When my career at CBS News came to an abrupt end, an executive commented as I tumbled through a trapdoor onto West 57th Street, “You are a square peg trying to fit into a round hole.” I was a provocateur. No question. I still tell my friends I left in a cutback of one. So why should I stop now. Those guys from Hartford asked to meet with me. Their agenda was not clear to me.
They spoke with the energy and enthusiasm of liberated souls. They talked to me about how little they had known about sexual dysfunctio n and MS. They also shared how much they now understood how much urolo gists could do to help them. We had a very upbeat session. I figured many of you would appreciate knowing about these people and this center. That is all. I am not pererring in your bedroom windows.
Sex is a touchy subject, even inside the house.I really was not expecting you to share the intimate details of your lives. I only wanted to share my experience.I was kidding when I wrote, Silence. I wish I had thought to make a sign carrying the same message when my kids were growing up. But I do think we are less than honest with each other and ourselves with regard to sex.
Next, the death penalty. Or maybe gun control.

17 Responses to Noise

  1. Jack July 30, 2014 at 2:22 pm #

    Provocateur — Isn’t that just a troublemaker with a good vocabulary?

    Seriously though, I appreciate your sharing information that helps to reinforce that none of us are truly alone and that there are steps we can take to address at least some of our problems. I never feel an obligation to reveal personal information or even to comment on each of your blog posts. We share what we want to share.

    • Richard M. Cohen July 30, 2014 at 2:31 pm #



  2. Nik July 30, 2014 at 4:07 pm #

    “Sex is a touchy subject”. It SURE is 😉
    I thought you were referring to that post…not as many responses. You crack me up!

    • Richard M. Cohen July 31, 2014 at 6:59 am #

      I don’t want to talk about it.


  3. Jeff July 30, 2014 at 4:30 pm #

    I come here to learn and to share – hopefully to help myself and others make our way through this journey the best we can. Sometimes that means talking about something that we would normally keep to ourselves. At this point, I am an open book. Being open has helped me become OK with myself and open to new ideas.

    Thanks for breaking the silence, I like it better when we discuss.

    • Richard M. Cohen July 31, 2014 at 7:01 am #

      Me, too.


  4. Yvonne July 30, 2014 at 8:01 pm #

    Ohhhhh…I get it. Silence. Not as many replies when talking about sexual dysfunctions. As a female MSer I had no reference point so I stayed out of the conversation but I can understand the silence. It’s a sensitive topic one I haven’t even talked about with my neurologist. I guess as a single MSer I should be more informed about how this disease effects sex as it progresses. Guess I have a new topic for my next appointment. I’m sure it will be uncomfortable but it’s obviously a necessary discussion I didn’t think of. If it effects men it probably manifest in some way with women. Thanks

    • Richard M. Cohen July 31, 2014 at 7:04 am #

      It does, according to the female urologist from Hartford. I found her easy to talk to.


  5. Marlene July 30, 2014 at 8:07 pm #

    The guys agenda was simple… Meet the man who has paved the way bravely, openly and with a whole lot of attitude! Your presence alone has energized this group! About time men with MS were recognized and supported- thanks

  6. Mark July 30, 2014 at 9:07 pm #

    I try to minimize my expectations. I just read the posts, the replies and then react. So far, the MS hasn’t had an impact on my reactions.

  7. Richard M. Cohen July 31, 2014 at 7:08 am #


  8. Laura July 31, 2014 at 10:56 am #

    Silence? You must not have seen my lengthy reply on your original post. Bravo for you to speak up and challenge others to do the same.

    • Richard M. Cohen July 31, 2014 at 12:30 pm #

      Fight on.


  9. jane July 31, 2014 at 12:01 pm #

    Have you ever heard of a shut-up card? We saw it on TV last year and laughed as it is my husband and me. So I made him some to use. The idea is if I am droning on about a boring subject or nagging he could hand me a shut up card and I would stop! Haha.
    Now we just say “time for a shut-up card” and laugh, usually. You were only supposed to use one or two a day. It can stop a fight from evolving for us.

    • Richard M. Cohen July 31, 2014 at 12:32 pm #

      Not sure I get the connection.


  10. Grandma July 31, 2014 at 8:49 pm #

    are there studies on sexual dysfunction with ms distinguishing if the causes are physical,psychological, or relating to ms medication?

  11. Anonymous August 1, 2014 at 1:46 am #


    Do a search on for any of those terms with “ms” and “sexual dysfunction.” You’ll find many, many research papers on the subject in all three cases.