This September, CancerCare launched a new, professionally led support group in New York City for men, focusing on “Sexual Health After Cancer.” The group, led by CancerCare Men’s Cancers Program Director Bill Goeren, LCSW-R, ACSW, brought together 20 participants, who shared their concerns and insights about intimacy and sexual health during and after cancer treatment.
While the majority of participants were prostate cancer survivors, the group also included men diagnosed with myeloma, head and neck cancer, colon cancer, and throat cancer.
Though their experiences were unique, a common thread binding the men in the group was their anxiety and uncertainty about the impact of their cancer and treatment on their sexuality, noted Goeren.
“Men can often be hesitant to discuss their emotions and feelings,” he said. “Once the ice was broken, though, the group really opened up and asked the questions they wanted to ask,” such as whether they would be able to continue or resume physical intimacy with their partner. The men also shared how they were affected emotionally by the temporary or permanent loss of sexual function due to their illness and treatment, and how that loss redefined their intimate relationships.
CancerCare will offer its professionally moderated men’s cancers support group throughout the fall and winter. Future discussion topics will include exercise and nutrition, work and careers, and how to talk to your children about cancer.
For more information about CancerCare’s programs for men affected by cancer, contact Goeren at 212-712-6141 or email email@example.com.