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Fancy’s Plaint
Bar Harbor
Though the weather cannot seem to make up its mind, it is officially (if intermittently) Spring. The time when young men’s fancies turned to thoughts of love – and also not-so-young men. This particular man is grumpy about it.

True, the poly aspect of my marriage has always been observed more in theory than in practice. As Kestrell so memorably put it on a button, “Poly, but I’d probably rather be reading.” It takes time and effort to build up a new relationship, and those are rare resources. But it was exercised on occasion. And just having the option available was often very gratifying. It’s fun, when talking with someone attractive, to think, “If I turned up the charm and put in the effort, there’s a decent chance that they would have sex with me.”

But these days… that train of thought goes more like: “If I did manage to get this relationship onto a sexual level, would it even be remotely worth it?” Except in rare cases where the sexual chemistry is as compatible as the personality chemistry, it takes a while to get to really good sex with a new partner. There is a learning curve as you adjust to each other’s particular quirks and kinks. Any new partner I got at this point would face a particularly steep curve, as so many of my body parts now respond to almost any stimulus with “OUCH!” And my ability to give pleasure is just as compromised as my ability to receive it; my once-proud ‘gamer fingers’ can no longer in repetitive motions for extended periods. And my stamina in general has gone to hell.

It’s not the worst problem in the world, but it is One More Thing. I feel kinda pathetic for whining about it. But I figure that there are enough people among my friends who either have this problem now, or will face it in the years to come, that it’s valuable to talk about it.

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You've broken the "second-to-the-last taboo." (the last is still Death). I've always said that the later twentieth century reversed the Victorians on tabooed subjects--they talked openly about money and death, not so open about sex. We don't discuss death and money, but--thank the Internet--sex is an open topic.

Except for sex for the aging and/or disabled. Still an embarrassment for writer and reader--but (as you have shown) things are changing. Thanks to the aging cohort of baby boomers who still watch broadcast TV, we can see commercials for every sort of male potency aid and lots of hormones and other creams for women. Like the long-ago menstrual products ads which were so coy you couldn't figure out what they were advertising, these ads don't say frankly "Can't get it up any more? Too dry to want it?" but they're coming closer.

It seems to me that people talk about death all the time - boomer-wise, those of us who still have parents are talking about it, there is The Conversation Project, and famous people younger than we are keep dying (without wills, though, so you may be right). http://theconversationproject.org/

One of the post-menopausal sex pain ads is pretty explicit. I think it's advertising some sort of hormone cream (?) The people in the ad are supposed to be non-actors, and I believe it - the woman who does most of the talking and her husband look like random people one might see in a mall (ie not sexy models) but are making it clear that sex is important to them and they're going to do something about it (cue pharmaceutical solution). I haven't seen ads for anything that will help gamer finger problems, though.

Yeah, I don't know any woman who produces blue liquid monthly.

To your point, Alexx, note that your potential intimate friends likely have similar tales to tell; perhaps not as extreme as yours, but in a similar neighborhood, unless you are shopping in a much younger aisle than you yourself occupy. Wow, there's a convoluted metaphor....

Anyway, the idea here is that they would probably understand that it's not as simple physically as it used to be for either of you. Any of us.

Once you've dealt with that, the details can be resolved by willing experimentation.

-- CV

Oh yes, they *can* be, in principle. But the cost is much higher than it was in our glorious youth, and at a time when we all have less to spend...

Well, yes. you and me and that other person, in the tent one night....

And was that a pun? Well done.

There are also the memories... over which I will draw a veil. :)

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