Sex: Why slower (and older) may be better
March 17th, 2011
07:24 AM ET

Sex: Why slower (and older) may be better

Ian Kerner, a sexuality counselor and New York Times best-selling author, blogs about sex on Thursdays on The Chart. Read more from him at his website, GoodInBed.

Recently, my very own mother discovered romance anew and is having what can only be described as a love affair.

Her last boyfriend passed away a couple of years ago, so I’m happy for her in all her giddiness. And while nobody likes to think about their parents having sex, I can’t help but wonder if her sex life is now better than mine.

As a busy dad of two young sons, I have to admit that it’s hard to keep sex high on the list of priorities: My wife and I will often opt to hit the hay rather than tumble in it.

Does sex get better with age? According to a study in the November 2008 issue of Psychological Science, marital satisfaction may improve once the kids have left the nest. In fact, many of my colleagues in the world of sex therapy attest that empty nesters tend to have more disposable income and more opportunity to enjoy quality time with their partner, including sex.

Sex therapist David Schnarch writes about the difference between a person’s “genital prime” and his or her “sexual prime.” For most of us, the genital prime happens during adolescence and our 20s, when the body is in its best shape, however, the mind may not be as well-developed sexually. Schnarch says that a person’s sexual prime is actually well beyond what most of us think of as the hot-and-heavy sex years - more like middle age than high school.

As we age, we benefit from accepting ourselves as we are, knowing what we like, and not being afraid to ask for it.

And aging itself may not affect sex as much as those unhealthy habits that take their toll after too many years. Too much stress, too little sleep, poor eating and exercise habits, and not making the time to nurture ourselves or our relationships can be the most damaging to our sex lives. Letting our overall health fall by the wayside may be the biggest culprit in sexual health woes, so it’s no surprise that many people in their 50s and 60s are more sexually fit than their younger predecessors.

One key difference between older and younger people: Sex is often slower as we age. While younger women may lubricate in as little as a few seconds, it can take older women up to several minutes to become lubricated. The same pattern applies to men and their erections. It’s important for both sexes to realize that taking longer to become erect or lubricated doesn’t necessarily mean a partner isn’t aroused.

In fact, slower can actually be better for your sex life. When the physical markers of arousal aren’t instantly obvious, it gives partners more time to play and connect with each other in bed. The behaviors we usually think of as foreplay can become the main event during sex, and give couples the opportunity to rediscover themselves and each other sexually. As men age, testosterone levels go down, while estrogen levels go up. This means that many older men are able to focus more and appreciate the tender side of sex.

For instance, if one position used to do the trick or if sex has always followed a predictable sequence, as it does in many long-term relationships, aging allows couples to shake things up. Maybe she wants to try a vibrator for better arousal (or maybe he does, too).

Or perhaps one or both people have been curious about erotic massage and other techniques, and now have a reason to introduce them into the relationship. As my colleague at Good in Bed, Dr. Gail Saltz, says, “Celebrate what improves with age: Younger men may have stronger erections, but older guys tend to have better control. You both know each other's bodies, you've perfected your bedroom technique, and you may feel less inhibited than you did in the past.”

I always like to say that the mind is the biggest sexual organ. By understanding the inevitable changes that occur over the sexual life cycle, and knowing how to deal with them, you can sustain a healthy, satisfying sex life well into your golden years. Keeping a sex-positive attitude and a commitment to overall health is the way to maximize sexuality, whether you’re 30 or 80. Go Mom!

soundoff (721 Responses)
  1. Custom Paint


    May 31, 2021 at 19:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Sprinter Van Mechanic

    I used to be able to find good advice from your blog posts.


    June 1, 2021 at 01:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Sprinter Van Repair Los Angeles

    This site really has all of the info I wanted concerning this subject and didn’t know who to ask.


    June 1, 2021 at 06:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Ford Luxury Van Repair

    I really love your website.. Excellent colors & theme. Did you build this amazing site yourself? Please reply back as I’m trying to create my very own blog and would like to know where you got this from or just what the theme is called. Appreciate it!


    June 1, 2021 at 10:28 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. rv interior repair

    I must thank you for the efforts you've put in writing this site. I am hoping to check out the same high-grade content by you later on as well. In fact, your creative writing abilities has motivated me to get my very own site now 😉

    http://www.chaosns.com/link.php?url=https://kafuco.ac.ke/scit/index.php/item/4-oxford-s-part-in-a-new -multiple-sclerosis-drug-adipisicing-elit-sed-do-eiusmod-tempor?start=298090

    June 1, 2021 at 11:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. rv washing near me

    Great article. I will be facing a few of these issues as well..


    June 1, 2021 at 12:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Van Frame Repair Shop


    June 1, 2021 at 13:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. semi truck paint shops near me


    June 1, 2021 at 16:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. Bud Hillers


    June 1, 2021 at 17:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Rhona Falb

    An outstanding share! I have just forwarded this onto a friend who had been conducting a little homework on this. And he actually ordered me dinner simply because I stumbled upon it for him... lol. So let me reword this.... Thank YOU for the meal!! But yeah, thanks for spending the time to talk about this topic here on your internet site.


    June 1, 2021 at 17:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. rvupgrades reviews

    Way cool! Some very valid points! I appreciate you penning this post and also the rest of the website is also really good.


    June 1, 2021 at 20:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. orange county tire


    June 1, 2021 at 21:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. geico commercial horse


    June 2, 2021 at 02:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Sprinter Van Upholstery Shop Near Me


    June 2, 2021 at 03:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Xochitl Powroznik


    June 2, 2021 at 06:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. Upholstery Shop


    June 2, 2021 at 11:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. Filomena Thuney


    June 2, 2021 at 15:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. repair rv shades


    June 2, 2021 at 17:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. rv plumbing parts near me


    June 2, 2021 at 19:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. Johnnie Mcgurie


    June 2, 2021 at 21:12 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Local Marketing Consultant

    Spot on with this write-up, I really think this web site needs a lot more attention. Iíll probably be returning to see more, thanks for the information!


    June 2, 2021 at 22:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. Isadora Debski


    June 3, 2021 at 02:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. RV Solar Panels Systems Orange County

    Everything is very open with a very clear explanation of the challenges. It was really informative. Your site is extremely helpful. Thank you for sharing!


    June 3, 2021 at 03:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. Sprinter Van Repair San Diego


    June 3, 2021 at 04:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. Sprinter Turbocharger Repair

    This is the perfect web site for anyone who wants to understand this topic. You realize so much its almost tough to argue with you (not that I actually will need to…HaHa). You certainly put a brand new spin on a subject which has been discussed for decades. Excellent stuff, just great!


    June 3, 2021 at 05:05 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. watch repair san clemente

    An interesting discussion is definitely worth comment. I believe that you should write more on this issue, it might not be a taboo subject but generally folks don't talk about such subjects. To the next! All the best!!


    June 3, 2021 at 05:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. SEO Marketing Consultants

    I could not resist commenting. Well written!


    June 3, 2021 at 07:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. Repair Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 2500 Automatic Transmission


    June 3, 2021 at 08:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. Internet Marketing Specialist

    Iím amazed, I must say. Seldom do I encounter a blog thatís equally educative and amusing, and without a doubt, you have hit the nail on the head. The problem is an issue that not enough people are speaking intelligently about. I'm very happy I stumbled across this during my hunt for something concerning this.


    June 3, 2021 at 13:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. Google Marketing Service

    Hi there! I could have sworn Iíve been to this blog before but after looking at some of the posts I realized itís new to me. Nonetheless, Iím certainly pleased I found it and Iíll be bookmarking it and checking back frequently!


    June 3, 2021 at 16:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. rv camping in orange county ca

    A fascinating discussion is definitely worth comment. I do think that you need to write more about this subject matter, it may not be a taboo matter but generally folks don't talk about such issues. To the next! All the best!!


    June 3, 2021 at 16:45 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. wall paint shops near me

    I like it whenever people come together and share opinions. Great site, continue the good work!


    June 3, 2021 at 16:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. camper service near me


    June 3, 2021 at 17:03 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. rv electrical repair near me


    June 3, 2021 at 17:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. rv parts near me now


    June 4, 2021 at 00:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. tv mounting service orange county

    When I initially commented I seem to have clicked the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now each time a comment is added I recieve four emails with the same comment. There has to be a means you are able to remove me from that service? Thanks a lot!


    June 4, 2021 at 02:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. Digital Marketing Agency Near Me


    June 4, 2021 at 02:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. esurance rv insurance

    I blog frequently and I genuinely thank you for your information. This great article has truly peaked my interest. I will take a note of your blog and keep checking for new details about once per week. I opted in for your Feed too.


    June 4, 2021 at 02:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. cleaners near me

    Good post. I certainly love this website. Continue the good work!


    June 4, 2021 at 02:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. Conversion Van Screen Repair

    Hi there! I could have sworn Iíve been to this blog before but after going through many of the posts I realized itís new to me. Anyhow, Iím certainly pleased I stumbled upon it and Iíll be bookmarking it and checking back regularly!


    June 4, 2021 at 02:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. Mercedes Sprinter Diesel Service Near Me

    Your style is really unique compared to other people I've read stuff from. Thank you for posting when you have the opportunity, Guess I will just bookmark this web site.


    June 4, 2021 at 04:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. rv repair close to me

    Pretty! This was an extremely wonderful post. Many thanks for supplying these details.


    June 4, 2021 at 09:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. Mercedes Benz Sprinter Repair Shop


    June 4, 2021 at 13:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. vape stores near me


    June 4, 2021 at 13:39 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. chloroquine malaria prophylaxis

    hydroxychloroquine side effects heart aralen price usa hydrochlorazine

    June 4, 2021 at 13:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. Sprinter Repair Shop

    This site was... how do I say it? Relevant!! Finally I've found something that helped me. Thanks!


    June 4, 2021 at 13:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. 2003 Dodge Sprinter Repair


    June 4, 2021 at 14:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  48. rv entertainment system upgrade

    I really like it whenever people come together and share views. Great blog, continue the good work!


    June 4, 2021 at 17:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. Digital Marketing Firm


    June 5, 2021 at 01:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. rv parts temecula


    June 5, 2021 at 01:42 | Report abuse | Reply
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15

Leave a Reply to watch repair san clemente


CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.