David M. Pittle, Ph.D., M.Div.
When life gets busy, one of the first things to go in a relationship is sex. Couples are too tired, too stressed, too distracted. Simply put: too not in the mood. This is especially true among Seniors. Very often Seniors accept the cultural bias that once you are over 50 (or maybe 60) sex is no longer important. In fact, some would say it is “Yuck.” Of course, that is not true. Just because younger folk think we no longer enjoy sex, doesn’t mean we have to live as though they are correct.
I also understand that there are many reasons not to have sex tonight. Even among younger folk, most have sex only 2-4 times a week. But there are plenty of others who are enjoying sexual activity five, or six times—or even more in a week. If we stop defining sex as a penis in a vagina, we open up enormous possibilities for experiencing the joy of sex. “Making out” on the couch, mutual masturbation, “outercourse”, are all great forms of sex for couples. And for the single person, self-loving, aka masturbation, is very satisfying sex, and a good vibrator is very worthwhile the price.
Here are some really good reasons to increase your sex with your partner (or with yourself.)
1. It provides some much-needed couple time.
"We make sure to have time for sex every day. It is a moment when the world is reduced just to the two of us.” “No other commitments are allowed to interfere with this time where we are alone together.”. “Having sex allows us to be passionate, to show affection and we enjoy pleasing each other."
2. It leads to more physical expression outside of the bedroom.
"We hold hands a lot.” “Friends have mentioned that sitting on a couch together, I usually lay my hand on his thigh, or he on mine.” “When I’m at the sink, washing dishes, I often feel his kiss on my neck or a pat on my butt.”
3. It sometimes substitutes for a session at a gym.
"Sometimes we get a regular workout; especially when we get ‘energetic’.”
is a time of getting away from the present and lose ourselves in each other—maybe in the beyond. Ironically, it is also often when we are most present, most us,4. It is a kind of meditation.
5. It strengthens the sense of trust.
"I remember doing ‘trust exercises’ in a group. Trying new things with my partner is a little like that. We’ve been together a long time and sex helps build trust in our relationship. Even if the new activities are not wonderful, my partner will keep trust in me and I in him. Maybe it takes a while to develop this kind of trust.”
6. It's a way to connect without speaking.
"Sex is a vital part of a relationship. It brings couples together in a way that other things don't. I don’t mean just my penis in her vagina; I mean all ways of pleasuring each other, making it a mutual exploration. We get that from cuddling, touching in all ways. We get to each focus on the other, even if only for a few seconds, or a few hours.
7. It helps us work out our differences.
"Having frequent sex means we know better when something is wrong. We are more in touch with each other’s moods and emotions.” “We don’t fight or argue. We talk and try to find consensus or if that’s not possible, we at least understand why we differ and wind up with compassion for each other, not condescension or anger.”
8. It promotes creativity.
Here’s one I took from a quote on a blog. "Being intimate so often, and sharing what each person needs and wants allows the freedom of creativity. There is no position or situation either of us has ever denied the other. This makes us each feel more and more comfortable to share [fantasies] or point out a hot girl or guy, and say what we’d like to do with them in bed."
9. Scheduling a regular time for sex is easier.
“I think that it gets rid of ‘Who’s on first?’ We no longer deal with who should start the invitation. Or how do we fit it in? Sure sometimes we have to move the time because I’m a cop and I get called out at odd hours. But we always make time for it. It is just like having dinner. You normally have dinner at 6:30, If the world interferes, we can push dinner to 8 or 10, but you almost always eat dinner. Our sex time is like that. And if we finally have to miss, we both want it so we get back on schedule as quickly as possible.”T
10. Orgasms are not the only reason, but they are important.
"Orgasms are amazing. I get lost in them. At my age, they don’t come as easy, but they do come. My partner gets completely lost in it. Seeing that is a double payoff.” “Sometimes it takes more lubricant, but it is so worth it.”
11. It is just as good if it is just one person doing most of the work, as long as both are enjoying.
"I have a medical problem and sometimes I just don’t have the energy to do as much for her. But I don’t have to pretend. Everything she does for me brings me forward and is sexually a blessing. My part is just to let her know. Of course, when I can, she is just as appreciative. So even when I’m not a full strength we enjoy sex at least 5-6 times a week. Not too bad for a couple in their 80s.