Interfering Family Won’t Give Me Privacy

By Joan Price | 15 September 2021

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Joan Price


Joan Price calls herself an advocate for ageless sexuality. She is the author of four books about sex and aging, including the award-winning Naked at Our Age: Talking Out Loud about Senior Sex and her latest: Sex after Grief: Navigating Your Sexuality After Losing Your Beloved. Her award-winning blog has been offering senior sex news, views, and sex toy reviews since 2005. At age 76, Joan continues to talk out loud about senior sex—partnered or solo. She is the co-creator of “jessica drake’s Guide to Wicked Sex: Senior Sex”. Find Joan at

"I’m a widow, alone for the past five years. I moved in with my daughter’s family at the beginning of the pandemic so I could help teach and supervise my grandchildren while the parents worked. They think everything is going fine. I’m going nuts!"

"I miss companionship and sex, and I’m ready to date again— but that’s impossible while we’re all stuck at home. I’ve looked at online dating sites and I’d like to join to flirt and have some sexy conversations. But when I bring up the idea that I want to date — even virtually — the family is horrified. I can’t even get privacy to masturbate since there’s no lock on my bedroom door and the adults and kids don’t hesitate to barge in, even when the door is closed. How do I get privacy and respect for being more than “Grandma”?"

Joan answers:

Good for you looking out for your own needs and wanting to regain your sense of yourself as a sexual being. I think you have to be honest and ask for what you want. I’m not suggesting announcing your plans in explicit detail or putting a sign on the door saying, “Grandma’s getting her groove on with sexy talk with strangers and wild orgasms with vibrators, so stay out, this means you!” I am suggesting that you say something like, “I love being here with all of you, but I’m a full person, not just Grandma, and I need private time, too. Let’s agree on certain times that I’m ‘off the clock’ and unavailable. And if my door is shut, respect my privacy and come back later.” (FYI, some vibrators are quieter than others.)

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