Sex is one of the most intimate things you can do with another person. But talking about it can be a lot harder that you imagined. You might imagine that your partner will feel bad or feel insecure or it is just a no-no area to talk about. Maybe you’ve had mismatched libidos for a long time and need to find a way of dealing with it. Perhaps you’re struggling with getting an erection or finding sex painful. Or maybe you just want to spice things up – and all the hinting you’ve been doing has been getting you nowhere!
Experts say that opening up to your partner about this aspect of your relationship will make you happier and make sex more enjoyable.
Below are four important principles that will help you communicate about sex with your partner and have a better, more satisfying sex life and relationship.
Pick an appropriate time
An important principle is picking the right time to have the conversation. If you have a lot of pent up feelings about your sex life or things you’ve wanted to bring up in the past but haven’t – chances are you might broach the subject at the wrong time. Other times they tend to talk about sex just after they’ve finished doing the deed. Offering critique about sexual performance or bringing up your unhappiness with your sex life might feel more natural when you’ve just had (or tried to have) sex. But by doing this you’re actually running the risk of creating a conflict and bringing your partner down.
Learning we’re somehow inadequate in bed, just after we’ve finished off, doesn’t make for a great conversation. Instead, you want to talk to your partner about sex at a time when emotions aren’t already running high or you or your significant other aren’t stressed out. Your best bet might be during your free hours at the weekend, or perhaps after you’ve both been able to unwind after work.
Make sure the setting is relaxed
If sex is something you rarely discuss with your partner, you might also want to be extra cautious when thinking about where you have the conversation. For many persons, the bedroom is sexually charged as it’s a common place to have sex. Choosing a setting that isn’t charged with sex or emotion – a neutral one – is a good way of increasing the chances of a constructive discussion.
A more neutral setting might be your kitchen or living room (if these are not places you also have sex or try to have sex). It’s also important to take into consideration whether or not the setting for the conversation should be public or private. You might find it feels more relaxed to talk about sex while going for a walk, as opposed to sitting at home at the kitchen table. But if you choose a public setting, it’s important to make sure your partner also feels comfortable in discussing such a private matter while you’re out and about. This could otherwise turn a perfectly good conversation into an argument!
Express yourself by telling your partner how you feel
When it comes to communication and relationships, and talking about sex specifically, it’s not uncommon to feel a little nervous or shy. After all – you’re talking about something that likely feels a little difficult for one of you at the moment. This is what to do. Tell your partner about how nervous you are to talk about it. If the whole thing makes you turn red, they’re going to notice anyway. Not only will your honesty be refreshing to your partner – it’s also a great icebreaker, and allows them to understand where you’re coming from.
For example, if your libido is low, coming straight out and saying it instead of dancing around it is your best bet. When your partner knows how you feel, they can help make it easier for you. As a result, they make it a point to meet your emotional needs when they know what you’re feeling. win-win for everyone!
Tell them what your preferences are
Sex is a taboo subject, which often means we try and avoid going in to detail when we talk about it. A good sex life is characterized by a lot of different things – one of them is knowledge about each other’s sexual preferences. If you want your partner to start doing something in particular (or stop doing something!), it’s important you let your partner know exactly what you have in mind. This way, you’re ensuring your partner won’t become confused and worried, and increases the chances of you getting what you desire. For example he or she might think this means you want to:
• have sex at least three times a week,
• or you always want to have anal intercourse whenever you have sex,
• or that this somehow is an ultimatum and you’ll break up with them unless all of the above are taken care of immediately.
It’s the combination of a lack of information and being vague in your communication that kick-starts all of this. Communicating in a clear and concise way might sound something like this:
“I like when you spank me until I say stop.”
“I’d like our sex to be rougher.”
“I’d love you to say more things about my body and use the words ‘sexy’ and ‘beautiful’ during sex.”
As opposed to:
“I’d like you for you to talk dirty during sex.”
”I’d like to try a new position called ’x’. It looks like this: (show the position on your mobile phone).”
”I’d like to try a new position”.
In all of the above-mentioned examples you’re talking straight and being clear about what you’d like. This way your partner doesn’t have to worry about you meaning something else, and you might just get what you want!
Communication in relationships can be difficult. Even if you’ve got a handle on communication and relationships in general, talking about sex can sometimes feel daunting. By using the four principles outlined in this blog post, you’re sure to have a better conversation about sex with your partner – one that hopefully leads to a better sex life and a more fulfilling relationship. So where do you start? Here are some tips on how to make your sex talk as helpful, productive and enjoyable as you can.
As a reminder, communicate as often and as clearly as possible using these tips.
• Don’t go in circles, be open and straight-forward about it
• Open up about your fantasies
• Timing is everything
• Take responsibility for your own pleasure
• Be clear – and explain
• Be positive, not critical
• Listen – and ask questions