Research Needs and Elderly Sexuality
Rsearch articles generally end with suggestions for further research. The article, fisted below, was aimed exclusively at identifying research needs in the area of elderly sexuality.
As evidenced by the 457 articles and books annotated in this collection, there is little information about the sexual behavior and sexuality concerns of the older population. Even more obvious is the lack of empirical data about the old-old population which is the fastest growing segment of the population in the United States. With men the major problem appears to be impotence; with women it is a lack of partners.
One generalization that is exceeding evident from reading these hundreds of articles is the similarity among those written in the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s. Writers decry the same myths and stereotypes. Writers in each decade provide an overview of male and female sexuality using data from Kinsey and Masters and Johnson. They cite data about elderly sexual behaviors and sexual interest that resulted from the long completed Duke Longitudinal Studies. Little information, to date, about sexuality has been published from the on-going Baltimore Longitudinal Studies.
The most important question might be "What do the elderly want?" That question is not generally asked. What elderly people know about their sexuality and what they want to know is seldom investigated. Many writers feel strongly about the importance of sexuality in old age. Butler, Renshaw, and Waltz and Blum are among