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Words by Kate Lucey with advice from Sarah Mulindwa
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A few more years and a few more experiences doesn’t just bring added wisdom under our belts.
Today we’re talking about a topic that doesn’t get nearly enough attention – sex in midlife. While we are starting to see midlife sex talked about a little more, most of the media and headlines we’re given focus on sex in your twenties – or even teens (save for this charming headline about the alarming spread of STIs among retirement homes).
BUT, sex in midlife can be entirely more satisfying, more explorative and more exciting than it was in our fumbling younger years. As we get older and more experienced, we get to know what we like, what our partner likes, and generally tend to have higher standards than we did in our “figuring it out” seasons. Whether you’re in a monogamous relationship or not, the sex that comes with midlife confidence can be altogether more sensual, stimulating and satisfying.
When we get to know ourselves better, there’s a decreased pressure to perform. When you’re in your twenties there can be a lot of pressure to have sex a certain way, or to live up to certain expectations. But as you get older, you tend to care less about what other people think, and more about what makes you happy, which of course leads to more satisfying sex.
“With age comes a greater understanding of oneself and this includes our desires, likes and dislikes in the bedroom,” says Lovehoney Sex Expert Sarah Mulindwa, who notes that as we get older and develop stronger emotional bonds with our partner/s and become confident in our sexual behaviours, the sex will naturally become more satisfying.
“With age comes a greater understanding of oneself”
“The common thought of ‘older people don’t like or have sex’ is a myth. If you are happily sexually active and sex plays an important role in your life in your twenties and thirties, then this would most likely remain the same in later life.”
Communication is key to a fulfilling sex life.
Sexual desire waxes and wanes
A cursory Google of ‘age of female sexual peak’ throws up a whole range of different answers, and it’s often touted that a woman will reach her ‘sexual peak’ in midlife – but the idea of a sexual peak is actually all codswallop anyway, says Sarah.
“The idea of a “sexual peak” is a myth,” she told us. “Sexual desire and experience can vary greatly from person to person and are influenced by a variety of factors such as hormones, physical health, and emotional well-being. While some people may feel a greater sexual desire in mid-life, others may feel more satisfied with their sex lives at other ages.
“Sexual desire can fluctuate throughout a person’s life and can be influenced by a variety of factors. Hormonal changes can play a role, especially for women around menopause, as can physical and emotional health, relationship dynamics, and life events. Overall, it’s important to understand that changes in sexual desire are normal, and not necessarily indicative of a problem.”
…but what if your sex life isn’t as amazing as all this?
It’s all very well to read about and appreciate that women remain sexual well beyond their younger years and that it’s very easily possible to have a satisfying sex life throughout our different life stages, but what about those of us who feel like we’re missing out? What if we’re not getting the satisfying sexual experiences that we crave while it seems everyone else is secretly off enjoying the best sex of their lives?
Hope is not lost. “If your sex life is not as fulfilling as you’d like it to be, there are a variety of things you can do to try to improve it,” says Sarah. “Communication is key – talking to your partner about what you’d like to try, what you enjoy, and what you’d like to change is an important first step. These conversations can be daunting, but once you start the conversation, you may find your partner has been feeling the same way and is just as keen to spice things up as you are.
“If you’re both open to taking your sex life up a notch, why not explore new sexual techniques or positions, or to try incorporating toys,” says Sarah. “Seeking the help of a therapist or sex therapist can also be beneficial, as they can help you and your partner navigate any underlying emotional or relationship issues that may be impacting your sex life. Ultimately, it’s important to remember that a fulfilling sex life is one aspect of a healthy and happy relationship, and that it may take time and effort to achieve.”
If you’re reading this and feeling like you’re missing out on the best sex of your life, sexual healing coach Amy White has advised WYLDE MOON readers on how to solve the five most common problems in the bedroom, here.
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