How are Seniors Having Sex? An In-depth Senior Sex Study
There may be a good reason grandma and grandpa haven’t returned your phone call.
A survey looked at how the sex habits of 2,000 people aged 50 and older changed and found that more than three-quarters have noticed significant changes to their sex life now compared to when they were younger (77%), with 45% saying they’ve had the best sex of their lives as they’ve aged. Can we finally embrace aging now?
The results showed that most respondents said they have less sex now than in their youth, citing their 30s as the time of their life they were the most sexually active — but one in eight Americans 50 and older still have sex at least 5 times a week.
Conducted by OnePoll on behalf of LELO, the survey found that 35% are surprisingly more intimate than ever before and the same amount say their sex drive is higher than when they were younger.
More than a third of people over 50 would like to be more intimate, but don’t have the time (38%) — likely because they’re always working (42%), live with others (39%) or have family come over often (36%).
Three in four respondents whose kids still live with them say they usually wait until their child falls asleep or isn’t around to have sex with their partner (74%).
And nearly half of those whose kids are out of the nest said their sex life has improved drastically (48%).
Although some Americans 50 and older don’t have as much time to be intimate as they’d like, more than half said they take advantage of their free time by being intimate with their partner (56%).
While the most popular places in the home that respondents have had sex are the bedroom (69%) and living room (48%), one in four older people admitted to getting a little adventurous in the laundry room or on the staircase.
And two in three are comfortable with being experimental in the bedroom, with half of respondents divulging that they are more comfortable with trying new sex positions in the bedroom now than ever before (53%).
“Even though we don’t see many older adults being sexually romantic in the media, it doesn’t mean they don’t enjoy it too. The myth around it is related to people’s discomfort with aging. We believe that pleasure should be celebrated by everyone – regardless of age. Intimacy comes in different forms as we age and it can be just as satisfying,” says LELO’s CMO Luka Matutinović.
More than a third also admitted that they are more comfortable with the idea of having multiple sexual partners now than ever before, but some would rather focus on their relationships.
One respondent said “a night out enjoying each other’s company” helps their intimacy spark alive while others say it’s important to remind one another that they love each other.
Other respondents keep the spark alive by being spontaneous or trying new things in the bedroom.
Sex still matters for seniors, which is why one in eight said they would feel uncomfortable talking to their partner about changes in their sex drive.
Forty-two percent of those who have a low sex drive feel that would destroy their relationship.
But it doesn’t always have to be about sex. Thirty-four percent said they’ve had too much sex in their lives, and 57% feel they’ve accomplished everything they wanted to do sexually in life.
Americans 50 and over enjoy bonding with their partners non-sexually by watching movies (53%), having intimate dinners (46%) or going on walks (44%).
“The changes that come with aging make women and men communicate more, get more creative, have more time to explore, which leads to getting the right type of satisfaction. Our buyers are often seniors; they know what they want and understand pleasurable things are waiting for them to explore,” adds Matutinović.
Places in the home older Americans have had sex
- Bedroom (69%)
- Living room (48%)
- Bathroom (38%)
- Kitchen (28%)
- Dining room (24%)
Older Americans’ favorite sex positions from the last year
- Doggy-style (42%)
- Missionary (38%)
- Spooning (29%)
- Reverse cowgirl (28%)
- Cowgirl (27%)
Donna is a Volonté contributor and freelancer who lives in San Francisco with her understanding husband and not-so-understanding teenage sons. Her work has been published in The Journal of Sexology and she is currently writing a book on love languages.