When I began writing this article, my goal was to help mature men in the dating scene better understand women’s sexuality, but plenty of women need help with this, too. A surprising number of mature women are ignorant about how their bodies work and how to have an orgasm.
In researching this article, I Googled the phrase “mature women and sex“. Nearly half a billion search results appeared. The majority of results led to porn sites and articles focusing on what it’s like for men to have sex with older women or why older women are hot.
With so little useful information available that’s focused on the actual physiology of women’s sexuality, and so much misinformation out there, it’s no wonder stereotypes persist.
Sex and Mature Relationships
First, let’s establish that when you’re dating (at any age, really), and thinking about having sex with someone for the first time, put the brakes on if it’s early in the relationship. For so many reasons, it’s wisest to wait about 3 months before diving into sex. Read more in my popular article, When To Make Love For the First Time.
So, now you’re in a relationship that is hopefully working well and includes physical intimacy. Despite the stereotype that people over 60 are no longer interested in sex, you probably DO want a healthy sex life.
If you’re someone who is no longer interested in sex but you want a lasting, healthy relationship, that’s fine, as long as your partner agrees. You’ll need to discuss this and come to an understanding that makes you both happy.
If sex is must in your relationship, but things are not going well in that department, you also need to discuss things and come up with ways to satisfy both of you.
I know, I know. Sex can be very difficult to talk about. But, as mature adults, communicating our feelings should be easier than when we were younger and less experienced. And dispel the notion that men don’t want to discuss it. Men who are looking for a truly lasting, loving relationship will want to know how to fulfill you sexually. If your partner is not receptive to a discussion about sex and intimacy, they’re probably not good relationship material.
Cosmo noted in his article, 7 Reasons Why Finding True Love Later in Life is Better:
“If we’re dating after fifty or sixty, it’s likely we’ve had one or more partnerships or marriages. This means we have a pretty good idea of what we want and don’t want in our potential partner.
To find a true, loving partner requires that you present yourself accurately to others. It’s essential to strip away that which doesn’t reflect who you truly are or worse, that which buries your true personality.
Depending on your previous relationships, you might be comfortable with co-dependent behaviors that mask your authentic self which in turn, sabotages your future relationships. If so, you must learn how to love yourself again.”
If we aren’t open and honest with ourselves and our partner now, at this age, when will we ever be?
The Pressure to Have and Give Orgasms
Holly Parker, Ph.D. (https://twitter.com/DrHollyParker) talked about the pressure to have and give orgasms, considering a 2017 study revealing that:
“5 percent of heterosexual men, roughly 12 percent of gay and bisexual men, 14 percent of lesbian women, and approximately 35 percent of heterosexual and bisexual women do NOT frequently experience an orgasm.”
For some people, she says:
“An orgasm is a sign they’re functioning normally. The implication is that if it doesn’t happen, then something must be amiss with them. Others view climaxing as a reassuring message to their partner, such as ‘You’re a talented lover who’s turning me on!’ Still, others treat an orgasm as an indication that they’ve done their part as a lover; if their partner didn’t climax, they assume it means they’ve failed. And when we treat orgasms as a way of showing that we’re normal, as a means to safeguard our partner’s feelings, or as a marker of our own sexual skill, we raise the stakes of an orgasm tremendously.”
This is probably why so many people fake it . . . something like 25 percent of men and 50 percent of women, according to a 2010 study.
Dispelling the Myths and Stereotypes About Women and Sexuality
Science (bolstered by conventional wisdom and popular culture) often support prevalent stereotypes. We’ve all been led to believe that men are always ready for, and thinking about, sex and that they have stronger sexual feelings than women.
Culture and lifestyle author Allie Volpe (https://twitter.com/allieevolpe) wrote about the myth of “complicated” female sexuality, and how researchers are rethinking how sex studies are conducted, partly because more women are now involved in this research:
“Because many influential studies on sex were performed only on men, it was assumed that the way desire manifested in men was also the way it presented in women.
Over the past few years, researchers have found that no one gender is more complex than the other when it comes to sexual urges. In fact, everyone is pretty sexually complicated.
The idea that female desire can wax and wane throughout life is frequently cited as part of what makes women’s sexuality ‘complicated’. It is true that many women experience a spike in desire during ovulation and in the first and second trimesters of pregnancy. And women’s sex drive can decrease during menopause. But men’s sex drive can fluctuate with age too. Stress, sleep deprivation, and depression can all cause dips in male libido.”
A Few Things About Women’s Sexuality You May Not Know
Grant Hilary Brenner, M.D. (https://twitter.com/GrantHBrennerMD) notes in an article about women’s sexual pleasure:
“A greater understanding of female sexuality sets the stage for future research by determining which behaviors and techniques actually lead to the greatest pleasure for women. It’s a profoundly important pursuit, one with implications for cultural change reaching beyond individual pleasure to challenge and destabilize norms.
There is more and more known every day about the neuroscience of sexuality, and more information in mass-market materials, including popular books and other sources, about sexual needs and techniques, but empirical data investigating the finer details of women’s sexual experiences is in short supply.”
As recently as about 15 years ago, many believed the clitoris was a surface structure only. Brenner stated:
“The clitoris is actually quite extensive, connecting with substantial erectile tissue which extends back into the pelvis in a wishbone shape, encircling the vagina.”
A study of over a thousand U.S. women in 2015 aged 18 to 95 went beyond the usual focus to include inquiry into genital touch. Researchers were able to go deep into detail by using prior work from OMGYes.com (an impressive research organization that lets you “explore the latest science about what feels good and why”.)
Brenner related the findings:
“Nearly 40 percent of women reported needing clitoral stimulation to orgasm during intercourse, and about the same percent reported that even if they did not need clitoral stimulation to orgasm, it made the experience more pleasurable. Almost 20 percent found vaginal penetration alone sufficient for orgasm. The remaining women reported not having an orgasm during intercourse at all or described alternative patterns, such as stimulation before intercourse, orgasm after intercourse by oral sex, and so on.”
Sex and Mature Dating: What Do Women Really Want and Need?
Getting right to the heart of the matter of women and orgasms, Laurie Mintz, Ph.D. noted in her book Becoming Cliterate and an enlightening Psychology Today article that there’s no ONE surefire method:
- While about 95 percent of women need clitoral stimulation to orgasm, either alone or paired with penetration, just what type of stimulation each women needs is unique, as every woman’s genital nerves are positioned a bit differently;
- It’s thus important to get to know how your genital nerves are positioned, by “taking matters into your own hands”;
- It’s then critical to tell a partner what type of stimulation you need, using great sexual communication.