by Rosie Hammond
by Rosie Hammond
What's an author doing writing an article about romance on a website about impotence? Well may you ask...
Because my task is to reassure you that there IS life after impotence, that's why. And there's love and companionship and intimacy and romance and SEX. Take it from me, I've been there. So my aim is to combine my personal experiences of impotence with my experiences as a romance writer and inspire you to re-discover the romance and passion in your relationship.
Writing books about romance is easy, it's keeping romance alive in the real world that's a challenge for most of us. Tales of testosterone-fueled men savagely sweeping up swooning maidens in passionate embraces are long gone. In their place are modern heroes and heroines, more likely to be found wearing Hugo Boss than thigh-high boots and Calvin Klein in place of crinolines.
Despite latter day themes and settings, the protagonist and his partner still dance their courtship waltz, even if the dance steps have altered slightly. The settings may have evolved, but the complicated rituals of human courtship remain. And from those rituals, the seeds of romance blossom.
Let's face it, romance is a breeze in those first heady days and months of a new relationship. For the lucky few, it continues until "death do us part". But for must of us mere mortals, meeting deadlines, staying two steps ahead of the boss and simply coping with the everyday chaos of life is enough, without having to think about romance too.
Romance is really about "whatever turns you on". Sure, we can all conjure up romantic images of two lovers lying by the fireplace, sipping Bollinger, listening to Chopin's 1st Piano Concerto and staring lovingly into each other's eyes. No cell phones, no children wailing in the background, no dirty dishes piling up in the sink, and no in-laws to disturb the moment. Wrong! That usually only happens in the movies (or in my books!)
OK, maybe you DO remember to bring home the occasional bottle of wine, and sometimes you get organized enough to hire a babysitter so you can enjoy a quiet dinner for two. But I'm going to go out on a limb here and suggest that little luxuries like wine and flowers and intimate dinners for two are more the exception than the rule. Am I right? For those of you who answered 'NO', I suggest there's not much point reading on, so congratulations, go find something better to do - like write a passionate piece of prose for your partner. Or better still, we've made it easy for you by including pages of romantic quotes. Click here to find that perfect piece of poetry.
Now don't get me wrong. Romance doesn't have to be about roses and violins playing, poetry and dainty little chocolates wrapped in red foil. Romance can be as simple as saying "I love you" when your partner is knee-deep in dirty laundry, or worse still, dirty diapers. Maybe not a great example, particularly if he or she responds with a tirade of abuse about not being more helpful around the house, but you could consider it a step in the right direction.
What I'm trying to say is that romance means different things to different people. If romantic poetry and sweet little boxes of chocolates does it for you, then go to it, write (or copy) that beautiful poem you love so much, buy that box of chocolates for your mate, but above all, just DO IT!
Complacency is the bane of all relationships, because I assure you, romance AIN'T GONNA HAPPEN if you don't MAKE IT HAPPEN. Think about what romance means to you, and more importantly, what it means to your mate.
I'm assuming YOU know your partner better than anyone else, so put yourself in their shoes and imagine what it would take to engage that beautiful smile, or make their heart go ka-boom. If you sit back and wait for them to make the first move, you may be waiting a very long time.
Think of romance as the fertilizer of a healthy relationship. And just like your garden, your relationship needs to be fertilized regularly. Well, at least as often as possible....OK, at least once a year.
Romance doesn't have to cost a dime either. On the following pages you're going to find all sorts of romantic ideas, romantic quotes, romantic poetry and much more. Maybe it's time to surprise yourself and your partner by being bold, or maybe you're just looking for something new and different to add a little sizzle to your relationship.
Whatever the reason, wouldn't it feel great to re-ignite that old flame? Because if you can make your partner's heart beat a little faster, I guarantee yours will beat along with it.
Relationships are an interesting species. Even the healthiest and happiest relationships have their fair share of ups and downs, ins and outs, and loop the loops. Maintaining equilibrium during all the peaks and troughs is what defines a good relationship.
That, and communication. And I mean GOOD communication - the "let's talk turkey" kind of communication that sorts out the men from the boys and the wheat from the chaff. Saying what has to be said without spite, blame, guilt, fear or personal attack is what enduring relationships are all about. Oh, and don't forget romance - it helps too.
About fifteen years ago my husband found out he had diabetes. Since then his condition has worsened and he is now insulin-dependent. But what's that got to do with anything, I hear you ask? Everything, particularly when the subject matter is romance AND impotence.
Diabetes is a major cause of male impotence.
As his diabetes worsened, obviously so did his impotence. I would love to be able to tell you that we handled the situation perfectly, but we didn't. I'm sure most therapists will tell you that one of the lines they hear most often is "I knew something was wrong, I just didn't know what to do about it." Well, that was us.
Looking back now, with the benefit of hindsight, I can see we fitted into "the couple gradually discovering he has impotence" psychological mold perfectly. Mr H's brooding silences, his gradual withdrawal of physical contact, my loss of self-esteem, then fear that he was having an affair, his denial that anything was wrong - textbook reactions to a situation we had not been faced with before.
I'm no psychologist, but I now understand that he felt his masculinity was being challenged because he couldn't "get it up" and my sense of being a woman was being challenged because I felt unloved and unwanted. Our salvation came about as a result of our joint love of red wine. After a few glasses of good red one night (OK, more than a FEW glasses!), a conversation that started off tenuously and innocuously soon became a flood of emotions and honest-to-goodness verbal diarrhea about what was happening and how it made us feel.
The one ingredient I forgot to mention that goes into maintaining a good relationship is humor. Once we had confronted our situation head-on, we couldn't help but laugh at the absurdity of it all. Every relationship is different, but for us laughter is the best tonic available to restore intimacy - and we laugh a lot in our home.
To cut a long story short, Mr H embarked on a course of impotence treatment that eventually restored his "manhood" (I'm trying to be subtle, OK?) and our life these days is as close to normal as normal gets.
And now we get down to the nitty gritty bit, the REAL TRUTH about romance and impotence.
Maybe it's because I write romance novels or perhaps it's just me, but as we progressed with Mr H's impotence treatment, I decided that our situation presented an ideal opportunity to re-ignite the passion candle, which I have to admit was burning a little low.
Complacency and taking life and people for granted are part of the human condition - we're all guilty of it from time to time. Let's face it, when you've been married to the same person for a long time, surprises start to get a little thin on the ground.
Sometimes it simply takes a small sideways step to give us a change of perspective. And that's what happened with Mr H's impotency - it gave me a reason to restore an element of drama and romance into what I admit was a good (but dare I say it?), stale relationship.
I'm not going to tell you that our path to eventual sexual fulfillment was littered with rose petals. It wasn't.
There were times when it was frustrating, funny, emotional and plain hard work. But it would have been harder, and far less fun, without the "romantic extras" we both contributed. Romance shouldn't be one-sided. Mr H was a necessary part of the equation and his input into what he considered to be romantic was as important as mine.
We "played" with all sorts of romantic ideas, and I want to emphasize the word "played". Sure, romance can be serious sometimes, but it should also be fun. I don't need to tell you about all the romantic things we did, and still do, to maintain the passion in our relationship. Not because I don't want to, but because what works for us may not light any fires for you.
Romance is an individual thing - it's about whatever gets your heartstrings zinging and your passion soaring. Romance is about aiming cupid's arrow straight at the heart of your partner and firing, then watching them fall in love with you over and over again.
The following pages are dedicated to reviving romance and passion in your relationship. But don't think we're suggesting your relationship NEEDS reviving, maybe you're one of the lucky few who simply need a little "tweaking".
Just remember, no matter how good you believe your relationship is, there's always room for a little bit more romance. N'est pas?
To discover all the delightful, romantic and inspiring articles in this section, visit the following pages...
|Impotence and Women
|The Psychology of Impotence
|Impotence and Partners
|Female Sexual Dysfunction
|Women and Viagra
|Romantic Love Quotes
|How to Kiss