It Was Tough Admitting Erectile Dysfunction at 19 Years Old

Jonathan, 25, lives in Winter Park, Fla.

Urologists weren't eager to treat a young man, but he's notconvinced it's all in his head.
I first realized something was wrong when I was 19 and my girlfriend at the time told me that it wasn't normal to lose your erection in the middle of sex. So I started thinking more about it.

If I can get decently hard, it's gone in about 10 or 15 minutes. I'm 25 now, and I shouldn't have this problem. If I were 55, it would be a different story.

But I didn't get help right away. It took a while to admit that I had any problems at all. I looked up information online and didn't find a lot of answers. By the time I finally worked up the nerve to talk to my doctor, I was married to a very understanding woman. And my problem frustrated us both.

My doctor wasn't much help. I tried Viagra and Levitra, and both of them have helped me to get a fuller erection, but, from what I understand, it's not as full as it should be. And both have the strangest side effects, at least for me. In addition to giving me sinus congestion and headaches, the pills make me feel depressed very quickly. It really kills the mood, and I beat myself up over not being able to satisfy my wife.

I know a lot of doctors say it's often a psychological issue—especially when ED happens in younger guys—but I don't know. I want to say it is, because that means it's something I can eventually fix with therapy. But the fact is that I've had this all my life, and that makes me think there's a physical cause.

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As told to: Nick Burns
Last Updated: April 13, 2008

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