TWO DIFFERENT VIEWS
Both of the previous scenes were written by attendees at a romance writing course taught by a
friend of ours. They were given the same basic scene and told to write the opening chapter.
Would it surprise you that the first scene was written by a man? We didn’t think so.
Nor should it surprise you that the second was written by an aspiring female novelist.
Is it any wonder, then, considering the two scenes from these wannabe novelists, why men and
women have trouble communicating with each other?
The expectations seem so different. Yet the differences between sexes is no laughing matter,
especially when those differences absolutely dominate your lovemaking.
If anything, as you reach fifty and older, understanding the differences between men and women,
and discovering ways to overcome those differences, becomes even more crucial for long-term
satisfaction and happiness.
How do you overcome those differences in bed?
From our research work with sex therapists, counselors and physicians, we have gleaned
several practical guidelines that may help you forge greater bonds of trust and
understanding during lovemaking.
EMBRACE THE CHANGES
Bob Dylan sang, “The times they are a-changin’.”
If you haven’t figured that out in bed, Mr. or Mrs. Boomer and Beyond, you will.
Your body responds differently as you age. Deal with it! Things that used to be such a turn-on
don’t cause the same response. Conversely, things that you might never have considered can
become quite wonderful.
For starters, the time it takes you to get aroused may take longer and longer as the number of
birthday candles increase, but you can learn that this can be a very good thing for both partners.
Men, you may not get as erect at 60 or 70 as you did when you were 18, but you can become a
much more skilled lover when you don’t have to worry as much about premature ejaculation.
Women, for example, you may be drier inside and not have as intense of feelings sometimes, but
you can learn to cherish the great feelings of longer foreplay and intercourse times. (And you can
be thankful for all the great new lubrications!)
Your climaxes may not be as earth shattering, but many people whom we have interviewed have
mentioned that orgasms as they get older are often much more deeply satisfying, overall, though
the fireworks may not be as spectacular.
Who knows how romance will be for you, but you can know that there are many
Seasoned Seniors who have gone before you who say that there are wonderful benefits
as you embrace the changes of getting older.
Mainly, the most satisfied older lovers seem to agree, you must determine to make
romance and mutual satisfaction a priority in your relationship.
Go with the changes. Learn to use your Boomer and Beyond years to become better, more
thoughtful, more communicative partners.
Which brings us to the importance of communication as you strive for greater mutual satisfaction…
DON'T EXPECT YOUR PARTNER TO BE A MIND-READER
How often, during our research interviews all over the
world, have we heard one (or both) of the partners in a
relationship expressing how the other person “simply
doesn’t have a clue how to satisfy me sexually”?
Sadly, when one or both parties in a relationship feel
this way, the relationship can sour quickly. Confidence
wanes. Walls go up. Both parties often stop trying.
What happens, especially in a day when we are deluged
with books, movies, videos and television all touting
“instant” gratification, men and women somehow have
started believing that you have to be an "expert" to be
One of the beautiful things about a long-term, trusting
relationship is that we don’t have to be experts. We can
admit that we don’t know everything. We can learn truthfully and openly what pleases us.
Sexual pleasure, for people of any age, is a skill. What you learned yesterday is helpful, but as
the situation (and your body) changes, you must constantly keep discovering what you and your
What you enjoy may be something totally distasteful and foreign to your lover. Sexual arousal is
very individual and often constantly changing. Some people like to be touched gently. Others
enjoy more vigorous touching. What is highly arousing one time may tickle or cause discomfort
another another time.
Generally, in terms of foreplay, you are always safe by learning what erogenous (most sensitive
sexual areas) zones work best for you. Your lips, ear lobes, breasts, nipples, genitals, fingers and
toes are always good areas to touch, stroke and caress. And don’t forget the nape of the neck,
the small of the back, and the soft skin inside the elbows and knees.
Don't forget that a flickering tongue can be one of the most potent sexual exciters. Get skillful at
using it all over your partners body.
Massage each other. Touch each other. Find out what is erogenous to you. Each of us is
different, and it can be such a grand adventure to find out what excites each other.
We are often sadly surprised during interviews to hear people say that they don’t really have a
clue what the other person likes.
The only way to know what is working for you and your partner is through communicating what you
are feeling at the moment, then learning to trust each other to be completely open, honest and
nurturing in the adventuresome pursuit of mutual satisfaction.
BE OPEN ABOUT WHAT YOU LIKE
Talking about what you like and dislike has several benefits. Not only can simply talking about sex
add to your excitement, but the more you talk, the more relaxed and confident you become with
your partner. Just be careful to focus more on what you like than on what you dislike.
As mentioned earlier, you would not believe how many interviews and research sessions we have
conducted in which people admit that they have never once expressed what feels good to them
during sex. That is incredulous, but much more common that you can imagine.
Some fear the other person will judge them for being too experienced. Others fear the partner will
judge them for not being experienced enough. That about your proverbial Catch-22! Either
way can hinder communication and passion and build growing walls of fear and distrust.
Almost every single person we have interviewed—men and women—say they would like
more variety during sex, but they don’t know how to express that desire without
appearing to be bossy or critical. Worse, they are afraid of having their ideas for variety
One good technique we have found that works is to find something you would like to try in a
magazine article or book, then to bring it up in a conversation: “Have you ever thought about
doing this?” Or, “I’ll bet you would like this.” Or, “I don’t want to shock you, but I’ve wondered if this
would feel good.”
Chances are that your partner wants to try new things as much as you do, but can’t find a way to
communicate those desires any better than you. Sometimes invisible walls are harder to break
down than visible ones, but you can't stop trying.
The second-worse thing in communicating about sex is fake responses. The worst thing, however,
is no response.
Granted, there are times when you can't express yourself as you would like. Lots of people during
interviews have laughed about the times in motels or homes with paper-thin walls where they have
been forced to use pillows to mute the sounds during sex that they would have preferred to
Expression, however, is important!
Whatever you do before, during and after intercourse, find a way to be positive and responsive.
The secret, once again, is to focus on what you really like, rather than what you don’t like.
In bed, as in all other areas of life, you get more of whatever you reward. Moaning, subtle
whispers and making more passionate noises are amazing and instant rewards to each other, so
don’t be afraid to be demonstrative.
Specifically, when you are making love, make sure your partner knows when they've found the
right place or “groove.” Let them know when something they do is working well. Even a soft
murmur will do if you don’t feel comfortable being more responsive.
The point is to reward and applaud (figuratively, not necessarily literally) what you want more of.
If, for example, your partner need a bit of guidance, gently move his or her hands or fingers to
demonstrate what really turns you on.
At the same time, notice the movements and sounds your partner makes as you encourage him or
her to let you know when you’ve found the right place or if what you are doing brings special
Just don’t become a “director” who constantly offers a barrage of detailed instructions—“Do
this…not THAT!” Directing and berating destroys trust and kills the mood. Keep it simple and
focus on passion for both of you.
Passion, remember? Not directions. And say, Oh, yeah!” in as many ways as you feel comfortable
You may surprise yourself as you learn how liberating it can be to become more and more vocal in
your responses. More importantly, you may be greatly surprised at your partner’s response as
you learn to be more comfortable in expressing yourself.
Communication...a Learned Skill
Just like you probably got a few skinned knees while learning to ride the bicycle, something as
important as lovemaking skills cannot be learned without lots of practice, tenderness and love.
Just because you are a Boomer or Beyond doesn’t mean that you know it all, nor does it mean
that you can’t learn how to do things better.
Depending upon your background, you may have a lot more making up to do, since in many
cultures, women—especially—are raised to believe that their sexual parts are repulsive and
inferior to those of men. Worse, men, you may have grown up in a culture where men are
repressive about a woman having or expressing pleasure during sex.
Wherever you are, in terms of your ability and willingness to enjoy sex, there has never been a
better time than right now to begin learning how to communicate what you enjoy than today.
Whatever age you are simply means is that you are at the time of your life when you can get
better and better at pleasuring yourself and your partner.
If at First You Don’t Succeed…
The worst thing you or your partner can do, in terms of communicating and learning to enjoy
intimacy more than ever before, is to concentrate on the so-called failures.
Don’t build up walls. Look for ways to encourage without demeaning or focusing on so-called
“You’re beautiful tonight!” or “Have I told you lately how
handsome you are to me?” works well in just about any
“I’ve got all the time in the world to touch and hold you,” works
a lot better than “Good grief! Why don’t you concentrate!” any
“Let’s try something you’ve always wanted to do but never told
me,” works wonders, as well.
So does, “If you could have me do anything in the world sexually, what would it be?”
Use your imagination. Whatever you do, build communication, not walls.
The pay-off, if you learn to embrace the changes, can be more wonderful for you as a sexy,
sensual, sensuous, skillful Seasoned Senior lover than any romance novelist could ever dream up!
Until next time, we wish you romance!
As her husband trudges inside, his nostrils flaring at the smell of fresh-
baked bread and a tasty porridge, his wife quickly feeds and grooms the
horses, then races back to the log home.
Inside, smoldering with passion, she pushes herself against her frontier
hunter and begins pulling at his clothing, striving to touch him, caress
him and satisfy him, driven wild by his manly scent.
The woman returns from foraging in the woods for wild berries. As she
nears the log cabin she and her husband built not long after their
marriage, she notices the horses her husband had been using inside
the nearby barn, already fed and groomed. As she opens the door and
glances inside, she sees her husband standing over the small wood
stove, busily cooking a stew from the game he killed.
She moves toward him to welcome him home, and he offers a quick kiss,
grinning knowingly: “Let me grab some of your wonderful-smelling soap,
and I’ll run down to the creek for a nice bath. I must smell like a grizzly
bear after all the days I’ve been gone. First, though, let me finish
cooking and wash the utensils I’ve used cooking this meal for you.”
WRITING YOUR OWN ROMANCE NOVEL
...Learning to Communicate
The man, bold in relief against the weather, travels with his horses toward the frontier log
cabin, a home carved with his own hands. He rides proudly after weeks of hunting. He brings
food in abundance to the “little woman.” When she sees him galloping toward home, she
dabs a little perfume behind each ear, looks in the small mirror to fix her hair one last time,
then runs to meet him, taking the reins from his calloused hands and leading the horse to the