Sex... solo or in company comparison...

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Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2011
Total Posts : 4093
   Posted 3/30/2011 2:23 PM (GMT -6)   
This is a question for those of you who regained sexual function to any degree.

My relationship with my wife is great, still very much attracted to her ( in fact more so than ever ) so that shouldn't be the focus of this question.

I find that my erections are much stronger when I'm "practicing" alone then when I'm sharing them with her. I mean, they are sometimes just as hard with her, but often times not as strong as they are when I'm alone.

Has anyone else experienced this? If so, what do you make of it?

I'm guessing that I have a lot less pressure on myself when alone and that this answers it. But then I've been married 20 years (no that isn't the problem) so I really have no pressure with her. In fact, she'd be okay even if I couldn't get any sort of erection at all.

I also noticed that if I wait 3-4 days to be intimate with her it mirrors my solo results, but if I try with her too often it doesn't.

Before surgery I was good for the same exact results all the time no matter how frequently ( not same day ).

Also, the above results are also different when not on Cialis.

It's a pain in ass because when i judge myself based on my results with her I start to get annoyed at myself sometimes ( and one poor result always eclipses the good results for some reason ). Then when I'm alone and achieve complete erections I say to myself that all is fine in that dept.

Just wondering if anyone else has gone through or is going through the same situation or if I'm still a twelve year old mentally.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 2670
   Posted 3/30/2011 2:37 PM (GMT -6)   
I don't think you're a 12-year-old mentally.  I think you're a 40-year-old prostate cancer survivor who's obsessing and over-thinking this aspect of your life.  I suggest you relax and let whatever happens happen, instead of trying to force the issue or prove something to yourself.  Maybe a bit of a mid-life crisis coupled with performance anxiety complicated by recent surgery.  No charge for the diagnosis :)

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 3172
   Posted 3/30/2011 2:45 PM (GMT -6)   
In the first few months after surgery, things were only "sufficient", but in my experience thnigs got better-and-better over time. It is commonly reported that a full recovery may take a year or two, but it sounds like you are at least "sufficient" relax and enjoy.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2011
Total Posts : 4093
   Posted 3/30/2011 2:53 PM (GMT -6)   
Full recovery some nights with her, complete recovery everytime I'm alone. That's what i don't understand. Maybe it's about how mechanical the whole thing is right now.

Maybe I should give my secretary a go and see how that goes just to complicate this even further.

Steve n Dallas
Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 4835
   Posted 3/30/2011 2:58 PM (GMT -6)   

Stop being so hard on your self and by yourself?!?!?!?!?!?

Sounds like you're being your own worst enemy.

Then there's the part about the 3 to 4 day wait and all is good. Me thinks that solves the problem... aka quality over quantity.


Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 2670
   Posted 3/30/2011 2:59 PM (GMT -6)   
When you say "the whole thing is mechanical right now" it really sounds as if you're doing things just to reassure yourself that you still can rather than because you want to make love.  If you're only doing it "mechanically," maybe you just need to wait until you're actually legitimately turned on.  That's why I said above that it sounds more like you're operating to prove something...performance anxiety....rather than a legitimate sexual urge.  I don't have any stats on how often that would typically be for a guy your age, but I'd wager two, maybe three times a week would be above average.  Yeah, yeah, I know, we're all sex machines and do it every day.  Right.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2011
Total Posts : 4093
   Posted 3/30/2011 3:06 PM (GMT -6)   
you're absolutely right. If we all want to have a good laugh at my expense, I'll even admit to verifying that I can get an erection while on the verge of falling asleep and actually dose off during the exercise. This is why women say we men are idiots I suppose.

I'm nowhere near as turned on as I was before surgery. No doubt about that. That has to be because of depression, constant fatigue, and what someone here had mentioned, post traumatic stress. It's funny because the day I got the go-ahead to go work in Rome I felt great, was excited and that night, had no issues whatsoever with my wife.

anyone married 20 years knows that they'd sign a contract for 3 times a week. My thing isn't frequency, it's verifying that I still work in that dept. I do, but with varying degrees of results depending on timing, circumstances etc. It's liek i'm discovering myself all over again.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 2845
   Posted 3/30/2011 3:18 PM (GMT -6)   
Davidg -
- you are rediscovering yourself as you recover from the surgery - and even more so, you have rediscovered your wife (spouse/ partner) and how you two work as a team -
- wishing you both all the best for the years ahead.
Age:55 -gay with spouse of 14 years, Steve -Peterborough, Ontario, Canada
PSA:10/06/09 3.86
Biopsy:10/16/09- 6 of 12 cancerous samples, Gleason 7 (4+3)
Radical Prostatectomy:11/18/09
Pathology:pT3a -Gleason 7 -extraprostatic extension -perineural invasion -prostate weight -34.1 gm
PSA:04/08/10 -0.05 -Zero Club
PSA:09/23/10 -0.05 -Zero Club
PSA:03/24/11 -0.02 -Zero Club
PSA:03/24/12- TBA

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 990
   Posted 3/30/2011 9:19 PM (GMT -6)   
I have learned that my wife and I have to discover new ways of working together. In particular I need to be much more verbal about what I need from her in the way of stimulation and that sometimes it takes both of us working together to get where we want to be

In the past, the erection was all my business and it has taken some mental adjustment to understand that it is now a joint effort. The main message is communication. I have found that I need to give verbal feedback to my wife, where before, she got it from my physical state.

But the good news is that it can be much more of a shared experience and more intimate.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2011
Total Posts : 4093
   Posted 3/30/2011 9:35 PM (GMT -6)   
Geezer, that is so true.

We do talk a lot more and I have told my wife that unfortunately I need help with the mental stimulation because it's such a mechanical process right now. Some of the things that come out while talking can be quite surprising at times. Good thng we've been together so long and are secure with each other.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 5875
   Posted 3/31/2011 3:01 AM (GMT -6)   
Davidg, take this plz with the helpful spirit I intend. This somewhat mimics your post on your post op exercize. Post op recovery in all areas is not a competition, it is a season of life.
Diagnosed 8/14/09 psa 8.1 66,now 67
2cores 70%, rest 6-7 < 5%
gleason 3+ 3, up to 3+4 @ the dub
RPP U of Wash, Bruce Dalkin,
pathology 4+3, tertiary5, 2 foci
extensive pni, prostate confined,27 nodes removed -, svi - margins -
99%continent@ cath removal. 1% incont@gaspass,sneeze,cough 18 mos, squirt @ running. psa std test reported on paper as 0.0 as of 12/14/10 ed improving

Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 598
   Posted 3/31/2011 7:37 AM (GMT -6)   
You are in very good company. I've talked to dozens of men who experience the same thing. For most guys, it's the train wreck in their brain - simply watching their performance way too much. The other reality is that our 'margin of error' is way narrower than it used to be. Stressors such as fatigue, daily life, worry, distraction, hormones, inspiration used to have a much more limited effect on erections. Now, they have a much greater effect.
Also, when **********, you are using minimal blood flow. During sex, you have probably been exerting yourself more. Exertion for sex can also divert blood and affect blood pressure. Before surgery, these things did not matter so much.
I always tell the men I work with, in your age group, to give themselves a year of taking PIV sex off the table. If it happens, great, but the couple should go into each session anticipating that intercourse will not take place. It is simply intimate time and you help each other take care of needs and have fun. Just this mindset takes any pressure to 'perform' (god I hate that word) out of the experience. Hence, the reduced expectations often produce better physical responses for the men.
So glad you talk to your wife. Many men need heightened stimulation both physically and mentally than before. Something as simple as different positions can help. Other coupless find that sex toys, videos, and dressing up can be a huge boost. You might take this time to really explore both of your newfound sexual reality together. Those ideas you never thought you would tell your wife may be just what is needed now. Have fun.
Many men find that while the sex is completely different, they have a far better love life than before surgery. Don't try to get back what you had. It often leads to frustration. Think of taking what you have and explore.
Founder, Erectile Dysfunction Foundation and creator of The site for erectile dysfunction.

46 at Diagnosis.
Davinci at 47.
Doing fine.

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 725
   Posted 3/31/2011 9:12 AM (GMT -6)   
Good replies. One other thing, if it applies. Standing is a lot easier than laying down because the blood flows better.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2011
Total Posts : 4093
   Posted 3/31/2011 8:21 PM (GMT -6)   
Paul - Just wanted to let you know that I've enjoyed your site/forum very much. it's very helpful. Very glad to hear you mention the margin of errors. That's what is driving me crazy, I just cannot predict how "good" i'll get one day to the next and I started to suspect that fatigue, stress and depression had something to do with it. Not sure about exertion/blood flow. Once I'm in it seems to stay right or improve throughout the act. And I'm with you on all the variations except the dressing up part, haven't even thought of that one yet. Although a nice Cleopatra wig on my wife might be a nice site.

Logoslidat - I know. And I've cooled it on the gym expectations for now. It's just that I was so elated to learn I could get erections so soon after surgery that I started to obsess about it and verify that it continued to work on a daily basis. I even started to wonder if it was possible for one to regress. My nurse said not, but then I read something about scar tissue.

New Member

Date Joined Jan 2011
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 3/31/2011 11:38 PM (GMT -6)   

I have not been to this site in two months. Back in January I had little hope. I was only three months post op RP 10/25/10. My wife did not find the use of the pump very good. Then mid February I stopped using the pads. Then on the 26th I took extra Cialis. I am on a dose of 5mg nightly. On that Saturday night in question I took 15 mg and about two hours later my wife and I were making out on top of our bed. Then it happen. She said to try and I did. No stress no problems it just went in. Now every Saturday I take the extra Cialis and we see what happens. We laugh a lot and sex is much more laid back. It is like what Paul said, Explore.. It is really good finding one another again and having that new love feeling. Good luck on your journey.

PSA 5.9 March 2010
Free PSA 14% (I was told it may have been a false test since day before I had sex.) April 2010
2nd Free PSA 11% Late April 2010
Biopsy May 25 2010
Results June 8 2010 - 16 cores 1 positive Gleason 3/3 = 6 about 3% of sample
Told I had 'low volume disease.'
Researched treatment. Prostate became enlarged. Troubles with sex, PE and some ED.
Scheduled RRP for Oct 25 2010 at Banner Good Sam in Phoenix
On Feb 14 2011 I learned that I was a member of the undectectable club!

Elite Member

Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 25380
   Posted 4/1/2011 12:02 AM (GMT -6)   
Arizona, thats a very good report and story. Congrats on your sucess
Age: 58, 56 dx, PSA: 7/07 5.8, 10/08 16.3
3rd Biopsy: 9/08 7 of 7 Positive, 40-90%, Gleason 4+3
open RP: 11/08, on catheters for 101 days
Path Rpt: Gleason 3+4, pT2c, 42g, 20% cancer, 1 pos marg
Incont & ED: None
Post Surgery PSA: 2/09 .05,5/09 .1, 6/09 .11. 8/09 .16
Post SRT PSA: 1/10 .12, 4/8 .04, 8/6 .06 2/11 1.24
Latest: 6 Corr Surgeries to Bladder Neck, SP Catheter since 10/1/9, SRT 39 Sess/72 gy ended 11/09, 21 Catheters, Ileal Conduit Surgery 9/10,

New Member

Date Joined May 2011
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 5/22/2011 4:24 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks for your thoughts on taking the pressure off.  After four years I totally agree with what happens - happens.  Intercourse or not and orgasm or not.  Although I agree with the natural flow, I maintain difficulty in doing so because of christian religious beliefs that all sex is complete only in intercourse. My conscience is a barrier and as such does not allow me to enjoy the flow of inttimacy.  Hope some time soon I (we) can work through this.  Any helpful knowledge in this area?

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 202
   Posted 5/22/2011 6:26 PM (GMT -6)   
I'm the same way davidg.  Much more dependable alone.
I joke that I now know what it's like to be a woman.
Prior to surgery, it was automatic.  It took care of itself and I didn't give it a second thought.
Now, a lot of things can affect my performance, particularly mental issues that weigh on me.
I feel like the planets need to be lined up correctly for all systems to be go.
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