Some more myths about sex after 50
Selfish sex is bad!
No, it isn’t, because it’s only by asking your partner for what you want that you are a likely to get it – and be satisfied with the results!
Those people who are too obsessed with pleasing their partners tend to have bad relationships because they don’t communicate. They may not be in touch with their own feelings, don’t know how to get sexual pleasure, and are resentful of the fact that their sex life is “all give and no take”.
Sex which is constantly aimed at the pleasure of your partner is just frustrating sex; it’s not likely to lead to much fulfilment for you. Reframe the idea of “selfish sex” as simply seeking out the best way to find joy in a sexual relationship. This may make it easier for you to overcome your embarrassment and ask your partner for whatever it is that you want.
In the end this is a much healthier route to sexual satisfaction. Compared, that is, to waiting in frustration for your partner to miraculously work out what it is you want and give it to you! Further more, when your relationship is truly monogamous, you need to express your sexual needs before they become too strong and remain unfulfilled – that way lies temptation….
When both partners seek to please themselves during sex rather than expecting their partners to do so, you finally begin to have a relationship where sexual equality is possible. You satisfy each other. You start by asking for what you want and your partner agrees to give it to you, in the expectation that you will do exactly the same for them.
This is true sexual equality, and gives both partners the chance of sexual satisfaction.
Sexual problems cannot be solved
This is a truly pernicious myth about sex after 50. By sexual problems, here I mean things like delayed ejaculation, erectile dysfunction, premature ejaculation and low sex drive. Each and every one of these problems has a solution. Delayed ejaculation can be overcome by training the body and mind to become more aroused. Erectile dysfunction can be overcome by using drugs like Cialis and Viagra. And so on. There is a solution for every problem: sometimes that involves medicine, sometimes it involves therapy.
You must always put your partner first.
It’s a kind of charming, old-fashioned notion of the romantic man seducing the lady, taking her to bed and making her swoon with delight.
Whatever the truth of these stereotypes, one thing is certain: your partner is a sexual woman, with desires, lusts, fantasies and sexual needs. And what that means in practice is that if you’re hung up about the relationship between women and sex, or you don’t know much about female sexuality, then be prepared for a few shocks.
As you get to know a woman within a long term relationship, and your sexual relationship develops, you will find there is a sexual goddess close to the surface: a sexual goddess whose lustfulness may surprise you in its intensity. It should also means there is nothing that you can share in the sexual arena which is embarrassing or off-limits (provided it’s not harmful, coercive or distasteful to your partner).
To achieve full openness and an absence of sexual inhibitions with your partner is a wonderful experience. So ask yourself how you would feel in any of the following situations: watching her masturbate or masturbating her; having her watch you masturbate or having her masturbate you; enjoying mutual masturbation or watching her using sex toys to masturbate; using a vibrator to bring her to orgasm.
If you are inhibited by an image of your partner as a Madonna stereotype, saintly and sexless, then you really need to share some uninhibited sexual experiences which will blow these illusions away.
Masturbating together in an uninhibited way can be a very good start in this process for it removes performance pressure. That’s because it teaches you what your partner likes in the way of genital touch. You also learn that it doesn’t matter who comes first or second, and it helps you to shed your embarrassment about sexuality. There’s something about the act of shared masturbation which breaks down inhibitions rather quickly and helps couples learn about others’ sexual needs and desires. Sexual embarrassment is much more common than you might realise.
The same is true of discussing fantasies, with the proviso that if your partner shares them with you, you must respect what they say.
If you’re a woman you may have fallen victim of the pernicious myth that men want perfect bodies.
As you may have noticed, however, most men are with partners who do not have perfect bodies! This is because the supply of physical perfection is a little bit thin on the ground nowadays!
The truth is that men are far less critical of women’s bodies than are women themselves. The reality is that most women are extremely critical of their own bodies, and very conscious of what may be wrong: whether that is breast size, the amount of fat on their bodies, the tightness of their vaginas, slackness of their butts, the double chin… or whatever.
But to focus on what is wrong with our bodies, or what we believe to be wrong with our bodies, just reinforces those issues in our minds (and indeed in the minds of our partners). If you are told something is bad for long enough you come to believe it. If you focus on the good things instead, then those become predominant in your consciousness. Monogamy is not about avoiding reality – it is about embracing it. Sex in a monogamous relationship is not about desiring perfection: it’s about appreciating the beauty of what you have.
That statement has a profound truth in it. And that is that we’re all responsible for how we look, and we’re all responsible for how sexually fit and healthy we are.
Loving and accepting our bodies is certainly necessary before our partners can be expected to love and accept them. Remember the old expression “beauty comes from within”? Well, you are what you believe: if you believe you are attractive, you are more attractive.
If you look at this list of what men want in a lover, you’ll see that nowhere is the issue of body size or shape mentioned.