And how else will he learn that his batman outfit actually gives you the creeps and does zero for you in the excitement department because a neighbour once played a Halloween trick on you?
Rejection is what we ultimately fear
Often what stops us from communicating openly is our fear of being embarrassed or worse, rejected. We are afraid to ask our partners for what we really want out of fear that they will find our requests repulsive, silly or too demanding: “My darling wife, I’m not a cross-dresser but I’d love to pop your sexy satin nightie on when we make love tonight just to see how it feels…”
We also fear hurting our partner’s feelings if we ask for a change: “Honey, I know you love making out while you’re watching Baywatch but do you think we could turn the TV off tonight?”
The risk is worth it
Being able to communicate in a safe, trusting and loving environment pulls us closer together and leads to greater understanding of our significant other. Yet most of us don’t even know what we want in bed, let alone have the words we need to ask for this or be uninhibited enough to talk about it. However, we can learn to open up and talk about our sexual needs and desires – and develop greater sexual intimacy with our partners.
How to talk to your lover
If you want to improve your sex life, don’t be shy to articulate your sexual needs. This means learning to discuss sex with your partner – asking about their sexual needs and desires, and sharing yours. If this is something new in your relationship, here are some tips to make it easier:
Practice talking about sex: When you are alone, say out aloud what you’d like to try in lovemaking. Once you get used to hearing yourself express your needs, it becomes easier repeating them to your partner.
Discover what you enjoy in sex: If you don’t really know, take time out to find out for yourself. Masturbation is often the best way to do this – try different techniques and props, and concentrate on what feels good. The more you learn about how your body responds to various stimuli and different forms of touch, the better you will be able to communicate this to your partner.
Build a common language: Often, we find talking about sex embarrassing because the way we talk about it differs. You may use certain words that he finds offensive, or vice versa. Here’s a good way to find out what your partner’s preferred sex vocabulary is: both of you make a list of sexual phrases that you prefer to use, then swap lists to see what language you have in common. If your phrases are a lot more racy than his, ask which of yours make him uncomfortable and then tone them down. Once you know what words your partner prefers to use, it’s easier for you both to talk openly to each other using them.
Talk about your expectations of sex: Most of us need certain specific things to happen during sex to make it fully satisfying. Do you need an hour of foreplay before even attempting intercourse – or at least two orgasms before you can sleep? Let your partner know: “Darling, you take two minutes to orgasm during intercourse but I need much longer, so I’d love you to play with my clitoris until I orgasm first, and then we can…” or “I’ve had a stressful week at work and sex helps me to unwind and let go. I know the kids are exhausting but if I help with the cooking and dishes, do you think we could have sex more often, say, a couple of times a week instead of once a month?”
Be honest and open about your needs: Everybody has sexual needs and you can’t expect your partner to read your mind to figure out what yours are. There is no right or wrong way to have sex so don’t assume they will go about it the way you expect them to. Be upfront about what you need and negotiate with your partner so that both of your needs can be met.
Be positive and encouraging: It often seems easier to be critical but this can be hurtful and can lead to a negative reaction in your partner. If you want to ask your partner for change, find an approach that is both positive and expresses appreciation: “I love it when you do that. Can you do it again, just a little softer?”
Use non-verbal language: You don’t need to talk right the way through sex – it’s not always necessary and sometimes your partner may actually find it off-putting. Some well-placed moans and hip thrusts are a good way to show your appreciation and to encourage more of the desired behaviour. Alternatively, you could take your partner’s hand and gently move it to where you want it, to show them what you’d like.
And finally, one of the best ways to communicate with your lover is to let them know when they are doing it right. Cheer them on! Let your body communicate with an arch of your back, with verbal encouragement like “that's it - right there!” or an ecstatic scream. They’ll feel well rewarded for their efforts and be more enthusiastic for the next encore.
Sources of information:
superhotsex – Tracey Cox
The Big Bang: nerve’s guide to the new sexual universe – the writers at nerve
The Good Vibrations Guide to Sex – Cathy Winks and Anne Semans
Learn how to boost your sex life...
Premature ejaculation: techniques to delay his orgasm
Foreplay: why this is sex for women plus great foreplay techniques
Kissing: why it arouses women
Painful sex: why sex sometimes hurts a woman
Dry humping: a saucy alternative to penetrative sex
How to please a woman orally: the lowdown on great cunnilingus
How to give him great oral sex: fellatio techniques and tips
The art of a seductive striptease: how to do it like a professional
Are you ashamed of your genitalia? here's why you shouldn't be
Masturbation: why a little self loving goes a long way
"Tell me I've been a bad boy...!" how to ask for the sex you want
Anal play: why is it a growing trend and how to go about it safely
Female orgasm: all about the clitoris, the G-spot and female ejaculation
The clitoris: where to find it, how it works, how to stimulate it
The G-spot: how to find it, how to stimulate it
Female ejaculation: what it is and how and why it occurs
Erection problems: why impotence occurs and what to do
The secret to stronger orgasms: Kegel exercises for him and her!
Lubrication enhances pleasure: why you should use it - and lots of it
Read our fascinating sex tips...
Did you know...? interesting facts about sex
Spice it up tips: how to rev up your sex life
Sexual health tips: make sure you keep it healthy
Sexual Q&A: your embarassing sex questions answered
Sexcapades: our readers tell us their real sex adventures
Must-reads for toy lovers
Sex toys: what they are and how to use them
Cleaning your sex toys: how to keep them hygienically clean
Are your sex toys safe? some toy materials can be hazardous
General advice and new research
Male and female arousal: are women aroused by watching women?
Do all women have a G-spot? what new research says
Intersexed babies: what to do if your child is one