a publication of the sexuality and aging consortium at widener university

Aging as a Process, Not a Disease

By Melanie Davis, EdD, CSE

Rhoda P. Curtis is vibrant, curious, active, and 93 years old. She is also questioning why people fear aging so much.

In an article published by Huffington Post (7-28-22), Curtis writes, “I think we need to accept aging as a necessary process, not as a disease. Aging is a process that begins with birth and does not need to be conflated with infirmity.”  She advises people of every age not to fear aging but to accept it, adapt to it, and enjoy the freedoms it brings.

I don’t know whether Curtis is aware of the Sexuality and Aging Consortium at Widener University, but I know that her outlook is shared by our membership. In our quest to support the sexual rights and happiness of adults in mid- and later age, we encourage people to live their lives to the fullest, as Curtis does.  We know that for most people, full lives include intimacy, which can range from having a friend to dine with to having a sexual partner. We also know that it is difficult to enjoy intimacy of any kind, solo or partnered, if one lives in fear of age and its associated physical and mental changes.

If you would like to learn more about sexuality education and advocacy related to older adults, please contact our administrative assistant or our members.  If you’d like to read Curtis’ article, click here.  To read more of Curtis’ work, visit her blog.

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