Being in an intimate relationship is very important to me, and I am not currently in an intimate relationship. Regarding barriers to barriers to dating, Parkinson’s symptoms have become obvious and I am uncomfortable meeting new people. I do feel differently about intimacy than before I was diagnosed. I am experiencing physical barriers to a satisfying intimate relationship including loss of libido, and emotional barriers to a satisfying intimate relationship including depression.
I have not undertaken any treatments that have impacted positively or negatively on my relationship, for example medications or procedures such as Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS). The factors impacting on my ability to have an intimate relationship include a lack of emotional support, reluctance to ask for help, fatigue, lack of sleep, depression, a feeling of being overwhelmed, the impact of changes in independence, the impact of changes in partner roles, worry about the future, tremor, rigidity, slowness of movement, difficulty with coordinating movement, self-esteem issues and negative body image. I have experienced a lack of sexual desire, changes in sexual function, difficulty with getting or keeping an erection, pain during intercourse, fear of incontinence during sex, and balance issues during sex. Strategies that are useful or may be useful include talking to my partner about my concerns, increasing exercise to improve mobility and stamina and going to the toilet before sex. I feel that it would be useful for the App to provide free access to a Relationship Therapist for online advice specifically in relation to young onset Parkinson’s. I would like a Relationship Therapist to know about young onset Parkinson’s, and this survey shows a good insight and is a really good start.
Questions we should be asking children include – How do they think Parkinson’s has affected their parent? How has their parent’s PD affected them? How do they see things going/happening/changing in the future?