Partnership in old age – this is how relationships stay strong

Partnership in old age – this is how relationships stay strong

Love and partnership are by no means tied to a certain age. Many people dream of spending their old age happily with their partner . Whether it is a lifelong relationship or a new great love – the partnership in old age is something very special. Even if they have some H CHALLENGES entails, it is worth it to you to work, because a healthy relationship enhances the quality of life and overall well-being.

Maintaining the relationship in old age

Couples who have been together for several decades have experienced a lot together – that welds together and provides a solid foundation for a partnership in old age. You know your partner very well and you know what is important to him or her. But habit quickly turns into daily grind: your career is over, the children have long been out of the house and, in addition to all the qualities that you appreciate in your significant other, the traits that tend to bother you are all too well known. Find out here how relationships flourish again in old age and how the partnership becomes stronger than ever .

Partnership in old age

Triggers for relationship problems in old age

In your imagination, growing old together was more romantic and beautiful than it is in reality? The aging process and the changes that come with it pose many challenges to relationships . Of course, this does not apply to every partnership in old age. For couples facing relationship problems, the reasons for the difficulties can usually be traced back to age-related changes :

  • Different changes in the daily routine and sleep rhythm
  • Physical changes in one or both partners, often due to hormones
  • Different needs for rest
  • Proximity and distance become unbalanced
  • No shared hobbies and interests
  • Different needs for sexual tenderness
  • One of the partners “lets go”, the other suffers from it
  • Inequalities in the distribution of daily tasks or feelings of being patronized
  • Lack of topics to talk about
  • Living side by side instead of living together
  • One or both partners need help and care

Even if these relationship and marital problems appear less unusual in old age, it is important to work on them proactively – for a healthy partnership in old age .

Tips for a happy partnership in old age

happy relationship in old age gives joy and security , because loneliness is a problem that many seniors have to struggle with. This is counteracted with a strong partnership.

These tips will help maintain a strong partnership in old age or build a healthy new relationship :

  • Rediscover old hobbies together or find new interests together.
  • Focus on the present, live life in the here and now .
  • Take time for one another, common rituals enhance love in old age.
  • Mutual respect is the be-all and end-all, the basis with which you can quickly resolve disagreements – listen to your partner and respond to worries and wishes.
  • The little things make the difference. Show affection and attention to your significant other .
  • Discover new things together. Curiosity counteracts the daily grind.
  • Who is responsible for which tasks in the household? Divide all activities fairly among you.
  • Be open about your needs and stay open to the other. This also applies to physical needs.
  • Laugh together and take life with a sense of humor – laughter is healthy and strengthens the bond with one another.

Find a new relationship in old age

Who as a single in retirement is gone, often wants a new relationship – more free time and less social contacts can be the need for a partnership aged are often larger. The need for physical closeness is also not tied to any age. In many cases, the desire for a new bond arises several years after the spouse’s death . It is important to know that past relationships will always have an impact on new ones that emerge. Older people can benefit from this, because experience has taught them which characteristics of a partner are important to them and which conditions must be fulfilled in a relationship in order for it to be a happy one.

order couples

How can senior citizens get to know a new partner? Hobbies are particularly suitable for this . In the musical, cultural or sports club like-minded people meet. This environment is suitable both for making new friends and for getting to know potential new life partners. Even at senior meetings there is the opportunity to meet people of the same age who are longing for a new bond. If you don’t want to leave the search for a partner to chance, you can search for love with the help of advertisements or a dating site .

When a parent or grandparent enters into a new partnership at an advanced age, children and grandchildren often react skeptically at first because they are worried about changes in the family constellation. Here it is important that seniors communicate openly and confidently : The children go their own way and the older generation should also claim that. A new partnership in old age increases the quality of life and ultimately this is something that all children and grandchildren want their parents and grandparents to have.

Most people want tenderness, even at an advanced age

Sexuality in old age? Even if sexuality changes over the years, it remains individual and complex . The decline in sexual contact in old age usually has little to do with the fact that people no longer long for tenderness. However, age-related illnesses, chronic pain, hormonal imbalances, drug side effects, and mental health problems affect many seniors. But those who focus on the desire for closeness and well-being instead of achieving top physical performance can also enjoy a fulfilled sex life in their partnership in old age .

partnership and sexuality

In order for both sides to be able to enjoy the love life, an open exchange of wishes, interests and preferences is essential. As long as this exchange takes place openly and honestly, relationships in old age can easily meet the sexual needs of both partners. Mutual listening and encouraging openness helps reduce feelings of shame over the aging body , and also contributes to a positive experience with sexuality in old age.

Getting older changes a lot. But love remains.

The maturity of old age comes with serenity, openness, and respect – these are fantastic conditions for a healthy relationship . In order to make the partnership as harmonious as possible in old age, it is important to work actively on it, as in any other interpersonal relationship. The nice thing about old age: You have a clear self-image and know your own wishes. This experience , paired with respectful interaction with one another, is the cornerstone of a fulfilling and harmonious partnership in old age .

The all-round support from PROMEDICA PLUS: Also a relief for the partnership

Frequent disruptive factors in relationships in old age are linked to the age-related need for support of one or both partners . If one of the two partners has limited mobility and this makes it difficult to distribute tasks in everyday life, this often has a negative effect on the partnership. Also, when a partner needs help maintaining personal hygiene, it can put a strain on the relationship. If one of the partners has a greater need for social interaction and leisure activities than the other, tensions quickly arise.

These and other problems in partnership in old age have one thing in common: 24-hour care at home relieves the situation , so that there is more space for happy moments together . The care offer of the senior care of PROMEDICA PLUS includes :

cosy old couple
  • Home help
  • personal hygiene
  • mobility
  • Food

With all-round care at home , Eastern European carers live in the four walls of the elderly and provide individual support with daily tasks . This offer can also be used by couples together – we will be happy to advise you on the special features of looking after couples and the costs involved . Get in touch now for a non-binding initial consultation!

3 tips for a fulfilling love life in old age

The following three tips can have a positive influence on your love life in old age.

1. Communication as the key


Talk to your partner openly and honestly about new and changed wants and needs during sex. There are other ways in which you can pamper yourself physically and spend sensual hours as a couple, especially if it is no longer so easy for men to get an erection or women have problems with vaginal dryness.

Feel free to also address any fears and fears that you may have developed. An understanding partner will surely have an open ear and will be happy to work with you to find a solution.

An open discussion helps to clear up possible misunderstandings with regard to the common sex life and clears the way for you to new intimacy and closeness. Sex therapist Christina Graefe also advises open communication, “First of all: open your mouth. Nobody, young or old, has to experience pain during sex.

If the sexual encounter is aimed at making everyone involved happy and satisfied, then it should not be a problem to openly address wishes and ailments. After all, it’s a bit like yoga – for every position there are at least three equally good alternatives for different fitness levels. Not to mention aids such as lubricant, penis rings and humor.

Nevertheless, health impairments should also be clarified in the event of problems. If symptoms persist, specialists such as proctologists, urologists and gynecologists should be consulted. If organic causes can be ruled out, “in many cases competent sex therapists help to resolve any psychological blockages,” recommends Christina Graefe.

2. Sensual massages

Especially when it gets colder outside and the gray season begins, you can spend nice hours together with your partner. With a sensual massage, everything that the partner likes is allowed. Special massage oils are suitable for the massage, which warm up when rubbed and spray stimulating scents. A cozy atmosphere can also be created with special massage candles.

Basenio.de asked Omocha Dreams, the leading European online retailer for unusual sex toys from Japan and Korea , which fragrances are currently particularly popular. A spokesman for the shop told us: “We recommend the Shunga Massage Candle, for example, which smells wonderfully of chocolate. After a few minutes the oil in the candle has liquefied and can then be used as a massage oil for the body. “

3. Sex toys for couples


Often the love life just fell asleep a bit. Then it’s high time to try something completely new together. For a stimulating new experience, sex toys specifically designed for couples can be just the thing. These have long since lost their “dirty” reputation, today sex toys score with their aesthetic design and surprising functionality.

“Couple vibrators or pair dildos, for example, provide great pleasure for two,” reveals the spokesman for the erotic shop when asked He also has a tip: “For optimal use, we always recommend using a little lubricant. After having fun together, you can easily clean the toys with special toy cleaners.”

Professional sexual counseling and seminars

Couples often find it helpful if they look at their sex life together and potential problems from a new perspective. This works best with expert help provided by professional sexual counseling.

In the following video you can see a panel discussion on “Better sex in old age?” from the TV show “Nachtcafé” (SWR):

Christina Graefe also helps singles and couples with love and sex. On request, she explains how she does this.

“First of all, I look at people’s sexual conditioning. For many of us it looks similar after years of partnership: kissing, caressing, oral, penetrating and bang! Light off. The predictability of this process contributes significantly to the fact that many people no longer want to ‘bother’.

In addition, there are age-typical aspects such as feelings of shame because of the figure that is no longer very high-gloss or the loss of physical stamina. In such a situation, the most important thing is to change your perspective: “Do I really want more of the same thing, or couldn’t it also be exciting to discover something new?

After a phase of mourning and saying goodbye to their ‘old’, namely youthful, idea of ​​good sex, many couples then set about exploring their ‘new’, age-appropriate sexuality with curiosity and the joy of experimentation. Many are rediscovering the sensitivity of their bodies all over again. “

Christina Graefe has always been able to report such findings from her practice. “’I would never have thought in my life that you were so into foot massages,’ a successful lover recently announced to his resurrected wife. The look she gave him then left no doubt that the two had experienced more than just good sex – they were intimate with each other, ”reveals the therapist.

Never in the mood for sex – the phenomenon of asexuality

Michelle is not interested in sex – and is completely satisfied with it. Nevertheless, she experiences closeness and intimacy. Asexuality has hardly been researched scientifically.

For most people, sexuality is a natural part of life, much like eating or sleeping. If you describe yourself as asexual, you will perceive it differently: Sex? Unimportant minor matter to disgusting. At best a curiosity that only affects others.

A bit like tiredness or hunger

Michelle sits in the grass on the Tempelhofer Feld in Berlin with a hand-rolled cigarette in her hand. It’s summer, warm, many people are outside today enjoying the good weather. Michelle is in her twenties. She has short hair, piercings and glasses. They shouldn’t be called “pretty”. She annoys that things like “even though she’s pretty, she doesn’t care about sex” are written about her. As if there was a connection. Michelle has a boyfriend. He’s not asexual, and she sleeps with him sometimes.

no sex needed to be happy

Her boyfriend gets along with the fact that while they are in love, Michelle is not particularly into sex. They are concerned with intimacy in a broader sense. Sometimes Michelle is physically aroused. But that has nothing to do with her boyfriend or any other person, it just happens – just as she is sometimes tired or hungry.

For many, definition means first of all: self-definition

Anyone who feels this way is asexual. The term appeared about 20 years ago when more and more people began to exchange ideas on the Internet, often anonymously in forums and later on social media channels.
The research deals with the phenomenon relatively briefly. The leading researcher in the field of asexuality is the Canadian psychologist Anthony Bogaert. His book “Understanding Asexuality” is the standard work in the field.

His own feelings are decisive for him – just like with any other sexual orientation. Feeling no sexual attraction is not in itself a disease or deficiency; many people experience this at least at times in their lives.

The Berlin sexologist and therapist Christoph Joseph Ahlers considers asexuality to be a normal phenomenon, even if it was not always as visible as it is today. Scientists perceived asexuality even before the Internet boom – just not under that name, explains Anthony Bogaert. Even famous American sexologist Alfred Kinsey has studied asexual people, calling them “Kinsey X’s” because they didn’t fit his famous 7-point scale.

Online forum AVEN

Today the “Aces”, as they also call themselves, meet in the online forum AVEN – that stands for Asexuality Visibility and Educational Network. It was founded by the American activist David Jay. AVEN now has over 60,000 members who use online forums to exchange information in several languages. The spectrum ranges from the so-called aromantics who do not want a couple relationship and generally avoid intimate body contact, to those who masturbate but do not want to have sex with others, to people who are in a relationship and sleep with their partner, such as Michelle.

The online community serves as an exchange and offers the opportunity to find out something about yourself and to be told: You are ok if it is ok for you. One platform even offers a self-test – for those who are unsure. Belonging to a group and feeling understood and accepted is one of our basic psychological needs. Since Michelle has known that she is not sick, she has accepted herself for who she is.

describe yourself as asexual

The hormone levels are normal in most asexual people. Also, physically, they have all the signs of sexual arousal, such as an erection or vaginal lubrication, so there is no organic disease. Only if someone completely avoids intimacy, regardless of the level, and therefore gives himself the label “asexual”, can there be an undetected problem behind it. Because intimacy is a so-called basic psychosocial need.

Intimacy as a basic need

In contrast to breathing, sleeping, eating and drinking, we can do without basic psychosocial needs for a while. But we have to compensate. For example, if I don’t have a partnership, I might look for belonging and intimacy with my friends and family.

Basic Intimacy

So far there is only one study in which scientists asked a cross-section of the population whether they perceive themselves to be non-sexual. This survey was carried out in the UK between 2000 and 2001. Anthony Bogaert evaluated the data for his research: In one of the first studies he did, about one percent of a national cohort stated that they were never sexually attracted to others. Incidentally, probably more women than men are affected.

Nonetheless, among those who replied “never felt sexually attracted to anyone” in this study, 30 percent of men and 25 percent of women were in a relationship, some had children. There are no surveys at all for cultures other than European-North American.

Research on asexuality is just starting

It could offer a change of perspective: Anyone who deals with the absence of pleasure suddenly notices how many scientific questions are still open on the subject of sexuality, says social psychologist Anthony Bogaert. Because for asexual people, for example, romantic feelings are more clearly decoupled from sex, research into how sex and love are actually related gets a new perspective.

Homosexual or transgender people are often discriminated against. Asexuals also often experience social disadvantages. Fortunately, this doesn’t happen to Michelle that often; with her it is more curious questions. But the assumption that she must be sick or have trauma because she doesn’t value sex is discrimination.

Being rejected in this way can lead to great emotional stress. A 2010 US study found that asexual people were more likely to have psychological problems such as anxiety, depression, or thoughts of suicide than heterosexual people. These findings coincide with comparable studies on homosexual people. This in turn suggests that the problem is not sexual orientation per se, but the discrimination people experience.

Improving sex in old age: a sex therapist gives 3 tips to get the love life of women and men going

How is sex in old age for men & women? Which tools are popular? Basenio.de spoke to a sex therapist and an operator of an online erotic shop about physical love in older people.

Do you think a fulfilling sex life is only for young women and men? You could be wrong about that. Many older people over the age of 60 confess that they only came to enjoy a truly fulfilling sex life in old age.

Because once the youthful pressure to perform is gone, you will consciously focus on what your partner and yourself really like in bed. Sex is by no means a question of age, it still plays a major role in our lives at 50, 60 or 70 years of age.

According to a study published in the British Medical Journal in 2010, a whopping 39% of men between the ages of 75 and 85 are still sexually active. For women, however, the proportion in this age group is significantly lower at just under 17%. Especially people who fall in love all over again in old age spend intimate hours together. But even a sleepy love life with your long-term partner can be revived with some advice and tips.

The true journey of discovery is not about exploring new landscapes, but about seeing old things with new eyes. – Quote from Marcel Proust

Love life in old age

Basenio.de spoke to Christina Graefe , a systemic sex therapist, couple counselor and alternative practitioner for psychotherapy, about sexuality in old age. In her own practice in Wiesbaden she advises couples and single people, writes a blog and gives lectures and group seminars on personal development. Many obstacles and problems arise in people as a result of age-typical changes in the body.

Christina Graefe confirms: “In this age group, erectile dysfunction in men and a lack of lubrication, i.e. moistening of the vagina, in women occur most frequently, which makes spontaneous sexuality more difficult. Of course, younger people occasionally struggle with these problems too. In the middle of life, however, the number of those affected increases by leaps and bounds, which is primarily due to hormonal causes. “

The therapist knows that these changes can lead to misjudgments in sexual behavior. “However, many people interpret the symptoms in such a way that they simply no longer feel like having their partner and as a result neglect their sex life together, resort to sexual enhancers or seek other stimulants.

Of course, this is usually not so good for the couple. When these people come to me, I first try to get them in the mood that everything is fine with both of them, but that they should acknowledge that their bodies and thus their sexuality have changed over time. So now it’s about discovering a new, age-appropriate sexuality. “

Men need sex even older

Changes in men with age

Age-related changes occur in men around the age of 40. The proportion of the male sex hormone, testosterone, drops in the blood level, which means that an erection develops more slowly than at a young age.

If in the past the mere sight of your partner was enough for an erection, now longer and stronger stimulation is necessary. Erectile dysfunction often occurs precisely because a man is afraid that he will no longer be able to fully satisfy the sexual needs of his partner. The gradual decline in sexual abilities is quite natural in men and no cause for shame at all.

By talking openly with your partner about the potency problems, you can put away your fears and become more relaxed and intimate again. Aids can also be used against erectile problems. The medical contact person should then be an andrologist.

Probably the best known medical aid is “Viagra”. The little blue pill came on the market in 1998 and brings in billions of dollars a year for manufacturer Pfitzer. But natural remedies such as maca, capsaicin, arginine or saffron extract are also supposed to contribute to a more fulfilling sex life in old age.

Changes in women with age


With the onset of menopause, the woman does not have a monthly menstrual period and the ovaries slowly cease to function. This also means that less estrogen is produced, which makes the vaginal lining thinner. Many women now struggle with vaginal dryness, which can lead to pain during sex.

The libido – i.e. sexual pleasure – is little affected by these physical changes, but rather depends on psychosocial factors. In principle, women retain their desire for sex into old age.

However, taking certain medications can also decrease the desire for sex. The greatest fear of women over 50 is not the sexual act itself, but the fear of no longer appearing attractive to the partner.

This is the conclusion reached by Elisabeth Drimalla in her book “Cupid does not age: couple relationships and sexuality in old age”. However, some women also see the changes during menopause as very positive, because the elimination of the menstrual period means that contraception is no longer an issue, which leads to new freedom and more informal sex.

Christina Graefe knows about age-typical changes and the associated sexual needs. “From a biological point of view, it is clear that the human body in women stops producing sex hormones sometime between the fifth and sixth decade of life and thus ends their ability to reproduce.

Mature Sex

In men, this remains longer, but also decreases significantly and gradually around the middle of life. This results in a decrease in libido and sexual functions, which are ‘no longer needed’ from now on. At least that’s how evolutionary biologists see it, ”explains the expert.

In nature, the majority of this loss is also associated with the approaching end of life. “As far as we know, most living things on our planet only survive the loss of their reproductive capacity for a short time – with the exception of killer whales, short-finned pilot whales and humans,” says Christina Graefe and draws attention to another peculiarity of humans.

“We have another special feature: the female has a sexual organ with the clitoris that has no function in terms of reproduction. It serves solely to gain pleasure in women.

So one can certainly ask oneself whether sexuality is ‘naturally’ only something for young, reproductive living beings, or whether, for example, the stigmatization of lust through religion, social convention and / or other ideologies have not contributed to the fact that older ones People often feel so self-conscious about sex that they no longer allow their mature lust. “

Older couple sex

Differences between young and old

The physical changes usually also bring new sexual behaviors with them. While in younger years the idea of ​​performance was often formative during sex, in later years it is more the sensuality.

“In our younger years, the sexual functions usually work spontaneously and without great external effort, which enables us, for example, to do the legendary ‘quickies’ that many people associate with good sex, reveals Christina Graefe.

“In later years this is no longer possible because of the delayed sexual reaction – quite apart from the fact that you may not be able to lift your loved one so easily and toss them onto the sideboard.

Put simply, the essential difference between adolescent and mature sexuality is that we experience sex more drive-oriented at a young age, while later on we have and need more time to concentrate on the details of the sexual encounter, “explains the sex therapist.

This also shifts the motives for physical love among us humans. “The orgasm is gradually becoming less important as the sole ‘goal’ of all sexual endeavor. It is replaced by a broader spectrum of possibilities for sexual activity, which I like to summarize under the term ‘intimacy’.

That means, if I really want to become intimate with another person, I can only do that if I trust that person and the moment and what will emerge from it. It’s like holding hands, closing your eyes and running. In any case, this is the opposite of our usual, systematic approach to sex, which is fixated on orgasm. Of course, it is still welcome, but only as one of many possibilities, ”says Christina Graefe.

Sex is good for your health

In old age, symptoms such as diabetes, nerve and hormonal disorders are unfortunately not uncommon. In addition, taking drugs that are supposed to lower high blood pressure often also decreases sexual desire. Christina Graefe knows, however, that regular sex in old age has considerable positive effects on the human body.

“I would even go so far …