Q: I am a 33-year-old woman and recently got engaged to the man of my dreams. I love everything about my partner and am so excited about starting our lives together. But there is a problem — our sex life. He has never been very adventurous in the bedroom, and lately I have noticed that he seems uncomfortable or ill at ease when performing oral sex. I love receiving oral sex (and giving it!), but I don’t want to feel like I am making my fiancé pleasure me. When I asked him about it, he got upset and said he felt attacked — but I am the one who is hurt! What can we do?
A: Many couples struggle with oral-sex issues. It is not uncommon for people to feel intimidated by the idea of oral sex, and it is also not uncommon for people to worry that the act itself is dirty or unclean. There are many religious taboos when it comes to oral sex and along with the fact that the act itself is so intimate and rarely discussed, it’s no wonder so many couples grapple with this pleasurable activity.
While your struggle is not uncommon, there are a few things you can consider when it comes to oral sex (and your sex life in general):
Shower together. If he isn’t comfortable with oral sex because he is concerned about cleanliness, you might consider showering together before performing/receiving oral sex. It will help him to feel more comfortable, not to mention, it can be a fun addition to your foreplay.
Don’t ignore sex issues. You did the right thing by talking to your partner about your feelings, but unfortunately it sounds like it didn’t go so well. He said he felt attacked, and you mention that you feel hurt as well. It might be time to have another conversation about this topic, but this time be careful not to approach it in a way that will put him on the defensive.
Instead, say something like, “I love our sex life and I love being intimate with you. I always enjoy giving you what you need in the bedroom, but sometimes I worry that you don’t enjoy oral sex or that it makes you uncomfortable in some way.” Or you might say something like, “I really want to make our sex lives a priority in our marriage. Do you have any fantasies or feedback for me that can help me please you even more?”
Get hands-on. Once your partner gives you some insight into why he is resistant to oral sex (most likely he is worried that he is doing it wrong or that you aren’t enjoying yourself), you can tackle the issue from there. Men are often intimidated when performing oral sex on a woman — they worry that they aren’t even remotely in the right area or that your moans and coos are disingenuous. Who can blame them? The female body is mysterious, and even women have trouble figuring out how to give themselves pleasure.
So what can you do? Get educated together and become oral-sex experts. There are a number of great resources out there, including How to Give Her Absolute Pleasure by Lou Paget and She Comes First: The Thinking Man’s Guide to Pleasuring a Woman by Ian Kerner. You can get in on the action, too, and brush up on your own technique by reading Passionista: The Empowered Woman's Guide to Pleasuring a Man, also by Ian Kerner. Erotic movies for couples are also a great option — they tend to give you an up-close-and-personal view of oral sex, so not only will they put you in the mood but will also show you plenty of techniques and positions to try.
Remember, every couple struggles with sex issues. It is how they handle them (try communication, kindness, and a willingness to work at it) that dictates how successful their relationship will be. Good luck!
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