The only reason I would take up jogging is so that I could hear heavy breathing again.
Itâ€™s Time To Uncross Those Lady-like Legs And Do What You Want
When I started to put together this blog, I went online to look for a joke about midlife women and sex.Â I have a good sense of humor and try not to get too serious about myself and aging.Â However.
Not surprisingly most of the jokes involving midlife sex referred to older men in one of these situations:
- Midlife wife doesnâ€™t want sex
- Midlife wife is wrinkled, sagging, ugly, toothless,Â joyless
- Older man has sex with much younger woman (By far the most popular topic)
- Older man canâ€™t get it up
- Older man took a blue pill, or twenty, and canâ€™t get it down
- Older man looks feeble but has a 20-inch cock and endless prowess
Positive Jokes About Older Women Having Sex
I had a much, much, more difficult time finding positive jokes about older women having sex. Even my beloved Erma Bombeck is wistfully implying sheâ€™s not getting any. Despite the calendar saying it is 2016, and notwithstanding the fact that Baby Boomer women are full of confidence, vitality, and sexual know-how, culturally people still get squeamish thinking about older women having and wanting sexual encounters.
â€œBut sex embodies a human freedom the market denies. To desire and be desired can be many things: funny, awkward, transforming, sacred and profane. To be honest about what turns you on, for a moment or a lifetime, demands a particularly intimate bravery that is threatened with extinction by the megaphone of cultural sexism.â€
TheÂ Medicalization of Women’s Sexuality
As Ms. Brooks states in her quote above, cultural sexism ignores the most fundamental aspects of human desire and aging. Weâ€™ve become a nation dependent upon technological advances to transition into each phase of life; with women often found in the crosshairs of medical meddling and testing. Rachel Mainesâ€™ research (see resources) brought attention to the male-dominated world of technology, sexual devices, and the marketing of discontent. She also offers an examination of the culturally approved limitations and medicalization of womenâ€™s sexuality.
What started as a professional medical tool to treat hysteria in the 1800s the lowly, but effective, vibrator eventually became something of a moral fulcrum.Â Each time women took the vibrator and their sexual pleasure into their own hands, a patriarchal-based cultural backlash followed. Womenâ€™s sexuality, defined through a male lens, has barely changed descriptions from historical hysteria to modern Female Sexual Dysfunction. In other words, the full-circle medicalization of womenâ€™s sexuality continues to push the message of feminine deficiency.
Women Entering the Post-Menopausal Years
Dr. Dorin Schumacher has been a voice for womenâ€™s issues since the 1960s.Â She states, â€œBiomedical research is still carried out primarily by men, and the decisions about which research proposals get funded are still made mainly by men. Studying female sexuality and the changes that take place in a womanâ€™s sexual/reproductive system as she ages, and developing non-invasive clinical approaches to ameliorate the negative changes, do not attract the big research funding that helps build long lists of publications.â€ (Schumacher, 1990)Â With all the decades of shifting cultural voices questioning healthy female sexuality, it is little wonder Baby Boomer women are entering their post-menopausal years with a mixture of confusion, shame, and defiance.
While technological advances have enormous potential to offer a better quality of life as America grays, post-menopausal women continue to face ageist stigmas equating growing older with deficiencies in health, relationships, appearances, and sexual desire.
My friend Judy, in her 70â€™s, is an example of a woman who has given up on sexual relationships. She feels that she is not only too old to be sexually alluring, but fears that she would once again feel sexually and socially controlled by a man should she consent to a relationship. Judy has said that if it allows her to live independently, loneliness is her preferred companion.
My grandmother was a very tough woman. She buried three husbands and two of them were just napping.
Womenâ€™s sexuality should be an honored collection of meaningful choices and experiences throughout life, and yet the post-menopausal years arrive laden with limitations when it comes to healthy sexual outlets. As long as scientists, pharmaceutical companies, and physicians create extremely lucrative disease paradigms involving womenâ€™s sexuality, and ageist cultural attitudes support female deficienciesâ€”sexual and otherwiseâ€”the cycle, and jokes, will continue.
What do you think?Â Share a joke or statement that made you want to shout, â€œThat is NOT who I am!â€
Benton, J. (2006, April 18). GM Spends $17 Million Per Year on Viagra. Retrieved here.
Canner, E., Julie Parker Benello, Ettinger, W., Helfand, J., & Weiss, M. (2009). Orgasm, Inc. Astrea Media: Hartford, VT. DVD video : English
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Davis, C. M., Blank, J., Lin, H., & Binillas, C. (1996). Characteristics of Vibrator Use Among Women. The Journal of Sex Research, 33(4), 313-320.
Dooley, M., & Bell, B. B. (2007). Psychosocial Aspects of the Menopause. London: Springer-Verlag.
Doress-Worters, P. B., & Diana Laskin Siegal. (1994). The New Ourselves Growing Older: Women Aging With Knowledge and Power.Â New York, NY: Touchstone.
Drew, J. (2003). The Myth of Female Sexual Dysfunction and its Medicalization. Psychology, Evolution & Gender, 5(2), 89-96.
Easton, T. A. (March-April 1999). Social Stealth. RetrievedÂ here.
Encyclopedia of Mental Disorders. (n.d.). Female sexual arousal disorder. Retrieved here.
Estes, C. P. (2011). The Power of the Crone: Myths & stories of the wise woman archetype [CD]. Boulder, Colorado: Sounds True.
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Hutcherson, H. (2012, May). Have a healthy, happy, vagina. Redbook, 218(5), 182-185.
Kinsey, A. C. (1953/1998). Sexual Behavior in the Human Female. Bloomington, IN: Indiana U. Press.
Maines, R. P. (1999). The Technology of Orgasm: “Hysteria,” the Vibrator, and Women’s Sexual Satisfaction. Baltimore, Maryland: Johns Hopkins University Press.
Nye, D. E. (2007). Technology Matters. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press.
Price, J. (2011). Naked at Our Age: Talking Out Loud About Senior Sex. Berkeley, CA: Seal Press.
Slick, W., & Omori, E. (2008). Passion & Power: The Technology of Orgasm [DVD]. First Run Features.
Schumacher, D. (1990). Hidden Death: The Sexual Effects of Hysterectomy. Binghamton, NY: The Haworth Press, Inc.
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Wajcman, J. (1991). Feminism Confronts Technology. University Park, PA: Pennsylvania State University Press.
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