Looking for Better Sex?
How about talking to her
Bedroom boredom is a bad, bad thing, and it's totally unnecessary. According to the panel of experts we keep standing by just for these situations, all that's standing between you and the sex life of your filthiest dreams is learning to communicate what you really want. So if you're doing pages 1 through 4 of the Kama Sutra, but not pages 12 through 20--and never page 84--it's time for a little chat with that woman hogging the covers. Here's how three guys were instructed to get past their coital-conversation issues, and how you can too.
PROBLEM #1: YOU WANT SOMETHING, BUT YOU DON'T KNOW HOW TO ASK FOR IT.
John had always been a fan of a certain non-missionary position, but was afraid that Lisa would think he had lost respect for her if he requested it. He alluded to it indirectly from time to time, but she never took the hint ... and he never found out if she was willing.
* Go ahead and tell her what you want.
"You'll get the best results by telling her the truth--whether or not she wants to try the same things that you do, she'll be encouraged by your honesty," says Pepper Schwartz, Ph.D., a professor of sociology at the University of Washington in Seattle and author of Everything You Know About Love and Sex Is Wrong. "Say, 'There are certain things I want to include in our sex life,' and tell her what they are. Or get a book of sexual positions and read it together, just to get a discussion going. Talk about things you like or don't like, including specific acts you'd like to try."
* Be respectful. "If you want to discuss changes in the bedroom, bring them up during a nonsexual situation when you can talk about it calmly," says Julian Slowinski, Psy. D., a Philadelphia psychologist and sex therapist and co-author of The Sexual Male: Problems and Solutions. "Do it nicely, with the understanding that you might not get what you ask for. On the other hand, she might be receptive to what you have in mind--but you'll never know until you ask, so speak up."
* Discuss it indirectly. "If you're worried about making her nervous, the easiest way to ask is to use a third-party reference," suggests William Fitzgerald, Ph.D., a sex therapist in San Jose, Calif. "Say, 'I was talking to a buddy who said his girlfriend did this or that to him.... Would you be willing to try it?' Avoid saying, point-blank, 'I want us to try that.' If you phrase it in those words and she says no, afterward she'll be worried that you'll find someone else to do it with. If you phrase it in more ambiguous terms, there's less risk for her."
PROBLEM #2: YOU WANT SOMETHING, BUT SHE DOESN'T KNOW HOW TO DO IT.
Rita had had few sexual partners before Tony, and had never done the act that he wanted to try. He was willing to instruct her, but was afraid of making her feel inadequate.
* Give her the benefit of the doubt. "Don't hold her inexperience against her.... The fact that she's hasn't tried a lot of different things doesn't mean she isn't willing to learn," Slowinski says. "If she is, try to educate her without being patronizing or putting her down. Watching 'adult sex education' videos together can be very helpful in these situations."
* Don't sound critical. "The words you use are very important," Fitzgerald says. "If there's a specific thing you want to teach her, what works most effectively is to say something like, 'Guys are different in the way they want to be touched.... Let me tell you what my body likes.' That keeps you from sounding as if you're reprimanding her for not knowing what to do."
* Make it easy. "Just play around ... try to keep things light and fun," says Schwartz. "If she's worried that she won't do it right, reassure her that it doesn't have to be done perfectly to feel good. Say, 'If you do this with me, the last thing I'll be thinking is that it's too bad you're not an expert.'"
PROBLEM #3: YOU WANT SOMETHING, BUT SHE SAYS SHE DOESN'T WANT TO DO IT.
When Allen asked Summer to participate in a certain bedroom maneuver, she said, "I've never liked doing that." He didn't want to pressure her and let the matter drop, but felt their sex life had suffered as a result.
* Deal with her issues. "Try to find out what's behind her reluctance," Slowinski says. "If you know what's really going on, in some situations you may be able to change her mind. For instance, if she's had a bad experience with a certain act, you can try to make her feel better about it. If she has a religious background, ask her why she thinks something is wrong'.... It's possible she has a misunderstanding of what her religion really teaches about sexuality. Or if she hasn't enjoyed a certain act in the past, she may be willing to try it again with you if she's comfortable with your relationship in general. Of course, if she isn't, you won't get anywhere by pressuring her."
* Be adaptable. "Break the act down into compound pieces to find out what part she's objecting to," Fitzgerald suggests. "Say, 'Help me understand; what is it about this that you dislike?' You may find that there's only one aspect of it that bothers her, in which case you can deal with that part or do it differently."
* Plead monogamy. "If you're in an exclusive relationship, let her understand that you want to increase your level of intimacy by broadening the scope of your lovemaking," says Schwartz. "If you say, 'I only want to be with you ... but that means you're my only hope for doing this now,' she'll probably be understanding."
In the unlikely event that she still says no even after all this, what can you do? We didn't even have to go to the experts to field that one.... Like so many sexually frustrated men before you, you'll take up golf.
next: Tips For Amazing Sex
Last Updated: 01 April 2016
Reviewed by Harry Croft, MD