On life and love after 50 newsletter
by Tom P. Blake - October 23, 2015
A Champ in her 60s we will call Becky, not her true name, emailed this week. She had read the two recent newsletters about chemistry, particularly the comments from Champs who were in relationships that initially had no chemistry, but where chemistry kicked in after a period of time. That happened to her. Senior sex just arrived later for her.
But Becky also wanted to share that even when chemistry is present in older couples, there still can be intimacy issues that couples may need to deal with.
Before getting into Becky’s “intimacy-issues” comments, a little background on her: She said, “Single since November 2011, I've tried various websites, meetup groups, divorcee gatherings, took many international trips, and asked friends if they knew of any eligible, nice, and somewhat healthy middle-aged men.
“But after dating/meeting casually for 3 1/2 years, I wondered why I spent so much time conversing/meeting men. Was it true that nice divorced men were all taken? Of course not, but it felt that way. I truly had given up.
“I thought I could be a great partner to the right person, but wasn't willing to move or negotiate on what a potential partner could or couldn't provide. I mentioned in my on-line profile that I wanted to be ‘friends-first’ with someone. Most of the men I had previously met wanted ‘everything’ by date one or two
“In April, I met a man who lives 15 miles from me. And being ‘friends-first’ is what he decided to do. We dated about 16 times before he gave me a kiss on the lips. I thought he wasn't attracted to me. I thought he just wanted an activity friend and nothing further. I wasn't a runner and he had told me he wanted a girlfriend who ran.
“Chemistry came later. It became true for me that even in one's 60's, things can move relatively slow and still develop into something amazing. I was looking for a loving, caring relationship, and I found such.”
Becky’s comments about intimacy
So, Becky and her runner boyfriend had progressed from the “just-friends” stage to the intimacy stage. But that doesn’t automatically mean they are making whoopee every night, as Becky explained.
She said, “There are differences as we age in our physical attractiveness, intimacy needs, etc. Aging couples do not talk openly about erectile dysfunction or female issues. When you are younger you snicker at the commercials on television or internet, but then you are in that age group and these things happen.
“As a former pediatric nurse practitioner, I wasn't up-to-date with how intimacy changes as we age. But, now I'm living with it and find that 50% or more of men in their upper 50/60's have some sort of ED and need assistance. The price for the pills is not covered by Medicare or insurance. Sometimes the pharmaceutical manufacture will provide a short-term rebate, but otherwise, around $44 is the cost for the little blue pill.
“Baby boomers want to live their remaining years attempting to do things they used to, but, our aging bodies change and sometimes men or women need to resort to using pharmaceutical drugs with a high price. Pharmaceutical ads specifically state that there are lots of forgery drugs being offered in the states, Mexico and Canada, but there doesn't seem to be long-term financial assistance to purchase such medications in the USA. Not everyone is wealthy.
“I just wanted to share as I had never given much thought about intimacy, potential problems, and solutions until recently. We are happy we found each other and he is very verbally appreciative of my understanding with his intermittent problems.”
Becky concluded: “Actually, I don't see this as a problem as we have been able to work around this very well. It is a learning curve. When you start to ‘date’ again in your late 50's or 60's or older, just be aware and sensitive to male/female sexual issues, but - heaven's - don't throw in the towel. It is just another stepping stone in gaining knowledge about the aging process.”
I applaud Becky for bringing this subject up. It is a fact of life. Although I tend to tiptoe around this subject, as a Champ we’ll call Oscar Meyer pointed out three weeks ago, I will say this: “I have never taken the ‘little blue pill,’ or any similar pills that claim to achieve the similar results--not that they wouldn’t be helpful--but when you hear those TV commercials stating the possible side effects, I prefer to find other creative solutions to the older-male dilemma.
By creative solutions, I don’t mean standing on my head and whistling “Dixie.” Nor do I mean having a snake charmer play the pungi (flute-like instrument) as is done to get the cobra to rise out of the basket.
However, electrical appliances can work wonders. (One woman responded, if it comes to that, I give up on sex). Too bad, she's missing out.