Seniors and Sex

As many older couples know, sexual activity does not end at menopause or "manopause", it continues throughout our life. Kissing, touching, stroking, petting, whispering sweet nothings, the intimacy, the flirting and the fun are important and satisfying whether you're 21 or 71 – or older.

Sexual activity changes. The urge to have wild, pounding intercourse fades. You settle into nice, comfortable manual stimulation and oral sex or vibrator use. Males and females may not feel the driving need for orgasm - if it happens, great. But if there is no orgasm, the body contact, the warmth and intimacy all make for a great sexual relationship.

According to a recent study, mature men between the ages of 57 and 64 want to reconnect with their partner. They want the companionship, the shared fun, the sense of closeness that they used to have before finances, children, pressures of work and unresolved conflict weighed down on the relationship. When Dad gets older, many of those pressures have lifted. The kids are grown, finances are stable, conflict is not an everyday event. Then they want to "nest" again.

For many women, the early years of the relationship were spent making lives and friends of their own. With the kids needing her less, Mom wants to satisfy some of those needs she put on hold while tending to the needs of her family. She may want to resume her career. Couples at this stage are often on different paths and this can create problems.

Long-term partnerships can also be severely affected by the accumulation of unresolved conflict – the anger, resentment and hostility that was just pushed aside, and never really dealt with. It's called the green "scarbage" bag in the middle of the kitchen floor, and it's a major obstacle to intimacy.

If the contents of the "scarbage" bag aren't confronted, a pleasurable, satisfying relationship is almost impossible. Working to improve communication skills and conflict resolution can reduce the irritation and fault finding. You can fall "in like" again, opening the door to being "in love" again. Being good friends, doing things and having fun together will help bring you closer together.

Every couple hopes for the kind of loving relationship where they "walk hand in hand into the sunset" as they get older. Add a little sex along the way and it don't get better than that!