It's the simplest thing, and yet so few of us do it.
I'm talking, of course, about asking for what you want in bed.
This is something gay couples tend to excel at, mainly because queer sex usually necessitates a bit more negotiation - eg: "Are you a top or a bottom?", "Do you prefer penetration or no penetration?", "How do you feel about strap-ons?", etc.
Heteronormative culture short-changes straight couples by framing the conversation around sex as something that essentially begins and ends after the clothes start coming off. In porn and the movies, we never see anyone ask for consent, set boundaries, or discuss their expectations once the sexy soundtrack begins.
So it’s rare for heterosexual people, particularly women, to communicate what they want (and don’t want) between the sheets. Which may explain why research shows just 63 per cent of women who have sex with men climax during sex.
It’s especially not uncommon for women to email me confessing they’re not enjoying intimacy with their partners or that they’ve been faking their orgasms.
These women usually say they feel embarrassed about asking their husbands for what they want, or admit they’ve never thought to explore what they might be into, and so don’t know what to ask for.
It’s striking, really – that most of us feel less confronted by the prospect of getting naked with another person than we do by having a conversation about what gets us off.
Unfortunately, if we don't communicate with the person we share a bed with, unless our significant other happens to possess mind-reading powers, mutually satisfying nookie becomes a near impossibility. And more often than not, this leads to sexlessness and resentment in relationships.
The good news is, having the kind of sex you want is very achievable once you overcome the hurdle of opening up that first discussion with your partner.
And if you don't know what you want yet?
Porn and masturbation are two great ways of discovering that. In fact, it’s my opinion every woman needs to invest in a vibrator and put aside at least an hour a week to explore her body alone, without the pressure of performing for a partner. This is truly one of the best and most underrated ways to learn what you like in bed.
Will that first conversation be easy? Look, probably not.
We’ve been conditioned to feel enormous (albeit unnecessary) shame around sex, so addressing it may mean surfing through some discomfort.
Thankfully, the more you make talking about sex a part of your intimate life (because it absolutely should be an ongoing discussion, so you can evolve with one another as your desires and needs change), the easier it gets.
You have a right to have the kind of sex you want. Stop letting fear and shame hold you back, and make today the day you start the conversation. I promise you won’t regret it.
You can thank me later.