Sex and The Single Life in Your Thirties
When I was 20 years old, I thought that reaching the age of thirty and being single would be a disaster. At that age, I speculated that my body clock would be ticking louder than ever. Back then, each time I had sex I would be wondering if the man I was with could be a viable candidate for being the father of my children. Now that I am in my thirties, however, my opinion about this has changed completely.
I used to love watching the Sex in The City. It was so funny and I found it groundbreaking for the time. But, despite this, I thought that it projected quite a negative image of the thirtysomething single woman. There was an obvious reason for this.
Although we see that the main protagonists are professional independent women, they are all, nonetheless, still obsessed with finding their own Prince Charming. That goes for all of them, with the exception of Samantha Jones. This old-fashioned mind-set was exemplified by the on-off relationship between Carrie and Mr Big. He was, to be blunt, something of an asshole. During the course of six seasons we saw how they got together and broke up, time after time, with him letting her down continually. Every time Carrie seemed to be getting her life together, Mr Big would reappear, out of the blue, and weaken her resolve. She could never, seemingly, resist his elusive charms.
Samantha, on the other hand, was older than the others but she sought sexual fulfilment and not love. She was my favourite character mainly due to her confidence, integrity and the single-minded commitment to satisfying erotic desire that she exemplified. She was very sure of herself and was, at the same time, unapologetically physical in her demands. Although she seemed to have the control when she was dating, in real life I think it is regrettable that people consider that sexual freedom is synonymous with promiscuity.
Another representation of a single 30-something woman is the story of Bridget Jones and her famous diary. I found that Helen Fielding’s books, and the films based on them, were very entertaining in much the same way as Sex in the City. But they both have the same message that, when all is said and done, we are all looking for a special man in our life. Bridget wasn’t nearly as sophisticated as the four women from Sex In The City. So, between Bridget Jones and Samantha Jones, I will always choose Samantha.
Now, after trying sex in my thirties, and being single, I can say that it is not how I imagined it would be. I realised that my philosophy towards single life has changed and I am not the only one. People are delaying marriage for longer and single people are not necessarily seen as being unusual. Neither are they perceived as being social failures.
I still haven’t heard my body clock and I am not going to go out of my way to provoke its alarm. Whenever I have a date with someone, I am not imagining how our wedding would be and what our children might look like. All I want to do is enjoy the moment.
I have discovered that sex in your thirties is much more satisfying than I could have contemplated when I was younger. There are several reasons for this. In my twenties, having sex was almost like engaging in an extreme sport. The emphasis was on performance, physical prowess and constant repetition. Now, in my thirties, sex with my partners is much more varied, creative and we know our bodies that much better.
Besides, it is well documented that the female sexual peak is achieved between the ages of 35 and 45. For me, this means that my best time is still to come. Although I have not had my best orgasms yet, it amuses me that I can have a date with a student and not look like his mother. On the other hand, I can be seen with an older man and not look like his daughter.
So, if my own Prince Charming is reading this, please do not enter my life just yet. I want to carry on having fun for a few more years. Thank you.
Translation of ‘Sexo y la soltería a los 30‘, published in El Pais.