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Are you aware that there is a direct relationship between your intimate relationships and your health? Often the disease symptoms you may be experiencing are the red flags that your body-mind is using to let you know that some aspect of your relationship isn't working. The symptoms may not always seem obviously linked to a problem in your sex life or your relationship, but with a little exploration you may be surprised to discover the connection. Unless you look as deeply as possible into the causes of your symptoms or illness, we have found over and over again, that they're likely to persist, to return after a temporary healing, or to disappear only to be replaced by others which are more serious and life-disrupting. We are struck continually by how often people's physical, mental, or emotional complaints are caused by problems in their relationships which they have either given up on or chosen to ignore.

If there is anger, resentment, fear, jealousy or grief between lovers or feelings of sexual inadequacy, the genitals, uterus, ovaries, prostate gland, or testes may be directly affected. P.M.S., vaginitis, urethritis, urinary tract infections, breast prob- lems, painful sex, cervical dysplaisia, prostatitis, impotence, premature ejaculation and cancer of the reproductive organs, which prevent or limit sexual intercourse and intimacy, can be very strong statements about your relationship. Getting sexually transmitted diseases like venereal warts, herpes, or AIDS can sometimes be reflective of deeper feelings about the relationship that need to be dealt with, or feelings about your own sexuality, confidence, or self-love. Although no one would choose to get any of these illnesses consciously, the subconscious mind may have perfectly good and protective reasons for acquiring a painful, contagious or dysfunctional condition in order to limit sexual contact with your lover or make a statement about unspoken feelings. This is not to say that you are " to blame" for the disease, but rather that you might have subconsciously invited it into your life to teach you valuable lessons. In many cases it is absolutely necessary to heal the relationship issues before the physical illness can resolve and not return.

Roger, a single man in his twenties, had a lot of fear about sexuality and performance in his relationship with his girlfriend. He came to us because of a persistent, deep pain and tension in his groin, which became worse whenever he made love with his partner. There was no obvious physical problem, but the pain was very real. He began to avoid sex with his partner, which made her feel unwant- ed and unloved. His pain eventually caused him to leave the relationship in order to see if it would happen with other partners. He found that it was necessary to deal with his own feelings about sex and fears of inadequacy beforehe could have sex with anyone. Through treatment with a homeopathic remedy, emotional release work, movement therapy and hypnosis, Roger was able to get rid of the pain com- pletely, change the way he felt about himself as a man and love himself. He was able to make love with other partners, and considered returning to his primary relation- ship with renewed hope that he would be able to make love with the woman he desired to be with the most.

Claire, a busy lawyer, and her husband, John, were unhappy in their marriage of 3 years. When they had first been together they had made love all the time, some- imes several times a day and really enjoyed it. She had come to expect that level of attention and felt unloved if she didn't get it. John, an equally busy executive, just couldn't find the time or the energy to have sex that much anymore. He loved Claire, but he couldn't handle her moods, especially before her period, when she could fly into violent rages if she felt slighted or he didn't want to have sex. Over time, as Claire became more demanding, John became more reluctant, and even- tually began having trouble getting an erection. Between the P.M.S. and the impotence, their love life became both a battleground and a disaster. They began avoiding sex more and more, and eventually were hardly speaking to each other. Through couples counseling, homeopathic treatment and individual therapy, it became clear that the main problem was miscommunication and misunderstanding. Neither Claire nor John knew how to help the other feel loved and special. They needed to learn to speak each other's love language. When they had had a lot of sex, it was easier for each of them to feel loved, but as their life demands intervened, and sex became less frequent, the amount of loving that they gave each other markedly decreased. They had to realize, in the process of healing their relationship, that there was much more to loving than just being sexual with each other. When they each learned a number of other ways to express their love and caring so that their partner would really get the message, Claire's PMS became very mild, and John's impotence evaporated. The sex which they did have, although less frequent than during their honeymoon, stopped being a battleground, and became a source of real fulfillment and love in their relationship again.

Harriet was 48 when she first came to see us two years ago. She had just separated from her husband of 25 years and had mixed feelings of relief, excitement, and moments of insecurity verging on panic. Her husband was a compulsive gambler. She had gone along with all of his decisions, stuffed her anger and rarely argued or cried. She became silent and withdrawn. Yet she blamed herself for the failure of the marriage. "If only I had been smarter, worked harder, been a better wife, etc, etc." She made love out of duty alone. She had many recurrent bladder infections,, gas and constipation, and chronic allergies which drove her crazy. By the time she came in, she was afraid of "just about anything" and had no trust in her own ability to make good decisions in her relationships and her life. Now, after two years of homeopathic treatment, counseling and hypnosis (during which time she remem- bered a childhood experience of sexual abuse), and a sincere determination to change her patterns, she is a new person. She has learned to trust and express her feelings more, is more assertive about what she wants, has a new career which she loves, and a new relationship with a man who nurtures and "adores" her.

If you are having persistent health problems, sexual or otherwise,which haven't responded to orthodox medicine, consider looking further and deeper. When your sex organs are crying out for attention, look at the parts of your relationship that are just as sensitive, vulnerable, and in need of attention. Pelvic pain, abnormal Pap smear, problems with intercouse, or other symptoms, may be urging you to evaluate how you feel about your lover, your sex life, and your life together. Do you feel happy, loved, creative, and nurtured? Are your reproductive organs or other parts of you trying to get you to make a change and to heal your relationship in ways you might have been ignoring?

Drs. Judyth Reichenberg-Ullman and Robert Ullman are naturopathic and homeopathic physicians and cofounders of the Northwest Center for Homeopathic Medicine in Edmonds, WA. They are coauthors of The Patient's Guide to Homeopathic Medicine and Beyond Ritalin: Homeopathic Treatment of ADD and Other Behavioral and Learning Problems. They can be reached at (206) 774-5599.

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About The Author
Judyth Reichenberg-Ullman, ND, DHANP, MSW is a licensed naturopathic physician board certified in homeopathic medicine. She graduated with a degree in ...more
 
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