I am so happy that “Good Luck to You, Leo Grande” exists! This film portrays older-age sexual yearning, curiosity, shame, and nervousness accurately and beautifully. The film stars Emma Thompson, age 62, as a widow/retired religious education teacher who has never had an orgasm, and Daryl McCormack, age 29, as the sex worker she hires for a bucket list of missed sexual opportunities.
I’m 78, and I never expected to see a film with such tender authenticity about a senior woman wanting to explore her sexual pleasure with a gentle, respectful, vulnerable, and gorgeous male sex worker.
Is she ageist because she wants a young man?
I read objections from several of you on social media who saw this as ageist. I don’t see it that way. She had sex with only one man in her life: her husband, whose idea of sex was get on, get in, get off, go to sleep. She wants transactional sex with a man who prioritizes her pleasure, who will serve her without his own agenda, and whose youthful appearance will turn her on.
In my view, this “pilot light lover” (to adopt Gail Sheehy’s phrase) is just the beginning of her sexual awakening. I picture her after the film ends, going forward with confidence to meet men of her age who, she will discover, delight in giving pleasure to their partner.
Let’s address what many people are asking: did Emma Thompson need to bare it all to make the point that she finally accepts her body?
I love that she does this. It’s startling to see her naked, staring in the mirror, no longer confined by a pencil skirt or draped in a negligee. She is unapologetically adorned with her natural wrinkles and loose skin. I loved that. I found her beautiful.
No, she didn’t have to do it, but how it amplifies the message of overcoming shame and reclaiming her body! I applaud her and director Sophie Hyde for this decision. (Personally, I would have appreciated seeing more of Leo, too, just saying.)
I know I’ll have more to say about this film, but I’ll stop here to invite your comments. Let’s keep this discussion going.
I look forward to reading your comments.
I wrote this post 6 years ago, in 2016. I’d like to submit this question again, hoping to ignite a discussion. Please post your comments, and include your age. Thanks!
If you’re dating (or trying to date), I’d like your input:
Let’s say you met someone, either through online dating or some other way. It seemed to have potential as you started to spend time together and get to know each other, but soon you realized it wasn’t going to work out.
Which of these do you do?
- Say something like “I’m sorry, but I don’t see us as a match,” with a kind explanation.
- Say something like “I’m sorry, but I don’t see us as a match,” but with no explanation.
- Give an explanation that you know will hurt, but will definitely end things.
- Give the true reason you want to end it.
- Make up an excuse, e.g. decided to get back with an ex, or not ready to date again, or …?
- “Ghost” or “fade away”: you say nothing but don’t get in touch or respond when the other person contacts you.
- Other? (Please explain.)
Now switch roles:
If you’ve been on the receiving end of any of the above, which one(s) left you feeling okay? Awful? If rejection has to happen, how do you want to be rejected?
Do your answers change in any way if you and this new person have been sexual?
Please comment, and although you don’t need to give your real name (please choose something other than “Anonymous”), please include your real age. I’d like to contrast the views of our over-50, -60, -70 age group with those younger.
I look forward to your comments!
Do you need some help navigating the dating scene as a senior? View my webinar, “How the Heck Do I Date at This Age?”
Do you love your Magic Wand, but you wish for a smaller, lighter, yet still powerful version? Or do you wish your clitoris could experience the Magic Wand that everyone raves about, but the size of the original is daunting? Welcome to the new Magic Wand Mini Cordless Rechargeable Vibrator from Betty’s Toy Box. You’ll get the same quality and most of the power at half the weight.
But is it small? It’s not small. When I think “mini,” I mean toys that are small enough to toss in a purse or stuff into the toe of a sock that’s going into my suitcase, like the We-Vibe Touch or Tango or the Hot Octopuss DiGiT: palm-sized or smaller. This isn’t that! However, compared to the regular Magic Wand, it’s mini. To compare:
Magic Wand Rechargeable: 13 inches long, weighs 1 pound 5.1 ounces, handle diameter 1.9 inches.
Mini Magic Wand: 9.5 inches long, weighs 9.7 ounces, handle diameter 1.5 inches.
What about power?
Yes, it’s strong, though not as strong as the bigger models. The Mini Magic Wand has 3 power settings, vs. the Magic Wand Rechargeable’s 4 power settings and 4 patterns. The Mini has plenty of power for most of us – including me, and I need strong vibrations. However, the second and third settings are higher-pitched (buzzier) than the bigger model. If rumbly vibes work best for you or you need the power of the highest setting, you’ll probably want to stay with the larger wand. If you usually stay within the first settings of the Magic Wand and your clitoris does not demand rumbly, this will be a great choice for you.
Controls are intuitive: press the power button, then press “+” for more intensity and “-” for lower intensity. Controls are easy to see and use without reading glasses.
The head of the Mini is body-safe silicone, with a little cushioning that can make all the difference when you’re pressing it to your clitoris. The neck is flexible, so that you can get the best position for your wrist. At our age, we have to think about these things.
The head is much smaller than that of the Magic Wand Rechargeable, which has its pros and cons. Pro: it doesn’t take up so much room (vulvar real estate, I could call it) if you’re also inserting fingers, a penis, or a dildo into your vagina while you use the Mini on your clitoris. Con: if you like more vulvar coverage to stimulate the internal clitoris, you might prefer the larger version.
The slimmer handle is as much a bonus as the lighter weight. It’s much easier for my small, arthritic hand to hold, letting me forget about the logistics and just enjoy the sensation.
Like the larger Magic Wands, it’s noisy. Close the door, turn up the music, send your family members to the movies.
I was delighted to find a full-sized user manual in the box, with clear, large black print on white pages. Thank you, Vibratex (and shame on all the sex toy companies that send tiny guides with light lettering on a colored background, impossible to read). But do we really need 5 full pages of warnings plus additional warnings on almost every page? I can’t even count the number of “Do not…” and “Never…” Sure, we want to know what not to do, but let’s not scare people away from using pleasure tools. Vibrators are not high-risk products. What if every restaurant menu contained 5 pages of what could happen if we choked on our food, ate enough to make us vomit, or scooped it up from the floor?
I was surprised that the Mini did not come with a storage bag.
- Do not use while plugged in. Plug it in only for charging, and do not leave it plugged in for more than 4 hours.
- Use only water-based lubricant.
- Use for no more than 20 minutes to prevent overheating. (Don’t worry, you won’t need 20 minutes!)
- Clean the head carefully after use without submerging in water. It’s not waterproof.
- For external use only.
For 10% off your purchase, use coupon code JOAN10
“Bond, James Bond” is the iconic catchphrase Agent 007 utters to introduce himself in at least a dozen of his films. “Bond” is also We-Vibe’s new vibrating penis ring. James Bond is a handsome, romantic undercover agent. We-Vibe calls its Bond cock ring an “undercover tease.”
I’ve tried several other vibrating penis rings, and Bond is innovative in several ways. Most striking is the adjustable quick-release system for positioning the ring around your penis and scrotum. Other cock rings I’ve tried require wearing the band around your shaft and stretching it to pull your testicles through. Depending on the size and shape of your equipment, this can be painful and far from sexy.
Bond, however, is a stretchy band with ends that detach completely to open the ring. Fit it around your penis and scrotum with the broad part against your perineum (that sensitive area between scrotum and anus). Then close the ring by linking the two ends together with a simple click. When you’re done, open it just as easily. An extra custom fit link is included for those who require a slightly larger size.
Control Bond with either a small inconspicuous remote that fits in your palm or the We-Connect app. Either of these lets you play with ten different intensity levels. (Personally, I’m especially fond of the cha-cha). The toy is very quiet so it can be worn undercover in public without attracting attention.
Like all We-Vibe toys for vulvas and penises, Bond is made of body safe material and is fully waterproof. Charging takes up to 90 minutes via the magnetic charging pins, and a charge lasts for up to two hours. We-Vibe cautions that you should not wear the ring for more than half an hour at a time.
I used Bond first for solo sex. I loved that I could simply lie back, relax, fondle the remote, and bring myself to the edge several times before reaching an orgasm. It stimulates the perineum as well as the penis and testicles with delightful vibrations.
My partner and I experimented with Bond during partner sex. She took control of the remote while ministering to me with mouth and lubed hand. This produced the “tease” that We-Vibe mentions and helped me retain an erection. As enjoyable as that was, I prefer Bond for solo sex. It’s so much fun to play with the protruding genitalia “bundle” myself!
Bond is a delightful new penis toy — clever in design and effective in results. Compared to other vibrating rings that encapsulate penis and scrotum together, Bond comes away as the best on the market. I’ve nicknamed mine “James.”
— Shamus MacDuff, age 78, was oblivious to the delights of sex toys for penises until about four years ago. He’s been making up for lost time! Read his other posts here.
Note from Joan:
Have you viewed We-Vibe’s “Silver Sex” videos with folks our age talking about their sex lives and tips from sex educators? (Yes, I’m one of them.) All the videos are educational and entertaining, and well worth watching.