When my grandmother was in her early 90’s I remember her worrying about how she looked. It was surprising to me at the time to see this woman well past her prime still worrying about how she appeared to the world.
As I began to come out in my mid 50’s, I remembered my grandmother’s perspective and noticed how much I was conscious about how I appeared to the world. But I did not feel well past my prime. I felt like a new world was emerging.
When I first started coming out I felt like a teenager discovering my sexuality for the first time. Everything was new and exciting. Then last year my doctor put me on a drug to treat male urinary symptoms of BPH or an enlarged prostate. The drug had the side effect of causing retrograde ejaculation. So when I reach orgasm, while taking the drug, no semen came out. Also, over time, the medication has caused the pleasure from reaching orgasm to diminish. From feeling like a teenager, the effect of this drug had me feel like an old man.
Much like a woman who has had a mastectomy, I have felt like an essential part of my manhood has been taken away. I have felt somewhat less than a man. And so for a number of months, stopped dating.
Beginning late in 2014 I went through a series of events, culminating in my writing an essay entitled, My Relationship to My Sexuality, which I posted on this blog. In this essay, I began to write some of the goals I had for my sexuality and also what stops me. Almost as soon as I finished the essay, things began to change for the better.
After what seemed like months of nothing happening on Match and OkCupid, I suddenly had a number of men responding to my emails or emailing me. I now have a number of coffee dates planned, the first of which occurred last night. I have also recently met two guys that I am interested in. Both relationships are in the very early stages and I am excited as I spend time with each of these men to see where these budding relationships go.
What is new is that I feel more open to a wider range of experiences with men. I also feel the narrow swim-lanes I permitted for my sexuality and my relationships are beginning to open up to a set of wider possibilities. After months on this prostate drug of feeling like I was past my prime, again I am feeling excited and that a new world of possibility is opening up for me.