Dating in your 40s, 50s and beyond is so different from dating in your 20s and 30s that you may feel like you need a guidebook to navigate the new terrain. And if you're already part of a couple, you may want some sexpert advice on how to keep the passion going.
We’ve rounded up three great, new books to help with the unique issues and challenges that come with midlife relationships: getting back into dating, understanding how sex is different now and finding places that spark romance.
Dating After 50 for Dummies, Pepper Schwartz
The For Dummies series is one of my favorites, and Schwartz’s book is a good addition. Her sensible, sound and systematic approach to finding midlife singles and navigating the phases of dating and beyond also includes sensitive topics like safe sex.
Schwartz starts off with “Jumping (Back) Into the Dating Pool,” to help newly-singles assess how relationship- ready they are and identify what kind of mate they’re seeking. While many midlife singles enjoy a more comfortable and casual approach to dating than they did when they were in their 20s, she still encourages them to bring their best selves to the modern dating world.
Schwartz specializes in sex, so her chapters about taking things to the next level are very distinct from other books. She helps midlife couples navigate: when to introduce their new mate to friends and family and in what order; dating with integrity and managing medical needs while juggling libido and family life.
(MORE: Hinge, the New Dating App for All Ages)
The Ultimate Guide to Sex After 50, Joan Price
The Ultimate Guide to Sex After 50 follows up on Price’s earlier books, Naked at Our Age: Talking Out Loud About Senior Sex; Better Than I Expected: Straight Talk About Sex After 60 and Ageless Erotica. Price offers a frank, detailed discussion of mature sexuality and extensive coverage of many of the bedroom challenges couples face during midlife. While some of the anecdotes are from heterosexual couples, the stories are equally relevant to LGBT couples.
Price goes where few have gone before, covering a wide array of midlife health challenges, including heart disease, which often affects women; cancer; the effect of medications; joint replacement; arthritis; chronic pain and diabetes and their effect on sexual pleasure and function.
Particularly useful is the six-point system from sex journalist Michael Castleman that helps midlifers have “great sex despite chronic illness.” But Price also encourages fun in the bedroom and offers input and wisdom from sex educators, marriage counselors and, yes, phone sex operators. Put this book on your nightstand and ignite some sizzle.
(MORE: Yes, It’s Possible to Fall Madly In Love After 50)
Places for Passion, Pepper Schwartz and Janet Lever
Schwartz and Lever provide overviews of romantic getaway locations in the United States, Canada and numerous European and Asian locations to demonstrate what traveling can do for a midlife relationship.
One particularly useful section of the book is the Romantic Interests Index — it helps the two of you select your destination based on the activities you love most. So depending on whether you’re culture vultures, say, or foodies, you’ll see an array of locations to choose from. City and scenic nature settings are listed.