Friday, October 10, 2008
Woman, 105, Credits No Sex for Long Life AOL
Clara Meadmore, who celebrates her 105th birthday Saturday, says she knows the secret to a long life: no sex.
The retired secretary, who lives in a nursing home in Cornwall, southwestern Britain, says she is a virgin and has no regrets about it, according to reports in British newspapers.
"I've always had lots of platonic friendships with men but never felt the need to go further than that or marry," The Telegraph quoted her as saying.
Meadmore said she had turned down several marriage proposals, but she made up her mind when she was 12 that she would never marry.
"People have asked whether I am a homosexual and the answer is no. I have just never been interested in or fancied having sex," the Daily Mail quoted her as saying.
"I imagine there is a lot of hassle involved and I have always been busy doing other things," she said. "When I was a girl you only had sex with your husband -- and I never married."
Meadmore was born in Glasgow, Scotland, in 1903 -– two years after the death of Queen Victoria. She remembers the sinking of the Titanic in 1912. When she was 7, her family moved first to Egypt, then to Canada and New Zealand. She returned to Britain when she was in her 20s and eventually settled in Cornwall, according to the newspaper reports.
"I grew up in an era where little girls were to be seen and not heard so I had to learn to stand up for myself and earn my own living," said Meadmore, who still has her own hair and teeth. "Some men don't like that in a woman and before long I was too old to marry anyway."
She plans to celebrate her 105th birthday with a party at the Perran Bay nursing home, where she lives in Perranporth, Cornwall. Queen Elizabeth II sent her a birthday card.