December 15, 2017

Getting Your Sexy Back with Breast Cancer

Barbara Musser, Sexy Saturdays blog, breast cancer, intimacy after breast cancer, breast cancer and sensuality, cancer and sex

Dear Friends,

I’ve just completed an hour-long show with Breast Friends, all about body image and self-esteem, loss of sensation as a result of lumpectomy and radiation or mastectomy, how chemo and hormonal therapies impact libido, how to get your sexy back and much more. We covered many bases in an honest and real conversation. I’m including the link here so that you can listen to the conversation because it was that good! Please feel free to download and listen at your convenience, and feel free to share it. It’s full of solutions to many of the challenges to sexual function that happen as a result of cancer treatments.

Do yourself a favor and educate yourself about your own body and pleasure. Most of us didn’t have good sex education early on and weren’t taught about pleasure. There is so much pleasure to be experienced and cancer is a great opportunity to learn about that.

Sexy After Cancer?

If you have questions or comments, ask them here and I’ll respond as quickly as I can.

 

© 2016 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog reflects my personal opinions. It is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

Cancer, Your Body, Trust and Love

Barbara Musser, Sexy Saturdays blog, breast cancer, intimacy after breast cancer, breast cancer and sensuality, cancer and sex

So many of us disconnect from ourselves at different times when we are coping with cancer, treatments, side effects, side effects of side effects, trauma and grief. It’s the experience of losing our essence or forgetting our essence and then forgetting that we’ve forgotten. I believe that it’s crucial to reconnect with our essential self and to discover what our essence has to reveal to us. The dimming of our essence is like the dimming of the sun, we can become brittle and angry or very sad. There’s so much grief with this and it’s healing to welcome it and experience it.

Many women tell me that they’ve lost their libido, feeling beautiful or sexy or any interest in intimacy and sex. Our sexual energy is our life force energy. This can affect our moods, energy levels, happiness and brain. What to do about this? There’s lots of ways to help you get aligned and integrated and it all begins with you trusting you ~ your body, your heart, your spirit and your mind. Until we begin to trust ourselves again, nothing can shift.

I invite you to experiment with the practice described in this video. We have great wisdom in our pelvic bowl, our womb, which is the source of life. And our hearts are radiant with love. When the womb and heart are in communication and communion trust emerges. Tenderness for yourself can arise, tears may flow, anger may erupt. Whatever your experience, welcome it and trust it, let it lead you to where you need to go.

 

© 2016 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog reflects my personal opinions. It is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

Cancer and Sex ~ A New Kind of Valentine

Barbara Musser, Sexy Saturdays blog, breast cancer, intimacy after breast cancer, breast cancer and sensuality, cancer and sex

 

Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer, Cancer and Sex, Breast Cancer, Emotional and Spiirtual Healing After Breast Cancer, Cancer and Hope, Nature cancer and sensuality, love and sex and cancer

Valentine’s Day is a Hallmark card extravaganza. It seems like the standard keeps getting higher and higher, and more and more expensive. And for those of us who are single, it’s easy to feel a little down. And with cancer in the picture, it may not feel like a time for hearts and flowers, much less intimacy and sex. Cancer and Sex in the same sentence can feel like an oxymoron.

What to do???

Take a new lover. Let nature be your lover. What do I mean by that? Take a walk in a beautiful place. As you walk, imagine that nature is loving you in each moment ~

  • With every step, feel the earth caressing and kissing your feet
  • Feel the air or breeze on your skin and know that the element of air is kissing you
  • Open your ears to hear the birds or other animals and know that they are singing their song for you
  • Sniff the scents of the earth, trees and flowers, knowing that nature wants to delight you with her aromas
  • Open your mouth and breathe in the air and notice what it tastes like, and know that this is to bring pleasure to your mouth
  • Look with new eyes, as if you are gazing upon your lover, and see the gorgeous sights that delight your visual sense
  • Imagine that it’s all designed for your pleasure and love, and know that nature is always expressing its love for you

I have made this practice part of my life, most days and in each season. When I swim I feel enveloped by the water’s love and generosity and feel its silkiness on my skin, especially if I swim naked. When I ski, I know that the snow is on the ground to reach up embrace my skis and me. When I feel the warmth of the sun on my body, it feels like a lover enveloping me. And the flowers! Flowers are the sex organs of plants, and they shamelessly and abundantly reach out to me as I stand among them. The scents of the flowers seduce and intoxicate me.

Love and sex are all around us and this is the very energy of life. When we have cancer we can become more aware of what’s important and what’s not, and what matters. Life has a sweetness and immediacy to it that we might not have experienced before. When we can attune ourselves to the rhythms and flows of nature, the very life force energy that is constantly expressing, it can be a very sensual, intimate and sexual experience. Many people on the cancer journey feel like their sex life is over. Cancer and sex can take many forms. Open your mind and heart to receive new inspirations.

I invite you to create a new context for Valentine’s Day this year. It doesn’t cost a dime and doesn’t require a lover, although you can share this with your lover if you have one. Make this Valentine’s Day a celebration of you, sensuality, intimacy and sexuality with your lover nature. It can create an entirely new experience of cancer and sex.

© 2016 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog reflects my personal opinions. It is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

 

Dreaming Up a Sexy and Hot 2016!

Barbara Musser, Sexy Saturdays, breast cancer, intimacy after breast cancer, breast cancer and sensuality, cancer and sex

As 2015 comes to an end and the moon is full, it’s the perfect time to create your dreams for the new  year. You do that by consciously choosing thoughts that create the experiences you want to have. This is the secret to a great life ~ knowing that your thoughts are the foundation of your experiences.

Watch this video to give you some inspiration and ideas for what you want to create, and then let us know by sharing your visions and dreams below.

 

© 2016 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog reflects my personal opinions. It is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

Total Eclipse of the Heart

Barbara Musser, Sexy Saturdays, breast cancer, intimacy after breast cancer, breast cancer and sensuality, cancer and sex

Astrologically we are in a period of lots of action ~ eclipses, full moon, the equinox and Mercury retrograde, to name a few. During the season of eclipses, things can change in big ways, rapidly. If you knew you could wave a magic wand and change something big about your heart and your capacity to love, what would you change? How can you love you more? How can  you bring more love to the world?

Our experience of love blossoms from our love relationship with ourselves. How do you love you? Are you madly in love with you? Do you have a crush on you? Do you know how gorgeous and lovable you are? If  you aren’t having these experiences, what would it take for you to have them? Maybe, just maybe, it starts with deciding that you do. And then acting as if it’s true. Don’t believe me? I invite you to try it on and see what happens. Let your heart shift completely in the eclipse! And here’s a poem to inspire you.
“And You Shall Love”

do you love yourself?

yes, but
do you love yourself?
not like a poor relation, with an
effort to be kind.  being good about it.

do you love yourself
like the most hopeless crush you ever had?
the day you wrote his initials
all over your notebook:
mr. and mrs.  glowingly divine?

do you love yourself like
Rumi loved his God?
do you love yourself stumbling
and giddy, burbling visions of wine-drunk
spiritual ecstasies?

do you love yourself
so hard it hurts to breathe,
so true the very thought of losing you
makes you ache and cry?

do you love yourself
with dirty fingernails
and all you’ve got,
hanging on, for dear life?

do you love yourself as you rise up,
as you lie down, and as you go about your way?

would you die,
if you didn’t have you?

have you woken, yet,
from that awful dream,
the recursive bargain of self-hate
you made to stay alive?
is this the deal-breaker?

the angel abides
until one day
your will abides no more:
from out of nowhere you could name
the unleashed heart of fire ascends
and you are joined.

as full of scars
as grace.

“beloved”
a voice is heard;
the voice is yours.

(this time it is the angel’s turn
to laugh; even God’s hidden name
prances and smiles)

Dvorah Simon

 

© 2015 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog reflects my personal opinions. It is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

You Look Wonderful Tonight!

Barbara Musser, Sexy Saturdays, breast cancer, intimacy after breast cancer, breast cancer and sensuality, cancer and sex

Remember that Eric Clapton tune, “You Look Wonderful Tonight?” That can happen at any moment and it comes from what you access deep inside you. No matter your age, size, hair situation or shape, your sense of beauty and sexiness comes from you, your self love and your attitude.

This week I bought myself a “date dress” for the first time in years. When I found the right one and looked in the mirror, I felt so happy and excited. Why? The dress? That was the cue for me to know that I still got it goin’ on. In that moment, I knew that I exude beauty and love and that no matter where I go, it’s in me. All I have to do is choose it and let it radiate out from me.

Same with you. Give yourself the gift of going on a date and strut your stuff, however that looks and feels to you. The more you choose beauty and love and sexiness, the more it shows.

Here’s to you and that you still got it goin’ on!

 

 

© 2015 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog reflects my personal opinions. It is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

Make Love to Your Skin!

Barbara Musser, Sexy Saturdays, breast cancer, intimacy after breast cancer, breast cancer and sensuality, cancer and sex

Many things change in unexpected ways when cancer is in your story, including your skin. It’s time to take the next step into loving yourself and creating deeper intimacy and love, and it begins with loving your skin. Stan in front of the mirror, looking into your eyes, knowing that you are your lover for life. Say, “I love you” as you look into your eyes. Then begin to gently stroke your face, exploring your skin and what feels good and brings you pleasure. You have lots of nerve endings in your fingertips and in your skin, so get curious and get to know your skin. As you touch your face, notice what feels good and what doesn’t. What type of touch brings you the most pleasure? Is it strokes as light and soft and butterfly wings, light raking with your fingernails, firmer touch, little taps, or something else? Experiment and get to know yourself now. Check out the video below for some ideas, and please feel free to share what you discover. Wishing you a Sexy Saturday!

 

I love your comments and feedback, so please let me know if this tool is useful for you.

© 2015 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog reflects my personal opinions. It is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

 

More on the Itty Bitty Clitty and Breast Cancer

Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer, Sexy Satrudays, breast cancer, breast cancer and sexual health, intimacy and breast cacncer

 

 

Following on the thread started last week about Cliteracy and the possibilities for women to experience more intimate and sexual pleasure through their clitoris, here are some additional facts and thoughts ~

  • All babies have the same genital tissue when they are conceived. It’s after about 12 weeks of gestation that the differentiation into a penis or labia begins. The clitoris and the penis are the same materials assembled differently, and the differentiation begins as a result of hormonal flows. The book The Female Brain by Luanne Brizendine contains some great information about how this development begins and the different phases of development for males and females.
  • The clitoris has all the parts a penis has ~ a glans, a foreskin (also known as the hood), erectile tissue and a small shaft. And the clitoris swells when aroused and becomes engorged. You know that sensation of tightness and swollenness? That’s all the erectile tissue of the clitoral system becoming engorged.
  • The only purpose of the clitoris is pleasure. It has nothing to do with reproduction. Pleasure only, and it is the only part of the body with this sole function.
  • Only about one fourth of the clitoris is visible outside the body, and the rest is inside. In addition to the clitoral head (also known as the itty bitty clitty), the hood and the shaft, the clitoris is composed of the urethral sponge, erectile tissue, glands, vestibular bulbs and the clitoral legs. Altogether this is called the clitoral system and some experts believe that the G Spot is also part of the clitoris.
  • There are different kinds of orgasms and a clitoral orgasm is the easiest for most women to achieve. Most women are not able to achieve orgasm without clitoral stimulation. Women who know this and know their clitoris can communicate what feels good to their partner and enhance their pleasure.
  • Clitoral stimulation and pleasure varies with each woman. Some prefer soft and gentle touch and others prefer a lot of pressure. What feels good also changes during the arousal cycle. Don’t assume that you know what it takes and that it will be the same every time. Take your time to explore and get to know your unique clitoris. You can even map areas that are more responsive than others, and when during the arousal cycle. If you take the time to explore yourself alone, you’ll have a much better time educating and guiding your lover.
  • The word clitoris is from the Greek word for “key.” As you explore and begin to understand this extraordinary source of pleasure, you may find that it is a key to unlocking your pleasure possibilities.
  • Take your time to explore the entire clitoral system and ways to stimulate it. You’ll be very glad you did!

I urge you to explore and include the clitoris in your personal pleasure plan. With attention and focus you will learn what brings you pleasure and this can be a wonderful addition or alternative to penetrative genital sex play.

© 2014 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

The “C” Word ~ No, Not Cancer!

Barbara Musser, Sexy AFter Cancer, Sexy Saturdays, breast cancer, breast cancer and sexuality, breast cancer and sexual health, breast cancer and intimacy, sex and cancer

 

 

The “C” word stands for a lot of things ~ cancer, communication and in the realm of intimacy and sexuality, it stands for cunt, cunnilingus and clitoris, to name a few. This and the next post will focus on the clitoris, which deserves attention and enlightenment.  Once breast cancer is in our life story, the impact on our intimate and sexual lives is profound and many women grieve the changes to their sex life. Many think that there’s little point in attempting to be sexual, especially if sex wasn’t all that great before diagnosis and treatment. This is the reason for my work, research and teaching. I aim to provide the ingredients for a happy and healthy intimate and sexual life after diagnosis.

The clitoris can be part of our intimate and sex play and doesn’t seem to be as affected by treatments as other areas of our genitals. This is great news! And there isn’t much information available about this. There is so much to know about this amazing body part, and my purpose is to educate, inspire and shed light on some new possibilities for pleasure. I hope that after reading this you will include the clitoris in your personal pleasure plan.

There is an art exhibition going on currently in New York called “Cliteracy”, and the artist is Sophia Wallace. It’s a mixed media project designed to “expose the irony of society’s obsession and ignorance of female sexuality.  Cliteracy, 100 Natural Laws (2012) includes a monumental wall of texts which challenge phallocentric biases in science, law, philosophy, politics and the art world. Wallace’s focus on the clitoris and female pleasure serves to question and counteract the history of misinformation regarding women’s bodies and the concomitant oppression therein.”

Here are some inspiring clitoral facts and thoughts. Let’s begin with a statement from the artist Sophia Wallace: “The clitoris is not a button, it’s an iceberg.” Some of these ideas also come from my colleague Pamela Madsen who is also a sex educator.

  • If you want to address the clitoris, labia and vagina together, vulva is the all-encompassing term. Not Volvo, vulva, even though it may have many miles on its odometer. J
  • 50-75% of women who have orgasms need to have their clitoris touched (clitoral stimulation). Experiencing orgasms through clitoral stimulation is a great way to experience pleasure if your vaginal tissue has any atrophy.
  • The clitoris is only partially visible to the eye. The entire clitoris is close to four inches in length (similar to the average non-erect penis), but three fourths of its is hidden from view within a female’s body. It’s buried treasure. Think of all the pleasure potential in the entire region. Have you explored it?
  • The clitoris grows throughout a woman’s life. It can become 2.5 times larger after menopause than it was when the woman was a teenager. This is great news for those of us who have experienced instant menopause as a result of breast cancer treatments. This is not to say that pleasure depends on the size of the clitoris; however it contains 8,000 nerve endings, which are deliciously sensitive. By the way, this is twice the number of nerve endings in the glans of a penis. Lucky us!

More to come in the next blog… in the meantime please feel free to ask any questions you have or share any facts you may know. We are all teachers for each other.

© 2014 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

My Friend Stacy

Baebara Musser, Sexy After Cancer, Sexy Saturdays blog, cancer and sexuality, sancer and sexual health, breast cancer, cancer and intimacy, sex after cancer diagnosis,

 

 

Stacy died on Easter Sunday, 42 years old, leaving a beautiful 2 year-old daughter and beloved husband, along with a very large circle of friends and family. Even when we know it’s coming we’re never ready for death. Even though we know it’s in the cards for each of us, we somehow don’t acknowledge it. When cancer is part of our story, we are often more aware of the fragility and preciousness of life.

I’d like to share a story of how Stacy lived her life fully, before and during her cancer adventures. Although born into privilege and wealth, Stacy didn’t flaunt it. She wore jeans, attended and gave garage sales, yearned for love and happiness. If anything she knew that wealth doesn’t guarantee happiness or love. She had lots of “fristers”, friends who were her chosen sisters. I was one and it was fun ~ we were in a women’s group together, attended personal growth workshops, created lists of our perfect partners and lamented our imperfect bodies.

A little over three years ago, Stacy realized that she really wanted to have a baby. She wasn’t in a relationship and her biological clock was ticking.  Undaunted by these circumstances, she made a commitment to herself that she would be pregnant by the end of that year, 2010. She didn’t have a plan but she had a beautiful vision and a lot of passion for her vision.

Months passed and she kissed many “frogs” in search of her prince. I introduced her to some men who I thought worthy of her. No lasting connection was made. Then, miraculously, she and a wonderful man realized that there was something very special growing in their hearts. They were a perfect match ~ the same quirky sense of humor and irony; very playful; loved to laugh; and both wanting to be parents.

By the end of December she was pregnant! Her daughter was born in September and the world laughed and celebrated her arrival with delight. Stacy’s dreams had all come true. Love, family and a very happy life were hers.

Last summer she was diagnosed with cancer. Ten months later she died after watching the sunrise and hearing and seeing the sights and sounds of a beautiful spring morning, Easter Sunday. She is risen.

To my dear friend Stacy, with love.

© 2014 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.