"Sex is good for you," says the 63-year-old Blank, a sex educator for more than 25 years.

"You should continue to have good sex for the same reason you should continue to get good exercise: It's taking care of yourself. Do it whether you feel like it or not." Bortz, a specialist in internal medicine at the Palo Alto Medical Clinic in California and a clinical associate professor of medicine at Stanford University School of Medicine, goes even further: "We should as a moral responsibility continue to be sexually active," he says.

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The concern is with recreation rather than the possibility of procreation -- and for same-sex couples, the stress is less on performance and more on satisfaction.

This allows more room for expanding one's sensuality -- an important aspect of sex when the natural aging process may mean changes in sexual function.

"Men are mostly concerned about erections," Bortz says.

"For women, the concern is opportunity." "I was on an airplane sitting next to a 90-year-old woman and she said, 'What do you do' and I told her I was a gerontologist with an interest in impotence," Morley recalls.

"Is it OK for a 75-year-old widow to say, 'Sex is not on my agenda any more?

' I would challenge that and say, 'Maybe you should make an overt effort to make the rest of your life as full as you can.' And that includes being daring, flaunting the stereotype.

"She got more and more interested in what I was telling her, and she said, 'Well, you must have a big clinic of men.

So the next time you fix one, give him my card.'" Bortz says women over 60 should reject the idea that their sex lives must end if their husbands pass away.

"If you don't have a guy, go get one -- don't be embarrassed, or shy, or conform to the idea it is over for you," he says.

There is this reigning paradigm that once your man has died it is all over for you. But physical touching and romance should be with us until the last twinkle." One of the disincentives for women is painful intercourse due to thinning of vaginal tissues as estrogen levels decline.

We have learned so much from people in the disability community. Find a way to enjoy yourself with whatever limitations you may have." "The worst sexual dysfunction in this country is our inability to talk about sex," Blank says.