There isn’t much private anymore.  I’m not talking about people who publish their random thoughts on a blog–that would be me–or say too much on Facebook or some other social network.  I’m talking about public discussions of things once private.  Secret.  Forbidden.  Shameful.

For example, consider erectile dysfunction or ED for short.  No pun intended.  There isn’t an evening that goes by without at least three fairly explicit ads for drugs to solve that problem.  If he has to take a pill to make it happen and she has to take a pill to care, why bother?

Also, consider the view that ED is God’s gift to menopausal women.  Now there is something you shouldn’t discuss in public.

I almost drove off the road the other day when an ad for a local plastic surgery factory toted vaginoplasty and labial reduction (labiaplasty) at reduced rates.  Who knew?  I suppose the gynecologists and plastic surgeons.  I would have imagined a discrete referral.  I Googled the topic.  There are several other cosmetic reconstructions available for female genitalia.

What does the woman tell her friends as she sits on her inflatable ring?  “Oh, now that he has his little blue pill, I so want to be more attractive.  There.  You know.”

HELLO.  He has the little blue pill.  Attractive isn’t what counts.

Having viewed selective photos on the WEB, I understand that some women need some work done.  That’s not the issue.  With all of the explicit advertising, it can be embarrassing to watch television or listen to the radio in mixed company, especially if the mix includes parents and their offspring.

Menopause seems to remain under a shroud of semi-secrecy.  So much so, that I was advised by a young person that hot flashes are all in a woman’s head.  I was so busy fanning myself I didn’t have a free hand to hit him with.  Perhaps a little public awareness would bring personal internal combustion to a level of acceptability and understanding, like ED for example.

I saw an coupon for i-cool in the paper yesterday.  Okay, it wasn’t a discrete ad, but it wasn’t on prime time television either.  We’ve already established iWant anything that begins with an i.  This felt like karma.  I took the coupon to Walgreens and found the product on the very bottom shelf under the vitamins.

That in itself says a lot.  Condoms at eye level, menopausal relief two inches off the floor.

I teach nursing.  I’m allowed to talk about these things.