United for Marriage: Dynamics of Elderly Couples


  • Beatriz Porpino do Rosário Chacon
  • Janari da Silva Pedroso


In the face of aging population and the fluidity of intimate relationships, this qualitative study aimed to understand the conjugal dynamics of elderly couples who have been together for more than 20 years. Reflections about the aging, the conjugality formation and the marriage transformations were made by the psychodynamic bias. The Mini-Exam of the Mental State was applied to five Brazilian couples aged from 60 to 83 years old, with an average marriage time of 41.6 years, who were at last interviewed. Such interviews were guided by a semi-directed script with identifying data and five questions previously elaborated according to the research objective. This content was analyzed and their results were thematized showing that couples perceive marriage as a union requiring commitment and sharing of life projects. It was concluded that even amidst a hedonist society, the elderly are not yet thoughtful of individuality, because love for them has a connotation other than a sum of pleasurable moments.