Ask the sex doctor

How often ?  It’s all up to you.

By Dr. Laurie Betito

Dear Dr Laurie, as a single 50 year old woman, I am confused as to what is considered an ‘appropriate’ level of sex on a first date.

This is a question that is frequently asked by women who are new to the dating scene in later life, especially if they have just come out of a long relationship. They feel times have changed and are confused about the expectations men have of women.

The reality is, there is no ‘appropriate’ amount of sex — that is a personal decision. What I have also learned from many older women is that they want to be in charge of their sexuality, and that may mean taking more initiative. They often care less about what others think, and will engage sexually because they want to. What is important is to let your intentions known. If you are only looking for a casual relationship, then say so. If what you want is something more serious, then I would recommend you take the time to get to know someone in a nonsexual way before getting into bed. Becoming sexual quickly will throw the relationship into an intimacy that you both may not be ready for.

I still can’t tell you how long to wait — two, three, more dates? This is where individual choices need to be made. To gauge your readiness, ask yourself how you would feel the next morning (any regrets) or how you would feel if he doesn’t call you again.

laurie betito

Laurie Betito, PhD, is a clinical psychologist, the host of “Passion” on CJAD 800 radio, president of the Sexual Health Network of Quebec, and author of The Sex Bible For People Over 50: The Complete Guide to Sexual Love for Mature Couples


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