Sex Life: Losing My Leg Changed My Attitude Towards Sex

January 4, 2020

Sex Life is an anonymous Zikoko weekly series that explores the pleasures, frustrations and excitement of sex in the lives of Nigerians.

Today’s subject is a 26-year-old heterosexual woman who originally planned to remain a virgin until marriage. Then she lost her leg to cancer and decided that life was too short to wait.

When did you have your first sexual experience?

I was about 14. The guy and I didn’t have full-on sex, but we kissed, fondled and he fingered me. It was mostly exploratory. I hadn’t seen a penis in person until that moment, so it was all very new to me. He actually did most of the touching.

I told him I was saving myself for marriage, but he still decided to try his luck. While I was getting used to all the fondling, this dude tried to put his penis in my ass. I almost let him because I didn’t want to seem too inexperienced. 

My eyes cleared immediately the tip of his penis touched my asshole. It was so painful that I started contemplating if sex was even for me at all. For a long time after that, I didn’t allow guys to go near the bottom half of my body. 

Wait. Are you still saving yourself for marriage?

Nah. I lost my virginity when I was 22.

What made you change your mind?

When I was 21, I lost my left leg to cancer. After the amputation, I was in a really bad place emotionally and I needed some kind of release. At that point, foreplay and erotic content were no longer doing it for me.

I was a mess because I was trying to deal with the reality of losing my leg and just how sexually frustrated I was feeling. The entire thing got me thinking that I could have died without ever having had sex. So, I decided to do it with a guy I was dating at the time.

So sorry about that. Do you regret the decision?

Not even a little. See, everything leading up to sex — from kissing to fondling — is a scam. The actual thing is so much better. I’m convinced that I made the right choice. 

Was religion the main reason you were initially saving yourself?

Honestly, I had an intense, almost irrational fear of getting pregnant. That was really my biggest barrier. Like, I knew contraceptives were an option, but that didn’t make me any less scared. Eventually, I accepted that if it happened, I’d just get an abortion. 

So, what was your opinion about sex before you had it?

Save for my phobia for getting pregnant, I never thought it was something bad. The way people went on about it, however, I expected it to be some life-changing event. Don’t get me wrong, when I finally had it, I thought it was great, but I still think people get too worked up over it.

I know what you mean. Besides sex, how did you cope after the amputation?

I know I should have, but I never went for therapy. I’m still dealing with it because every day is a reminder of what happened to me. Thankfully, I had — and still have — a very good support system. I definitely made some bad choices along the way, but I’m a lot better now.

That’s great to hear. How else did your amputation affect your sex life?

I don’t really have anything to compare it to. I wouldn’t exactly define what I had pre-amputation as a sex life. That being said, I don’t think it affected much. I doubt there’s anything an abled person can do that I can’t. 

There might be a bit of discomfort, but I’m certain I’m just as capable as anyone else. I mean, I still have my knees and one foot, so if I need to contort myself and I’m not wearing my prosthetics, I could still make it work.  

Mad. Have you had to deal with any ignorant partners?

I luckily haven’t had to. I’ve had sex with just two people, and I was in a relationship with both of them. I was friends with my ex before my amputation, and we started dating after. With my current partner, we were also friends first.

I don’t feel comfortable taking off my prosthetics around strangers, so a one-night stand is definitely off the table. I have to really get to know someone before I feel comfortable enough to take off my leg around them. 

It’s not even a case of me being self-conscious. I have a disability, so if the situation becomes dangerous and my leg is already off, how do I escape? So, yeah, my mind tends to imagine different scenarios like that. 

That makes sense. 

That’s not to say that I don’t get self-conscious though. Like, if I’m feeling very uncomfortable and I need to take off my prosthetics in public, I make sure I have a scarf to cover my limb. I feel weird when people are just staring at me, whether it’s with sympathy or curiosity.

Fair. So, what’s sex like for you these days?

It’s great. At first, with my ex, it was a bit underwhelming. With my current partner, however, it’s incredible. We explore and experiment a lot. I’m also very comfortable with him, so there’s never an awkward moment. He’s helped me discover pleasure points I never even knew existed.

So, you’re fine with the level your sex life is currently at?

Well, to be fair, even though I’m enjoying the level I’m currently at right now, I do think I’m a bit vanilla in the bedroom. I feel like I still have a lot to explore, so I’m constantly looking for new things to try. 

I can’t quite place my finger on what exactly I’m looking for, but I know I want more. I’m not in a rush to find it though. I’m still trying to learn about my body and my partner’s body; learn what we like and what we don’t. Then we’ll see where it goes from there.

Is there anything you’ve tried in the bedroom that didn’t work out?

LMAO. Yeah. It was a very embarrassing experience. My ex and I tried to spice things up by having table sex, and it was disastrous. He was a student, so he had all those weak ass plastic tables. He put me on it, and I fell down hard. 

The plan was for me to use my prosthetic leg, so both my legs would be on the floor. Well, my prosthetic leg gave way, I gave way and the table gave way. Immediately I fell down, the mood was ruined.


Yeah. We didn’t have sex for a week after that. I was really in my head because of it. I kept thinking that maybe it wouldn’t have happened if I had both legs. The self-pity was intense, and I still haven’t had the liver to attempt table sex again.

How would you rate your sex life on a scale of 1 to 10?

I would give it a 7. 

Why just a 7?

Well, I’m satisfied but I think it could be better. I’ve heard my friends talk about their sexual experiences — I don’t know if they’re exaggerating or not — but it doesn’t sound like we are having the same sex.

So, while I consider my sex life to be goooood, I still want to try a lot of new things (especially toys). So, in 2020, we move.

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Check back every Saturday by 12pm for new stories in the Sex Life series. If you would like to get this story in your mail before everyone else — complete with inside gist that doesn’t make the final cut, sign up here. Catch up on older stories here.

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