Many people think that your sex life is over after age 50. But nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, some people have the best sexual experiences of their lives during the golden years. Here are 5 common misconceptions about sex among older adults.
Myth #1: Older adults want to settle down.
Many people want to date around after age 50, especially if they’re divorced. Casual sex is actually common among older adults. These days, you can’t just assume that a relationship is exclusive, even if you’ve been having sex with someone for months. If monogamy is important to you, talk to your sexual partner. Be clear about your expectations up front to prevent any misunderstandings or hurt feelings.
Myth #2: Older adults don’t have to worry about STDs.
With the risk of pregnancy gone, some older couples think that they don’t need to use protection. However, sexually active adults over 50 still have to worry about STDs. According to a study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 23% of new HIV cases each year are among people aged 45 and older. Overall, 10% of American adults over 50 have AIDS. You also have to watch out for herpes, chlamydia, and HPV. Until you’re in a monogamous relationship, it’s a good idea to always use condoms.
Myth #3: People over 50 are less sexually attractive.
Older adults can still be sexy. Just look at celebrities like Christie Brinkley and George Clooney. Don’t spend too much time worrying about wrinkles and gray hair. Many people over 50 look and feel great thanks to diet, exercise, and healthy lifestyle choices. As a mature adult, you may also be more in touch with your sexual desires. That can be very attractive too. When dating after 50, keep things fun and exciting. Instead of the typical sit-down dinner, ask your date to go dancing instead. Fun activities can boost your energy and create sexual chemistry.
Myth #4: Sex stays the same as you age.
Nothing stays the same in life, including sex. Older women may make less natural lubrication after menopause. Older men may have problems with erectile dysfunction. It’s all part of the aging process. You can still enjoy sex, but you may need to make some adjustments. Women can use water-based sexual lubricants. Men can visit a doctor for erectile dysfunction treatments. Couples can also engage in other sexual activities like oral sex. The experience may be different, but if you keep on open mind, you can still have a lot of fun.
Myth #5: Older adults already know what they want sexually.
Many people think that older adults have already done it all. But there are always new things to try. Plus, your tastes and preferences can change throughout the years. You may not like all the things you enjoyed when you were younger. On the other hand, you might be open to new things as well. How about an exciting new sex toy? Or maybe you could try a new sexual position? Think of sex as an ongoing adventure and you can have fun for decades.