Sex after 50?


#1

This is a 3 part question:

  1. I have heard that procreation is a central theme of a Catholic marriage, but some elderly couples are not capable of conceiving kids. Should they marry or live as brother and sister unmarried? (I once heard that the church discourages marriages of older couples who are incapable of having children or are incapable of a sexual relationship.)

  2. If, during a marriage, the wife has a hysterectomy for medical reasons, and can no longer conceive, then should marital relations be discontinued?

  3. Is consummation of a marriage required by the Church to validate the marriage?


#2

Ok for #1–I’ll be 50 in March, I hope not.:wink: Question #2–Following the birth of my last child complications warranted an emergency life or death hysterectomy, Our Parish Priest knew about it, I was given Last Rights, at no time was I ever told at age 32 (still childbearing years) was I told it would be a sin. Unlike a tubal ligation, I did not “will” this. With question #3—Do not know, that one someone else needs to answer


#3

[quote=StFrancis2]This is a 3 part question:

  1. I have heard that procreation is a central theme of a Catholic marriage, but some elderly couples are not capable of conceiving kids. Should they marry or live as brother and sister unmarried? (I once heard that the church discourages marriages of older couples who are incapable of having children or are incapable of a sexual relationship.)
    [/quote]

Well, I’m 51, and I can guarantee you that my husband and I are not living as brother and sister. My kids also laugh when I tell them I attended my grandfather’s wedding–but it’s true. He remarried while in his 80’s, and in the Catholic Church.

There is more to the marital act than procreation. There is also bonding. It is a renewal of the marital covenant.

  1. If, during a marriage, the wife has a hysterectomy for medical reasons, and can no longer conceive, then should marital relations be discontinued?

My mother had a hysterectomy in her 40’s but did not discontinue marital relations. As stated, it’s more than about having kids. If procreation was all God intended sex for, women would be fertile all the time, instead of just a few days a month.

  1. Is consummation of a marriage required by the Church to validate the marriage?

This one I don’t know as much about. I think an annulment can be granted if the marriage is not consummated–even a civic annulment can be granted for that. I don’t know if my grandfather consummated his second marriage–that was one question I certainly wasn’t going to ask!


#4

If you were to ask any highschooler from my apologetic classes over the years… why do people get married … they will respond with the only answer on which everything else is built : “The only reason to marry is to help your spouse get to heaven”

Procreation, worship of and obedience to God, respect for each other,… are all natural fruits of that desire to get to heaven.

At 25, 50, 75, or 100,… if the first reason is attainment of heaven, let gramps go for it!


#5

[quote=StFrancis2]This is a 3 part question:

  1. I have heard that procreation is a central theme of a Catholic marriage, but some elderly couples are not capable of conceiving kids. Should they marry or live as brother and sister unmarried? (I once heard that the church discourages marriages of older couples who are incapable of having children or are incapable of a sexual relationship.)

  2. If, during a marriage, the wife has a hysterectomy for medical reasons, and can no longer conceive, then should marital relations be discontinued?

  3. Is consummation of a marriage required by the Church to validate the marriage?
    [/quote]

  4. Procreation is not a Catholic requirement for marriage.

  5. Marital relations can be continued after a hysterectomy, (or after menopause, etc.)

  6. Consummation is not required for validation of a marriage, but for its ratification. (Permanent impotence, but not sterility, would be an impediment to marriage.)


#6

[quote=StFrancis2]1. I have heard that procreation is a central theme of a Catholic marriage, but some elderly couples are not capable of conceiving kids. Should they marry or live as brother and sister unmarried?
[/quote]

The Church teaches that sex has a unitive aspect as well as procreative, so there’s no need for barren couples to not enjoy this gift from God.

[quote=StFrancis2](I once heard that the church discourages marriages of older couples who are incapable of having children or are incapable of a sexual relationship.)
[/quote]

Two different issues. One can not have a valid marriage without it being consumated. So if the couple is incapable of having sex, they can not be validly married.

[quote=StFrancis2]2. If, during a marriage, the wife has a hysterectomy for medical reasons, and can no longer conceive, then should marital relations be discontinued?
[/quote]

No. See my first answer.

[quote=StFrancis2]3. Is consummation of a marriage required by the Church to validate the marriage?
[/quote]

Yes. See my second answer.


#7

Each act of intercourse must be objectively procreative and unitive. However, that does not mean that subjectively each act must result in conception. Therefore a couple who is naturally infertile due to menopause is not impeded from marriage. The Church does not discourage or prohibit the marriage of older couples.

However, you also mention those who are “incapable” of a sexual relationship-- impotence-- that is an impediment to marriage. Infertility is not.

No.

Yes.


#8

#9

[quote=StFrancis2]This is a 3 part question:

  1. I have heard that procreation is a central theme of a Catholic marriage, but some elderly couples are not capable of conceiving kids. Should they marry or live as brother and sister unmarried? (I once heard that the church discourages marriages of older couples who are incapable of having children or are incapable of a sexual relationship.)

  2. If, during a marriage, the wife has a hysterectomy for medical reasons, and can no longer conceive, then should marital relations be discontinued?

  3. Is consummation of a marriage required by the Church to validate the marriage?
    [/quote]

It is not sinful for a married couple to rejoice and share the sexual aspect of their marriage, whether they are able to conceive or not. You should not discontinue marital relations as long as both spouses are willing partners, and respect one another

Relax and rejoice in your marriage. Love making is a gift from God. With Jesus as the center of your vocation, you will have many ways to be fruitful, regardless of your ability to conceive children. Be open to the promptings of the Holy Spirit, calling you to fruitfullness. You can be open to life, no matter what your medical records say about your ability to conceive. Being open to life takes many forms. In what ways are you being called to be fruitful and open to life? Are you feeling called to be more active at your parish? To share your faith with friends? Some couples even foster children or become active in the pro-life movement. Perhaps your fruitfulness is simply to help each other grow closer to God, to help each other reach heaven. You and your wife are on a beautiful path. God bless you and your marriage.

Age should not play a factor in being intimate with your spouse. It is the culture of death that says only the young and perfect 10 seductive mynx is worthy of sex, to be used as a cheap thrill, for lust and to objectify. God created sex for a much greater purpose, it is a gift to marriage.

Love, laugh, share tears and joy and rejoice that God created you to be as one for the rest of your lives!


#10

All of these postings have good points, with peace-Bwu winning IMOHO.

And remember how old Abraham and Sarah were when they finally conceived Issac…Ya never know what God has in store for you…:wink:


#11

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