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Changing   Sexual   Practices   in   New   Intimate   Relationships   in   Later   Life  – A   Life   Course  Perspective
Stockholms Universitet.
University of Gävle, Faculty of Health and Occupational Studies, Department of Social Work and Psychology.
2014 (English)In: 8th  International  Conference  on  Cultural  Gerontology: Programme and Abstracts, 2014, 138-138 p.Conference paper, Abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

It  has  been  argued  that  in  late  modernity  sex  has  escaped  its  reproductive cage and people  form  pure  relationships,  based  on  mutual  satisfaction.  Ironically, although  older people  are  per  definition  non-­‐reproductive,  they  have  often  been neglected  in  studies on  sexuality.  In  this  paper  we  present  results  from  1)  a qualitative  interview  study  with a  strategic  sample  of  28  63–91  year  old  Swedes currently  dating  or  in  a  heterosexual relationship  (married,  cohabiting,  LAT) initiated  60+  and  2)  a  quantitative  survey including  answers  from  1225  60–90 year  old  Swedes.  The  interviews  revealed  a  clear normative   change,   from   a   cultural   context   that   condemned   extra-­‐marital   sex   in young  adulthood   to   a  context   encouraging   sexual   relationships   but   not   marriage in later   life.   All   had  experienced   the   sexual   liberation   of   the   1960s,   and today, these  liberal   attitudes   seem   to  encompass  later  life.  Today,  an  active  sex-­‐life  is regarded  as  important  for  a  good  relationship  and  sexual  attraction  was  seen  as  a precondition  for  newrelationships.  Many  informants  had  interpreted  sexual decline  in former  relationships  as  “natural  ageing”,  but  re-­‐discovered  sexuality with  their  new partner.  In  the  survey,  a  majority  (93  %)  had  had  their  sexual debut  before  marriage (despite  the  restrictive  norms).  Half  or  the  respondents have  had  ≥  4  sexual  partners, and  one  in  five  ≥  10.  Sexual  activity  correlated negatively  with  relationship  length.  It has  often  been  argued  that  sexual  values and  practices  will  become  more  liberal  in  the  future  by  cohort  replacement.  Our data  indicates  that  “the  future  might  already be her

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. 138-138 p.
Keyword [en]
relationships, older people, sexuality, 60+
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-20807OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hig-20807DiVA: diva2:877894
8th International Conference on Cultural Gerontology, 10–12 April 2014, National University of Ireland Galway Ollscoil na hÉireann Gaillimh
Available from: 2015-12-08 Created: 2015-12-08 Last updated: 2015-12-08Bibliographically approved

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Öberg, Peter
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Department of Social Work and Psychology

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