Eric wants to call this blog “Beyond Blue Balls.” That’s his way of saying two things: I’m working too much at night, and I’m not meeting his physical needs.
If he compared notes with other husbands of sleep-deprived mothers, he would discover that he is actually quite lucky: his wife sleeps with him an average of 2.5 times a week to ensure he doesn’t start surfing porn at night or sleep with his assistant. That’s quite generous given that she presently finds sex as satisfying as an oil change (That’ll do for awhile).
“How are the sexual side effects?” my doctor asked me last visit.
“Ha!” I said. “Who cares? I don’t want to die anymore! I wake up and can breathe on my own without using a paper bag! It’s taken me a year and a half and 23 different medication combinations to get here. I’m not going to chance it all for a measly orgasm.”
I thought about William Styron’s comical reaction to his doctor’s explanation that the antidepressant Nardil at optimum dosage could have the side effect of impotence. Styron writes in his memoir “Darkness Visible“: “Until that moment, although I’d had some trouble with his personality, I had not thought him totally lacking in perspicacity; now I was not at all sure…I wondered if he seriously thought that this juiceless and ravaged semi-invalid with the shuffle and ancient wheeze woke up each morning from his Halcion sleep eager for carnal fun.”
“There are different medications we could try that are better for libido,” my doctor explained.
“Look,” I said. “I’ve been on SSRIs [Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors] since I was 18. I’ve never been all that orgasmic. And on top of it I’m Catholic.”
“There are a couple of books you could read, such as ‘Reclaiming Desire,’ or you might want to go to a specialist…”
“Like Roz Focker (Barbara Streisand), the sex therapist in ‘Meet the Fockers‘?” I asked. Now I had visions of Eric and I blowing into each other’s ears, massaging each other’s feet, holding hands as we sat in a circle of other copulation morons at a sex camp in Vermont.
Maybe there will come a time when I’ll be able to have my cake and orgasm too. But for now I’d rather be neutered and alive than dead and blissful.