Initiating Sex

Initiating Sex

Does your partner usually initiate sex?  What do you do that you may think it is impossible for you to begin the dialogue and initiate the sex that you desire; after all, sex is not something we usually talk about.  If you are reading this tip, it is apparent that you want to have more sex, but you are not sure how to go about getting it.  Do not worry, this is common, many people feel awkward initiating sex because they are too shy.  In fact, a fear of getting rejected can also be a common accomplice to one’s shyness.   If you are afraid that your partner is going to shoot you down then it is time that you take a risk!  But do not get overwhelmed; there are many small steps you can take to start the dialogue with your partner.  Here are some suggestions to get you going (that can be used at home in Center City or with a counselor in couples counseling) :

Talk to your partner.  Talk to your partner. Talk to your partner. Get the idea?

Put yourself in a safe place to start the dialogue. For some this means in the privacy of your own home, at a therapy office with a sex therapist, with your pastor, on the telephone….. Do whatever you need to do to build the courage to talk to your partner. And when you do . . . 

Be Direct: tell them that you want to have more sex; they are likely thinking the same thing.  Too shy to initiate a conversation?  Don’t worry, so are a lot of people.  But you do not have to be as forward as you think you need to be.  In fact, there are many subtle things you can do that will let your partner know that you are interested without making yourself too vulnerable for the rejection sting.  Here are a few subtle suggestions to let your partner know you are interested in more sex:

Leave a note You can place a note somewhere obvious so your partner gets an idea that you are interested in on some action.  Write a post-it that says: “Come back to bed, I have a present for you.”  Place the post-it on the bathroom mirror after your partner goes to bed to make sure it is the first thing they see in the morning.  Once your partner comes back to bed, smile and ask if they saw your note.  Now you have the opportunity for some early morning love making that can get both of your days off to a great start!

Send a text.  Let your partner know that you are looking forward to hooking-up with them at the end of a busy day by sending them a text that is out of the usual for you.  Let them know you are thinking about them and are excited to be intimate later.  Something as simple as “I can’t wait to see you after work, I’ll meet you in bed :-P”  lets them know that you are interested in sex later and it can give them something to look forward to as well.  Word of Caution:  Texts, along with emails can easily be forwarded to friends and strangers. Thus be careful with what you write. Keep the literal words safe.  For example,  “I can’t wait to see you tonight . . . “  is relatively harmless.  In contrast writing “I can’t wait to have your hard cock up my wet ass” would be problematic in the wrong hands.  Additionally, sexting from a minor, or to a minor is illegal.  Underage sexting has serious long term consequences.

Start a Conversation: if you are comfortable enough to start a conversation with your partner about your desire to have more sex it is important to make the focus of your conversation about why you are hesitant to initiate sex–the fear of rejection.  Help your partner to understand what you want.  Think about what you feel when your partner initiates sex.  For example, you may think, “It makes me feel attractive when my partner seeks out sex from me.”  This is what you enjoy about your partner initiating sex; it makes you feel fulfilled in a respect because your partner wants your body.  Yet you are afraid that if you try to initiate sex with your partner they will not go along with it and as a result you will not feel attractive.  To avoid this fear it is important to tell your partner how you feel when they initiate sex to ensure that understand what you are thinking.   For example, you may begin by saying: “I understand that you initiate sex all the time, I just feel insecure.  I would like to have sex more often, but I am afraid that you will shoot me down and then I will not feel attractive and will not want to try again.  Please try to recognize when I am initiating sex and go along with it so I know can build up my confidence.”  Saying something like this gets the dialogue started and can inform your partner that you are looking to have more sex.  Also, it will help them to understand what you are thinking and this new understanding will help them to be more sensitive to your sexual needs.  Or if you are looking for a more subtle way to start the conversation you can talk about sexual experiences that you have recently enjoyed.

During the conversation, you can ask your partner what they like about your sex life.  It is easy to talk about sex in positive terms.  When you are reflecting on the good aspects of your sex life it is difficult to offend your partner; however, if it is not something that you often talk about it could be embarrassing to bring up the topic.  Here is one way you avoid the embarrassment, plan ahead for the conversation in your mind.  It could go something like this:

Another approach to the conversation is to pick a time when the two of you are relaxing a reading a book together or watching television.  You could comment on one of the characters approaches to sex, or sexual experiences and say “that would never work for me, I really like it when you ….. or Hey, I think they are onto something,  I really like it when ……Is that the same for you? This conversation could help to clue your partner into your sexual desires, likes and / or wants.

If you can’t find a good scene on the television, and the moment feels right, you could simply say, “I really liked when you nibbled on my ear as you began kissing me all over my body.”  An innocent compliment can get a fascinating conversation going.  Once the dialogue has begun, it will become easier for you to reveal your desire “I want to increase the frequency of sex, what are your thoughts?”   Frequently, the hardest part about talking about sex is having the courage to start the conversation. If part of the frequency problem is that you are not initiating enough, you could ask your partner to promise to respond positively while you are building your sexual confidence.

Compliment your partner on a recent sexual experience. The more specific you can be about your partner’s style, approach, technique that was used, the more likely it is that your partner will be able to a) identify what you are talking about and more importantly, replicate it again. Compliments build a person’s sexual self esteem.  Higher levels of sexual self esteem, enable people to feel more sexy and thus become more willing to take risks in the bedroom.

One of the most critical pieces to having good sex is the willingness to take a risk.  Gaining the confidence to initiate sex takes practice. Nobody is good at it on the first attempt.  Remember, the very act of identifying ways to initiate sex (sometimes even brainstorming with friends and / or your lover, can be very calming.  That way, in the moment, you will have a better idea of what to do.

There are plenty of options for you and your partner to take charge; you just have to be willing to try.  Lastly, just because one person initiates does not mean that the other person will automatically be in the mood.  Saying no in the moment, does not mean that sex is unwanted. Rather the No may be more reflective of what is going on in the moment.

Change is possible .   Feel free to contact one of our sex therapists / couples counselors at Sex Therapy in Philadelphia.