So my best friend who is 21 has been dating her 31 year old boyfriend for over a year. The problem? They have not had sex yet! Now, she certainly wants to, however he has some health issues and has some problems gaining and keeping an erection. Not only does he have diabetes that he does nothing to keep in check, he is also on methadone which is said to cause lower libido. They have looked into pharmaceutical fixes but they are too costly. Any advice on what they can do so they can finally have a real relationship? And if he isn't willing to try I've suggested that she ask him to allow her to get it elsewhere. Does that seem reasonable?

Girls Got Needs Too

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My response after the jump...


I'm curious, first off, why this letter came from you and not your best friend.

That said: if the pharmaceutical fixes are too costly, and his erections are too wonky, they could have sex like (most) of the lesbians do: without erections. (Well, without an erect cock—women also get erections—really!—but women's erections are, um, embedded. Subject for another SLLOTD.) They can have a "real relationship," a fully sexual relationship, with oral sex and mutual masturbation and fingering and fisting and—when his dick does kick into gear—they can enjoy penis-in-vagina intercourse for as long as he lasts.

And, yes, it seems reasonable for your best friend to seek permission to get it elsewhere—but you know me: I think getting it elsewhere, now and then, with your partner's permission, is reasonable even if your partner doesn't have health issues, wonky boners, and a methadone prescription.

And finally: when a partnered person has lots of issues that prevent him from having sex, and he isn't willing to work on those issues, it's often a sign that he isn't really interested in having sex—not with his partner, maybe not with anyone. But he still wants a partner. For the support, companionship, and intimacy. But many of these guys—and girls—aren't comfortable giving their partners permission to get it elsewhere, even though they have no interest in "it." Which is too bad. Lots of decent, loving, sexless relationships come to an end because people we're so hung up on monogamy, culturally, that even people who aren't interested in sex refuse to give their partners permission to seek it elsewhere.