Diabetes and my intimate life.

By Monalisa Latest Reply 2012-03-19 09:52:41 -0500
Started 2010-01-04 16:05:31 -0600

Hi, I am a 44yr old woman with diabetes t2 I have noticed that my libido has diminished to a point where I don't have sexual desire anymore, my question is if this is a side effect of diabetes and if others experience the same as me, please help, this is affecting my marriage, any advise accepted, thank you.

60 replies

Jrwolfks 2012-03-19 09:52:41 -0500 Report

I am a Type 2 also, My libido was causing me problems also and I did some checking with my doctor and showed him a bottle a friend said was helping her with the same problem, okay-ed by my doctor I gave it a try and my God it works for me.
It is put out by Puritan's Pride I buy it from their website and been using this now for 4 years with no problems,my husband and I are now happy again and I feel much more like a woman not just a female, if you know what I mean.

Puritan's Pride Product: Dong Quai 530 MG Natural Herb -
I have tried allot of different things but when my doctor felt it was worth a try I'm glad I did.

It might be worth a try for you.

Pam from KCMO
Pam from KCMO 2010-02-17 04:17:57 -0600 Report

Do talk to your doctor - I know it's scary and embarrassing, but I'm sure they've heard (and answered) this kind of question before.

I hit menopause at 50 (same time I was diagnosed diabetic - let me tell you, I was CRAZY and thought I was falling apart). But I was in perimenopause for several years before that - and that can mess with your libido as well. You might try talking to your ob/gyn if you're uncomfortable with your regular doctor.

Pat Roth
Pat Roth 2010-02-18 13:30:19 -0600 Report

I don't know what I was in, for years, BUT after my periods stopped, it was like a BIG Weight had been lifted from my shoulders—I was a NEW WOMAN!! NOw I get bitchy just part of the time, not ALL!! haha—-PR

Pam from KCMO
Pam from KCMO 2010-02-19 04:27:10 -0600 Report

I read something once where the writer declared that, after menopause, you become the person you were before all your hormones went nuts.

So, I figure I'm about 13??? NOT a good age…I'll stick with what I've got! LOL! And sign me up for "Bitches of the World" - don't think I'm mean enough to be president, but I'm certainly mouthy enough to be a member!

imsuzie2 2010-02-19 05:04:17 -0600 Report

I agree with you. Any takers for President? Should we start a discussion or will it detract from P&M?

tearbear1968 2010-02-16 20:41:49 -0600 Report

wow ! After reading some of this feel I am not alone or from a different planet. Have been living like this for sometime, no desire for intimacy. Now can really look into and see if can get help for this.

imsuzie2 2010-02-16 04:33:14 -0600 Report

My husband has been on heart, cholesterol and blood pressure pills for a long time, and over the years, his libido had diminished. Being the wonderful, loving and understanding wife that I am, it was not a big problem as there are other things to do…so when we began to realize that neither one of us were initiating "advances", we realized my libido was slowing down even more. That was around menopause…we laugh about it, and if one of us thinks about it, we ask the other. I did notice when I was diagnosed as clinically depressed, and started generic Celexa, I began to think about sex more. So, another thought is depression can have a big effect on libido, I have found out. Good luck.

Terri d
Terri d 2010-02-16 18:10:00 -0600 Report

Thank you, imsuzie2. Your experience has helped me. The more I focus on it, the more anxiety/stress I have about it. So, perhaps, I should just go on about my life & just be happy.

Anonymous 2010-02-15 21:26:17 -0600 Report

This is the first time I've shared anything on diabetic connect so here goes. I am a young single 64 yr old female who has neuropathy in my feet. I am confused with regards to the term 'libido'. I thought libido meant the desire for intimacy. I see some people use this term to mean the ability to orgasm.

I am very interested and enjoy sexual intimacy, however, I seem to not be able to orgasm. It is very frustrating. I liken it to a male getting an erection, but not being able to orgasm. I have been Type 2 for 31 years and have always had difficulty in this area, but not where I just cannot orgasm. At this point, I don't even want to try, so I think my mind is saying 'can't', so I just figure it won't happen.

I can pleasure my partner, but usually they think it is their fault. I have talked with my OBGYN and been prescribed a testerone ointment ten or so minutes before. It is petroleum based and messy, and it does nothing. I have talked to my regular doctor and been prescribed an RX to take one hour before. It does nothing. I have talked to my therapist and nothing helped.

Is there anyone out there who experiences this(male or female)? Does anyone have any ideas?

GaryFB 2012-03-19 09:30:11 -0500 Report

I can relate to the peripheral neuropathy thing, and also to the intimacy part. Diabetes 2 has effected a lot. We have accepted that there are other paths to romance and sex. Intercourse rarely works. We still engage in oral sex, although results usually take a lot longer. But, we laugh along with it. It's better than crying! Other than that, we do a lot of holding hands, and somehow can't stand to be away from each other for too long. Guess its the "in sickness and in health" thing. I am ok with that at 58.

jayabee52 2010-02-15 22:30:43 -0600 Report

I am sorry about your libido. I thought the same as you about the meaning of the word. so I decided to look for the definition
Here's the from article Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Libido

and here's one from Discovery Health :: Reclaiming Your Lost Libido:
http://health.discovery.com/centers/womens/se... including suggestions to restore libido

here's a whold website devoted to libido you could get lost in here:http://www.libido.com/

Hope this clarifies, and is helpful to you..

Anonymous 2010-02-16 18:04:12 -0600 Report

Thank you, James & Blessings to you.

jayabee52 2010-02-17 03:10:38 -0600 Report

Thank you Annon. I am already blessed by my wonderful bride, she is a wonderful lady. You can see her in my profile pic.

But I still can use all the Blessings I can get!
and right back at ya!

mockingbird1945 2010-02-14 20:09:52 -0600 Report

So much experience and the willingness to share! I'm truly amazed and pleased.

All I have to offer in addition to the others suggestions and AFTER you talk to your Dr., of course is the use of one of the natural supplements that increase libido. I personally use Libido-Max and have found it to work very well for me; I'm a 64 yo male, but the same brand offers a formula for women as well. For me, it helps both the libido and the physical response.

Best wishes to you.

DIVAgal 2010-02-14 07:30:57 -0600 Report

If your loss of libido started after you learned of your diabetes, it is probably related to adjusting to your diabetes. Remember, you had diabetes up to 5 years before it was diagnosed. I had a problem with my libido for a while, but found it was caused by one of my other meds, an antidepressant…changed my antidepressant and VOILA!!! My libido is great now…
It is always better to write down your questions before you go to your physician…Even if you are not shy, you could forget issues that you wanted to ask… GOOD LUCK!!

GailJ 2010-02-13 20:55:22 -0600 Report

This may sound a little cliche', but everyone with diabetes is different just as every human being is different. As you have already said, you are a very private person and things that involve intimacy are not the easiest subjects to talk about with many people.

I have had diabetes for 23 years, but in all honesty, it has never affected me in the least. I have tried to learn everything that I could about how any activity, whether sports, dancing, gardening, walking, or sexual intimacy can be affected by having diabetes. I have always been a very sexually active person and in all honesty, having diabetes has not affected my marriage or my sexual intimacy in the least. It is very important to be comfortable with our own bodies and learn as much as we can about them. The more you are willing to learn and be candid with your partner, the more comfortable with you having diabetes will be to your partner.

I wish you all the best and if there is ever any way that I might be of help to you, don't hesitate to let me know.

abpsych 2010-02-13 16:46:48 -0600 Report

Your problem may be two fold, the diabetes and perimenopausal activity. For us guys, Andropos comes around age 40 with a diminished testosterone factor, which diminishes libido. Many people don't know that testosterone is also the libido hormone for women. Lot's of problems, and at age 65, I've come to understand that it isn't like I'm 21 again.

ptsparkle 2010-01-12 10:25:40 -0600 Report

Go to "watch and listen" on left side of page, and go to "most discussed". Scroll down a bit to the video on female sexuality. It might be helpful.

giojuju 2010-01-06 13:10:56 -0600 Report

theyre right the best thing is to talk to ur dr and partner. ive had that problem but the first thing i did was talk to my dr who gave me great sdvise and then to my husband who is very caring and supportive he understood and things changed for the better

Sue Turner
Sue Turner 2010-01-05 20:07:23 -0600 Report

You know, you really need to talk with your OBGYN. I know you are young, but, if this has nothing to do with the diabetes, you could very well be pre-menopausal. Just a suggestion…It happens!

momma-rae 2010-01-05 18:42:58 -0600 Report

I can understand your worry and fear for this issue and I dont know the answer, but if you do not feel comfarable talking to docter then maybe you have the wrong docter. When it come to something as life threathing and controling as diabetes you should feel like you can talk to him or her about anything. I say that as a concern mother of a diabetic and as a medical professional. Good luck

AddassaMari 2010-01-05 18:47:49 -0600 Report

You hit the nail on the head there, momma-rae.

Sue Turner
Sue Turner 2010-01-05 19:50:19 -0600 Report

I am a medical professional too, and my patient's always felt as though they could talk to me about anything. I don't think that there is anything that I have not seen or heard. I think that if you are comfortable enough with someone, you can discuss anything with them. And, you are "not" judged or ridiculed. We as professionals are here to help, not to judge someone for anything…

Turtle 2010-01-05 18:33:46 -0600 Report

Wow! What a great thread. Anon, you are one gutsy person to startthis thread. I have NO labido whether it is my diabetes or my past, I do not know. I just am grateful I am not married anymore. Now I do not have the demands of a misunderstanding husband anymore.

I agree with what ppl have said here…talk w/ your doc about it.


Anonymous 2010-01-05 15:06:20 -0600 Report

I echo all the advice to talk to a Dr about it. Have you talked frankly to your husband about your diminishing libido? Sometimes a frank and open discussion could be helpful.

I'm a man and can't perform because of peripheral neuropathy (why i am using privacy manager). My wife doesn't like it {neither do I} but we have discussed it openly and frankly with one another and we do enjoy as much intimacy as we are able under the circumstances. We have to be a bit more creative, but she seems to find enjoyment, from what we are able to do together. She is also diabetic with peripheral neuropathy so that may change the equasion a bit. As a man I have noticed a decrease in libido with the neuropathy, however, I do love my wife and want to please her emotional needs

Sue Turner
Sue Turner 2010-01-05 10:58:23 -0600 Report

I agree with everyone who has responded to your concerns. I too think that you should discuss this with your doctor, and have your husband along with you when you do, since it involves the both of you. There could be many things causing this problem, and the diabetes could add to it. Please don't take this as fact. But, we all know that anything is possible. I hope that you have a very loving, patient, and understanding husband who is willing to help you work through this. Good luck to you!

Anonymous 2010-01-05 15:36:17 -0600 Report

Thanks Sue, but I am the problem,I don't dare talk openly about sex, it's different here because nobody knows me and I can talk my mind without beeing judged or ridiculed.

PapaRon 2010-01-05 08:57:18 -0600 Report

I honestly don't know if it is a side-effect of diabetes. A good question to be consulting your doctor about. And I have a hunch that your husband may need to be involved in perhaps some doctor discussion/therapy on the subject. BUT…I just turned 63 two days ago and I have had the same problem for at least 10 years now. And NO, I haven't asked my doctor about it. My wife and I 'make-do'. If all a marriage is based on is 'sex', then I feel sorry for any marriage that is. Thank god I have such an understanding wife (who is about 6 1/2 years my junior).
Good luck!!

Sue Turner
Sue Turner 2010-01-05 11:03:38 -0600 Report

Papa Ron,

You are a very lucky man to have such a loving and understanding wife…I think
"she is a keeper for sure!"

Pat Roth
Pat Roth 2010-01-05 12:13:12 -0600 Report

So true that you need to confide in your Dr or pharmacist. My husband is on hi BP med and it is know to cause low libido—as for me, my buried past has eaten away at my psychi to where it is a wonder I am still here——-so many factors to consider— (I agree, that we have "made do" for 25 years too!!) Best of LuckPR

Sam Stokes
Sam Stokes 2010-01-05 15:13:21 -0600 Report

I too know the feeling all to well , since 1997 between the back and the diabetes , it's been a pain. . But , I too thank God that I married a woman that loved me no matter what situation comes up,True love overcomes all things , good luck !

Anonymous 2010-01-05 15:33:29 -0600 Report

My husband is 5yrs younger than me, he is a very loving, caring and understanding man, but he sometimes gets desperate with my excuses, I try, but he knows when I'm faking

Anonymous 2010-01-05 15:57:41 -0600 Report

EXCUSES? Is that from you or from him? If you are having trouble because of a medical problem it is a REASON not an EXCUSE. Spouses who are not afflicted with a particular disease sometimes don't understand (or understand fully) why you can't perform like you once did. If you don't talk openly and frankly about it, they may never "get it"

My ex saw my lowered libido and inability to get or maintain an erection as an excuse. She was "healthy" at the time and decided to divorce me. About a year later she ended up with a heart attack and quintuple bypass surgery.

My new wife has a lot of medical problems too so she gets it. She even makes allowances for me with my (diagnosed now) ADHD. There are little bumps in the road, but we manage to talk it out and work it out so it doesn't blow up into a "deal breaker" and another divorce.

tfuller 2010-01-05 17:34:20 -0600 Report

i was having the same problem,i tryed and tryed to explain to my wife but she automaticaly had the assumption i had a girlfreind on the side or that i didnt love her anymore.so my next doctors visit i took her with me and he explained it to her himself.now she understands.

Sue Turner
Sue Turner 2010-01-05 19:58:30 -0600 Report

That is one reason why we really need to be careful about what we say and do to another human being, because we never know when it is going to come home to us. As I have said before, my husband got cancer six months after we were married, and my ex said to me, "all you have now is a sick old man." Now my ex has some serious health issues. He has had several heart attacks, and has stents in three major arteries in his heart…He would call me up and tell me about all the women he now had in his life since I was no longer there, and how much fun he was having. Each one was like a new toy! I don't wish him any ill will, like I said, I pray for his health daily, but I often wonder how he feels now about the things that he has said about my husband. He may not feel anything at all, I don't know…

imsuzie2 2010-02-16 04:22:07 -0600 Report

From what you have said about your ex, I doubt he will get it…and it will be someone else's fault. Probably thinks you hexed him but is afraid to verbalize it! LOL Your forgiving nature will nurture you and your current husband, while your ex's nature will eat at him. There but for the Grace of G-d…

AddassaMari 2010-01-04 19:11:53 -0600 Report

There is a book - Sex & Diabetes: For Him and for Her - under the Book Club link on the 4th page I believe that you may want to check out. As Sal said talk to your doctor. As diabetics controlling out glucose levels is only half the battle the other being well informed about all aspects of our condition.

Anonymous 2010-01-05 15:27:40 -0600 Report

I feel very unconfortable talking about sex, (thats why i'm private) even to my Dr.

AddassaMari 2010-01-05 15:39:57 -0600 Report

Have you thought about writing down your concerns or questions and giving them to your doctor? That strategy would put space between you and your doctor then the only thing he/she can address is the medical issue. Just a thought.

Anonymous 2010-01-05 16:21:37 -0600 Report

Wow! I hadn't even thought about that possibility, thanks AddassaMari I will indeed do this, maybe I can even do this with my husband!
I am a very shy selfconscious person, Thanks again and God bless you

Sue Turner
Sue Turner 2010-01-05 16:29:07 -0600 Report

You should not feel uncomfortable talking to your doctor about this. Your doctor would understand your concerns. It is, or could be a medical problem having to do with the diabetes same as any other condition one might have. Obviously, it is important enough to you that it is causing you a lot of worry and stress in your relationship with your husband. I would do whatever it took to educate my husband, and let him know what is going on with me. At least by doing that he will know that there is a physical problem, and know that you have not lost interest in him. Have you thought about seeing a therapist? That is another option, but the medical aspect needs to be ruled out first. These people are professionals, and you should not be embarrassed or feel ashamed or uncomfortable discussing it with them. Good luck

Pat Roth
Pat Roth 2010-01-05 23:09:37 -0600 Report

Personally, I talk to the nurse when I first go into the room—-if she seems receptive. Just a thought! PR

Deborah L
Deborah L 2010-02-15 22:45:34 -0600 Report

Every time I go to my doctor, I type things out as fully as I can. He gets a page and I get a page so we can each have one and take notes. It helps me to remember everything I want to discuss and also helps me initiate those "uncomfortable" questions and medical concerns. I also have a traumatic brain injury so this helps me stay organized, remember questions to ask, and write his answers so I don't forget or get confused later. If I'm too embarassed, I just say "read the question on line # whatever and it works.

jayabee52 2010-02-16 02:33:21 -0600 Report

That's a good way to do it. I do a variation of that. I have only a sheet for myself. I'll have to try that at my next Dr visit. But I can als email my Dr (secure email) and have her reply to me if I have a question or need clarification. I've never had such an open line of communication with a Dr (all my Drs here) before.

sweething 2010-01-04 19:03:49 -0600 Report

I have been type 2 for 27 years, and the diabetes had no effect on my libido at all. The peripheral neuropathy has had an effect, though, on my ability to enjoy intimacy.

Anonymous 2010-01-05 15:25:45 -0600 Report

I too have neuropathy and this is part of it all,

Anonymous 2012-03-19 07:50:20 -0500 Report

i have type two and neuropathy as well and i am for sure all new to this and yes it has affected me big time down there :( and the sad part is well really don't have the money to go to a doctor i use the christian minitstries for help with my diabeties and kinda talk to the doctor about it and well to be honest i thought he was kinda avoiding answering don't know thou…lol anyway any help in this matter would be greatful. trust me it would. my email bqhickory1@gmail.com small i live in the nc area anyway hope to hear from someone i this. oh and by the way i am 46. and hate that i am having problems

salmanda 2010-01-04 16:46:48 -0600 Report

I am sorry I can't address your concern directly, but I do recommend talking to your doctor about it. It could be a medication that is causing it or the diabetes. Having just been diagnosed, perhaps your libido is "on hold" while you deal with all the things you need to learn and do for your diabetes. It can be pretty overwhelming, and that certainly can't help the situation.
I admire your courage to ask such a personal question. Good for you! I hope you find some answers soon.
Sal :)

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