Every Wednesday The CSPH highlights a Sexuality Professional you should keep your eye on. Their backgrounds are very diverse in order to bring attention to the wide variety of amazing people working in the field. This week we bring you Joan Price!
1. What do you do in the field of sexuality?
I call myself an “advocate for ageless sexuality.” This means I talk out loud and write about senior sex. I offer accurate information to my readers and audiences who often don’t know that answers to their questions are available. I work to promote the idea of healthy, vibrant sexuality through our lifetime.
2. Where are you based out of?
3. What is your focus? What do you do?
I’m a writer and a speaker. I am the author of Naked at Our Age: Talking Out Loud about Senior Sex (Seal Press, 2011) and Better Than I Ever Expected: Straight Talk about Sex After Sixty (Seal Press,2006). Right now I’m editing an anthology of senior erotica – stories by writers over fifty featuring steamy characters over fifty – titled Still Naked: Erotica for Seniors, which will be published by Seal Press in 2013. I lead workshops in several topics related to sex and aging, including my most popular workshop for single seniors: “How the Heck Do I Date at This Age?”
4. What are your particular goals and passions in the field?
I’d like society at large and seniors in particular to understand this about older-age sexuality:
- Our youth-oriented society’s view of seniors who enjoy sex as icky, weird, pathetic, or ludicrous is wrong, wrong, wrong! Our sexuality can be pleasurable and joyful throughout our lives.
- If something emotional or physical is interfering with your enjoyment of your sexuality, there are solutions available! That’s why I wrote Naked at Our Age: Talking Out Loud about Senior Sex, because so many of us just accept our changes as inevitable, unchangeable, and too embarrassing to seek help for – and don’t know that solutions exist that can totally change our experience.
- We as seniors need to talk out loud about our sexuality. That’s the way we can change both society’s view and enrich our own enjoyment by seeking information, learning what’s possible, and sharing that knowledge.
5. Why did you choose to work in this field?
I fell in love at age 57 with the artist Robert Rice (www.robertriceart.com) age 64. Our spicy love affair inspired my new career. I wrote Better Than I Ever Expected: Straight Talk about Sex After Sixty at age 61 to celebrate senior sex and give voice to those of us who enjoy vibrant sex after age sixty and beyond.
After Better Than I Ever Expected came out, readers said to me, “You may be having great sex, but I’m not, and here’s why….” I heard questions about ED, vaginal pain, lack of desire, difficulty with arousal, relationship problems, communication barriers, and much more.
I realized that my next book had to be a guide to the many challenges of older-age sexuality, giving my readers voice to tell their stories, and assembling expert advice to address their concerns and answer their questions. Naked at Our Age: Talking Out Loud about Senior Sex became that book. Forty-five sex educators, therapists, and medical professionals contributed their advice to the 135 readers whose stories are included. The result is a dynamic guide to maintaining or regaining a satisfying sex life after age fifty, sixty, seventy, and beyond.
6. Where did you go for school/training?
I have a BA from Bennington College and a MA from University of California at Berkeley, but neither is in the sexuality field. My background isn’t in sexuality – but my foreground is! I was a high school English teacher and a health/fitness writer/instructor in earlier parts of my life. I have been concentrating my skills on senior sex education since 2005.
7. Do you have any literature out (websites, articles)?
[oh yes, see above]
8. What would you recommend to future professionals attempting to get into the field?
Follow your passion. If this is your niche, don’t let anything deter you.
9. What is the most challenging aspect for you working in this career?
It was harder in 2006 when Better Than I Ever Expected came out – the idea of sex-positive seniors was radical then. I encountered a lot of love and some instances of nastiness. Now, it’s not such an odd idea that senior sex exists, thank goodness. That doesn’t mean my work is done!
10. One must read-what would you recommend? Why?
Naked at Our Age, of course! It’s the best guide out there: contemporary, comprehensive, accurate, helpful — and even fun to read. I’d love it even if I hadn’t written it myself, honest.
11. Anything else you want to add?
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