A bit of black spandex with a woman attached to it.   110 lbs., maybe. Blonde curly hair,  nice face, slim, bronzed, freckled. This is Dear Husband’s (DH) new “girlfriend”.  I’ll call her “Irene”. 

Irene has attached herself to Ted, like crazy glue!  She’s a friend of a friend; that’s how we got to know her.  And she’s recently divorced, so of course she needs a shoulder to cry on. And I’ll bet you can guess who that shoulder belongs to?  Ted.

Ted is a good listener.  Yesterday, DH reported to me:  Irene said that I am so “stable and level-headed“.  Well, that phrase just makes me crow: Yes, Ted is stable and level-headed, that’s what I fell in love with, the “Midwestern” in him.  

It’s like this: DH has lived in NY for 30 years.  Even so: “You can take the man out of Missouri, but you can’t take the Missouri out of the man.” 

You have to understand that, in frenzied New York, that Slo-Mo comes in real handy.

I do have a thing for corn-fed men, but then I like all men.  I got this “androphilia” from my mother.  She actually said to me once, “Men are a superior race”.  Well, English is not her first language, but I got the idea.  We come from an old world, religious culture, which worships men.  A little regressive, if you ask me. 

Back to Irene:  She just drops by our apt whenever she’s nearby, which is often.  And she always brings her bike.   The other day when she came she actually asked me to feel  her biceps to see how strong she is.  “You see that”, she said, “That’s how I am all over.”  Ripped, cut, defined. 

Kind of funny.  But I remember a time when I was into weight training myself, and I would want to show everyone my biceps, triceps, lats, abs, pecs, hamstrings, adductors, abductors and so forth.   

You must be asking yourself: Why do I tolerate an attractive woman spending so much time with my husband?  Aren’t I jealous?

At moments, but overall I think it’s a blessing Irene has taken such an interest in DH.  She’s good to talk to and smart.  And the truth is, with everything Ted has gone through in the past two years, he needs someone to talk to.  More than that: someone to worship him and seek out his “wise counsel”.

Of course, I have suggested to DH that he talk to me about his feelings, but he rarely obliges.  So I urged him to get to know some of the Brothers online.  But DH said he is just not ready yet.

Well, I’ll be.  Here’s the kicker!  Ted confessed to me that what he had confided to no Man, not even his brother or his father, he has shared with a Woman, Irene!  Somehow, he’s more comfortable with that.

I asked Ted what he talks to Her about, and he says Everything.  All the gory details: the impotence, injection therapy, his concerns about his genitals being “fried”.  That’s what bothers him the most.   (Ted started IMRT 2 wks ago, salvage radiation.) 

Yes, a man can be rendered impotent twice.  DH was just starting to get a boost in his natural EF (erectile function) when all this happened.

Ted recently asked me if there has been any progress made in “nerve grafting”.  I asked, “Why”? He said, “Maybe they could use that to fix what they’ve messed with.” You know, like his Manhood”.  I told T. that nerve grafting is something that is done during prostate surgery, so it’s too late for that.

*But I reminded DH that his own ED doc, Arnold Melman, is a very smart guy, and he’s working on a gene therapy for ED that’s already in clinical trials at Mt. Sinai!  And there’s always the penile implant.  Have never heard of a dissatisfied customer! 

That was a hard conversation for me,  painful even to recall it.  So,  you could imagine how he feels.

Maybe it’s not surprising that T. would rather discuss his limp dick with a woman.  His “girlfriend”.  It’s better than saying to another guy, “I just can’t get it up.  No way, no how”.  That’s just my guess.  When you’re talking to a woman, the competitive aspect isn’t there.

We live near two parks, Riverside and Central, and in the summer there’s always something going on there.  A concert, a play.  So, about an hour ago, Irene rang us up and invited us to come to the nearby Boat Basin, saying there was a party going on there.  Well, dear husband ended up going, and that’s where he is now.  Hope he’s having fun. 

You might think I’m crazy for allowing my DH to gallivant around with a hot babe who thinks every word he says is a pearl of wisdom.

Maybe.  But I will tell you that my fear for T. was not that people would cling to him, but that they would avoid him.  Or distance themselves from him.  Sometimes that happens to people who are dealing with Round 2 of cancer (he has also had a melanoma).    An old-timer in these groups told me about this “shunning” phenomenon, and I know it happens because I’ve done it myself.

Well, the boss just walked in.  I guess he finally said, “Good night, Irene”.

Take care.