- Question from Two Fancy: I'm 6 years out from breast cancer, and I don't know how to tell my hubby that I hate it when he touches or tries to play with my breast.
- Answers - Leslie R. Schover, Ph.D. I think it is important to be assertive about something so important to you.
- Marisa Weiss, M.D. And I love the way Leslie expresses herself.
- Leslie R. Schover, Ph.D. I think you need to find a safe place and time outside the bedroom to talk to him about your feelings. You may want to say that you know he enjoys touching your breasts but that you find it distracting or unpleasant or a turn-off, and would like to find a way of lovemaking that would be better for both of you.
- Marisa Weiss, M.D. After talking, you might find a good compromise. You may agree that you feel comfortable with his touching the breast that was not affected by breast cancer and leaving the other one alone. You may even need to change your position in bed in order to have his free hand touch the one that you would feel comfortable having him touch.
- Leslie R. Schover, Ph.D. If neither breast gives you good feelings, then the two of you can find some new areas to touch or things to try during lovemaking—perhaps telling each other a sexual fantasy or trying a different kind of caressing so that breast caressing won't be missed so much.
- Marisa Weiss, M.D. And you may find that over time, your own desires may shift. What might feel uncomfortable today could become not just comfortable, but even exciting again in the future. Your sex life has been, and probably always will be, an exploration.
The Ask-the-Expert Online Conference called Intimacy and Sexuality featured Leslie R. Schover, Ph.D., and Marisa Weiss, M.D. answering your questions about how breast cancer diagnosis and treatment affect your sex life.
Editor's Note: This conference took place in February 2001.
The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of Breastcancer.org. A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.
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