Intimacy Intensifies in Women’s ‘Second Adulthood’

Women’s eNews

By Suzanne Braun Levine
WeNews guest author
Sunday, January 8, 2012

Despite conventional wisdom dictating that intimacy ends at midlife for women, Suzanne Braun Levine says this is untrue in her new book “How We Love Now.” In this except, she describes how love actually changes and deepens.

Suzanne Braun-Levine

(WOMENSENEWS)–Being in love knows no age limits. The kinds of love we can experience in a lifetime are limited only by our imagination and our circumstances.

Every love, whenever and however often it strikes, is unique and mysterious. Yet for too many women the notion of experiencing that unique and mysterious intimacy at midlife seems preposterous; they have bought into the conventional wisdom that menopause is the last stop on the road to loneliness and decline.

An increasing number of other women know different; they are living–and defining–a totally new love narrative. Love as they are experiencing it is not a replay of earlier relationships; there is something fresh and surprising about it. At the same time that her aging body is continuing its lifelong production of dopamine, the hormonal reward of feeling love, a woman in this convention-defying group is not experiencing love in the ways she did earlier in her life. Her wants and needs are different, and she is fulfilling those unfamiliar desires–in both flesh and spirit. Not only are women still lusting and loving as they age, they are enjoying it more than ever.

Love is never easy, and each stage of life brings its own versions of heartbreak and ecstasy. The landscape of love we are entering at midlife is not without stumbling blocks and dark shadows. We all see long-term relationships foundering around us and widows who are lost and alone for the first time in decades. We know and certainly hear all too much about how hard it is for older women to find companionship, sex, respect.

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Author: Leslie Carol Botha

Author, publisher, radio talk show host and internationally recognized expert on women's hormone cycles. Social/political activist on Gardasil the HPV vaccine for adolescent girls. Co-author of "Understanding Your Mood, Mind and Hormone Cycle." Honorary advisory board member for the Foundation for the Study of Cycles and member of the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research.