Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Erectile Dysfunction is a Thief

Yesterday 6/21 I received the front and back copy of my new book about erectile dysfunction & penile implants. As I read the copy written by the editor I was extremely disappointed. I thought there were run on sentences, grammar mistakes, and worst of all, I wasn't sure I'd buy my own book after reading their idea of what the book was about.

I did not want to write the copy for the back cover on my own. I was relieved to give this task to the professionals until I read what the professionals wrote. I knew I'd be the one to write the copy for the back cover but I also knew I had no experience or training to perform this task.

When I need to do something that I don't feel qualified to do, I know my next step is to take it to the Lord in prayer. My prayer goes something like this:
Lord, I can't do what I'm being asked to do, but I do know with your help I can get this done. So I'm asking you to give me the words I need to write, that would be pleasing to you. I can't and I won't begin until I hear from you.

Some time after this prayer, I wrote these words:

Erectile dysfunction (ED) is a thief. ED takes away physical and emotional intimacy. ED steals your confidence in the bedroom. ED robs you of your manhood. ED walks off with your self-esteem. Left untreated, ED has the power and potential to destroy lives, and end relationships. Here’s a surprising fact, the sudden onset of ED can save your life. Frequently, ED is early warning signal of current or future cardiovascular problems. ED can point the way to necessary life-style changes, or the need for a medication evaluation.

In Everything You Never Wanted to Know about Erectile Dysfunction and Penile Implants: End Your Silence, Sadness, Suffering, and Shame, authors Rick and Brenda Redner help men and couples recognize and overcome the roadblocks to seeking help with ED. They guide men and couples through the depression, grief and the inevitable relational conflicts that occur when individuals and couples are forced to cope with ED. They set couples on a path to discover healthy ways to think about, talk about, live with,  or cure erectile dysfunction.

Rick and Brenda share their four-year journey with ED, and the intimate details about their experiences with penile implant surgery. You’ll learn how penile implant surgery transformed their lives emotionally, psychologically, relationally and sexually. Based on their experiences and the information provided, you’ll have the opportunity to consider whether penile implant surgery is an option worth pursuing. With or without a penile implant, men and couples will discover that enjoyable sex doesn’t end with the onset of ED. A new and exciting sex life is possible after Rick and Brenda show you the ways to send the elephant in your bedroom packing.

If you've lived with ED, I'm curious what ED has taken away from you and/or your relationship(s).

Thursday, May 26, 2016

When Final Doesn't Mean Final

Have you ever done something, think you're finished, only to discover you aren't finished at all? It happens to me all the time when I'm writing a book, blog, Facebook post or talk. I read what I've written multiple times and declare "it's complete." I even go so far as to name the file final version as if by naming it that, it will become the final version. I can't count the number of final versions I've had with our new book and it's press release. Since I posted this blog, I've changed it four additional times. I'm hoping this truly is the final version of our press release. Comments and feedback are welcome.

It's ironic there's another final in my life that thankfully wasn't final. It occurred when I was told that I'd be impotent for the rest of my life.  I'm delighted that I didn't 't accept that diagnosis as final. I discovered a procedure that would cure my impotence. My wife & I decided to write a book for couples coping with erectile dysfunction and penile implant surgery.

Our book will be released this summer.

New Book Offers Hope for Men and Couples Coping With Erectile Dysfunction
One Couple’s Life-changing Journey With Impotence and Penile Implant Surgery

Written by award winning authors Richard and Brenda Redner, Everything You NEVER Wanted to Know About Erectile Dysfunction & Penile Implants reaches out to the 30 million American men suffering from erectile dysfunction (ED) with a single, heartfelt message: life—and great sex—is possible with erectile dysfunction. Rick thought he had lost it all after treatment for prostate cancer left him impotent, but thanks to penile implant surgery, he and Brenda enjoy a life of passion and satisfaction that exceeds their greatest hopes and expectations. In this candid book, they give a frank, detailed account of their trials and victories along the way and offer hope to other men and couples coping with erectile dysfunction.


Modesto, CA, May 19, 2016 – Due to the after effects of surgery for prostate cancer, Rick Redner became one of the 30 million men in the US who suffer from erectile dysfunction or impotence. Not only did it rob him of his sense of manhood, it also threatened to derail his marriage and left him with thoughts of suicide. Like most other men suffering from erectile dysfunction, Rick was unaware of the one medical procedure that had the potential to reverse his condition: penile implant surgery.

After exhausting all other treatment options, Rick, with his wife Brenda’s support, decided to go ahead with the procedure. Despite a few bumps along the way, the operation was a success, and it revolutionized their sex life and Rick’s self-esteem. More importantly, the Redners’ journey through erectile dysfunction and penile implant surgery deepened and strengthened their marriage and their faith in God.

In a compelling and potentially life-changing new book, Everything You NEVER Wanted to Know About Erectile Dysfunction & Penile Implants, Rick and Brenda take readers from the hospital to the bedroom as they share the intimate details of how penile implant surgery changed their lives emotionally, psychologically, relationally, and sexually. They are frank about their defeats, their victories, and the life-changing lessons they learned along the way.

After reading the Redners’ story, readers will know how to recognize and overcome the various roadblocks that prevent men and couples from seeking help with erectile dysfunction and how to determine whether penile implant surgery is the right option for them. They’ll discover healthy ways to think, talk about, live with, or cure erectile dysfunction, thereby empowering couples to end their silence, sadness, suffering, and shame associated with erectile dysfunction. Most importantly, couples coping with erectile dysfunction will discover how to develop a new and exciting sex life with or without a penile implant. In addition to the Redners’ story, the book is packed with all sorts of practical tips, resources, and links to help readers learn more about coping with erectile dysfunction and penile implant surgery.

The Redners were motivated to write this book following their fruitless search for resources to guide men and couples through the devastation of erectile dysfunction and the potential treatment options available, particularly penile implants. When diagnosed with erectile dysfunction, many men accept it as a life sentence. The Redners are on a mission to let people know that penile implant surgery is the single best solution to restore the physical and emotional intimacy that couples coping with erectile dysfunction thought they had lost forever.

 “Erectile dysfunction is a thief,” Rick says. “It steals hope, intimacy, and self-esteem, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Far too many men allow their fear, embarrassment or shame, drive them into hiding or self-destructive behaviors. Holding hands, back rubs, kissing, and all physical expressions of love are transformed into bitter reminders of what’s lost. This leads men to withdraw from all forms of physical affection. It’s important for men to learn how to break this destructive cycle of thinking in order to restore their ability to give and receive affection.”

Brenda could not be more enthusiastic about the positive changes penile implant surgery has had on their marriage. “Our sexual relationship has blossomed to a point beyond what we could have ever imagined. We have grown to love and cherish each other more than ever.”

This is the Redners’ second book together. To help couples face the challenges of living—and loving—without a prostate, Rick and Brenda wrote their award-winning book I Left My Prostate in San Francisco—Where’s Yours? (2013). Rick is also active online and elsewhere encouraging and counseling men and couples who are dealing with the effects of prostate surgery, cancer, and erectile dysfunction.

About the Authors:
Rick Redner received his master’s degree in social work from Michigan State University. He has spent many years working as a medical and psychiatric social worker.

Brenda Redner received her RN/BSN at Michigan State University. She has worked in oncology, home health nursing, psychiatric nursing, and teaching.

Contact: Richard Redner & Brenda Redner,

For more news and information, visit their website:

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Unwanted Change is a Fact of Life

I think it's fair to say the older we get the greater the frequency and intensity of unwanted change we'll experience in our lives. Since this is a prostate cancer blog, the odds are you or someone you love experienced the unwanted change of receiving a diagnosis of  prostate cancer. Treating prostate cancer can bring about additional unwanted changes.

To this day, I can't decide which was the worst news I'd ever received from a physician. It comes down to two days.

Day#1-The day I was told I had prostate cancer
Day#2-The day I was told that even though I had double nerve sparing surgery and participated in
            penile rehab program, I was going to be impotent for the rest of my life.

I've given up trying to decide which of these days was the worst and simply decided both days brought miserable and unwanted change into my life.  Recently I was reminded that losing your health isn't the only type of unwanted change.

Once a year the city of Carmel (in California) has Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Day on the beach. My daughter knows how much I enjoy attending this event so she booked a hotel so we could all enjoy this event with Toby, our King Charles Spaniel. I was touched by her generous gift. I was looking forward to this event so much it was one of the highlight events of the year for me. It wasn't only my daughter's generosity that touched me. I know she hates hanging out on the beach. She agreed to stay on the beach with us for as long as I wanted to be there. She was giving me the gift of her time to do something I enjoyed so much. It was a gift I'll remember for the rest of my life. Unfortunately, I didn't get to enjoy it.

Hours before our trip to Carmel, Toby escaped from our yard.  He was struck by a car. He died in my wife's arms before we could get him medical attention. I've had dogs in my life for close to sixty years. Toby was one of my favorite dogs. He's the only dog I've ever had who didn't live until a ripe old age. Toby was two years old. He died on the day we were taking him to Carmel to enjoy a day at the beach with other Cavalier Spaniels. To say I was heartbroken would be an understatement. I was devastated. Not only for my loss, but my daughter was as close to Toby as a dog and a human can be. She shared her pillow with Toby every night. My wife was deeply attached to Toby as well. I was grieved for my own loss, and the loss my wife and daughter faced as well. Grief on top of grief.

With broken hearts, we cancelled our trip to Carmel. We spent that weekend sharing our sadness and grief over this sudden and unexpected loss. Chalk up another unwanted change in our lives. Unwanted change comes in different forms. Most come unexpectedly. These events change your life in ways you intensely dislike.

Coping with unwanted change is an important life skill, but no one ever prepares you to face these inevitable and unwanted changes. It seems we are left to our own devices to find our own way in the school of hard knocks.

I don't know how anyone can successfully emerge from unwanted changes as a more compassionate person without a faith in God. Going through unwanted change with God allows us to experience this:

 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, (2 Cor 1:3-4 NKJV)

I don't know about you, but I need God's comfort when I face each and every unwanted change in my life. There's more God has in mind to do with our unwanted changes and the experience of His comfort. He has mission and purpose for us after we receive His comfort:

that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. (2 Cor 1:4 NKJV)

It's God's plan to use the comfort we receive in our unwanted changes to transform us into helpers and comforters of others who go through similar unwanted changes. My prostate cancer blog wouldn't exist if this were not true.

My wife and I would never have written a book to help men and couples cope with prostate cancer if this were not true. We wouldn't be publishing our second book (this summer)  about coping with erectile dysfunction and penile implants if this were not true.

My best advice in coping with unwanted change is this:
1. Don't go through it alone, put together a team of people to help and comfort you
2. Find people further along in the journey you are on and put a few of those folks on your team.
3. Find people with a good sense of humor. Laughter is an essential part of healing.
4. Don't miss out on God's comfort. Grow in your faith.
5. Somewhere down the road become a comforter to someone else.
6. Allow God to do His work in the mists of all your unwanted change: we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance;  and perseverance, character; and character, hope. (Rom 5:3-4 NKJV)

Some unwanted changes are awful and tragic and will always be awful and tragic. That does not mean we can't experience meaning and purpose in the mists of all of our unwanted changes. I know I have and I believe you can as well.

Friday, May 6, 2016

Seven Things You Need to Know BEFORE Your Prostatectomy

Before any surgery it's necessary to sign a consent to treat form which lists the risks involved with the surgery you're agreeing to. Here's a list of seven risks of prostate surgery you may not be informed of
1. The possibility of life-long leaking of urine
2. Climacturia-Leaking of urine before or during orgasm
3. Penile shrinkage
4. Change in the intensity of orgasms
5. Loss of ejaculation
6. A permanent change in the level of hardness of your erection
7. Loss of Libido-(interest in sex)

If you've had prostate surgery, we're you informed of these risks? If you know someone who is considering a prostatectomy (a surgery to remove the prostate) share this blog with them. Advise them to print this out to discuss these risks with their surgeon.

Believe me when I warn you that reading the seven risks is a whole lot easier than living with the reality of a single one of these risks.

Rick Redner and his wife Brenda are the author of I Left My Prostate In San Francisco-Where's Yours?

Friday, April 29, 2016

Everything You NEVER Wanted to Know About Erectile Dysfunction & Penile Implants

Here's the press release I'm considering for our new book which will be released this summer. Comments are welcome.
Uplifting New Book Shares How You Can Get Take Back What Erectile Dysfunction Takes Away – A Life-Changing Story of a Couple’s Journey With Impotence & Penile Implant Surgery.

Written by award winning authors, Richard and Brenda Redner, ‘Everything You Never Wanted to Know About Erectile Dysfunction & Penile Implants’ reaches out to the thirty-million American men suffering from Erectile Dysfunction, with a heartfelt message that romance and sexual fulfillment is still possible. Rick thought he’d lost it all after treatment for prostate cancer left him impotent, but thanks to penile implant surgery, the Redners now enjoy a life of passion and satisfaction that exceeded their hope and expectations. It’s a story that can easily become yours if you are coping with erectile dysfunction.

For Immediate Release

Modesto, CA –  Rick Redner was one of the thirty-million U.S. men who suffered with a medical condition that robbed him of his manhood, left him seriously depressed, and caused him to believe his wife would be better off without him. 
In a compelling and potentially life-changing new book, ‘Everything You Never Wanted to Know About Erectile Dysfunction & Penile Implants’ is a rarely told and unique story that could help millions of men find an effective form of treatment to restore their erectile functioning, lost manhood, and sex life. 
After Rick was diagnosed and treated for prostate cancer, he and his wife struggled as they adjusted to a four-year journey coping with erectile dysfunction. After exhausting all forms of treatment, Rick was told he’d be impotent for the rest of his life. Unwilling to live with that loss, Rick made a decision to undergo penile implant surgery. As a couple, Rick & Brenda candidly share their journey before and after implant surgery. They share their victories, defeats, and the life-changing lessons they learned along the way. They guide men and couples through depression, grief, and the relational conflicts that typically occur when couples find themselves coping with erectile dysfunction.

After reading their story you’ll know how to overcome the various roadblocks, which prevent men and couples from developing a satisfying relational and sex life. You’ll learn how you can end the silence, sadness, suffering, and shame associated with erectile dysfunction. 
Unfortunately, most men coping with erectile dysfunction are not informed about the life changing option of a penile implant. Rick & Brenda take you from the hospital and into their bedroom in order for you to know the intimate details of how this surgery will change your emotional, psychological, relational, and sexual life. You’ll discover how romance and sexual fulfillment are possible with or without a penile implant.
While there are many effective treatment options available to restore erectile functioning, unfortunately, what you don’t know can hurt you. Rick decided to write this book after receiving a letter from a widow whose husband was cured of prostate cancer. Tragically, rather than live the rest of his life impotent, he committed suicide. Rick was convinced he died unnecessarily and unaware of the possibility of penile implant surgery. 
Rick and Brenda want to spread the word that penile implants have the highest user and partner satisfaction rates of all the treatment options available for erectile dysfunction. It is within the realm of possibility to get back what you thought was lost forever. 
Rick says “Erectile dysfunction is a thief. In a relatively short period of time living with ED, all of your previously exciting erection-producing triggers elicit painful emotions, such as disappointment, frustration, anger, and shame. In order to protect themselves from experiencing these powerfully unpleasant feelings, men will actively avoid any actions or behaviors that are associated with their previously exciting sexual triggers. That’s one of the reasons why most men withdraw from all forms of physical affection. Holding hands, backrubs, kissing each other, and all other forms of affection, become bitter reminders of what’s lost.”
As Brenda reflects on the changes brought about by penile surgery she says: “Our sexual relationship has blossomed to a point beyond what we could have ever imagined. Creatively we have grown to love and cherish each other more than ever.”
One year after surgery, Rick and Brenda are having the time of their lives. After their first romantic vacation of 2016, Rick said “Unlike many of our romantic vacations before my implant surgery, a few nasty vacation crashers did not join us on our get-away. My vacation crasher named worry can no longer rob me of my joy. Two other vacation crashers, disappointment and failure, can no longer mess with my confidence or manhood. They’re all banished from my vacations, my bedroom, and my life.” 
If erectile dysfunction has stolen your manhood, caused an increase in tension, fighting or loneliness in your relationship, or caused you to believe you have nothing to offer, you’ll want to read the inspiring journey Rick & Brenda share with you in their newly released book ‘Everything You Never Wanted to Know About Erectile Dysfunction & Penile Implants’ 
For more news and information, visit their website at:
About the Authors: 
Rick Redner received his Masters Degree in Social Work from Michigan State University. He has experience working as a medical and psychiatric social worker.

Brenda Redner received her RN/BSN at Michigan State University. She has experience in oncology, home health nursing, psychiatric nursing, and teaching. She’s home-schooled each of their four children.

Rick & Brenda are the authors of the awarding winning book I Left My Prostate in San Francisco-Where’s Yours?

Contact: Richard Redner & Brenda Redner / / 209-345-3278

Monday, April 11, 2016

PSA Testing Anxiety

The Prostate Specific Antigen test commonly referred to as the PSA test, measures the level of PSA in the blood. PSA is a substance made by the prostate. The levels of PSA in the blood can be higher in men who have prostate cancer. Usually men with rising levels of PSA are asked to take a prostate biopsy. It's after the biopsy results are in that men are given the news whether or not they have prostate cancer. 

Once a man is diagnosed with prostate cancer, a yearly PSA test is usually required at least once a year for the rest of the his life. I don't know how many men go off the grid and skip their yearly testing. I do know this, I wanted to be and would have become one of the men who go off the grid and skip out on their yearly testing. I suspect doing this gives you the false confidence that your cancer will not return, To willingly take a PSA every year means you believe in the possibility of that your cancer could return. 

Even though I wanted to go off the grid, I couldn't. I'd been given a warning I found impossible to ignore. Though it happened many years ago, it's an incident I''ll never forget. A dear friend of mine was diagnosed with kidney cancer. They removed the cancerous kidney and he resumed his normal living. For the next few years he lived his life believing he was cured of cancer. No one told him to come in for yearly tests so he lived off the grid.

One day he developed severe back pain. He went to his doctor. He was placed on physical therapy. He went to PT for months without having any relief in his pain. Eventually he developed a severe case of night sweats. Once again he went for a physical exam.  His physician decided to run tests to determine whether or not his cancer returned.

Unfortunately for him, the return of his cancer went undetected for many years. By the time they discovered his cancer, it had spread so far he was given a few months to live. Within four months he died from cancer. I was furious. For years no one asked him to follow up or be checked for the return of cancer. When he suffered from back pain, he was wrongly prescribed physical therapy. He was near death before his doctors discovered his cancer returned.

There was a lesson in this for me and I burned it into my mind. The lesson was this: If I'm ever diagnosed with any form of cancer, I cannot go off the grid. I understood I could lose my life unnecessarily, by going off the grid, so  I made a promise to myself  if  I ever receive a diagnosis of cancer I would get regular checks whether or not they were recommended by my physician. I was sad and angry that my friend lost his life to cancer because no one told him to get checked on a regular basis. Perhaps he'd be alive today if the return of his cancer was discovered early on.

When I was first diagnosed with prostate cancer, without any effort on my part this lesson jumped of the file in my mind and read like a huge banner which said: YOUR LIFE DEPENDS UPON YOU NEVER GOING OFF THE GRID!

Within three years I was treating this like old New Years resolution. My wife would say it's time for your PSA test and I respond with the following question: "Would you mind if I skipped the test this year?" I don't know why I bothered asking, I knew the answer would be "NO!"

I had to ask myself a serious question. Why on earth would I want to avoid a test that could save my life?  I was surprised by the answer. Taking a PSA test year after year is a powerful and unpleasant reminder that our cancer could come back at any time. You'll never receive an all clear. The danger is never over.

 I don't like to be reminded my cancer could return. Six years after surgery, I'd like to believe I've beat prostate cancer once and for all and there's no possibility cancer will return. As I go for my next test, which is sometime next week, I'll have to wait with unpleasant uncertainty which could easily escalate to anxiety, until I receive the test results. During the entire time of waiting the following question will come to my mind MANY times a day: "Will this be the year prostate cancer returns?"

No matter what the results are, I'm grateful for the time I've spent cancer free. If I end up fighting disease once again at least I'll know early on, before it has an opportunity to spread. I remain one of the fortunate men diagnosed with prostate cancer. Early detection is an undeniable blessing both at the time of diagnosis, and in the time following treatment. So like it or not, I'll be getting my PSA tested year after year, for the rest of my life. If you have prostate cancer I hope you'll make the same commitment.

 Rick Redner and his wife Brenda are the author of I Left My Prostate In San Francisco-Where's Yours?

Rick has written more than one hundred blogs about prostate cancer.
Prostate Cancer Blogs

You can visit Rick’s Forums at:
Pre-Surgery, Post-Surgery, Erectile Dysfunction & Penile Implant Forums

Saturday, February 20, 2016

The Amazing Remedy for the Fear of Failure

When my wife and I wrote our first book, I Left My Prostate in San Francisco-Where's Yours?
I never expected I'd be asked to write magazine articles, have interviews on radio, blog, appear in newspaper articles, become involved in social media reaching tens of thousands of people and most anxiety producing of all- become a conference speaker. All of these doors opened after we released our first book about coping with life and love without a prostate.

Our soon to be published second book covers our four year journey with erectile dysfunction which led to penile implant surgery. As far as I can, tell there are no books on Amazon written by a couple who share their experiences with the psychological, emotional, relational, sexual, & spiritual  aspects of coping with erectile dysfunction and the changes brought about by penile implant surgery.

I believe one of two things will happen after our book is released. Either the book will be ignored and forgotten or it will attract national attention. Both of these possibilities frighten me. When you invest your time, your energy, your talent, and your money into a project, you become heavily invested in that project's success. I believe my wife and I have written a book that has the potential to ease suffering, to change lives, and to save marriages. We want to use our experiences to help other men and couples coping with erectile dysfunction.

Success usually takes time, talent, risk, and a willingness to go way beyond your comfort zone. For us success begins with prayer. We've spent lots of time in prayer during all the phases of writing our new book. How the book is received and what happens next depends upon both our faith and our efforts.

It would be effortless to allow my fear and anxiety to keep me within the bounds of my comfort zone.With two simple words my faith calls me to move  far away from my comfort zone. These two are "Fear not".) These two words are usually accompanied by a promise. Here's a few examples:

(Isa 41:10 NKJV)
Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you,   

(Isa 41:13 NKJV)
'Fear not, I will help you.' 

My personal favorite:
(Isa 43:1-3 NKJV)
Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; You are Mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, Nor shall the flame scorch you.  For I am the LORD your God, The Holy One of Israel, your Savior;

If we choose to follow in the direction God leads us, we will certainly experience fear. However God has made some very powerful promises which  has the capacity to remove our fears. What I discovered about God's timing is this: The fear doesn't go away before we step out of our comfort zone. It will go away AFTER we've stopped out of our comfort zone. 

So right here and right now, before the release of our book:
Everything You Were NEVER Told About Erectile Dysfunction & Penile Implants
Subtitle: End The Silence, Sadness, Suffering & Shame

I plan to step out of my comfort zone as many times and ways in which I'm called to do so in order to reach a significant number of  men & couples struggling to cope with erectile dysfunction. I suspect I'll need to read this many times once our book is released. 

 If you or someone you love is affected by ED and you'd like me to notify you when our book is released, drop me a line at: