When I was 11 years old, my mother silently snuck into my bedroom. Under the cover of midnight, she sat cross-legged at the end of my bed and proceeded to give me The Talk, although it was more of a whisper. Instead of focusing on the anatomy of sex — the biological prophecies by which, some say, our bodies were made to meld into one — my mother chose to emphasize pleasure. She spoke about the importance of passion: pursuing it, asking for it and finding it within yourself. Society has a tendency to perpetuate this idea that the older a woman grows, the more she yearns for the beauty of her youth.
Bianca Fileborn's role is funded through the ARC on a project related to sexualities in later life. Victor Minichiello receives funding from the ARC on studies related to sexualities in later life. Older people, and particularly older women, are often thought of as being asexual or sexually undesirable. Although the particular age this is believed to happen varies somewhat in the popular imagination, the idea that older people have sex is routinely dismissed, or makes many of us uncomfortable. Indeed, older people having sex are often the butt of jokes.
Changes in sexual function among midlife women: “I’m older… and I’m wiser.”
This analysis estimates the prevalence and predictors of sexual activity and function in a diverse group of women aged years. Women completed self-report questionnaires on sexual activity, comorbidities, and general quality of life. Logistic and linear regression and proportional odds models were used when appropriate to identify correlates of sexual activity, frequency, satisfaction, and dysfunction. Demographic factors as well as some issues associated with aging can adversely affect sexual frequency, satisfaction, and function. Obstet Gynecol ;
Women experience a variety of changes at midlife that may affect sexual function. Interviews and focus groups were conducted by a trained facilitator using a semi-structured guide. All data were audio recorded and transcribed.