For many people going through a Divorce Over 50, sex is not a pressing issue. Most are just too consumed trying to make it through the first stage of their DO50, survive, to even think about that aspect of their lives. Many have endured sexless periods as their marriages fell apart; a percentage of those even think the “ship has sailed” in regards to their future sexuality.
But here’s the great news: A “Singles in America” report from match.com reports that single women have the best sex of their lives at age 66, while men have their best at 64.
See, there is a brighter future out there, as you truly can thrive, after you make it through survive and revive.
Mature folks have learned that sex appeal isn’t based entirely on physical appearance. When we’re young, we tend to be very self-conscious about what our bodies look like; that wears off over time, allowing more focus on pleasure.
Though there are challenges when we’re older (pain and dryness for women, erectile issues for men), there are work-arounds that make sex just as enjoyable, or maybe even more so. Couples need to communicate more openly; they become more creative as they explore additional, non-penetrative ways to have sex.
Post 50’s no longer hold to rigid sexual expectations and roles. In your 20’s and 30’s, you want a partner to start a family with; that’s not an issue later in life, so the pool of partners expands. Additionally, mature women don’t have to worry about pregnancy, nor kids barging in on them in the bedroom, allowing more relaxation and enjoyment.
Sex has obviously been a popular topic here at Divorced Over 50, with our five most read posts (and 6 out of the top ten) being on that subject.
It’s perhaps best known for analyzing the nutritional value (or lack thereof) of the menu items at restaurant chains. For instance, thanks to them we know that the worst dish at Applebee’s is the New England Fish and Chips, with a whopping 1990 calories, 137 grams of fat, and 4540 mg of sodium. Instead, ET,NT recommends the Pepper Crusted Sirloin And Whole Grains, at just 380 calories, 13 grams of fat, and 1850 mg of sodium. Additionally, they provide dieting advice, recipes, workouts, and shopping tips; it’s a great site, packed with tons of valuable information.
And, they also offer several articles on the best, and worst, foods for your sex life.
Last post was about female sexuality Over 50; now it’s the guys’ turn. And just as the post regarding women contained information relevant to men, this one should be of interest to the ladies, too.
So let’s start with a few things we know about male sexuality when it comes to us Boomers: Impotence is to be expected, libido diminishes, and sex can actually be dangerous. Right?
No. Wrong! Those are myths, and none of them are true.
This piece from MaleHealthCenter. com says that research shows nearly all men (and the majority of women) retain an interest in sex between the ages of 50 and 80. And that even if response isn’t what it once was, simply recognizing it takes longer to get aroused is often the “cure” for erectile dysfunction. In other words, before seeking a medical solution, try simple communication with your partner, letting her know that you need a lot of foreplay, too.
The article says that great sex is the result of knowing, understanding, and caring for your partner. It offers a few recommendations for creating the solid bond that leads to fulfilling sex, including:
Be generous with your compliments, letting her know how attractive she is
Try alternatives to penetration, as there’s plenty of pleasure to be had other than intercourse
Communicate what you like, and ask her what works for her
Avoid monotony by trying new locations and times of the day
Aimed at males Over 50, our friends at AARP offer “Six Ways to Make Lovemaking Great.” Its main take-away is that men don’t give their partners an orgasm; rather, it’s the man’s role to create the right context that allows the woman to have one (or more). And to help create those comfortable conditions, men should…
Recognize most women require more than intercourse to climax
Treat her entire body as an erogenous zone, not just a few specific areas
Slow down, spending lots of time on the warm-up (which, as mentioned above, is important for men, too)
As we all know, human sexuality can be complicated. Then, when you’re Over 50, it can get additionally complicated. And for women Over 50, due to both societal factors and their own physiology, it can become more complicated still.
Though plenty of mature Divorced women are finding their sexuality reignited (see our January post “Sex and the Single Woman Over 50”), that isn’t always the case. Both the “mind” and the “body” issues that come into play Over 50 can have a negative effect.
Most Divorced Over 50’s report that their sex life during marriage, particularly toward the end of it, was extremely lacking. In fact, several of the interviewees for Gray Divorce Stories acknowledged going years without having any sex as their marriages fell apart.
Then, when DO50’s are first out of their marriage, the focus is just trying to keep their head above water while battling through the Survive Phase — sex may be among the furthest things from their minds. As life gets better, however, and they move into Revive, an interest in sex may come back. The problem, though, is that many people aren’t ready to get into a committed relationship that will lead to sex. So what to do?
If you ask a man over 50 for the first word that pops into his head when you say “sex,” he’d very likely answer with something like Yes, Now, Please, or More. It wouldn’t matter if he was single, happily married, or unhappily married – most men would have that positive, or at least hopeful, reaction.
But what if you asked an over 50 woman the same thing?
For a plenty of married woman beyond 50 — those who are in that standard, three or more decade long relationship — their first word just might be “obligation.” As in, my husband expects it, I don’t really want it, but I’ll submit occasionally, in hopes of keeping him happy. Or getting him to mow the lawn.
And for unhappily married women past 50, their word is probably something along the lines of No, Nope, Nah-ah, or Fugetaboutit.
But what if you asked a divorced woman over 50 for the first word that pops into her head? Well, there’s an excellent chance that word is “Yahoo!”
How do I, a divorced man over 50, know this?
Hours and hours of intimate contact with almost two dozen divorced women over 50.
The heart of her column concerns a letter she got from a 53 year old man whose 23 year marriage had ended in 2010. It’s basically a rave about women who are of a similar age. The writer says the women know what they want in a relationship. They’re dedicated to making the next part of their life amazing. They’re alive, and revel in the freedom of being single. And he suggests these women just get out and enjoy life, as their natural radiance will be more than enough to attract a real man.
For many Divorced Over 50’s, the last time they had to make first date conversation was the Reagan Administration.
“I don’t know, I think ‘Big’ was kinda overrated. And come on, Tom Hanks — that guy’s not a movie star.”
If you’re back on the dating circuit, or think you may be at some point in the future, it’s only natural to have some anxiety about what to say to a new person during that initial date. Luckily, Time Magazine has offered up “5 Things Research Says You Should Talk About” on a first date.
Most relationship experts would tell newly Divorced people to take some time for themselves, and steer clear of any sort of rebound romance right after their split.
In this site’s Roadmap Through a Divorce Over 50, we talk about three steps — Survive, Revive, and Thrive — with new romance being part of the Thrive phase. Though we also say there’s no set time frame for moving through the phases, and that not every step has to be done in a specific order, the feeling here is that a new relationship should probably come later in the process, after working on oneself (which is not to say a new romance is expected or necessary — there’s absolutely nothing wrong with not pursuing it again, and no one should feel pressured to do so).