Differences In Sexual Desire

One of the biggest complaints we hear from Suddenly Solos (of both genders!) concerns the issue of how much sex they are getting (or not getting!) from their partners.  Remember the scene in Woody Allen’s 1977 Academy Award winning movie, Annie Hall, where a split-screen shows Annie (Diane Keaton) and Alvy (Woody Allen) in their separate analysis sessions?  Both analysts ask their patients, “How often do you have sex?”  Annie responds, “Constantly. 2-3 times a week.”  Alvy says, “Almost never. 2-3 times a week.”  You get the point.

Differences in libidos are common among couples of all ages. Couples can become stuck in a pattern where one person initiates contact while the other avoids it. If you mainly avoid sex, consider taking charge of some engagement. If you usually initiate sex, try talking with your partner about what you need.

If you’re worried about hurting your partner’s feelings, talk about your experience using “I” statements, such as, “I think my body responds better when…” In turn, try to understand your partner’s needs and desires. Together, you can find ways to accommodate both your needs.

Look forward, not back.  Many couples want to know how to get back to the sexual arousal and activity levels they experienced in their 20s, 30s and early 40s. Instead, find ways to optimize your body’s response for sexual experiences now. Ask yourselves what’s satisfying and mutually acceptable.

Many books are available about how to maintain a healthy sex life as you get older. In addition, many couples find consulting with an expert helpful. Your doctor may be able to provide useful suggestions or refer you to a specialist.


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