I'm a 34 year old male with a severe libido deficiency that heavily contributed to the loss of my marriage. I have also been diagnosed as bipolar type II, but I'm not sure that's accurate. What I believe is at the core of this and is the symptom that precipitated the increasing downfall of both the ed/libido limitations, and the mood disorder, was the insomnia. I have traveled almost all traditional routes for a solution, but I was recently reading about copper toxicity or deficiency or a zinc copper imbalance.
The reason I'm on the male sexual health board is that it is the symptom that i find most bothersome. I have been diagnosed with hypgonadism, which simply means my testicles don't produce adequate testosterone. I'm on supplementary testosterone and I have been for several years. It helps somewhat with erection rigidity for a couple of days after my injection which I take once weekly, but it doesn't help with drive....except limited. I would settle for strong and reliable erections and because I'm recently divorced, I would really like for this to be corrected. I have and will take levitra etc., but I can't help but feel like all of these issues are intertwined, and while I have had multiple sleep studies that tell me what I already know, I'm not sleeping, they haven't shed any light on what it might me. I can't help but feel that the sleep issue is at the core and all I want is the sex drive that my brother and father share. It's embarrassing to not be "motivated" nor ready even when properly motivated. I want that, but I just don't feel it. I have been close to giving up all hope many times and I again find myself feeling hopeless like none of these issues will ever let up.
My question to the group is, have any of you experienced similiar symptoms? I read something that suggested copper toxicity or another heavy metal issue might be at play, but that's a first for me. Maybe I'm grasping at straws, but do any of you experience what I have described? Every once in a while my sex drive and erectile function will be fantastic for a single intimate session or maybe a full day, but then the next day is back to the normal uninterested self. I desire women, but I don't have the drive to go get it anymore.
I'm sure this is too complex for a simple answer, but I'm beginning to believe I have gone past "conventional" medicine approaches and I need to start looking at more obscure causes like heavy metals etc....
If anyone has any input or similarities, I would love to hear from you. Maybe as a group we can work together to research and get medical assistance to help attack it independently and collaborate as a group.
First, let me thank you from the bottom of my heart for taking the time to respond. I feel very alienated in this situation, so having someone tell me they hear me, even if it's not something they experience means a lot to me.
I will follow your guidance and find a naturopathic physician as soon as I can.
if anyone else experiences severe sleep issues, virtually non-existent libido except for unpredictable situations, frequent but not persistent ED, and mood disorders, please reply to this post. I can't believe that I'm the only poor sap running around with this issue.
My boyfriend has been suffering from severe insomnia for almost 10 years now and deals with issues very similar to yours. Unfortunately, he hasn't found any answers either, but I just ran across an article that discussed the benefits of fish oil in regards to sleep cycles. My boyfriend also has a panic disorder, so high stress also plays a part in his life along with the insomnia. He has participated in many sleep studies but, like you, they only told him that he has an extremely low amount of REM sleep compared to the normal, happy sleeper. Prescribed sleeping medications generally don't keep him asleep for the night even if they knock him out at first, so that has been another source of frustration.
Again, sorry for the lack of help, but I wanted you to know that someone can definitely empathize with you. He's described himself as being too exhausted to pursue sex, even though he is attracted to me. I'm definitely going to have him take fish oil regularly, and I will try to write back if there's any significant changes!
I have recently started taking fish oil but for an entirely different reason. If your boyfriend knows you are investigating on his behalf, I'd be interested in him contacting me as I'm certain three heads are better than one. I'm very appreciative of you taking the time to reply as you, or rather your boyfriend, is the first I have ever found that shared my symptoms and because we are in a very very small minority, MD's don't really know what to do so they essentially give up if front line options don't address the problems.
As for fish oil, I'm an avid athlete and I spend a lot of time in the gym so I started taking fish oil and CLA to reduce body fat. I'm early in the process, but I decided to try taking it before bed along with liquid B12....mostly because I'll try anything. (I even taped a kidney bean to my wrist one time because my grandmother told me she read that it might work...silly, but I did it). So, I also ran across a product called Flora calm, which might work great for his anxiety condition and is some derivative of an enzyme in milk which has anti-anxiety effects, but is non-addictive and herbal. I was super skeptical, but I purchased it and although alone it does not help my sleep, it does help calm me down. So, I take the flora calm at about 8, then I take the B12 and the fish oil at bed time and drink a cup of "sleepy time" tea which I purchased at Walgreens and I'm relaxed at bed time which is something that rarely happens. I'm by no means sleeping the way I believe I should be, but the combination, while probably a little strange, has certainly helped with sleep onset, and I feel more rested in the morning, but not by the afternoon. My mood seems more stable as well with a great deal less irritability. As for libido....still hit or miss, which as I'm sure you know, bothers all of us the most. I do believe that if I could get some sleep that the libido would fall into place.
Anyway, until we get a larger group of us with similar symptoms, I know we won't have the leverage to encourage drug and therapy developers to treat us. That said, I believe our connection might be a start. If he's interested, I certainly am, but I would understand if he's reluctant or if you aren't sharing your research. I'm by no means an MD, but hell if I don't know more than I ever cared to about sleep, mood disorders, and the medications that are used to treat them. I think this might be the beginning of a solution if there is interest. Patience isn't easy to come by when you suffer with this, but without it, we are all doomed.
If nothing else, know your boyfriend is in my thoughts as are you. Most people with insomnia don't have the severity and adjoining symptoms that he and I share, and as a result, they have no concept of how destructive the whole situation is. I'm convinced that the only people that understand our plight are new mothers, but they also don't have to deal with the reduced "male" functioning symptoms, and they also largely get a pass from those around them because child care is universally valued and the reason for lack of sleep is temporary in the grand scheme of things. When a new mother loses her cool or is irritable, moody, exhausted or doesn't feel like being intimate, she gets a pass or at least full understanding and help. When a young adult male or female without a child to keep them awake and their relationships suffer, their performance at work, and in interpersonal relationships suffer, they get labeled with all kinds of unfair stigmas.
I wish you and he the best, and God bless you for trying to understand. My marriage was a victim of this illness, so I really admire your fortitude. He's suffering in so many ways if his issues are anything like mine. I love to be outside and to play sports, and to compete on fields and at work, but without rest, I am aloof, too tired to do anything but work out an hour 5 days a week and just barely handle my workload. Quite honestly, I believe I would be dangerous in a good way, if I were to sleep normally.
Take care and feel free to have him contact me, or feel free to contact me with any questions you might have that you feel uncomfortable asking him.
I had a strong urge to again thank you for your response, and to tell you how much your understanding means to your boyfriend. My wife never understood, and quite frankly she simply got to where she didn't care why I wasn't interested or why I felt so terrible all the time. To be fair, empathy was never her strong point, but you are a total gem and you can't imagine how much he appreciates you trying to understand.
You should go to your doctor and have them take a full blood test of ALL your hormones to make sure they are at the correct levels. It's hard to measure hormone levels since they fluctuate thruout the month, but have them take a blood test once a week for 4 weeks if need be. Insist on this!! All your symptoms (insomnia, libido, moods) are very common symptoms of a hormonal imbalance. It's not just women that get hormonal imbalances, men's hormones can also become imbalanced. If you do have an imbalance, it's as easy as getting a hormone gel/cream to rub on the inside of your arms every day. Just make sure you get the bioidentical hormones and not the synthetic.
I have read a great deal about hormones, both male and female, and while there are bioavailable female hormones available in the US, I'm not aware of any testosterone that are available in the US. I'm by no means certain of this, but if you have a recommendation, I'm so happy to hear it. I don't have insurance at present, but once I do, I will pursue the tests in question.
Thank you for your input.
Last edited by Sleepnevermore; 03-09-2009 at 10:34 PM.