If you’re single and over 50, finding a new sexual partner can be daunting. So let us help you out, with ten ways to have more sex when you’re single, from flirting classes to online dating.
Whether you’re newly separated or have been consciously uncoupled for some time, maintaining a sizzling sex life when you’re single certainly calls for a proactive approach.
You don’t have the marrieds’ option of rolling over and making a move on your sleeping partner, but the rewards for making an effort can be plentiful.
According to studies, regular sex – that’s once to twice a week – can give you some incredible boosts to your health and wellbeing.
Lowered blood pressure, slashed stress levels, a bolstered immune system and longer life expectancy are all benefits of steady sexual activity. You get to have adventurous liaisons and plenty of orgasms to boot: what’s not to love?
And with the Office of National Statistics reporting that there are now more single than married people in the UK, it shouldn’t be difficult to find perfect partners.
Here’s how to can you get in on the action and have more sex when you’re single.
1 Be open to new experiences
If you’re keeping the same old routines and company, the likelihood of meeting someone new or doing something different – let alone having sex – are slim.
Nurse practitioner Barb Dehn, author of The Hot Guide to a Cool Sexy Menopause, stresses that you can’t wait for fun to come to you.
“Be your own catalyst,” she says. “The best way to spice up your life is to turn off the TV, get out of your house, take a class, try a new activity and get involved in life.
“No matter where you live, there’s a lot out there that will make you a more interesting and interested person. Expanding horizons is one of the best ways to have sex when you’re single.”
2 Host a getting-to-know-you party for single friends
Hold a social gathering and ask each of your invited friends to bring one single, eligible person you haven’t met.
Being surrounded by your social group in a comfortable environment will make meeting new people feel more natural, but you’ll still be putting yourself out there, says 61-year-old Monica Porter, author of Raven: My Year of Dating Dangerously. “Don’t be afraid to take a punt on someone,” is her advice. “What have you got to lose?”
3 Learn to read sexual body language
“When first meeting someone, reading body language is essential if you’re looking to have more sex,” says Dr Becky Spelman, psychologist and relationship expert for sex toy manufacturer We-Vibe.
“Pupils will dilate, eye contact will be held for longer than the usual five seconds, they will find excuses to touch you and will mirror your movements if they are really interested.”
4 Get your flirt on
Just as you’re observing body language to see whether someone is interested, don’t forget that others will be looking for the same from you. “Be confident. People are attracted to confidence,” says anthropologist Jean Smith, who runs flirting classes in London.
“Eye contact is the most powerful flirting tool. In my research, it is the number one sign that made people understand when someone was flirting.
“The glances were more frequent, more intense, and lasted for longer. When used appropriately, touch can be very effective in flirting, too. A light tap on the hand might be the perfect flirting tool for you to try.”
5 Treat yourself to a makeover
Update your wardrobe, wear seductive underwear, get a new hairstyle and get healthy. Not only will it make you more attractive to the opposite sex, you’ll feel better about yourself, too.
“Stay fit, control your weight, be well-groomed, choose your attire carefully. It’s surprising how many people don’t try very hard to look appealing,” says Monica, who this year revealed to the Daily Mail how – aged 60 – she raced through a string of lovers in their 20s.
“If you do look good, this will be reflected in your personality. You’ll be more self-assured and more fun to be with.”
6 Practise safe sex
If you are sleeping with someone new, safe sex is critical.
A pretty common risk, at that: a rise in people in their 50s to 80s hooking up with new lovers has also led to a rise in the numbers affected by sexually transmitted infections in the last decade
“The worry of accidentally falling or getting someone pregnant might move from your list of ‘things to fret about’ to ‘things to forget about’ these days. However, while an unwanted conception might be unlikely in your 50s, STIs are still a risk,” says Durex sexpert Alix Fox.
And although some people think of condoms as unsexy, there are newer, thinner products available that are still strong, such as Durex RealFeel and Mates SKYN, made of polyisoprene. A woman could try using her mouth to put a condom on to her partner, says Alix.
7 Take a sex class
Wondering exactly how you’ll learn to roll a condom on to a man’s appendage using your mouth? Or whether you’ll ever find the evasive G-spot without a roadmap? Take a class.
Luxury lingerie and sex toy shops Coco de Mer and Sh in London offer a variety of sex classes for single men and women, which range from ‘flute’ (aka blow job) salons to practical lectures on the marvels of role play.
“Attending an erotic workshop can help refresh your head with regard to sexual techniques and practices, and can be a really useful way of moving away from old, overly familiar sex-by-numbers habits you may have fallen into,” says Alix.
8 Try online dating
Online dating is big business, but none more so for people over 50. Jemima Wade, UK PR manager for dating website eHarmony says more and more people are using internet sites in search of sex, dating and love. There has been double-digit growth in numbers of people aged between 50 and 65 visiting the site.
Monica Porter found her year of internet dating to be liberating and fun. “I was simply after having an enjoyable, easy-going time with men whose company I enjoyed.
“And in one case, at least, I developed a real friendship, with a much younger man. I wouldn’t have experiences like that had I not ‘put myself out there’ in a bold way.”
If you’re looking for a site which caters exclusively to people upwards of 40, you’ll find them in their droves. MyLovelyParent reported a 100 per cent increase in sign-ups last year and The Times dating site Encounters Dating says business is booming.
9 Go on a singles’ holiday
Singles’ holidays are a great way to meet like-minded people. Far from the cringeworthy sun-drenched days and booze-filled nights of Club 18-30, many singles breaks are being reinvented for a sophisticated market, offering more thrills and glamour than ever before.
Whether it’s camping in the West Country or cruising the Caribbean, solo trips can include gourmet food, stylish five-star hotels and activities better suited to the jet set lifestyle of a more worldly and refined crowd. Better yet, everyone else on the holiday will also be single and looking to make connections – just like you. Solos Holidays, Solitair and Archers Direct are specialist operators.
10 Be flexible and realistic in your sexual expectations
Finally, be flexible and open to people who might not usually be your type. Their manners, their dress sense, their smile – start every interaction off by mentally listing three things you like about new acquaintances. This will enable you to stay positive and open to discovery.
Speaking from her own dating experiences, Monica concludes: “Don’t expect to find earth-shattering passion, total commitment, undying love and happiness. You might find them, of course, it isn’t impossible. But we are all old enough to realise that those things are rare.
“If you set out simply to find someone you like and enjoy being intimate with, make the most of it for as long as you can. And if it doesn’t last forever, well, so what? Just be glad you had it and then move on without a backward glance. Always look forwards, never back.”