Let’s talk about sex. Better yet, let’s talk about talking about sex. How do we communicate to our partner what we like and don’t like so that he: a) understands and does things better next time, and b) isn’t horribly offended?
Let’s walk down memory lane for a minute. Most of us have had the experience of thinking that we struck gold when we hooked up with someone really gorgeous and totally our type. Only to find out that he uses his tongue to dig for China when he goes down on us. Or he has no idea where our most important lady bit is located.
Did you tell him to be gentler? Did you take his hand and place it where you’d like it to be? Or did you let it slide because you felt too embarrassed, both for yourself and him, to address his ineptitude? Perhaps you thought he is fun to go out with, lest we forget gorgeous, so you didn’t want to risk hurting his feelings and having the relationship end.
Experiences like that are a huge letdown. Remembering it many years later can still make you cringe. It’s even worse if you experience sexual dissatisfaction with your longtime partner. You love them to pieces for so many reasons, but do you love them enough to spend the rest of your life longing for something in the bedroom that they are not giving you?
How Men Think
Ladies, fortunately for us, men are actually quite easy to understand: If you don’t tell them about an issue, the issue doesn’t exist! This applies across the board, from sex moves in the bedroom to leaving the toilet seat up and everything in between.
(Oh, how much I wish my brain functioned that way. It would save me so much energy, if I could just stop proactively guessing and worrying about my partner’s concerns.)
For a variety of evolutionary reasons, most men have inferior perceptive abilities as compared to women when it comes to reading emotions, from judging the tone of voice to reading body language. This explains why many guys are clueless when we are clearly sending them the ‘I like you’ signals. Or, on the other hand, when they sometimes don’t get the point when we are clearly trying to politely snub them.
So while it is possible to convey some basic ideas and sexual nuances to a man without talking – via games and special tricks – if you want to explain why you are not ready for bondage or inviting another woman into your bed, you’ll have to use verbal communication. Otherwise, your partner just won’t get you, and the prospect of a whip will loom again next time.
What’s the big deal with claiming you have a headache every time he suggests doing something you are not into, you may ask? Here’s the simple truth about men and sex: if you keep rejecting their bedroom ideas but never explain why, they can take it as an ultimate personal rejection and permanently lose their sexual desire for you. And with that goes the relationship. There are many long-term couples that have little or no sex. And guess what, the vast majority of them feel miserable. Sexual dissatisfaction is the #1 cause of failed marriage. Of course sexual dissatisfaction can have non-bedroom sources like money problems, but failing to explain what you want and don’t want in bed is a sure way to slowly but surely kill the intimate connection between you and your partner.
How Women Think
Us women are known for our propensity to talk talk talk. But when it comes to sex, many of us act as if our tongue was made exclusively for kissing or, if our partner is lucky, oral sex.
Come on ladies, let’s extend our Olympic talking skills to the bedroom! It’s perfectly OK, and actually essential if you want to have great sex with your partner, to be able to share with him that you don’t particularly enjoy having your nipples twisted like radio dials.
Almost every question we receive from the women we’ve worked with starts with, “How do I tell him…” or “How do I make him…”. But before you learn the “how”, first you have to learn to actually talk to your partner about sex!
Interestingly, what many women struggle with is not just admitting their kinky fantasies, but simply telling their partners that they are not getting their fair share of pleasure from sex. Who really wants to make her guy feel “less manly” by bringing it up to his attention that he is not as wonderful in bed as he probably thinks?
Conversations about sex can get extremely embarrassing and make even the most experienced adult feel like an awkward teenager. And while our European brothers and sisters across the pond are so easy-going about intimacy that some couples go as far as hiring sex counselors to oversee the process, many American couples are more reserved. We often hear things like, “Sex is a natural process, we can figure it out ourselves.” Sure, couples can try to DIY it, but then they shouldn’t be too surprised a few years down the road when they are barely having sex and it’s causing tension in their relationship. Frustration and disharmony will keep this crack growing and sooner or later it will turn into an abyss. The two will become strangers, with nothing holding to bridge the divide. They will inevitably become a failed relationship, just another statistic.
How to Tell Him What You Want in Bed
Gently but clearly tell you partner what you don’t like in bed. Be tactful but honest. Any doublespeak should be nipped in the bud. The best approach is to describe how you feel rather than blame him. “This doesn’t work for me. Let’s try something different,” works great for this kind of situation.
Now that you’ve finally voiced the issue, immediately tell him what you would like him to do to you instead. Every woman should know her own body well enough to help a man navigate around it. If you’ve read Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus, or the other millions of books and blogs out there on the differences between men and women, you will know that the male species lives to find solutions to problems. Without immediately showing your partner how he can please you better, you risk leaving him feeling like he just doesn’t have a key to your body. And this could crush him.
Men are visual creatures so it’s best to guide them with real life demonstrations. For example, you can touch yourself first, then have him mirror what you did. Show him your erogenous zones, explain where to push and how hard, where to be more gentle and where to add some spark. This is a must. Draw him a map. He is not psychic, after all.
Still not convinced or feeling shy? Remind yourself that for most men, watching a woman pleasure herself is a huge erotic fantasy. So play up to those fantasies and mask the fact that you’re actually giving him a lesson in how you want to be touched. And don’t forget how he will be beyond satisfied with himself when he sees you respond to his new more masterful touch.
And, finally, don’t fret about your sexual chemistry with your partner not being spontaneously perfect. Creating and sustaining long-term chemistry requires regular heavy lifting in the form of openly communicating about your likes, dislikes and fantasies, and reaffirming to yourself daily why you love and want to keep experience strong intimacy with the same person. Unfortunately there is no magic pill for creating a lifelong spark. It is a daily commitment that we must make. We will talk more about that in another post.