Dr. Ruth’s Secrets to Vitality

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Dr. Ruth's secrets to vitalityAt 87 years old, Dr. Ruth shows no sign of slowing down.  Last year she was involved in a play about her life, “Becoming Dr. Ruth”, and she’s still making media appearances and fully enjoying life.  When she turned 80, we had a chance to interview her.

Q Dr. Ruth, how do you feel about turning 80?

Considering the alternatives, I feel great, and so far my age hasn’t prevented me from doing most of the things I love, such as teaching at Princeton and Yale. The only concession I’ve had to make is that starting two years ago, I stopped skiing.

Q  What keeps you so vital? 

Writing, teaching, etc. I love teaching at Yale and Princeton. My students don’t know this, but I learn as much from them as they do from me. And while the subject is the Jewish family, towards the end of each class I let them ask me questions on my usual subject. I also love spending time with my family, in particular my grandchildren.

Q  What’s the secret for women to stay sexy at any age?

It’s simple, they just shouldn’t assume that their sex life could be over. There are changes they will encounter, of course, and some may make sex more difficult, like vaginal dryness, but others, such as no longer having to fear an unintended pregnancy and suddenly having so much more privacy when the children have left the nest, make sex better than ever. So as long as a woman takes the right attitude and adapts to any changes, she should be able to continue having sex until she’s well into her 90s.

Q What are your three favorite things about living in NYC? 

I love commotion and there’s always so much going on here. People often try to lure me someplace where there’s a beach, but sitting by a beach is, for me, torture. I don’t want to sit, I want to move.  And in New York there’s always something going on. I almost never stay home at night.  And if I don’t have an invitation, and my friends or family are all busy, I just take a cab over to Lincoln Center, go to the box office and say “Do you have a single ticket for tonight’s performance”, and somehow they always manage to find me a ticket and I’m set.


  • Dr. Ruth Westheimer is a psychosexual therapist who pioneered speaking frankly about sexual matters on radio with her program, Sexually Speaking. It began in September of 1980 as a fifteen minute, taped show that aired Sundays after midnight on WYNY-FM (NBC) in New York. One year later it became a live, one-hour show airing at 10 PM on which Dr. Ruth, as she became known, answered call-in questions from listeners. Soon it became part of a communications network to distribute Dr. Westheimer's expertise which has included television, books, newspapers, games, home video, computer software and her own website, www.drruth.com

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