As if I didn’t already admire Cricket legend Ian Botham enough as it is, the serial charity fundraiser has won me over yet again by publicly speaking of his fear of impotency. I’ve long spoken of my commitment to encouraging men to open up about issues which are perceived as being not very ‘manly’ and so imagine my delight when respected public figures do just that, ultimately, we want more men to follow suit.
Impotency is defined as the inability of a man to not only achieve an erection, but to achieve an orgasm as well. On the funny side, I guess us men have to laugh when we hear of such things being described as an ‘achievement’ – high fives all around! But at the same time, why is impotency considered a bit of a joke subject? Myself and my female friends have very few boundaries when it comes to discussing the issues between men and women and from what I understand, it’s not uncommon for a woman (of any age) to struggle to get ‘wet’ (the medical terminology sounded worse). But I can’t imagine anyone ever berating or ridiculing a woman in this particular circumstance – although I’m sure there is the occasional oddball who does. I have to ask though, do guys perhaps get a bit of a raw deal when it comes to this subject?
I’ve always said if it happened to me I would probably laugh about it, it’s just the way I am. However, in researching the issue I discovered exactly why impotency needs to be taken more seriously. Impotency in all it’s glory (or disappointment) can be a warning sign for diabetes, cardiovascular disease, neurological problems, hormonal inefficiencies and not to mention the obvious confidence and anxiety issues which may occur as a result. So would I still laugh if it happened to me? Yes, that’s just my sense of humour BUT, my sensitivity and awareness is tenfold.
Sir Ian this week revealed that he has recently underwent four sessions of the latest impotency treatment – Vigore Linear Shockwave Therapy. Regarded as non-invasive and pain-free, the treatment uses low intensity shock-waves in different areas of the groin and penis to increase blood supply and help encourage an erection.
Botham told the Sun on Sunday “It’s prevention rather than cure, I didn’t need the treatment, but I
didn’t want to be worrying about it in ten years time.” In an attempt to encourage more men to open up, Sir Ian reiterated that there was nothing to be ashamed of and said “What’s more embarrassing? This, or going to a chemist and popping some pills and saying to your partner, I’ll be with you in twenty minutes I’m just waiting for this to work.”
And I guess he’s right, particularly as we get older. There’s so much pressure to make relationships work these days and what happens in the bedroom is a massive part of that and be warned, you don’t need to be 50+ to lose your sex drive. It can affect anyone at any time.
I guess my point is, no matter how embarrassing you think the issue is: acknowledge, talk and fix. Whether you are the tallest tree in the forest or the floppiest bush in the back garden, never be afraid to open up.
The more we talk, the less embarrassing it becomes.