"They spend the decade in mommy mode rather than sexual mode, and intimacy gets put on the back burner." (There's no bigger libido killer than shrieking toddlers outside your room.) Now that you're no longer three (or four, or five) in a bed, and no longer getting woken up at the crack of dawn, you'll have more energy for the finer things in life—sex among them.

Another bonus: "Many women who are done having kids opt for a more permanent method of birth control such as IUD—or vasectomy for their partner—instead of relying on oral contraceptives, which can dampen sex drive," Streicher says.

Forget doom and gloom in the bedroom at the big four-oh—your sex life can definitely improve, according to research: Women grow increasingly satisfied with their sex lives after they turn 40, finds a University of California San Diego study. All that pays off in the bedroom: a 2010 UK survey of 2000 women found that those in their 40s were less self conscious about their bodies than younger women and, as a result, were more comfortable in between the sheets.

You've seen how much your body can endure, and as a result you're more appreciative of it.

MORE: 7 Things Only People With Anxiety Would Understand 3. While estrogen levels may be dipping during this decade, there's a silver lining: "As you start going through perimenopause, your body's testosterone remains unchanged, while estrogen decreases, creating a high testosterone to estrogen level in your blood," points out Hilda Hutcherson, MD, professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Columbia University Medical Center and author of the sexual advice book, Pleasure.

Testosterone can perk up your sex drive, and you can find yourself hungering after your partner more during this time. Only about 62% of women aged 45 to 54 are currently married, according to the US Census Bureau.

At points in your life you need to be a bit selfish, obviously we're not suggesting that you try to go into your old university pub for a discount pint, but going into a nice after work bar in the city is perfectly fine.

Even if you feel that your age gap is different from the normal customer, it's going to be a thought that is appearing only in your mind, and in no one elses.Also, going through the ups and downs of life gives you the gift of perspective: "Women at this age don't freak out about their cellulite," adds Streicher.MORE: 10 Things Your Breasts Say About Your Health 2. "Most women spend their 30s either pregnant or with young children, which is a real stressor," points out Streicher.Though it was considered odd even ten years ago, it's now actually a huge online dating category!The reality is that older dating sites have members which are the most successful at dating.Or, if you find your libido swinging the other way, you can find no-drug solutions to vaginal dryness, weight gain and other joys of menopause in by Melinda Ring, MD. About 3% are widowed, 19% are divorced, and almost 4% are separated.