by Elizabeth Hemmerdinger | bio

So my dear friend and college roommate Leslie, who earned a Ph.D. in English literature with an emphasis in romanticism, has been married and divorced, enjoyed a long-term relationship until she didn’t anymore, raised four grown children, and has two grandchildren. She’s fun and funny and really smart.

Leslie survived breast cancer, has high blood pressure and suffers from depression – which has led her to a healthy respect for medications. She’s done a fair share of internet corresponding with men her age, which has led, in some cases, to actual dating.

When the evening gets romantic, Leslie reports, most men say, “I don’t really need it, but I’ll take a half a Viagra.”

“Do us both a favor,” she responds, “and take the whole thing!”

Seniors and sex seem to be attracting more attention lately. On Nov. 30, ABC Nightline did a segment on seniors and online dating and sexual health that included interviews with Dr. Hilda Hutcherson, assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Columbia University Medical Center in New York, and Joan Price, author of “Better Than I Ever Expected: Straight Talk About Sex After Sixty.”

The Detroit News and Salon both published stories this week about seniors and HIV prevention.

Over at her blog, Price describes what it was like being interviewed for Nightline and her reaction to the finished piece. And she identifies words you can and cannot say on network television when talking about sex …

Elizabeth Hemmerdinger, a playwright and screenwriter, is on the board of Women’s Voices for Change.

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  • Elizabeth Hemmerdinger December 8, 2006 at 11:38 pm

    Dear Joan,
    You go, Girl! And shame on those naughty boys.

  • Joan Price December 8, 2006 at 4:54 pm

    Elizabeth, thank you for posting this synopsis of the ABC Nightline show and recent entries on my blog.
    Your readers will be disturbed to read an update, after shock jocks on a satellite radio show gleefully ridiculed the show, my book, my blog, and the whole idea of senior sex. They read my blog on the air for a full 11 minutes, laughing their heads off and making obscene comments. Then they encouraged their listeners to visit my site.
    They did — and they trashed it for a full morning. I had to remove more than 40 comments that were sexist, ageist, racist, obscene, and often quite horrid, e.g. what they’d like to do to Granny and in what position and with what force, after which they’d push her down the stairs.
    I removed the comments and made sure that from now on, all comments are moderated by me before they’re posted (good for you — you do this already).
    I invite you and your readers to visit my blog often, read and comment with your “women’s voices for chanage”!
    Thanks again, Elizabeth,
    Joan Price
    Author of Better Than I Ever Expected: Straight Talk about Sex After Sixty (Seal Press, 2006,
    Join us — we’re talking about ageless sexuality at