Initiating anything — whether it be asking for a raise, sending food back at a restaurant, asking someone out on a date, or initiating sex with your partner — can be pretty intimidating. Maybe it's just a me thing, but I have to overcome a certain amount of fear in order to burst through my people-pleasing tendencies to get what I want. This is especially true in my relationships and particularly when it comes to sex.
If my guy suddenly isn't interesting in hooking up or if our life in the bedroom has become boring, my immediate assumption is that my partner no longer likes me or is no longer attracted to me. My mind is pretty great at jumping to the most negative scenario pretty quickly. But what if, instead, I just took it upon myself to reinvigorate our sex life, and spice up things myself?
I asked Dr. Martha Lee, clinical sexologist, about how to initiate sex with your partner when you feel things are getting stale. Because it's time for me to take the power back in my relationships. Why not, right?
1. Brainstorm It
While other people can give you tons of suggestions, sometimes, your own ideas can be the best when it comes to getting you out of a relationship sex rut.
"Take a piece of paper and write down all your ideas of how you can initiate sex in a totally new way. Go wild, go crazy… nobody will ever need to see this piece of paper," says Dr. Lee. "Don't stop 'til you have at least 20 ideas. From there, see which ones are doable, which ones you find yourself laughing out loud [at], and which ones you groan to."
If you're feeling wild, choose the most adventurous items on your list, and if you want to start off easy, maybe pick the first idea you wrote down. Plus, now you have a stockpile of options to choose from on how to initiate sex with your partner, should things get stale again in the future.
2. Have A Mantra
Spicing things up in the bedroom by initiating sex with your partner requires a certain about of courage and doesn't leave a lot of room for fear and insecurity.
Dr. Lee explains that you should try giving yourself a pep talk:
When it comes to getting out of a sexual slump, it's also all about changing our perception. Dr. Lee continues, "Develop a positive mindset toward sex. Banish thoughts or attitudes that inhibit orgasm, such as 'I am taking too long,' 'They're not interested,' 'They should know what to do,' [or] 'I should be making them happy.'"
Usually, when sex becomes more of a burden than a ball, it's because we place too high of expectations on ourselves, our partner, and the outcome. So relax. Let go of any insecurities and have fun. Most likely, that will help your sex life immediately.
3. Have Morning Sex, But Do It Right
This means doing a little primping before jumping into the act (*ahem* brush your teeth first *ahem*)
"Morning sex is a BIG must-do if you haven't done it before," says Dr. Lee. "Why? Because so many people have hang-ups around it. If this is you, then this is my advice: Forget about getting out of bed to wash your face and brush your teeth before sex."
And if you don't have time to run to the bathroom before getting it on? Dr. Lee suggests you "roll over, do the doggy, and you don't have to worry about bad breath." I knew there was a purpose to that sex position.
4. Make Way For Fantasy
If things feel boring in the bedroom, it might be time to try out a little BDSM — or at the very least, a little bit of role play. Dr. Lee lays out a scenario:
Either way, you are initiating a new type of sex with your partner, which is sure to reactivate not only their libido, but also your sex life in general. She continues, "Remember, when we are blindfolded, our other senses heighten, so we can play along those lines. One can feel vulnerable without sight, so go gentle until you're sure your partner loves this."
But Dr. Lee says it would probably be a good idea to text your partner a little heads up with your plans to make sure they're in the mood. You wouldn't want to catch anyone by surprise.
Or would you?
5. Incorporate Sex Toys
Sex toys, whether a vibrator for you or couples sex toys for you both, can work wonders in the bedroom. And Dr. Lee says it's a good idea to use those toys to get more creative in how we initiate sex.
"I like to think of vibrators as massagers, [which] can be applied to sore spots in the body — back, shoulder, or even foot. I also see no reason why not to have some fun [by] placing a vibrator on the top of the head, or side of the cheek while kissing, or on the perineum while performing oral sex," she says. "Variety is the key. Vibrators are just tools which are meant for fun, and pleasure, so be creative."
So when you are using a vibrator, why not get creative? While I have definitely never put a vibrator on my man's head before (at least not his actual head), maybe it's time to start.
But Dr. Lee concludes, "Do not be too attached to the details. Each sexual encounter does not have to have profound meaning."
So who knows? It could just be time for a little afternoon delight.
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