Sex: it can be a tricky subject to talk about on a public blog, no?
My husband Jamie has been in my life for 11 years now, six of which we have spent together as a couple. When we first began dating and started to navigate life together, Jamie had to earn his degree at the University of Diabetes, as all loved ones and carers of people with diabetes do at some point.
As we talked about different treatments and how I manage it, my views on insulin pumps were clear; it was not for me. Medical terms like 'cannula' and 'infusion set' weren't welcome in my lexicon, and for many years I simply wanted to know nothing about them.
But as I learned more about the many benefits of pumping and realised that the problems people usually go on a pump to address were the very same challenges I was facing after more than 20 years with D, I realised I may need to re-consider my options longer term.
Jamie's never been squeamish. He watches Embarrassing Bodies with the same morbid fascination many do. But nevertheless, diabetes can be a gorey condition and having the gore on your own doorstep is different to watching it on a television show. Needles and annual blood tests are one thing, cannulas, possible glucagon administration and well-documented complications are another.
As I approached the decision to go on a pump I had to make sure that having tubing protruding from my clothing and cannulas moving around the landscape of my body wouldn't be a problem. I had to make it clear that if it was, then I would come off the pump. Above all else, Jamie still had to find me attractive if our relationship was to continue as well as it had so far. Feeling squeamish at the sight of me was not an option.
As always Jamie's attitude was to take it all in his stride. I believe his exact words were, "Do I mind it, are you kidding? It's like a girlfriend remote; notch it up a couple of units when you're annoying me, wait for you to go floppy, give you time to think about what you've done then chuck you some sweets. It's what every guy could want." True love there people, true love.
Rather on topic, Kerri Sparling of Six Until Me recently posted about how insulin pumps work during sex, and how you can either keep it on, or fling it. Personally, I'm a flinger; I don't want to be worrying about Lord Pumpington while in the throes of passion. It's Jamie and Anna time - no third parties needed (just don't tell Jamie, that will kill many a dream that was never going to come true).
My pump didn't change the way my then boyfriend (now husband) looked at me; It didn't freak him out; it doesn't get in the way of a sex life; it needn't be something you worry about if you are thinking about life on a pump. In fact, getting one may just make you a happier, healthier, more fun-loving person.
And who wouldn't wanna tap that ;)