THE BLOG

Foreplay Over Fifty

12/06/2012 07:32 am ET | Updated Feb 05, 2013

If you have ever seen a comedian perform, you know the value of a good opener. Even top comedians need someone to warm up the crowd and get the audience ready for laughs. That is the opening act's job -- to set the stage for the headliner.

When it comes to intimacy, foreplay is the opening act.

Foreplay is important at any age because it generates excitement for excitement's sake; it adds a splash of fun to a relationship. Additionally, foreplay signals to your partner that he is still desirable, and you want him to desire you, too. No one wants to be taken for granted, and foreplay helps alleviate that.

Too often, couples abandon foreplay and just get down to business; they skip the opener and move straight to the headliner. This is a mistake. Good foreplay starts your momentum moving toward intercourse, just as the opening act gets the crowd revved up for the comedians that follow. But don't wait until you are in the bedroom with the lights out to engage in foreplay. Think outside of the sexual box.

One easy way to introduce (or re-introduce) foreplay into your relationship is to hide a little note in the visor of your lover's car or in his jacket pocket. The note doesn't even have to be explicit to build anticipation. It can simply include an innocent message like "Can't wait for tonight." If a handwritten note is too 20th century for you, send him an email or a text to let him know you are looking forward to giving him your undivided attention and receiving his as well.

If you find yourself in a rut and you aren't sure how to bring the spark back to your sex life, it is best to start at the beginning. This is especially important for couples that have been together for a long time. Remind yourself of the little ways you and your partner used to excite each other when you started dating and try them again. Our bodies may change over the years --none of us are as agile as we were at 25 -- but our desire to please and be pleased stays the same.

Sexual excitement is like your sense of humor -- you don't choose what turns you on any more than you choose what makes you laugh. If "Caddyshack" made you laugh until you cried when you saw it in your twenties, chances are you still find it funny in your fifties. Foreplay works the same way. If holding hands or a gentle stroke on the thigh gave you butterflies when you were in college, these moves probably will excite you in retirement.

Whether you are 25, 45, 65 or older, one thing you can do to have better foreplay and a stronger relationship is free your mind. It is so easy to fall into the trap of the daily grind, to let the pressures of work consume us and to become slaves to a social calendar. Without letting go and having fun, life can look like one long to-do list. You need to commit to keeping time with your mate as stress-free as possible.

Emotional and physical intimacy -- particularly foreplay -- is supposed to be fun. The time you spend with your partner is precious. Spend it laughing and playing. Your mood, your relationship, and your sex life will benefit. After all, your sexual satisfaction is no laughing matter.

Earlier on Huff/Post50:

6 Kissing Tips