We’re socialized to not ask for what we want. This applies to promotions, the best looking cookie in the cafe’s pastry case and, of course, sex. When we pointedly ask for what we want, we’re seen as selfish, greedy, finicky and maybe even a little mean. When women ask for what they want in bed they’re stamped with ye olde “slut” badge. When men ask, they’re viewed as non-masculinely picky: you have a penis for fuck’s sake how difficult can it really be to please? No wonder we’re not asking for what we want in the sack.
The assumption that we’re only good at The Sex if we know exactly what our partners want just by getting naked with them is totally absurd. Yet media everywhere (myself included) cash in on giving you tips to “give her what she wants” and “how to blow his mind”.
Well, here’s the simple answer to all of these supposed sexual mysteries: Ask.
This is the truth: if you ask for what you want and need, you are more likely to get it than if you don’t.
Simple, yes, but also deceptively difficult. To be able to ask for what you want in bed, you need to know what you want — a lifelong, ever-changing project. So, let’s break it down.
What do you want, generally speaking? This category is especially clutch when you start sleeping with a newbie, who knows nothing.
I like greeting my new sex friends with a basic welcome letter, but this template will help anyone looking to jumpstart sexual communication:
Hey, Z., I’m so excited that we’ve decided that we’re going to have The Sex. Before we get started there are a few things you should know: I love using lube all the time, the more the better. Don’t take it so personally. You can pull my hair harder than you think and my clitoris is more of a turn-table than a light-switch.
Looking forward, Y.
Don’t know your general sexual desires? Exploring porn, smut, erotica and masturbation can go a long way in helping you discover them.
What do you want, in-the-moment? Communicating about your wants when it’s happening can require some bravery but is the best way to an orgasm. These are your “to the left,” your “harder”s and your “no, not that hard”s. People often dupe themselves into thinking that there are a limited number of directives you can make during sex. You work up the courage to ask for two fingers instead of one and then you’re like “Well, shit. I already asked the finger question so now I should keep my mouth shut about lube.” This is what the French call le bullshit. Ask as many questions as it takes to get you there. Reward your partner’s good direction-taking with moans and groans.
Of course, stating what you want doesn’t mean you will get it. Good sex is actively negotiated between partners in an environment where everyone feels comfortable stating what they do and don’t want, right now or ever-in-a-million.
Create a culture of asking with your sexual partner. This can be as simple as saying “Tell me what you want!” and is easily encouraged by asking them sexy, dirty-talk questions like “Ya like that, baby?”(Note to ‘baby’: it’s ok to be like “Actually, no, no I don’t.”)
Establishing a culture of asking won’t only bring more sexual pleasure to The Asker, but the Direction-Taker can relax and trust that you’ll ask for what you want instead of second-guessing themselves as they pull out every sex trick in their bangin’ book, internally rating your corresponding grunts on a scale of “Never stop doing that ever” to “Abort! ABORT!”
Maybe what you want is just to explore and experiment. You can ask for that, too. Asking isn’t just reserved for your longterm relationships. You can also ask your Tinder dates what they want, too. Everyone will have a better time if they can focus on rocking your body right instead of reading your mind right, am I right?