We’re lucky to have Dr. Yvonne Fulbright, a sexologist from Iceland, help us with today’s Q & A on one of our favorite subjects — you guessed it — sex! And being that she’s the ambassador for a personal lubrication product, we are also giving away Astroglide to the five people who provide the best 40licious sex tips in the comments section.
Dr. Fulbright is the author of several books, including Sultry Sex Talk to Seduce Any Lover, Touch Me There! A Hands-On Guide to Your Orgasmic Hot Spots and The Better Sex Guide to Extraordinary Lovemaking, as well as co-author of Your Orgasmic Pregnancy: Little Sex Secrets Every Hot Mama Should Know.
|Dr. Yvonne Albright. Wouldn’t you just love telling people you’re a sexologist when they ask what you do for a living?|
1. How does sex generally change for women in their 40s?
Research on women ages 35-49 has revealed that the majority are interested in maintaining a healthy sex life, with over half having sex at least once per week. About half are also initiating sex with their partners and enjoying sexual activity. From the “Sex in America” report to Shere Hite’s research to Gina Ogden’s “Heart & Soul of Sex” research, we’re constantly being reminded that women are often very sexually piqued. They want sex; they love sex; they desire sexual intimacy. Many want sex more than their partner does. Approaching 40 or entering the fifth decade of her life does not slow her down sexually, as is widely believed.
One of the reasons for this is that sex, for many, gets better with age. Her ideas about sex have evolved. Sex isn’t just about having sex – going all the way – it’s an experience that’s about her mind-body-soul connection, whether she and her lover get carnal or spiritual. It’s about the energy exchange, a celebration of the union and the pursuit of every pleasure the moment can offer.
Between popular press articles, personal experience, shows like “Sex & the City” and sex books, she’s also more informed and feeling more empowered in the sack as such. She’s comfortable being sexually creative, and feeling much more sexually mature than younger women. With more open discussions about sexual exploration, she’s more willing to role-play, share fantasies, try sex toys, vamp up her look, attempt erotic talk, seduce her partner… She recognizes the importance of maintaining passion and keeping things hot and fresh in and out of the bedroom – and she’s making the effort to realize such.
2. Are there any hormonal shifts we should be aware of? How do they manifest?
About four to eight years before the onset of menopause, about 90 percent of women experience a change in their menstrual cycle, e.g., lighter or heavier bleeding. Other symptoms of hormone shifts may include hot flashes, sleep disturbances, headaches, dry-eye syndrome, and unwanted hair. As a consequence, some may find themselves avoiding sexual activity.
3. What makes the difference between regular sex and swinging-from-the-chandelier sex?
There are a couple of major things going on. First, she’s connected to herself and her partner. She feels good about her partnership, which is one of the reasons she’s still sexually piquing at this time. She has fewer insecurities, and is feeling more confident in being more accepting of her body and the woman she has become, especially if she has had a child. She’s more sure of her sensuality and able to tap her sensual core. She has a better understanding of sexual intimacy and meeting her needs.
Second, changes are going on at midlife that invite more sexual opportunities. Many women are reconnecting with their partners as their children grow into ages where they’re more independent and there are more opportunities for a mom and her lover to be sexually active.
Some are re-entering the dating pool, and with that embracing their sexuality in a whole new way. Between new beginnings, being in a healthier place, and embracing new opportunities, these women are tuning into their sexuality in a whole new way.
4. Anything else you’d like to share about 40licious sex?
Pre-menopausal women still need to worry about birth control, since women over 35 are second behind teenagers in the U.S. when it comes to the most unplanned pregnancies. A major reason for this is that they’re having more sex than what we give them credit for. So for those not wanting to get pregnant, it’s important for them to talk to their doctors about their contraceptive options. Since the availability of the birth control pill, research has consistently found that women who don’t have to worry about pregnancy report better, less inhibited sex.
COMMENT: WHAT’S YOUR 40LICIOUS SEX TIP? FIRST FIVE GOOD ONES WIN SOME FREE ASTROGLIDE
All Albrights are sexperts! 🙂
I think life in general gets better between partners later in life – as long as you don’t resign yourself to “old and boring” – because you do have realistic expectations of what needs to be done to maintain relationships, sex included. When I was young, I thought that sex needed to always be spontaneous and that if it wasn’t amazing all the time, something was wrong. Now I know it’s ok to have an “off” day, and it’s also ok to plan for intimacy, which can be necessary for people who are busy. It doesn’t diminish the specialness of it if it’s planned for – it actually increases it. It’s saying “this is so important that I’m making time.”
And it’s ok to talk about it! Just because someone says “I’m disappointed in our sex life” doesn’t mean “I don’t love you” or “I don’t want you.” It’s an invitation to make the relationship better, which is the biggest gesture of commitment I think another person can show.