I get tired of a lot of things in our culture: sexism, racism, homophobia, biphobia, transphobia. The list goes on. One thing I really get tired of is agism, and the culture of youth. Except for rare Viagra commercials, the fetishization of older people in porn and Blanche on The Golden Girls, you’d think at a certain age, a person no longer has sex, can no longer be sexy, and so on.
So I was happy to come across this article about the sex practices of elderly people in Spain. I’m a big supporter of everyone being entitled to a healthy sex life. The practices reported aren’t particularly kinky, which may be kind of generation gap, a maturity about sex, or an internalized sense that elderly people can’t be sexual. The survey is only heterosexual people. But here’s the findings:
A new study published in one of the world’s biggest sexuality journals the Journal of Sexual Medicine analyses the factors that influence sexual activity amongst elderly people in Spain.
“This research lets us know the reality of a social phenomenon which is not tackled enough in Spain: sexuality and the elderly”, Domingo Palacios, a researcher at the Rey Juan Carlos University in Madrid and main author of this study, explained to SINC.
The results, based on the National Health and Sexuality Survey, in which 1,939 heterosexual elderly people participated in 2009, show that 62.3% of men and 37.4% of women are sexually active. The most common practices are kisses, caressing and vaginal penetration. On the other hand, the least practised are masturbation and oral sex.
Furthermore, there are other factors that limit sexual activity in both sexes: being older than 75, not having a partner, having a low level of education, a poor perception of their own health and sexuality, suffering from two or more chronic illnesses and taking two or more types of medication.