Sexual wellness and dysfunction issues are some of the most reported issues for those facing a cancer or illness journey, and those are the very issues often left out of the plan for survivorship and whole healing. Reclaiming Intimacy is an organization that focuses on all aspects of sexual health, sexual wellness, and sexual dysfunction by providing resources, therapeutic aids, educational services and personal intimacy and wellness guides for patients, their friends and family, and medical care providers who need them.
Studies suggest that sexual dysfunction is one of the most common and distressing consequences of treatment, affecting between 50-90% of adult survivors, depending on type of treatment.Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Reclaiming Intimacy works to break the taboo of discussing intimacy and sexuality in the medical community, and strives to provide patients holistic options, therapies, and resources to help them to reconnect with themselves, their bodies, and within their relationships. Their goal is to become the resource used for patients and medical staff to reach out to when guidance on intimacy and sexuality is needed.
Both men and women face varying issues with sexual dysfunction throughout their lives.
Some of the most common female-centered issues are vaginal atrophy, vaginal pain, and extreme dryness. For males, those common issues are erectile dysfunction, loss of ability, and painful intercourse. Many people also face loss of libido, lack of desire, the inability to orgasm (or anorgasmia), incontinence, and relationship disconnect.
Their experts are knowledgeable with years of experience with adult sexual education, product knowledge and share a passion for helping others reclaim their intimacy needs, and lives.
Some of the services offered by Reclaiming Intimacy include:
- Educational Courses. These courses are designed to educate, empower, and guide patients and medical professionals on better ways to address sexual dysfunction and wellness issues in life and within relationships. The courses are available via pre-scheduled Zoom webinar dates, private Zoom webinars, or offered via an online course to be taken in the privacy of your own home, at your own pace. Courses offered are:
- Reclaiming Life: Breast & Chest Cancer Focus. This course is designed for those people who are going through or have fought, breast or chest cancer.
- Reclaiming Life: Men’s Cancer & Illness Focus. Their Men’s Cancer & Illness focus course covers male cancers and illness, body changes due to ability or treatment, self-care, therapeutic aids, and more.
- Reclaiming Life: Women’s Cancer & Illness Focus. Their Women’s Cancer & Illness focus course covers women’s cancers and illness, body changes due to ability, self-care methods, therapeutic aids, and more.
- Maintaining the Caregiver’s Calm. Caregivers are often the silent strugglers when helping their loved one navigate through cancer and illness. This course is designed for those caregivers who are just entering the caregiving life, or those who are already a part, by giving helpful tips, tricks, reminders, and advice on how to make it a good experience for all parties and to build stronger relationships.
- Reclaiming Our Relationship. This course is designed for those in a relationship facing or living through cancer or illness. It touches on how to keep the connection strong, re-connect when things get tough, and maintain the balance of your relationship.
- Reclaiming the Self. When cancer and illness strike, losing yourself happens multiple times through the journey. This course is designed to help you stay focused, learn to give yourself the space and time you need, and to take the proper care to love yourself as much as you love others.
- Therapeutic Aids. Reclaiming Intimacy offers therapeutic aids, products and devices for both men and women that aid in the recovery of sexual ability and provide support to help patients reclaim their intimacy needs. Some of the therapeutic aids available are vaginal dilators and Kegel exercisers, breast prosthesis forms, natural lubrication & moisturizers, vacuum pump systems, support, and enhancement rings, along with prostate massage kits. Some of these products may even be covered by your medical insurance plan. Reclaiming Intimacy does not file insurance, instead helps patients with the filing process by providing the needed documents.
- Personal Intimacy & Wellness Guides. These free wellness guides are created just for you, with your setbacks, goals, and issues in mind. These guides offer a plan to help restore intimacy in whatever way you need, plus offers tips, tricks, and information to empower you to take back control of your sexual wellness.
- Partnerships & Outreach. Reclaiming Intimacy also works on partnering with many organizations nationwide that handle patient care, especially those focusing on cancer, long-term & chronic illness, and sexual dysfunction. Varying levels of partnership are available and links to organizations to broaden resource lists for patients is welcomed. Partnering with Reclaiming Intimacy ensures that staff is up to date on these issues and know how to have these important conversations with their patients.
- Memberships. Memberships are extended for those who purchase a service or therapeutic aid from Reclaiming Intimacy, or those organizations that partner with them. Memberships give access to all website content, printed materials, exclusive videos, pro-chat talks, Members Only activities and more.
- Free Monthly Open House Webinars. Reclaiming Intimacy is now offering monthly free open house webinars where anyone can attend, ask their questions, or learn more about how their partnerships work. These webinars will also have a topic of focus that varies each month.
- Q&A Sessions. Q&A sessions are offered throughout the year, with some sessions being designed for the public, and others solely for their members.
If you find yourself struggling with intimacy or sexual dysfunction before, during or after your medical treatment, or at any point in life, do not hesitate to reach out to Reclaiming Intimacy’s team for guidance and help to get back on track. Their therapeutic aids and educational services are available worldwide.
Jen Fecher is the Director of Educational Services for Reclaiming Intimacy in Fort Wayne, Indiana in the United States. She has worked in the education field for over fourteen years, with most of that time focusing on adult sexual education & intimacy issues.
A wife, mother, entrepreneur, and a chronically ill human, she has first-hand perspective on the issues many people are facing.