April 17, 2010 in Features

Lively sex life late in life? Yes!

Kathy Mitchell/Marcy Sugar
 

Dear Annie: I read the letter from “Happy and Sad in Oklahoma,” whose wife has “checked out” of their sex life at age 48. He said their counselor told him it was unrealistic to expect an exciting and fulfilling sex life at this age.

I applaud you on your response saying the counselor is wrong. It is indeed possible to have a loving, connected, meaningful sex life after menopause, but it takes commitment and work from both partners. The best therapist for this sometimes-challenging work is a board-certified sex therapist. Please advise “Happy and Sad” to go to the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists (aasect.org) to find one in their area. – Andrea Mattisen-Haskins, LICSW BCD, AASECT Diplomate of Sex Therapy, AASECT Supervisor

Dear Andrea Mattisen-Haskins: Many readers weighed in on this, and most were supportive of finding a route to a healthier sex life. Read on:

From Chicago: When I was 48, I had the same response to sex. I was indifferent at best and mildly repulsed at worst. The year I turned 50, my sex drive returned full force. We had sex every day and now do crazy things that never would have occurred to us when we were younger. What was the catalyst? The kids got married, my parents passed away after long illnesses, I finally hit five weeks of vacation at my job, and we got a cleaning lady. I had time to myself for the first time in 20 years. Fortunately, my sweet husband gave me a free pass on those years when I was an Ice Princess. God bless him.

Shreveport, La.: Menopause is worse than it seems. Many doctors checked my wife and said everything was fine. Every woman suffering from loss of libido should run to an OB/GYN who specializes in hormones. It took four months for my wife to get the levels right, and I wish I were younger so I could keep up with her.


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