Photo: Courtesy of Random House
In the early days, you didn't need help. You probably had (or at least could have had) pretty good sex under pretty poor circumstances (nightclub bathroom, library stacks, gas station, backseat). But at a certain point, after life has taken its toll, it turns out we all need help in order to have the sex life we want (which is, I hope, even better than the one we deserve).
As smart grown-ups, we don't shy away from help. Middle-aged women understand the potluck, the carpool, the consignment shop, the beauty tip. Why leave sex off the list? You need an assist and so does your partner.
Help comes in many forms, from coconut oil (cheap and very lubricating, plus your lady parts smell a little like a piña colada, which seems a plus) to frank talk (often leading to frank laughter) to a sturdy foam pillow for hips that don't fling quite the way they used to.
The point is: Go on.
The point is, as Winston Churchill once urged about another matter entirely: Never give in. Never give in. Never, ever, ever, ever give in. Do not give in to creeping celibacy. Keep making deposits in the Love Bank so you don't run out of currency—which in this case is romance and inclination as much as it is mobility and agility. Aging is a chance to make what was good, great, and what was never so good, better, because—what have you got to lose? Be honest (but kind) and show, don't tell, your partner what better sex looks like. If that doesn't work, get an appliance that does.
Be alive, from the inside out.
Amy Bloom's novel Lucky Us will be published by Random House next year.
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From the May 2013 issue of O, The Oprah Magazine
We Hear You!