SENIOR SEX: INTIMACY & BODY IMAGE

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Body image is big business. Everywhere you look there are images of young, physically fit women telling us that we must live up to their perfect standard of beauty. The level of physical perfection that the media perpetuates as the “new ideal” is simply unobtainable for the majority of women to achieve. So it’s no wonder that we judge ourselves so critically and harshly, often hating our bodies for the slightest imperfection. No matter how much we exercise, diet and take care of our bodies, time and gravity take a toll on everyone. Bodies change. Yes, we can remain strong, agile and physically fit as we age, but we can only do so much to preserve the figures that we had in our prime. The loss of perfection is mourned more by some, than others, but all women take a self-esteem hit when those once pert bits start to jiggle. We tend to feel less attractive in our older, less than perfect bodies, and at some point we look around to discover that our self-confidence has taken a major nose dive. It’s not a sexy feeling.

So what impact does this have on our lives? For some women, not much, but for others, it’s a game changer. I think many mature women still crave passion and intimacy with a significant other, but are hesitant to invite it back into their lives because of their negative body image, and the fear that they are no longer sexually attractive to others. I think most women over 50 have some body issues, but the question is, how much do they effect the way we live our lives and the choices we make?

My experience as a Playboy Bunny and a model made me very aware of my body and the value that is placed on women’s physical assets. As someone who was defined by my looks for many years, I am hyper aware of the insecurities that come crashing in as our bodies age. So while keeping your weight in check, exercising and wearing Spanx can give the illusion of a great body when dressed, we all have to come to terms with the imperfect image we see in the mirror when naked. That’s our truth and there is no hiding it from others or ourselves, because it will get in the way of creating and sustaining truly intimate connections.

So, if you’re feeling insecure about your body, and think that a fear of rejection may be what’s holding you back from dating again, then it’s time to resolve those body image issues. I think that it’s important to remember that the women with the greatest sex appeal are often not shapely or beautiful at all, but they do project an air of self-confidence that is alluring and sexually enticing to men. They know how to flirt, and they are confident in the use of their sex appeal.  They know how to make that man feel special and desirable and that’s what makes them attractive. It’s not always the most beautiful women who are the most seductive.

No doubt dim lights, soft music, sexy lingerie, and a glass of bubbly will set the mood, but the key word is attitude. Sex should be fun and you can’t be in the moment if you’re hiding under the covers.

When I mustered up the courage to discuss this topic with a few sexually active senior men, I did not get the response that I was expecting. They told me that yes, of course they are turned on by beautiful young bodies, BUT the passion, warmth, tenderness, and understanding they got from a partner closer to their own age was much more important than their physical appearance. I think it’s also important to remember that men have body image and performance anxiety as well. So, if we love ourselves and feel sexy then that is what we are and how we are seen.

I know it can be challenging to embrace your body and sexuality at this late date, but it can be done, and I say this from personal experience. At 80 years old I began dating again. Not only that, but I put aside my fears and became sexually active again, because I think physical intimacy keeps us connected to our own bodies as well as other people. It’s not an essential ingredient in everyone’s later years, but if it’s something that you are missing out on, and want back in your life, let me assure you that it is never too late to get your mojo back, or your groove on!

~ Dorrie

Senior Style Bible



11 responses to “SENIOR SEX: INTIMACY & BODY IMAGE”

  1. I shared this on my FB page.

    Great article.

    bisous
    Suzanne

  2. Joyce Silverman says:

    Difficult yes, impossible no, important . .hell ya! Groove on…

  3. Pati Springmeyer says:

    Right on, Dorrie! There are things we can do to affect our physiology ( like, bio identical harmones) and our physical appearance ( surgery, lasers, low tech skin therapies, body building, diet, laser body sculpting……on and on) but, if the right attitude isn’t within us, then we won’t have a satisfying experience no matter what we look like. This is the point! Thank you for sharing your wisdom xo

  4. cathy says:

    Dorrie, you are just the best, and I hope to be like you!!! xx

  5. So very true.. all of it. You know, those men don’t mind imperfections as much as we women do. And to be with someone who is perfect (old man, young woman) isn’t that easy really. Music she doesn’t know, experiences he cannot share. You are right, they will like somebody their own age. We women always see ourselves so much worse than others do, especially men.
    Greetje

  6. Darryl B says:

    I stumbled onto your site, and I really enjoy your articles (and style advice for ladies) Dorrie. You are like a breath of fresh air.

    As a man, living in an extremely active Senior Community, I concur that senior women have an overall negative body image of themselves. My sense is they feel they are physically past their “Sell Date,” therefore, why should they like themselves, anymore.

    BUNK, I say!

    As a man, I look at a woman as an overall package – Inside, and out. Not only am I not interested in younger women, I would not even know how to relate to one, let alone know what to do with her. I state that, as the senior ladies I run into all wonder why I am not pursuing a younger woman. When I ask why they feel that way, the inevitable comparisons between themselves, and some fit, firm, 20-Something, always comes up. It is so sad to hear, and I have about given up explaining to them that I like them for them, not some image of a fantasy female.

    That is why I like to see your fashion advice, as a lot of women, especially senior women, dress 100% frumpy, feeling they are basically old, and unattractive, so why try and look their best. Sad.

    I, myself, as a 52-year old, still like to look my best (shirts, ties, suits, etc), and I have always preferred the company of mature ladies, as they possess so much more substance than their younger kind. One major thing I do not understand about senor women is why they feel they have to act old once they grow up. Maybe you could do an article on that phenomenon in the future.

    In closing, you, yourself, look absolutely gorgeous, I love your rationale on life. and thank you for sharing you were not afraid to believe in yourself, and that you are not afraid of that scary word – Intimacy.

    I wish I could run into a lady like you.

    Regards,

    Darryl

  7. Betty Kurecka says:

    Dorrie, this exactly what I needed to hear as I get ready to fly to meet an old flame who I haven’t seen in 52 years. All my fears about my body and sex appeal almost kept me from doing it, but I’m going to give it a whirl. I also remind myself that when my old flame first wrote me, he never mentioned my looks back then, only how much fun I was and full of life and made him feel like he was living the good life. I’m going to make that my mantra on the flight there. Thanks for all you do for us of that certain age.