The Pleasure Diaries – Sex After 60

I JUST FOLLOW MY TIMELINE… About feeling alive after having survived some tough years, enjoying sex even more at an older age, ending up being convinced that ethical non-monogamy is my thing, and how this all came to be….

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CHEEX and The Pleasure Society invite a series of writers to share their experiences, thoughts, and feelings about how their sexuality has a connection with their age. Or how it doesn’t at all. Our sexuality constantly changes and transforms itself in all kinds of shapes. Deep dive into the lives of four different writers that will take you by the hand in some of the things that have shaped their sexuality today.

Polyamory

I think about sex every day. Risky business, but fun too. Has this always been the case? Maybe. How old am I? 61. There are many real life reasons that have given shape to the contours of my sexuality and polyamory. That in itself is an interesting story, but it also feels like an excuse. Why should there be a special reason for me having sex at an old age, having sex with multiple men, and enjoying it more than ever? It shouldn’t be an exception that needs explanation. But let’s say I like to tilt the general perception.

Hormones

Of course I would like to take you along a number of picket posts. Starting with: I’m lucky. Not just with my looks and the high amounts of energy I tend to share. And testosterone! (and if you don’t believe it: my ring finger is longer than my index finger, which was once scientific evidence for a lot of testosterone). The glass is always half full for me. Another hormone issue, I think. Last but not least: I am a true oxytocin spreader. With all the pros and cons. Everyone understands the advantages. As for the disadvantages – I literally get addicted to everything and everyone – I take that into the bargain.

Sex addict

As a young girl I was a striking figure. A Venus type, straight out of a Botticelli painting, with long red hair. The change from ugly duckling (tall and thin) to a beautiful swan coincided with the years in which I became aware of my effect on my environment. Although my mother always told me that as a two-year-old I had already mastered the art of seduction. Initiated into love at the age of 15 by a man six years older, a whole new world opened up for me. But at the same time there was a frightened family who watched the process with sorrow. Because of my father who died early, my “lord uncle” – Catholic priest – who assumed the role of paterfamilias took on the role of moral compass. I was given the sex addict label and I was regularly called out. It didn’t have much effect on me.

Life happens to you...

During a wonderful student time in which I really worked hard – on a professional level I know what I want and I am willing to invest – I tried out a lot. Men, women, androgynous types who would now identify as non-binary. In the end I married a lovely man who has the wonderful ability to give me complete freedom, even at times when things get quite tense for him. Already in the beginning of my marriage I was not monogamous. It is almost impossible in my profession, with all those cute artists. My sex drive was larger than my partner’s, which became a thing later in life. After the kids came, everything changed. Not because of the appropriate pattern, or the mother and father roles we took on, but because our worries would never end. My oldest son, with his autism and profound learning disability, was differently wired in a neurological sense. A beautiful boy, with enormous charisma – which is his helpline – but almost without language and a lot of behaviour issues that are difficult to understand.

Circles on the parking lot

Recently I told a sexuality and care expert at the Rutgers Stichting an anecdote. My oldest son was about 13 or 14 years old and the hormones were raging through his body. A big, strong guy who had found his own way to bring his regular state of excitement to a good end. I remember at that time I was already working on possible alternative scenarios, including getting advice on how to teach my son to satisfy himself. Fortunately, he had mastered it himself in no time, but his horniness reared its head at the craziest moments. On the way to our half-hour swim on Saturday morning, it was time again, and I didn’t know how to sail with it if I would force him out of his daze. So I drove a few extra circles around the parking lot until he was done. The expert responded with a big smile, calling my handling of the situation unique. For me this is normal, but it may reveal something about the way I approach myself and others, also or specifically in the field of sexuality.

After 45

Coming back from my care situation – three children, two of which are boys with autism, epilepsy, and learning disabilities – took a long time. So in my life I felt asexual at times. I was so absorbed in caring mode, with a world so small and focused on the children, that I didn’t even recognise a flirting man or woman in my vicinity as such anymore. Although I sometimes feared that this period would never end and my work as a professional in the arts and also the pleasure of my sex life was over for good, this all returned after I was 45. Trembling with happiness, I was suddenly waiting for the train again, on my way to work, after so many years of training people to guarantee the right learning environment for my sons. Where many people end up in a rut – also called a midlife crisis – I started a second career and the same lust for life. Having survived quite a bit of misery, I fully enjoy my professional and sexual freedom, extended well into non-monogamy.

Never say never

I just follow my timeline and know one thing for sure: never say never and enjoy what life brings. And that includes the setbacks and traumas. By living it, having gone through the pain of it, I can now reach even greater heights and climaxes. One never goes without the other. My advice: take the risk of living, and do this with as many others as possible.

Ine Gevers is director of the Niet Normaal Foundation and curator of the COME ALIVE exhibition, currently on show at the Muntgebouw Utrecht, together with Morgan Catalina.

COME ALIVE celebrates eroticism as a life force in our precarious times. Through touch, image, scent, sound, performance and play, more than 45 artists pull out all the stops to give our bodies a voice as the first and most important gatekeeper. Sharing ‘love without reason’ abundantly allows new insights and helps us to unlearn inherited behaviors.

Visit COME ALIVE and embrace the vitality we share with each and everyone.

The Pleasure Society is your sexuality curator in helping you explore your sexuality in the form of pleasure products, services, stories and experiences. They aim to help people open up the conversation around sexuality and believe that art is a fun, expressive and accessible tool to do just that. The artists, writers and content creators of The Pleasure Society all aim to open up the conversation around sexuality in a creative way.

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