We teach you how to stay cool when things get hot
Whether you’re with a potential one-night-stand or a steady partner, it can be difficult to initiate sex. Even if you feel that your initiative will be well received, sometimes it is not clear how you can take the first step without sounding suspicious, without pressuring the person or risking rejection. (It’s worth mentioning here that rejection isn’t the end of the world, really!)
Sex educator Flinn Ripple said many people don’t have the emotional intelligence and understanding to initiate sex the right way. “Everyone has issues with sexuality, and that can lead to fear, inadequate language to describe what we feel and ask for what we want,” Ripple said.
But it’s not necessarily a bad thing to feel a little uncomfortable when we want to take the first step. Cyndi Darnell, sex therapist and author of Sex When You Don’t Feel Like It: The Truth About Mismatched Libido and Rediscovering Desire, said it’s normal to feel at least a little weird when you initiate sex. If you don’t feel weird, it probably means you’re not thinking about the other person’s reaction at all. And that’s not good, especially if you want to have sex with her
Ok, so how do you initiate sex?
First, talk about sex outside the bedroom
Many people think that sex happens by itself. But Darnell said it’s helpful to talk to your potential partner about what turns you on and what your expectations are. This reduces the risk of you violating certain boundaries, being confused or hurting each other.
“Whether you’re having sex with someone for the first time or with a more established partner, it’s important to know what the other person wants and what you want in order to build an exciting dynamic,” Darnell said.
For example, Ripple explained that maybe you want wilder sex and your partner wants tender sex to feel safe and connected with you.
In order not to create confusion, it is good to ask a few questions: In what state are you at the moment? Do you like soft or harder sex? Do you want a one-night-stand, a fuck buddy or a relationship? Are there things you’d like to try and things that don’t appeal to you at all?
It sets the mood before sex
Create the right atmosphere for you to take the first step. Ripple says this requires awakening your partner’s senses. Maybe you want to dim the lights in the room, light some candles, play some sexy music. It’s a good idea to get your laptop off the bed and put your phone on silent so your partner isn’t distracted before you start.
But none of that matters if the timing is bad. If your partner is stressed or tired or busy with some task, it’s probably not the right time to initiate sex. Even if it does, it will probably be on the run and you won’t be able to enjoy it.
Read your partner’s body language
Darnell advises you to pay attention to body language, which gives you signals that your partner may not verbalize.
If your partner smiles, makes eye contact, and mimics your behaviour, that’s good. But you should also pay attention to other cues, like if your partner seems disinterested, withdraws, or doesn’t make eye contact.
You can try prolonged eye contact, a hand on the forearm or thigh, or some kisses on the neck.
Be direct and understanding, but don’t put pressure on your partner
When initiating sex, many people fear that they will cross some boundaries and pressure their partner to do what they don’t want to do.
Darnell suggests being direct and assertive and telling your partner how it makes you feel. For example: “I’m really excited to be with you. I’d like to show you this physically, but I’m not sure you feel the same way.”
This does not mean that you pressure the other person, but that you communicate how you feel and what you want. “It’s like an invitation to join you in a space that you feel, and he or she decides whether they want to or not,” Darnell said. Thus, initiating sex becomes an open-ended question that allows the partner to decide what he or she wants.