Life w/ a Neo-Bladder – UPDATE

Thought I’d provide a quick update.  October 10th will be 7 weeks post-op for me.  

At week 5 the Super Pubic tube was removed… my last.  This was a bitter sweet moment.  I was not a fan of the tube, but I knew after this, I was on my own.  Evenings have been trying.  At first, I was setteing alarms to go off every 90-120 minutes.  I have since extended that to a schedule I worked out through tracking progress.  I find that a log of bedtime, waking time along with rating success with continence AND how well I felt  I was able to void a good tool.  While I am still not confident and continent through the nights, it is getting better.  For me seems like I can make it 3 to 3 1/2 hours for the 1st alarm, after that I trim back to about 2 hours.  I found the hard part is that at times I wake up before the alarm and rather than get up, I fall back asleep.  That is when I usually have problems.  Just gotta get my butt outa bed if I wake up!  I do wear a Depends style underwear for accidents right now but with time I may be able to use that only when I break the evening drinkinig rules.

OK… move on… One of the huge benefits I find in this site is the feeling of not being alone.  Reading about others that are or have experienced similar feelings or events.  For this reason, I am going to move on to the subject of sex.  Men… I know this is a subject we avoid but is always top of mind.  Since I was terrified, I wanted to share and hopefully help someone down the road.

At my 6 week checkup the Dr asked asked if… as he said "Any signs of life down there?"

My wife and I had yet to try.  Doc said it was time to start breathing life back into it.  I did have a nerve sparing surgery and My Uro recommends a routine of 25mg Viagra daily to help with recovery.  He suggested a full 100mg dose and then get busy at least 2 to 3 times a week.  My wife was on her way out of town for a long weekend so all we could do was look forward to a good homecoming.

Well… being the man-pig I am and also being a LOT nervous about ability, I thought I’d just give things a "Test" run myself.  The reason I tell my story is because while I did take the Viagra… the results were not what I had hoped for.  In about 45 seconds I proceeded to have what felt like a very weak and totally un-satisfying orgasm and there was no erection what-so-ever.  Now I was really scared!  Was this what sex was going to be???

Obviously I was very upset and concerned.  What was my wife going to say when she came home and we tried with similar results!  After a day, I decided to give it another try.  The outcome was only slightly more encouraging.  Perhaps 30% erection but similar feeling for an orgasm.

When My wife got home, it was getting late and I had an appointment with the Uro the following day so the homecoming celebration was put off (whew).  In the morning, as we woke up I just felt like I could.  Long story short… I could not and that’s when I explainied that I had tried over the weekend.  She was very supportive and understanding but deep down I’m sure she was wondering herself.

At the Uro that afternoon, we discussed exactly what had happened.  He looked us both in the eye and said "Just keep working at it.  You’ve been through major surgery and it may take a some time.  The fact that you had some erection is a step in the right direction.  You didn’t wake up from the surgery and start running down the hall… everything is little steps."

I knew that if things did not work properly there were many treatments to comsider, but like any one, I wanted things to be as close to before a possible.

Later that evening we decided to try again.  I wanted to take some pressure off and for me that’s relaxing her first.  With that behind us things just seemed to progress naturally.  Now I’m not going to claim 100% on the erection side that quickly but my fears about a very mild and un-satisfactory orgasm were put to rest.  Since then… things are getting better every time.  Small steps lead to great success!

Men… be patient.  I’m sure there will be some fear but be patient.  Also REMEMBER… while your partner may not share this with you, they are VERY nervous about touching you.  They do not want to hurt you and may be very timid.  Let them know that you are fine and lead them if you must.

Again, I write this in hopes of helping someone understand that they are not alone.  The unknown creates the greatest fear.  When my Uro reminded me that this was a journey that takes some time, I just felt better.  My concerns faded and I was ready to keep working at it.  Do not give up and remember… attitude is half the battle!

mikmckna Author