Mar 072014

Melanie Davis is presenting Shattering Assumptions about Sex and Aging. Check out Melanie’s bio here.
Melanie Davis

1. How do you see yourself as a catalyst for change?

As co-president of the Sexuality and Aging Consortium, I’m able to call attention to the need for sexuality education, healthcare, and advocacy related to older adults’ sexualities and expression. As this organization grows, we’re fostering change by training professionals, paraprofessionals, students and consumers. It’s an honor to be a leader in this area of specialty.

2. Who or what was a catalyst for you?

My experiences as a Planned Parenthood patient educator and sex educator for my church inspired me to earn my PhD in Human Sexuality Education at Widener University and switch careers from marketing to sexuality education.

3. What do you feel are some of the biggest challenges or concerns facing us in the field of sexuality right now?

The continuing onslaught from sex-negative groups with the money and power to convert harmful agendas into legislation.

4. What do you feel are some of the most important/valuable positive changes that have been made in the world of sexuality in the past year?

Increasing numbers of states recognizing marriage equality and greater numbers of people entering the sexuality education field.

5. Why do you feel it is important to bring this topic Shattering Assumptions about Sex and Aging to CatalystCon East?

I’ll be addressing age-related sexual privilege, i.e., the assumption that sexual attraction, interest, and pleasure aren’t appropriate for people over middle age. It behooves us to honor the sexuality of older adults and to ensure that sexual rights and privileges remain everyone’s to enjoy throughout their lifespan.

6. Share one unknown (or little known) fact about yourself.

My husband and I took first prize in a ballroom dance competition’s “Over Age 40 Paso Doble Show Dance” category. We were the only competitors, but still…

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