When I accepted an invitation to be part of the forum on the SBS program ‘Insight’, I thought it was just a matter of flying to Sydney, playing my part in the taping of the program, returning to my hotel and coming home the next day. No so.

The subject matter being discussed by the forum is whether sex involving seniors is a taboo topic, especially for the young (and more). Because I have written the book ‘Sex in Your Seventies’, it was presumed that I would have an opinion on this. And I certainly do.

I said that I have often been asked by one of my children that I do not ‘mention the book’ when in a gathering of any sort. I always assure them kindly that I will not. But inevitably it happens that someone will greet me, and say something like ‘Saw you on’s the book going?’ I will then look to my child for permission to speak.

Quite funny when you realise that I have been the guest speaker at hundreds of large and important meetings, where I have spoken of my life and THE BOOK! At question time, I have replied as best I could to queries on sex, sex and more sex! But my children do not want to hear about it.

Yes, the matter is taboo indeed with the young and middle-aged. They definitely do not want to hear about their parents’ love-life. And it is worse when the parents have separated and mother (in particular) takes a lover. They do not like it at all and feel embarrassed, if not ashamed.

I mentioned this to the producer of Insight. She then asked if my daughter would also appear on the forum? Her opinion was interesting. Of course. I had told her of another daughter’s opposition to my last partner. Because she is a straight talker, my daughter made no bones about this to me at anyone. Now they want her on the program also. Am I to be crucified?

I have had three long term relationships since their father and I parted, only one of which was a live-in situation. My daughters found it difficult to accept that I was sharing my bed with a ‘strange man!’ Once, when staying the night at my daughter’s home, my man and I were not allowed to share the same bunk bed. He was put on a made-up mattress in the hall outside my room. Morning came and he crept into my bed, where my son-in-law found us when he announced that breakfast was ready...

It was the same when we visited his daughter. We were put in different rooms. No one minded. They were simply making a point. Had we been married, it would have been different, but the main reason we did not wed was to protect their heritage, our estates. The present laws regarding property are bringing about a community of singles, living alone, when they would rather live in pairs, helping each other and living in double harness.

When we visited my man’s sister for the weekend, it was I who was put on a made-up bed on the floor of the sunroom. He slept in a single bed in an adjacent room. My little bunk was very comfortable, and I didn’t mind sleeping there at all, but I woke early and sneaked into his bed where I had company in a strange house. It was not for sex, just simply to avoid feeling lonely. We were lying there chatting, my head on his arm, when they came to awaken us for breakfast. His sister was not amused!

I saw the same look on her face when we were watching television. He and I both put our feet (in socks) on the one pouffe, and our toes eventually touched and sort of caressed. Shock, horror!

I firmly believe that when you are aged, most of the community can hardly bear the thought of you having a love-life. Only those who are involved in a sexual relationship themselves can appreciate how it is.