Your partner encounters troubles with having or keeping an erection. What’s the first thing that pops into your head? That your man doesn’t find you attractive anymore. Moreover, it’s probably your fault. You start analyzing things, thinking about what you’ve done wrong.
Does it sound familiar? Unfortunately, many women feel the same way. They blame themselves, whereas the problem is rooted much deeper. Erectile dysfunction (ED) – because that’s the condition we’re talking about – has nothing to do with another person’s look or behavior.
What’s more, it’s much more common than most people think. According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, ED affects over 30 million men in the United States. Among the most frequent causes, scientists include depression, diabetes, high blood pressure, and other physical and mental problems.
Conclusion? It’s not your fault.
It doesn’t mean that you can’t help your partner, though. On the contrary, you can be key to saving your sex life or even relationship from breaking up. How? You’ll find all the crucial information in the following guide.
What Is Erectile Dysfunction?
Before learning how you can help your partner fight his issue, it’s essential you learn more about erectile dysfunction. After all, you ought to have at least a general idea of what you’re fighting against.
In a nutshell, ED is a health condition that makes it difficult for someone to have or/and maintain an erection. That makes it impossible to participate in various forms of sexual activity, like intercourse.
Of course, occasional difficulties don’t have to indicate that the problem is severe. However, if your partner experiences them on a regular basis, it means that he may require professional treatment.
A list of the most common causes of Erectile Dysfunction includes:
- Mental health conditions, like stress, anxiety, or depression
- Cardiovascular disease
- Chronic kidney and liver disease
- High blood pressure
- Alcohol abuse, smoking, drug intake
All that may lead to ED, severely affecting sexual intimacy in a relationship. Of course, you can always try other ways of pleasing each other. There are even male strap-ons or other sex toys that enable couples to maintain their sex life.
Keep in mind, though, that even such measures might not help your man. Often, his problems are more deep-rooted and require effort, patience, and empathy.
What’s more, keep in mind that his inability to perform can have more serious consequences, as it lowers a man’s self-esteem, often causing stress and anxiety that can’t be cured with toys or magical blue pills.
Ways to Help Your Partner
Now that you understand what your man is going through and how it’s affecting you, it’s time to learn how to help him. How you approach your partner’s ED can make a huge difference, so make sure you read the following guide with caution.
Talk About It
If two partners can’t communicate openly with each other, a relationship is doomed to fail. You should be able to talk about anything, and sex-related problems shouldn’t be an exception. No matter how embarrassing they may feel.
But how to tackle such a delicate issue as erectile dysfunction? The answer is simple – without beating around the bush.
Ask your partner openly what he needs. Try to comfort him instead of judging. Assure him that you’re going to deal with it together. The chances are, comforting words are just what he needs to feel more relaxed.
As mentioned above, ED can lead to more severe mental health difficulties. Having that in mind, you should approach the topic patiently. Cover everything, from your sexual preferences to work-related stress.
Communication is key and the best way to get all the information you need to take care of your problems, including ED.
Find New Ways to Get Intimate
Sex is the ultimate way to achieve intimacy and connect with your partner. However, what some people don’t understand, it’s much more than intercourse. It’s not just about physical but also a psychological connection between partners.
It means that even if your man has ED, you can still have a satisfying sex life. Lack of erection doesn’t have to be an end of the world. All you need to do is find new ways to get intimate. For instance, you can:
- Give him an intimate massage
- Kiss and cuddle
- Try oral, even if he doesn’t get an erection (share your energy and let him feel some pleasure)
- Ask him to go down on you
- Experiment with sex toys
As you can see, even without intercourse, you can build intimacy with each other. Don’t let erectile dysfunction stop you from having fun. In fact, if you show your man that you can have an amazing sexual experience even with his ED, it may build up his self-esteem.
Encourage Your Partner to Implement Lifestyle Changes
As mentioned before, ED is usually caused by various health conditions, both mental and physical, and unhealthy habits, such as smoking or alcohol abuse. With that in mind, implementing a lifestyle change is a must if your partner wants to take care of his condition effectively.
And here’s where you come in. Encourage your man to cut down on unhealthy habits and implement necessary changes to his life. When it comes to ED and other sex-related issues, your partner should:
- Get regular exercise
- Maintain a healthy diet
- Stop smoking and cut down on alcohol
To ensure your partner changes his habits, it is best to go through that process with him. Exercise together and eat the same foods. Keep in mind that such changes aren’t always easy, and having someone to share that experience with you can be a huge morale booster.
Be Supportive and Loving
Your partner’s ED will interfere with your life, and there’s nothing you can do about it. Make sure you don’t judge him, though. Instead, let him know that you want to help and that he isn’t alone.
Be patient, supportive, and loving. Get to the bottom of the problem, and respond with affection and empathy. Assure him that his inability to get hard doesn’t make him less of a man and that you’ll love him no matter what.
Keep in mind that he’s probably scared that you may resent him because of his condition. That sooner or later, you’ll look for someone who will satisfy you the way he can’t. Don’t let that happen.
Instead, support him and let him relax a little bit. Sometimes, knowing that there’s someone who will always be there for you is the best treatment. The chances are that once your partner achieves peace of mind, his erectile problems will fade away.
Seek Professional Help
As mentioned before, ED is a much more complicated issue than TV commercials show. Often, your only option is to seek medical advice. Encourage your partner to consult his doctor, who will provide him with treatment options.
When it comes to ED, there are two means to treat it – non-invasive treatment and surgery.
Non-invasive treatment includes:
- Oral medications (for example, Viagra)
- Injectable medications like alprostadil
- Suppositories that a person inserts into the urethra
- Testosterone therapy
- Vacuum or pump devices that draw blood into the penis
Surgery involves placing implants into the penis. Doing that will make it possible for the penis to stay erect during sex. These devices include inflatable implants and semi-rigid ones. An artery-reconstruction surgery can also help, as it improves blood flow.
Another thing to keep in mind is that certain medications can also severely impact your partner’s ED. For instance, if he takes antidepressants, blood pressure medications, or painkillers, the case may be that they cause your man’s problems with erection.
If you suspect that’s the case, consult his doctor and, if possible, ask for alternative medications.
However, if you believe that problem is psychological, the best idea is to encourage your partner to go to counseling sessions. And if he doesn’t want to go alone, go with him. In fact, some studies show that attending therapy with a partner improves stress-related ED symptoms.
Don’t Let ED Ruin Your Relationship
Although TV commercials make it look simple, treating erectile dysfunction is a much more complicated matter. Of course, there are cases where that magical pill will do the trick, but usually, the issue is more complex than that.
For instance, if your partner has constant problems with getting or maintaining an erection, it means that you should seek medical advice as your partner’s ED may be caused by heart conditions, diabetes, or mental health problems.
If that’s the case, only experts can provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment that will be accurate and effective. However, as you can see, your support will also play a crucial role in getting your partner back on track.
Communicate with your partner, and let him know that you want to help him. Your support can make a significant difference and show your man that there’s a silver lining. Beat ED together, and don’t let it destroy your relationship.