So much pain comes with a family splitting up, no matter how amicable the divorce. After the fog lifts a bit, you start to search for things to look forward to — sleeping alone diagonally, not having to fold you ex’s underwear, going to Target without having to explain your purchases, and getting to put your hands on someone else.
After sleeping with my ex (and only my ex) for twenty years, the thought of being with another man and getting to share new experiences in the bedroom (or on the kitchen island or in the back seat of the car) felt exciting. It was a small silver lining around a dark experience and I was ready, with a capitol fucking “R.”
When you are a woman in the second chapter of life, you aren’t afraid to call the shots. You decided if they were worthy of experiencing you. And you might be eager for sex without the commitment because, fuck, this is fun and you don’t want it to get all complicated.
Having sex with a new man is empowering and glorious with plenty of perks and yet…
I miss old married sex more than I ever thought I would.
There is something about having a quickie in the bathroom while the kids are downstairs playing and the look you give each other three hours later that says, “I needed that, Babe.” It’s something only the person you’ve been raising a family with, while dealing with all the chaos surrounding it, can recognize.
Or post-sex, when you can’t cuddle because it makes you feel like you are wrapped in 10 heating blankets and they know to move away yet keep one hand placed on your hip bone — there is so much comfort in that.
Old married sex means you both know what each other likes and what makes you feel like you are breaking in two so you do your thing, they gets theirs and you get yours, and everyone is happy without having to give a lesson.
And if you try something together and it flops, you can laugh about it because you have witnessed each other having a bad case of diarrhea and, well, this is nothing compared to the (literal) shit you’ve seen each other go through.
Old married sex means your partner knows by the way you walk in the room they absolutely aren’t getting lucky tonight unless you get a half hour back rub and they put the kids to bed.
Old married sex means you wear mismatched underwear sets, don’t shave or shower for days, and they want you despite the prickles, the smells, and the holes in your underwear.
Old married sex means when they look at your C-section scar or your saggy breasts they see something different than a new partner would because they were there for it all.
A lot of people say how their sex life has gotten so dull and boring and they long to be with other people, or the thought of only being intimate with one person for the rest of their life makes them feel a little empty. They miss passion and spontaneity.
And that’s normal and natural — some of us wonder if we are meant to be monogamous for forty years plus. I felt all of those feelings in my marriage.
But as a woman who had married sex for two decades, then divorced and had exciting new sex with younger men and older men (and that boy I had a huge crush on in high school and a man I fell in love with), I have definitely loved both kinds of sex.
But I can tell you, as I stand in the shower and groom my vag and select pretty lingerie for what is sure to be a wild and sexy time, I long for the familiarity and the connection that comes from being with someone for so long you can read each other and feel like you fit regardless of what you are wearing or the kind of day you had.
And it surprises me.
It’s not about not putting in any effort after a certain amount of time in a relationship, but more about the deep connection you have outside of your sex life — a connection you bring into your sex life.
Some think it’s boring, but I can tell you this: I’ll take it over the butterflies and the mind-blowing orgasms. Because having old married sex wasn’t just comfortable, it was more intimate than I ever gave it credit for.
Having sex is so much more than just experiencing different penises or vaginas and trying something new and feeling that lusty ache and not being able to keep your hands off each other. Don’t get me wrong, that is utterly amazing.
But I’m pretty excited for the next phase of sex too — when it’s comfortable. Because I’ve learned that what some think is mundane and predictable is really the truest form of intimacy.
This article was originally published on