whatever the issue is. I can’t figure out if it’s mental, physical or both.

We’ve been divorced now for 3.5 years. I should mention that I’ve been sober for 5 years as well. About 8 months ago I eliminated caffeine from my diet. I also stopped the  Cialis.

I’m 5’11” and 175 lbs. I’m active. I walk, run, jog, hike, surf, ride my bike, play volleyball, tennis, ride motocross dirt bikes in the woods, and swim. Not all in one day, but lots of exercise every week.

I have been taking nitric oxide and citrulline supplements along with Vitamin B6, B12, C, Zinc, E, Red Yeast to take the place of the statin I was taking, grape seed and beet root supplements for blood flow and heart health. Low and behold, I am now waking up with morning erections consistently…and they’re good hard erections. I’m super happy to be on my way.

I have found a new companion who I absolutely adore. We are building something beautiful and taking our time doing so. In our sexual encounters I have not been able to get erections since I’ve been off Cialis, except twice, but those two were really weak and premature ejaculation occurred both times.

Long story short, I am desperate to heal. My girlfriend has been super-patient and I take the time to get her off every time now…so, that’s been a positive. And, my erections are not about me cumming and getting off.We want to be completely available for one another. We want her to please me in the same way I please her. It’s about making love. At 46, I realize that making love may not involve intercourse…but, I’d like that option back.

I’m wondering if there is some sexual trauma that I have buried deep inside me. Or, if my manhood was somehow stripped away when I was married those 20 years.

Does any of this make any sense? Do you have any advice for a 46-year-old healthy male who desires intimacy and connection over every other passion in his life?


  • Michael Castleman says:

    It sounds to me that you’re ALMOST healed already. You’re sober, trim, physically active, and in love. All those accomplishments help heal the soul and enable great sex. The fact that Cialis worked shows there’s nothing physically wrong with your penis or sexual responsiveness. And you understand that sex involves more than intercourse. All good!

    But you’re still emotionally distressed from your marriage and history of ED. Fortunately, your distress can be relieved, and as it resolves, I would expect you to function well sexually without the Cialis, and have intercourse without premature ejaculation.

    I urge you and your new love to consult a sex therapist together. I’m confident that with a few months of weekly sessions you’ll get to where you want to be. If you’re unfamiliar with sex therapy, sex therapists are psychotherapists with extra training in sexual issues, who can provide relationship therapy as well as science-based insights into sexual issues and problems. Sex therapists do NOT have sex with you and do NOT watch you have sex. They rely on face-to-face conversations. They impart sex information and lovemaking insights, and often assign “homework.” Sex therapy typically lasts several months. Costs vary, but expect $200-300/hour. Some providers discount fees for those who can’t afford standard rates. For more, read my the chapter on sex therapy in my book, Sizzling Sex for Life, and/or see the film, “Hope Springs” with Meryl Streep and Tommy Lee Jones. To find a sex therapist near you, visit the American Association of Sex Educators, Counselors, and Therapists, the Society for Sex Therapy and Research, or the American Board of Sexology.

    I wish you sizzling sex for life!

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