Doctor's advice: It's my first time
Q Doc, I am planning to start an affair with an older woman. Don't criticise me because I am obsessed with this lady, and she says she loves me.
I am 19, and don't find girls my own age very interesting. I should explain that I am a person who studies philosophy and other complex matters, and I find modern girls very shallow and frivolous.
But as soon as I met this older lady, I found her very fascinating. She is very intelligent, and has achieved a great deal in her life. Also, she is still very good-looking. She is elegant and takes great care with her hair, make-up and clothes.
She has been married but is now divorced. Quite a lot of older guys are chasing her, but she says it is me she loves.
Now, Doc, I have to admit to you that I am still a virgin, so this will be the first time I have sex.
I have heard that there can be problems in making love to an older woman. A friend told me that ladies of that age can be 'tight' or 'dry'. Is that so? And is there anything special that I can do in order to make matters easier?
A Well, there are quite a few older woman-younger man relationships these days, particularly in fields such as show business. Although society used to frown on these relationships, some of them seem to work out very well.
However, forgive my saying so but don't be too surprised if your affair with this lady does not last a lifetime. To be frank, there may come a time when she tires of you, or you of her. That's how life often is.
Nevertheless, I wish you good luck with this relationship, and I hope it works out happily for both of you. Doubtless you will learn a lot from going to bed with an intelligent and experienced woman.
One word of warning: This woman has clearly had previous partners. So to be blunt, there has to be a chance that she might be 'carrying' some form of infection, such as chlamydia.
Therefore, I would urge you to use condoms when you both have sex. As she is a sensible woman, I don't suppose she will mind that.
By the way, you have not told me how old she is. Please bear in mind that if she is still in her 40s, she may well be still fertile. That is another reason why you should use condoms. Even if she is in her early 50s, there is a small chance of pregnancy, so take care.
Now, you ask me about possible difficulties in having intercourse with an older woman. Let me be absolutely frank. When a woman is in her late 40s, what usually happens is that the level of female hormones in her blood starts to fall.
Very often, the result of this drop in hormone levels is that the sex glands produce less lubrication. Therefore, the walls of the vagina become a little drier.
Also, they may become less soft, and not as 'cushion-like' as they were when the woman was younger. This can cause difficulties with intercourse because it may be awkward for the guy to get inside. Also, there may be a certain amount of discomfort, or even pain, for both partners.
But ... a great many experienced middle-age women defeat this problem by using vaginal lubricants. Often, they keep these products by the bedside in order to apply them just before having sex.
Also, your new lady friend may well be taking some form of hormone replacement therapy, for instance in the form of hormonal tablets or as hormonal vaginal cream.
The effect of this medication is to restore the condition of the vaginal walls to their normal state, and also to enable the woman to self-lubricate.
All in all, I don't think it likely that you will have any problems in making love to this woman. She will undoubtedly know exactly what to do in bed, and I am sure she will help you and treat you with consideration.
Finally, I think you should not hesitate to make clear to her that this will be your first time.
Q Doc, I am 18 and thinking of going on the Pill. Is it safe at my age?
I have heard that there is some new research about the Pill, but I don't know what has been discovered.
A Relax. Eighteen is about the safest possible age to take the Pill. It is in the older age group of women, like those over about 35, that serious side effects are most likely to arise.
Very occasionally, the Pill can cause big problems for a young woman. I am talking about heart attacks, strokes and clots in the leg veins. That is why it is a good idea to have a medical check-up before you start taking the oral contraceptive.
Also, please avoid smoking! Cigarettes greatly increase the chances of those side effects.
Now, you mention the new research into the Pill. This shows that the oral contraceptive reduces your chances of getting cancer of the ovary and cancer of the womb.
In contrast, the Pill does appear to slightly increase your chances of getting cancer of the cervix and cancer of the breast.
However, the researchers say that, overall, women who have taken the Pill are likely to live slightly longer than those who have not.
So the new research is encouraging. Provided that you are not going to smoke, it is probable that you will be just fine on the Pill.
Q I am a guy, and I would like your advice about women. I notice that usually during sex, particularly at the initial stage, there is a white cream-like secretion coming from the vagina.
I have found that with some girls, it's so much that it turns me off, so I either withdraw or lose the erection.
I don't think this secretion is anything abnormal, as I've seen it in blue movies. But how is it produced, and what is its purpose? Unfortunately, it negatively affects my interest to continue.
A Well, that is a pity. You see, this secretion is completely normal. It is produced by the vaginal walls and by the glands around the vagina. Its function is simply to provide lubrication for sex.
Its nature and appearance vary at different times of the menstrual cycle. In general, the more excited the woman is, the more she will produce. So really, you should regard it as a sort of tribute to how arousing the woman finds you.
I'm sorry that you seem to have a bit of a hang-up about seeing this fluid. I suggest you try to regard it positively, and also make love with the lights out. Please use safe sex!
Q Doc, I have never been pregnant. Could I be fitted with one of those coil things?
A Yes, you could. Coil insertion is easier in women who have had babies, but an experienced doctor or nurse should have no great difficulty in fitting you with one.
Email questions or feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also read Doctor's Advice in Outlook magazine in Sunday's Gleaner.