During the process of aging, social, psychological, biological, and cognitive aspects in humans are altered in somewhat circumspective. Various impacts on the aging process are determined by the effects and interfaces that the elderly face as they form part of the societal fabric. Similarly, even the basic needs of dieting and metabolism do not resemble the representation in youth. In terms of sexuality, the recognition and need for intimacy is a natural process within the aging and development of humans. However, it has been observed that sexuality in the older and aging generations is invisible. The determination is scrutinized especially with the external factors and setting of the society. Social acceptance, traditions, and culture are responsible for the invisibility of sexuality in older people.


Sex and sexuality are considered as private matters that affect an individual. It is strengthened by the fact that an older person guards the reputation and image carried throughout their life. Different orientations in the present world cause stigmatization on the widely criticized forms of expressions (Hillier and Barrow 174). Thus, it will be rare or unheard of when encountering the older generations in publicized forms of expressions towards their sexuality, especially to the public or strange individuals. Increased perceptions towards such forms enable sexuality at the aging stage difficult to comprehend event o the individual. At the time, isolation and confidentiality in all aspect of their living is considered important to them without external interference.

            The societal fabrics do not allow the free expression of sexuality in the older generations. Sexual visibility is credited with the youthful generation as the importance of factors like reproduction and continuity of lineage is expressed. In addition, physical attraction between the two genders is associated with the youth and equally glorified. Hillier and Barrow (174), notes that such mentality in turn leads to change of perception, from the older generation themselves. Their sexuality is not visible since they are expected to grace with age in silence and solace. Once it is translated to the older generations, the individuals are internally mandated to keep to themselves regardless of their stature and position within the society.

            Different circumstances provide restricted abilities to the visibility of sexuality in older generations. For example, the biological slowdown on metabolism, body functions, and movement inhibit the natural progression in expressing sexuality and intimacy. Thus, it is expected of them to be in their resting capacities without added comfort of sexuality. In turn, the older generations do not want to put themselves in position of scorn. The cultures and societal norms inhibit these processes. For example, in African and Asian settings, cultural backgrounds have a limited acceptance towards sexuality in the older generations. Expressing it becomes an almost impossibility and individuals maintain the trends as successive generations take the norms in equal measure.


Social acceptance, traditions, and culture are responsible for the invisibility of sexuality in older people. Apart from the physical, physiological, and biological inhibitions that come with aging, expressions of sexuality at old age is considered a private and confidential matter. Coupled with factors like cultural settings, societal norms and expectations, the acquired perception affects the individuals themselves. Rather than making it visible, they shy away from everyone and maintain it in their isolation. However, as changes to the society are seen through acceptance of different orientations, visibility of sexuality in older generations is improving as time goes by.

Work Cited

Hillier, Susan M, Georgia M. Barrow, and Georgia M. Barrow. Aging, the Individual, and Society. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Pub. Co, 2011. Print.

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