Sex & Relationships

Ask Joan: Controlling man?

Every month in Sex at Our Age, award-winning senior sexpert Joan Price answers your questions about everything from loss of desire to solo sex and partner issues. Nothing is out of bounds! If you’re over 60, submit your questions to this column by emailing Joan directly at sexpert@seniorplanet.org. There are more details on how Joan selects questions at the end of this article.

 

How does a man find an honest woman? I am a 60-year-old man. I was dating new woman. The first time we made love, she told me she never had an orgasm from a man’s penis before me. She had orgasms this way every time we made love. It was obvious she really enjoyed our love making.

After three weekends together, I asked, “Honey are you telling me the truth that a man never gave you an orgasm with his penis before?” This time she said, “Well, maybe a few other times before.” Am I wrong taking her first statement as a lie?

Six weeks into our relationship, I was working in her backyard, and a man walked into her house without knocking. I thought that was strange, so I went into the house. She said he was a family friend. I told her I didn’t feel comfortable with that, and I left.

A hour later she called and asked me to come back so she could explain. The man was her previous lover, and he came over to make up. I told her, “You lied to me again because you said it was a family friend, not a ex-boyfriend!” I lost trust in her because similar things happened later that didn’t add up. So the relationship is over.

Would you call her lies huge red flags? I’m trying to date and it’s hard to find honesty.

  • Seeking an Honest Woman

Joan replies:

You’re not going to like my answer. Instead of looking for someone who fits your idea of an honest woman, I’d like you to look within and see the controlling nature of your interactions with this woman. I’ll explain:

You had great first-time sex, and she was elated that she had an orgasm during intercourse with you. Only 25% of women reach orgasm through penetration alone. From what she told you, it was rare for this to happen to her. Yes, in the moment, probably from the exhilaration of a great orgasm with you, she went overboard and claimed this never happened before. An untruth, yes, as she admitted later, but a small untruth in my eyes. (Readers may disagree, and I welcome comments.) I think she was thrilled it had happened, felt exuberant, and wanted to make you feel good.

It backfired. Cross-examining her later, you exposed the untruth, but where did that get you? You felt lied to, she likely felt bullied, and the joy of that experience was undone.

The second incident: A former lover walked into to her house unexpectedly. She, probably flustered, introduced him as a family friend. You didn’t “feel comfortable with that” – “that” being a man in her house? — and you stormed off. You’d been dating for only six weeks. You had no right to control who visited her in her own house.

Sure, the ex-boyfriend should have phoned first. Probably he didn’t know she had a new lover and was as surprised to see you as you were to see him. A better response than anger would have been a simple exchange of names, and then you return to your activity outside, leaving them to their conversation.

She then phoned you, asked you to come back, and explained who the man was and why he was there. Instead of accusing her of lying, you might have acknowledged the new information with something like, “Thanks for explaining. That must have been awkward for you to have him show up with me here.” Instead, you took it as more evidence that your lover couldn’t be trusted, and you revealed a controlling side of yourself that would have killed your relationship if you hadn’t decided to break up with her yourself.

There’s a difference between maintaining privacy and being dishonest. No one should have to give over privacy and autonomy to be in a relationship. No one should require that of a partner. If she had been the one to write to me, I would have advised her to tell you, “Back off. I’m my own person, and you have no right to control me or tell me whom I can allow in my house.”

Your issue is more about your desire to control than about your date’s honesty. I hope you’ll look at that seriously and get help so that your next relationship goes better. I wish you the best.

Conversation tips for readers starting a new sexual relationship:

Don’t ask your partner any version of these questions:

  • How many sex partners have you had? None of your business. Your partner has been alive many decades and asking for a tally is offensive.
  • Have you ever done it this way before? None of your business. By now we’ve figured out some special things we like, and if your new partner is sharing that with you, consider yourself lucky.
  • Am I the best you’ve ever had? You’re not in competition with any previous partners. This just makes you feel insecure, and how is someone supposed to answer that?

Readers: What would you add to the “Don’t ask” list?

A Message from Joan:

I receive many more questions than I can answer. To help yours get chosen, know this:

  • I select questions solely from readers age 60+.
  • If I already answered a similar question, yours is less likely to be chosen, so do a search for your topic first.
  • When you submit a question, describe your problem, how it affects you, what you’d like to know. Your story will be edited.
  • For medical advice, consult your doctor. Change doctors if you’re not satisfied or if you’re treated dismissively.
  • I select questions for publication only. For a private answer, request a consultation. Most questions about sex and aging are answered in my books and webinars.

Send Joan your questions by emailing sexpert@seniorplanet.org. All information is confidential. Joan can only answer questions that are chosen for publication from readers age 60+

Joan Price is the author of several self-help books about senior sex including her newest, “Sex after Grief: Navigating Your Sexuality after Losing Your Beloved,” and the award-winning “Naked at Our Age: Talking Out Loud about Senior Sex.” Visit Joan’s website and blog and her Facebook page. For senior sex news and tips, subscribe to Joan’s free newsletter.

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