What about a man’s book?

I’ve talked to some men who are encouraging me to write a book similar to Better Than I Ever Expected: Straight Talk About Sex After Sixty about men after midlife talking about their sexual feelings, experiences, changes, challenges, and past history, along with advice from experts on male sexual issues. I have some questions for you:

1. Would you be interested in reading such a book? What would you hope to read in it?

2. Would men be responsive to a book like this written by a woman? Would they be honest with a woman interviewer? I thought that men would prefer a male writer for a book on male sexual experiences, but I’ve had men tell me that they talk more easily and intimately with a woman than a man.

3. If I do write this book, and you are a man at midlife or beyond, would you be interested in sharing your sexual thoughts, history, current challenges, and stories? (If so, email me your contact information, please!)


— Joan


  1. BillyBob, age 62, on May 16, 2006 at 7:52 pm

    Over the 39 years of marriage never did my wife ever shower with me nor want me to be with her and wash her back or anything. I never could understand that. She avoided being seen naked as much as possible. And never ever came to bed and started any flirtation wanting to tend her needs. It was always my lead and mine alone. So degrading to my male ego was our sex life.

    Over time my wife became very lazy about sex. She would just bump her butt over to me when I wanted sex like filling a dump truck was my feelings. It always made me feel like a rapist after.

  2. Bill, age 58, on May 16, 2006 at 7:41 pm

    The concept of a book like that for men really interests me. As an aging boomer man, I have all kinds of questions that don’t seem to be addressed anywhere I’ve looked.

    I hope you go into how religion and upbringing has affected people’s sex lives in your book. I was brought up to be very caring and protective of women to the point that I used to sacrifice my own pleasure and well being. I have recently began to express my feelings and needs more openly

  3. Larry Le Shan, 86, psychologist on May 5, 2006 at 2:08 pm

    As a psychologist, I would love to see a book for men written the same way as Better Than I Ever Expected. The interviewer should be a woman. From my own experience as a psychotherapist, men talk about sex much more easily to a woman than to a man.

    The amount of concern of men in this area is tremendous. Men in the United States define themselves by two factors: earning more money than a woman, and being able to maintain an erection. Men know that the first is being rapidly lost, and they are thrown back to depend on the second, which for most males tends to be a source of anxiety.

    A man has to be able to do something in sex that is not under his control. That frequently raises anxiety. A man who claims never to have had this experience is either a virgin or a liar.

  4. Bill, 68 on April 17, 2006 at 4:18 pm

    I would be very interested in reading such a book. The Contents could very well follow the same topics that you wrote about in “Better Than I Expected ….”

    I would hope to read about the fact that a man’s sex life does not die after age sixty. Decreased levels of testosterone, human growth hormone, and other physical consequences of aging need not make us fall prey to the social misconception that our libido dies and our sex life is over when we pass age sixty.

    I would look for hope and encouragement – from you, and from the sharing of other men – that sex after sixty can be the best ever!

    I do think that men would be responsive to a book like this written by a woman. We males do have a feminine side to our makeup. A book written by a woman would appeal to that feminine side. It would give thoughts and insights that would not be given by a male author. After all, it is a woman to whom I am married, live with, love, and express and share that love through our sexual union. I don’t think a male author could give the deep insight, feeling, and caring that a female author would. Women by nature are caring, loving, and have a beautiful tenderness that males have difficulty showing and expressing.

    I would be willing to share my sexual thoughts, history, current challenges and stories with you as resource material for a book written for men. My wife and I are age 68 and have been married 47 years. Our sex life has experienced many challenges and much change through those 47 years. We are learning how to enjoy sex at this stage of our life. Your book has helped us in our sexual journey!

  5. Seth, 60 on March 17, 2006 at 10:18 am

    What men share with each other is different from what men share with women. I still don’t think it is safe for men to share what really goes on their minds. Difficult for men to go deep in their feelings. I often think men are 5,000 years behind in their inner work. I also feel that men feel too threatened to be honest.

    If you do write this book, I’d like to read this about men: Honest feelings when men go into “manopause” or perhaps it should be called womenopause. I know men have a rough time when their mates go into menopause. They keep thinking of what it used to be like.

  6. Joan Price on March 15, 2006 at 6:13 pm

    Lew, your story really moves me. I feel compassion for you and your dilemma: You want to preserve your marriage, but you still want to be sexual and sensual, and be appreciated — even celebrated! — for that.

    I have no easy answer for you, but I think it’s an important issue to bring out in the open, because I think it affects many men whose partners are no longer interested.

    When I write my next book, I’ll be sure to include this issue. Meanwhile, I hope readers will comment and share their own experiences.

    — Joan

  7. Lew, 64 on March 15, 2006 at 6:06 pm

    I’ve been married to the same woman for 40 years. She indicated to me by her lack of interest in me (and her lack of interest in sex in general) that she has no libido at all.

    Looking back, I now wonder if she ever did really enjoy sex or was it just that she felt it was her marital obligation? She certainly treated it that way the past 20 years, showing absolutely no interest in me physically nor in her own sexual happiness.

    It’s not like I am ugly or anything, nor is she. We have aged but we both still stay active and athletic. I always tried every way I could to fill her sexual needs, but it’s really difficult to do when she doesn’t seem to have any or else won’t admit that she does.

    Fifteen years ago I had an affair with a woman a year younger than I and it ended rather sadly when we both realized that I would not leave my current spouse, even though this lovely lady divorced her spouse and waited a year for us to get married. She finally met a divorced man and ended up marrying him.

    Sex with this woman was really incredible because she seemed to enjoy it so much and also because she found me so sexy. She was always grabbing me and caressing me and commenting on how sexy I was, no matter where we were. It was a real ego-booster for me and a complete turn-on.

    My wife on the other hand would do anything to avoid being in a sexual situation with me. When we were at home alone on weekends, she would work in the yard until she was exhausted and then complain about all her aches and pains.

    I finally gave up trying to have sex with her about six months ago and she seems perfectly happy to let it go. However, I am in turmoil because I don’t want the pain of another affair but I am really missing a close sexual relationship with a loving woman.

    Write a book about that!!

    What saddens me the most is the number of letters I see to the advice columns from middle-age women whose husbands have lost interest in them physically. I sometimes wish I could meet some of them now in an atmosphere of non-commitment and relaxed rules. That’s just a dream though, I know as a practical matter that to have a meaningful physical encounter with another woman involves serious risk of one or both people becoming emotionally attached to the other.

    Then hearts are broken and marriages suffer: no one wins.

  8. Ralph, 70 on March 14, 2006 at 8:29 pm

    Yes, I’d would share my sexual thoughts, history, current challenges, and stories with you. I’m a pretty open guy and I don’t look at sex as something that is for the closet.

    As for myself, I’m not sure I would read a book to help me with my sex after sixty. As for other men, I’ve given this a lot of thought and have talked to other men and women about their opinions. This is what I concluded:

    Women seem to read more then men. Men seem to read more at younger ages than they do older (60+). Maybe men between 60 and 70 who still have sexual interest and would like to improve upon it might read such a book.

    Joan, you know that men always want to think that they’ve got “it” and they are “macho”. For a man to lose his sexuality is like have your driving privileges taken away; it’s devastating and depressing.

    What would I expect to see in such a book? Having been around many men that have expressed their sexual concerns to me, even at early ages, like 40 years old, I think men over sixty would be looking for answers and hope. There are many things that could have them seek answers and hope. To list a few:

    * a wife or girlfriend that is no longer interested in intimacy
    * can no longer get erections even if they get “lucky”
    * don’t know how to love without an erection
    * don’t know how to approach their mate after a long absence or many rejects.
    * what kinds of help is available
    * things to avoid, like erectile treatments that are advertised

    Joan, I don’t think it matters if a man or a women wrote this book if it is written with the right slant. If you offer me or any other guy out there, some quick and easy advice, they are going to want the information. Even non-readers will always purchase and read something for our penises; it’s our brain.

    So, the bottom lines, as I see it. You would have a good chance to pull this off, particulary after your first book. Women that bought your first book will want answers for their mates also, especially if they now have answers and their mates are still “boring”. Don’t forget, your book has giving women new feelings and life that they perhaps haven’t felt in years, now they need a tool for their man.

    Hope I’ve given you the response and depth you’re looking for. It’s a great thing that you might do for us men. I know if you do it, it will be time comsuming and with great interest and intent.

  9. Jim (59) on March 9, 2006 at 8:25 pm

    I thoroughly enjoyed your presentation in Milwaukee, and hope you follow through with the possibility of writing your next book about men after mid-life.
    Personally, I would prefer speaking “my truth” to a woman. Especially after having met you and know of your sincerity and integrity. The fact that you did the research from the woman’s point of view and then add the same from the man’s, would be of added value. I (and my spouse of 35 years) have found that our sexual practice has changed dramatically over the past five years and has never been better. We keep amazing ourselves with the new discoveries. (We are 59). We look forward with excitement to the decade of our sixties. You can count on us for our stories.

    Sincerely, Jim

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