12 June 2008

Learn to talk about sex

You talk to your partner about what you'll be having for supper, who won the cricket and about how much you like her pencil skirt - but not a word about your life in the sack.

You talk to your partner about what you'll be having for supper, who won the cricket and about how much you like her pencil skirt - but not a word about your life in the sack. Time to start.

Some relationships have no-go areas, even tacit, unspoken deals like “I won’t ask you whether you still email your ex, and you won’t ask me about how much I spend on shoes”.

But whether you’re new to a relationship or have been in one since World War Two, you should talk to your partner about it. After all, it’s something you share, like what to have for supper or what to watch on TV.

The funny thing is that the more you talk about mundane things – and listen to your partner talking about them – the better your sex life is likely to be.

Forget movies like Unfaithful and Damage, where couples meet just for wordless, pyrotechnic copulation. If they happen, they’re rare and they don’t last.

Logically enough, saying you like the way your partner looks and feels will be good for the level of intimacy between you. And if you’re only nice to your partner when you’re after sex, don’t expect any fireworks. She’ll be onto you in a minute, and not in the way you’d like.

Share your desire
Talk about why you find her attractive in very specific, even graphic terms. A mole behind the knee, freshly shaven legs, an evocative voice – having these attributes pointed out can do wonders for a woman.

Touching her outside the bedroom is only part of it. Actually being nice to her without expecting intercourse 18 seconds later will do your shares some good as well. Non-sexual touching will increase the likelihood of sexual touching.

The more companiable and regular this touching and talking is, the more likely you are to be able to talk about intimate stuff, like all the hot and nasty things you want to do to her and want her to do to you. This will also be easier if it’s couched in non-accusatory terms – not “I keep hoping you’ll. . . but you never do.” Rather, “It drives me nuts when you …”

Take note of subtle nuances while actually making love. Obvious signs like erect nipples and moistening genitalia mean you’re onto a good thing. If she pushed your hand or head away, try something else. If she makes agreeable noises, holds your hand or head where it is, arches her back or moves to get more comfortable, keep going.

Keep Kylie out of it
If you’d had a bit of a hiatus in your sex life together, getting too adventurous the first time out might be a bit daunting for her. But don’t let this put you off asking her what she wants. She may want to talk about sexual fantasies, and may want you to talk about yours. A word of caution: go easy on the references to former lovers and Kylie Minogue.

The matter of frequency might be an issue. Some couples are happy with getting it on once a week, or once a night. In other relationships, the bloke spends weeks in silent frustration, while his partner becomes increasingly miffed at how demanding he is and how “It’s all he ever thinks about”.

This often happens in more mature relationships where the initial do-it-anywhere, do-it-all-the-time ardour has faded. But when frustration and guilt build, it can result in a vicious circle, where each partner dreads the countdown to bedtime, knowing it heralds disappointment and resentment.

Get help
Talking about it should help. If it doesn’t, speaking to a therapist might. You could also try the non-confrontational route of finding a newspaper article that deals with the subject, as a way of reducing inhibitions about the subject.

If you go on about it though, you might frustrate your own efforts anyway. Your partner might start thinking, “I wish he’d stop emailing me this stuff – it’s all he ever thinks about”. Therapy time.

Another reason it’s good to get help is that some couples drift into a kind of emotional blackmail, where sex becomes a weapon: “You were out drinking with the boys, so no nooky for you for a week”. That’s human nature for you, but it’s bad for relationships. - (Health24)


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