Sex therapist Bettina Arndt will discuss how couples cope with changes in desire as they age at a lecture held at the University of Newcastle this week.
The clinical psychologist and author of The Sex Diaries will present research from her new book What Men Want at the University of Newcastle Ageing and Sexuality Lecture on Thursday 21 October.
This research, based on diary entries, shows how new erectile dysfunction treatments are changing the lives of older men. Ms Arndt has drawn on more than 30 years’ experience as a sex therapist and social commentator to offer advice to help couples maintain physical intimacy as they age together.
“This new project is about the changing sexuality of older couples. With every second man over the age of 50 dealing with erection problems, I wanted to discover how couples were dealing with the increasing number of sexual enhancement treatments available for men,” Ms Arndt said.
“For women, the number one sexual problem is low libido. Menopause is also known to contribute to sexual disinterest in many older women, so tensions over mismatched desire often increase as the couple age together.”
Participants kept ‘his and hers diaries’ which revealed the issues they faced renegotiating their physical relationship after dealing with problems including prostate cancer and sexual dysfunction.
The free Ageing and Sexuality public lecture is part of the Emerging Researchers in Ageing Conference, hosted by the University’s Priority Research Centre for Gender, Health and Ageing. The conference attracts postgraduate students, academics, policy-makers and representatives from community organisations in ageing.
“The conference provides an excellent opportunity for researchers to keep abreast of contemporary trends and methods in ageing research,” Professor Julie Byles, Centre Director, said.
Including presentations by leading researchers in the field as well as post-graduate students who are undertaking novel studies in ageing, the conference will be held at the Newcastle City Hall on October 21 and 22.
The free public lecture will be held at the Newcastle City Hall, Hunter Room from 6.30pm on Thursday 21 October. For more information about the conference or the lecture visit www.newcastle.edu.au/events
For information contact: Leonie Brann, Media and Public Relations Officer, 02 4921 6856 (Monday, Wednesday, Friday), 02 4348 4139 (Tuesday and Thursday), or 0448 898 813.