Using Your Strap-On with Your Long-Term Partner

photo of a man and woman in underwear, kneeling on a bed holding each other

Using Your Strap-On with Your Long-Term Partner (Sex Therapy in Philadelphia)

If you don’t have a strap-on yet, Your First Strap-On will teach you about your options before buying your first strap-on. If you aren’t yet comfortable with the idea or logistics of using your strap-on, Using Your Strap-On will help you feel comfortable, confident, and sexy. 

Now, we’ll focus on how to introduce your strap-on into your relationship.

So you rocked the first few steps; you bought a strap-on that works for your body and you’ve gotten comfortable wearing it and moving in it. Even if you’re feeling confident and sexy using your strap-on on your own, you may still feel a little unsure about how to introduce your strap-on into your relationship and use your strap-on with a partner. Introducing any new activity into your sex life can be intimidating, but the key is confidence. Remember, your desires are natural and sexy. If you are comfortable with what you want and why you want it, that comfort will come across in your communication with your partner.

Preparing for the Conversation

Maybe you’ve been living together for a few years or maybe you’ve been married for a few decades, either way, you and your partner have grown to know each other well and have probably navigated some pretty big bumps in the road along the way. You’re in a uniquely strong position to introduce a strap-on in your relationship.

When your relationship has reached a place where you know what to expect from sex, it is a natural desire to want to shake things up. While there is comfort in routine, it can be very exciting and arousing to explore something new. Think about why you want to incorporate a strap-on into your relationship and how you might share that desire with your partner. You may say something like, “I would really like to try something new in the bedroom. I’ve been thinking about what it might be like to use a strap-on with you and it really turns me on.”

Communicating about sex can make you feel all sorts of things, from uncomfortable to turned on and anything in between. If you’re feeling uncomfortable, explore that! Are you coming into this new experience for your pleasure, your partner’s pleasure, or both? Do you feel confident in what you want and why you want it? Maybe you expect this new experience will make you feel sexy, powerful, vulnerable, turned on. Tune into those feelings and be ready to communicate not only your desires but what fulfilling those desires could feel like for you. You may say something like, “I would love it if you’d penetrate me with a strap-on, I think it would feel so erotic to be penetrated by you in that way” or “I would really like to penetrate you with a strap-on, strap-ons make me feel so sexy and confident and I think it would feel great for both of us.”

As you prepare to introduce your strap-on into your relationship ask yourself: Have you and your partner ever talked about using a strap-on? Did they express desire, uncertainty, anxiety, excitement? How might this conversation play out? What is the best possible response? What is a potential undesired response? How will you cope if you receive an undesired response? You might want to start the conversation by checking in on their comfort level, saying something like, “I want to talk about sex, are you in a space for that?” or asking them, “Do you have anything that turns you on that you want to explore?” to start a conversation about mutual desires.

What can you do to alleviate some of the discomfort you may feel in having this conversation? Do you typically prepare for conversations with your partner? Are you more comfortable communicating spontaneously as things come up? How about your partner, do they need time to prepare for conversations or does that make them anxious? Spend some time reflecting on what would make this conversation feel more natural for both you and your partner. Consider asking your partner directly, “What can we do to make this conversation more comfortable for you?”

It may be helpful to think about your role in the conversation, your expectations for the conversation, and potential outcomes of the conversation beforehand. Think about how you typically negotiate sexual and non-sexual boundaries with your partner, do you tend to have a more active or passive role in these conversations? What’s your partner’s typical role? How do you imagine your typical roles playing out in this conversation? If you feel like your role is usually very passive or very active, consider potential modifications to your communication style that would make this conversation feel more balanced. 

Take a moment to reflect on all of those good feelings your strap-on brought you and what feelings it might bring when you introduce your strap-on into your relationship.

Communication and Sex

When you’re talking to your partner, be mindful that you’ve had some time to become comfortable with the idea of using a strap-on and afford them the opportunity to do the same. Your partner’s boundaries and desires may be different from yours; and while they may shift over time as your partner is able to process and reflect on the idea of using a strap-on, they may not. You may want to ask them to read Your First Strap-On and/or Using Your Strap-On so that they can learn more about and increase their comfort with strap-ons. It can be helpful to communicate your attraction to your partner and relate it to your ask. You might say something like, “You’re so sexy, I just can’t get the thought of you railing me with a strap-on out of my mind” or you can get specific with something like, “Your (insert body part here) is so I perfect, I can’t resist. I want you to feel my strap inside of you.”

Be intentional with both your verbal and non-verbal messages; you can communicate your desire to your partner through closeness, eye contact, and touch. Remain aware of what your partner is communicating to you both verbally and non-verbally. Be mindful of your partner’s body language and facial expressions and the cadence and tone of their speech throughout the conversation. Long pauses may mean they’re processing information or being reflective/thoughtful in their response. A hurried speed in their speech may mean they’re uncomfortable and want to get through the conversation as quickly as possible but it may mean they’re excited to share this new experience with you. Use what you already know about your partner and their expression and ask them how they’re feeling! If they seem uncomfortable, what do you normally do to increase their comfort? Do that!

 If your partner expresses desire or excitement, it may be appropriate to start to talk about logistics like when, where, and how you’re going to introduce your strap-on into your relationship.

After the Talk

Check-in with your partner and ask if they’re comfortable using the strap-on you purchased. It can be a fun and sexy activity to pick out a dildo for your harness together and involving your partner in this step can help them feel more involved and invested in this new sexual experience.

When you’re ready to introduce a strap-on into your relationship, do what feels comfortable in terms of planning. If your sex is usually spontaneous, it doesn’t make sense to pick a date ahead of time but if you or your partner are more easily aroused when you have more time to get there, consider picking a day and time to try your strap-on. If you’re planning when to introduce a strap-on into your relationship, plan a date to go along with it! Wisk your partner away on a weekend getaway, paint the town and go out dancing, or go out to a romantic, candlelit dinner. When it’s time to get sexy, set the mood; surround your partner in sexy scents, music, lighting, etc. Verbalize your desire and make it specific! While “I want you” is pretty sexy, “I want to feel you thrust inside of me” is off-the-charts hot.

Try these fun, sexy exercises with your partner to introduce your strap-on into your relationship!

Before you try these exercises, take 5-10 minutes to do a full-body stretch. As you stretch each part of your body, pay attention to what the sensations feel like. Describe those feelings to each other. Allow your natural moans to come out and listen to your partner’s. With a free hand, stroke the skin on the muscle you’re currently stretching, and pay attention to the feeling. You’re done stretching when you feel nice and loose, especially in your hips, legs, and back. It may take a few times doing this 5-10 minute stretch before you feel loose and that’s okay! Now, the person who will be wearing the strap-on should be given some privacy to put on the strap-on and get comfortable.

For flexibility, while wearing your strap-on, grab your partner’s hips and pull them close to yours while you are both standing. Practice thrusting back and forth. Once you feel comfortable thrusting, scoop your hips forward and back. Then try rolling your hips toward the right. Once you’re comfortable with rolling your hips to the right, switch directions. Pay attention to how your bodies respond to each motion. Try to move with rhythm and fluidity (if you feel awkward don’t worry, you’ll get better over time and it’s still sexy).

For strength and stamina, lay a towel, blanket, or yoga mat on the floor. Have your partner lay on their back on the mat. While still wearing your strap-on, get into the plank (or push-up) position over top of them. To get into a plank position, kneel over top of your partner, lean forward putting your hands on each side of them. Slowly and gently lift and straighten your body until your arms are straight but not locked and your body from your head to your feet is in a straight line. Time yourself and hold this position for as long as you can. The partner on the ground may be tempted to kiss, lick, touch, or stroke the partner doing the exercise… lean into that temptation and enjoy the closeness of your bodies. Relax your muscles slowly as you return to your knees. As you repeat this exercise, try to increase the length of time you are able to hold this position.

For performance, we’re going to combine the last two exercises. While wearing your strap-on, get into the plank position on a mat or bed, hovering over your partner. Now, practice those hip motions again: scooping your hips back and forth, rolling them to the right and then to the left. Switch positions! Lay on your back and practice those motions again. Enjoy the friction but don’t penetrate unless you’re both ready. If you’re having difficulty, take a break and relax. Change a few things in your environment to set the mood and try to feel strong, smooth, and confident using your strap-on.

If this new experience left you with more questions than answers or in need of support, call Sex Therapy in Philadelphia at (215) 922- 5683 x 100  to schedule an appointment with a sex therapist.