Maybe you made a sexual discovery in college and never got around to exploring it. Maybe you’ve been in a relationship for so long that it has become sexually monotonous. Whatever situation you find yourself in, you can do a lot of things to introduce and involve your partner in a new sexual experience.
The fact of the matter is that you need to iron out a lot of details before engaging your partner in such delicate matters, so it’s only natural to have questions.
What tone should I keep? How should I bring a sensitive matter to the table? What’s the best conversational icebreaker? There’s a lot of things to figure out.
Thankfully, we’ve gathered some expert tips and techniques to help you get rid of this sexual stumbling block and rally on ahead to spicing up your relationship.
1. Do Your Research
Research is paramount.
One of the biggest mistakes people make when convincing their partners to try out a new sexual experience is they don’t study up. For example, if it’s a kink you want to introduce to your relationship, it’s important to know its ins and outs. Many times, we have a misleading idea of what certain fetishes or kinks entail, and we make up a rough sketch of them in our heads based on what we’ve seen in movies or read in books.
Movies and TV’s are extremely misleading. Basing your knowledge on them is akin to learning sex from a porn movie. Things that look great in the cinema or on your TV screen often don’t translate as smoothly in the bedroom.
What’s worse is that some movies are not only misleading but also set a dangerous precedent.
Take the example of 50 shades of grey. This movie is the heartthrob of millions of women, and basically contains everything that you shouldn’t do if you want to get into S&M. Some depicted scenes if replicated in the bedroom can cause serious damage.
It’s clear that James has no prior knowledge of bondage or S S&M etiquettes. His use of cable ties can not only cause horrible scarring but also lead to permanent nerve damage in Anastasia’s leg and arm muscles. That’s why bondage experts advise the use of specially designed soft ropes for tying down your partner, not just something you get from your local hardware store.
Christian Grey’s behavior in the movie is also despicable. Without Anastasia’s consent, he pushes her into a world she has no familiarity with, and shocks her with advanced displays of knives, and other sex tools. He engages with her in some bondage scenes without any prior communication or preparation, whereas authentic S&M sessions require the consent of both parties involved and a lot of preparation beforehand. He also inflicts pain for his own pleasure and doesn’t offer any aftercare, leaving Anastasia reeling to her own devices.
50 shades of grey or any movie of the sort, isn’t an example you should follow if you don’t want to come off as abusive and offensive.
Instead, you should do your own research through reputable.
2. Use Positivity
The most difficult thing to do to persuade your partner to expand their sexual horizons isn’t the conversation in itself — it’s starting it. How do you tell them without hurting their feelings or making them uncomfortable that you want them to try out this new sexual fetish or fantasy.
This is where positivity can save the day.
Instead of going straight ahead and demanding something of your partner, lay down the carpet first. Tell them the things you love about your sex life, and how you think they can be made even better. Before a night of hot sex, escape to a restaurant, and when the opportunity comes up, ask them if they have any sexual fantasy of their own they’d like to explore.
This will ease them into listening to what you really have to say.
3. Don’t Complain
Once you’ve sorted this out, politely slip in your request. An example would be something like this: “do you want to try this new sex toy that’s really in nowadays?”
Make sure your request doesn’t give any hint that it’s a complaint. Communication is hard. Sometimes unmeaning words come out of our mouths and things turn ugly. So, think through whatever you have to say before sitting down with your partner.
If you say, “Whenever we try to use strap-ons, you become defensive,” your partner may consider your tone a bit rude, and respond unfavorably. Something like, “do you want to take some time off and try that thing we talked about?” is a lot better.
Christine Scott Hudson, MA, LMFT, ATR is of the opinion that you should ask what you want, rather than saying what you don’t. Give your partner as much positive feedback as you can to keep things balanced. If you tip the scales in the opposite direction, they might feel attacked and shut you down. Remember, this is a negotiation, not a demand.
4. Turn it into an Activity
If you’re not comfortable with confronting your partner head-on, start with a little game. Grab a pen and paper for you and your partner. Now, pen down any new sexual fantasies or fetishes you’d like to explore and ask them to do the same. You can even rank your choices in terms of priority.
This is a great icebreaker to put a new sexual adventure in your partner’s head and jump-start things.
5. Deal in “I” statements
Dr. Dabney, M.D Psychologist, recommends the use of “I” when talking about sex. This keeps the conversation centered on you and removes any suspicion from your partner’s mind that you’re insinuating something wrong about them. Make sentences like “I feel like X and you do Y, so perhaps we can work on this”.
Also, Avoid cannoned statements like, “You never try anal sex,” or “All you want to do is do that one position over and over again”. Dr. Dabney believes these are textbook examples of making your partner feel inadequate and insecure.
Dr. Fran Walfish recommends avoiding embarrassing or shaming your partner. You have to make them feel like it’s an adventure you’re both going to share, not something that’s forced.
Finally, never presume how your partner is going to react or what they are going to say. Just stay true to your own words and feelings to promote a more open and civilized discussion.
6. Avoid Accusations
You can also highlight the things you love about your sex life and then relate to them. For example, you can say, “I love that ____ we did. This new thing is similar to that. Maybe we can try it someday? Would you be open to that?”
Don’t use offending and negative statements like “you’re too uptight”. Also, don’t guilt your partner. This is a horrible strategy. Even if it works, it will greatly affect the sexual performance of your better half and suck all the fun out of this new thing you’ve been meaning to do for so long.
Remember, your goal is to introduce your partner to a sexual possibility that you can both enjoy in the long run. It’s not to hurl blame.
7. Respect Your Partner’s Boundaries
Remember, this new sexual experience is just about you. It’s going to impact your partner equally. So, if your partner hints that they’re not comfortable with this conversation, drop your point.
Dr. Dabney says that as an adult, you shouldn’t expose your dependency and desperation. You should never force your partner into doing something they are clearly not ready for. You can, however, follow up on it later, and see how things go.
If your partner refuses to give you a bone, even when you’ve done your best to present your feelings, then you might have to say, “I can see you’re not comfortable talking about this right now. We can do it later. It’s okay. Perhaps next weekend or over dinner.”
This way, you respect your partner’s boundaries and also keep the possibility of introducing them to something new wide-open.
And when the time comes to follow up, don’t jump into the conversation. First ask your partner, “Are you comfortable with talking about it, now? or “ Is this a good time for us to talk?”. If they still turn you down, keep at it until they finally cave in.
Don’t believe that once the conversation hasn’t gone well, you can’t have it again. That’s a rookie mistake.
8. Explore Avenues Other Than Verbal Communication
Nothing substitutes for a good conversation but if that’s not your forte, there are other possibilities you can explore.
For starters, you can surprise your partner with a weekend trip — to a resort in Hawaii or perhaps poker in Las Vegas? For this, you will have to do your homework and gauge your partner’s mood. If they’re showing any signs of weariness, hold off on your offer. They might not be as enthusiastic about it as when they’re well-rested.
And make sure you present these things to them in a romantic and humorous way that doesn’t invade their personal boundaries.
Other simpler options also work quite well. For instance, bringing a sex toy home and asking your partner’s opinion is a good start. But you have to be wary of the fact that they might be a bit taken aback. Maybe they don’t like the toy or they have certain reservations about its make. Either way, respect their opinions and suggestions and use them to build an ongoing dialogue.
You can also take the help of erotica, porn movies, and pop culture before serving the main menu. If you’re watching a movie on Netflix, and a scene turns you on, let your partner know. Better still, delve into its details that really fizzed your hormones, and ask whether there’s something that piqued their interest as well.
9. When You’re Ready to Upgrade, Don’t Forget About Your Safety
When your partner is ready to change things up, don’t get too excited and forget about your safety. For instance, let’s say you’ve both decided to explore anal sex. There are many potential risks anal play poses that are not present in vaginal or oral sex. For starters, the anal opening can’t lubricate itself to soothe rubs, grazes, and other types of discomfort. There is also an increased risk of STIs, bacterial infections, and fistula.
You need to take proper precautions to avoid these dangers. You can use a water-related lubricant to minimize tears, use different condoms for anal and vaginal sex, or simply stop if your partner feels discomfort.
Bottom-line: whichever sexual adventure you decide to venture on with your partner, make sure you do enough research to keep it safe and fun.
10. Let Your Partner Make Mistakes
Assure your partner that even if they do things wrong, it’s completely okay. When you’re trying out something new, it’s normal to make mistakes. Your partner shouldn’t feel discouraged.
Sexual fantasies often don’t translate in bed the way we want them to. In our minds, we have certain expectations of how things should be but are disappointed when they don’t turn out exactly as we’d hoped.
Give your partner enough space and freedom to be imperfect. Don’t push them and encourage improvisation and going-off script to further unnerve their insecurities.
In the end, there’s no one way to enjoy a sexual experience. Don’t let your partner be afraid of experimenting and bringing their unique flavor to the table. This will uplift their spirits and keep things natural.
You can use many tips and techniques to ease your partner into a new sexual experience. You just need to have the right mindset to apply these strategies, and make sure you don’t invade your partner’s personal boundaries. You also need to communicate your concerns and desires clearly and directly. If things do take a wrong turn, and your partner feels offended, you can always start fresh.
Consider the possibility that some conversations may not go according to plan and you might have to calm things down or take a time-out.