A GUIDE TO SEX FOR BEGINNERS, AND ALL OF US, HONESTLY.
Photo by: Charlotte Abramow
If this blog had a second title, it would be: The Sex Education Most of Us Never Had.
I have received a lot of questions of late, from some of my younger followers asking how to have sex that "doesn't hurt" and what it's like to "lose your virginity." That being said, I also get a lot of questions from women more generally about how to experience pleasure outside of penis-in-vagina sex, and "how to make their boyfriend go down." To explain all of this and more, I want to take us through the process of unlearning sex. This blog was inspired by questions from some of my younger followers but while I was writing it, it came to be about much more than just your first time. The tips that follow are an important reminder for all of us, no matter if we feel we've "mastered" sex *spoiler alert, there's no such thing.
To start, a quote from one of my personal heroes, Esther Perel:
"The myth that sex is natural, has done harm to so many people because it presumes that you should just know rather than the fact that it is something that we learn to appreciate to experience, we cultivate it, it's an art, and if you think it's natural than in fact you often remain ignorant."
Let's talk about sex, baby!!!
YOUR FIRST TIME
There is no pressure on your first time to be this magical, princess moment with fireworks in the background and everyone orgasming all over the place. It doesn't have to be the most incredible because SHOCKINGLY, nothing changes when you go from someone who hasn't had sex, to someone who has.
I remember in high school when I gave my first blow job and one of my friends said to me, "You're not a virgin anymore because you had a dick in one of your holes." Back then I thought that was ridiculous and judgemental but now I think she could have been right. "Losing your virginity" is acquainted with having a penis inside your vagina. But what about lesbian-identifying people who prefer to never have a man's penis in their vagina? What about gay men who do not have a vagina to put a penis into? What about a woman who has experienced trauma or rape, and prefers other avenues of pleasure besides internal p-in-v? Are they virgins forever? No? Exactly.
So "losing your virginity" doesn't really mean anything unless you want it to. But who you are, as a person, is not altered by having your first sexual experience, other than that sex and pleasure and play are a good time, and welcome! to the world of wetness and sensuality and BDSM and love making and car sex and kink and just all around fun.
MY FIRST TIME
Just to say, I didn't have sex until I was eighteen. Not to say I didn't try before that! My high school boyfriend and I attempted to have sex but his dick would just not go in and I thought I was sealed shut. Little did I know, I really wasn't that attracted to him and I wasn't relaxed and my pussy didn't want to open up to him. Listen to your pussy ladies!
When I did have sex, it was with my college boyfriend who I was sooooo attracted to. We smoked pot the night before, we cuddled all night, he woke me up by playing with me, touching me, licking me, teasing me for over an hour with no pressure of having sex. Eventually he just got on top, and voila! my pussy was open and it let him in and his penis was in my vagina and I was like, "this is it???"
So don't waste time hyping up your first time tooooo much.
UNLEARNING SEX AND TAKING THE PRESSURE OFF OF ORGASM
Arguably, the actual penis in vagina part is not the most mind-blowing part of sex when you're just starting out (and maybe ever? everyone's different!). Women have external sex organs and pleasure points that help make the internal part of sex that much more lovely. Good sex is created when there is consent, safety, (a little risk), connection, communication and the ability to focus on the beautiful moment you're sharing.
Have sex because you want to, not because everyone else is, not because you're being pressured, not even because you're horny and you think that's the only way to satisfy that itch, it's not. Try masturbation, in fact, if you haven't masturbated, you might not be ready for sex. It's okay if masturbation seems scary or if you don't know how. I don't blame you, no one taught us girls! But there are soooo many ways. Electric toothbrushes, a shower head, a jet in a jacuzzi, your hand, a vibrator. Check out my blog called "Clit" and go crazy! Masturbation is key to beginning to develop your sexual self, see how you feel, see what you like, see what is nice and what isn't so nice. Personally, the left side of my clit being aroused will get me off much quicker and more intense than the right side. The under part leads to a different orgasm then more on top, near the hood. Women NEED clitoral or external stimulation to orgasm during sex so this is vital. That being said, you do not NEED to come during sex. Take all of this pressure away from yourself. Some women can come during sex no problem, and some women can't. This is a result of years of misinformation and a lack of education into what makes a woman orgasm. As I write in My Sex Manifesto:
A lot of women are never told how their bodies work, or how to masturbate. They are left in the dark with a tingle between their legs and a huge lack of information. Around puberty, maybe we are put into some kind of sex ed class, to explain periods and boys’ wet dreams. But there is hardly ever mention of the clitoris, and seeing as the clitoris has the exact anatomical function of the penis and even more nerve endings (8,000 to be exact), why aren’t we talking about it? The clitoris is more sensitive and filled with pleasure than the penis; the penis which has become the holy grail of sexual experiences and how those experiences are measured. The clit is also the only part of the body that solely serves to please you. Your clitoris is connected to your G-spot, it's necessary for orgasm. Goddess gave woman this little button, this little pleasure, la petite mort, to make up for perhaps a world of challenges and a lifetime of sexism. And yet, medicine and science have tried to keep this little magic part of woman, a secret.
Sitcoms and movies make jokes about not being able to find it, and it was not until 2009 that the full shape of the clitoris was actually discovered. We then found out that the clitoris was just the tip of the iceberg, and that it’s stimulation was required for women to reach any kind of orgasm anywhere at all in their bodies, even though folklore and Freud had us thinking differently for way too long.
If you come during sex, that is so wonderful and I am so happy for you. If you don't come during sex, are you still enjoying it? Is it beautiful? Do you sweat? Does it feel good? Are you wet? Are you lost in it? If your answers are yes, than who fucking cares if you have an orgasm or not. The orgasm will come when you stop waiting for it, I promise. However, are you doing all you can to experience maximum pleasure? Do you know how to make yourself come? Have you told your partner? Have you showed you partner? Have they watched you masturbate? Do you touch yourself during sex?
TOUCHING YOURSELF DURING SEX AND USING YOUR VOICE
This is my all time favorite. Women are not the passive sexual creatures Freud would like us to believe we are. We are allowed to take control during sex. Recently, I started just putting my hand on my pussy when Pierre is entering me and rubbing my clit myself. Besides, it's my body, I know best. I rub myself right to orgasm and I come with him inside me and it's so intense. Like masturbation times a 1000. Plus, it's hot and Pierre can see the pleasure on my face and can feel my pussy get wetter with him inside me. This is an all around win for everyone. It was kind of weird for him in the beginning, he said something like "It's kind of weird because it looks like you're in more pleasure than ever before." But then he realised that if that's the case, that's great, that's all we should want for our partner anyways.
So put that pillow underneath your man so his pelvic area rubs you the right way, reach down and rub yourself so you can come during sex! Say "slow down" "faster" "to the left" "don't pull all the way out like that" "stop" "more." Say whatever you need to say to get you there and to make it feel good. That being said, if you have been having sex one way for a long time and your partner thinks you just love it that way, it can be hard to one day be like "Actually, I like my clit rubbed up and down not in circles." So phrase it in a more comfortable way, "Babe, just for fun could you try like this? I'm curious how it may feel..." or "Hey daddy, want to watch me play with myself?" There are lots of ways you can work in a new way you want to do something without it being awkward. Honesty is the best policy however, and if you are just starting out in a relationship sexual or otherwise, try to not fake your orgasms, try to be honest about what feels good, because it may be harder for you down the line to come clean about what really gets you ticking.
THE ACTUAL FIRST TIME IT EVER GOES IN
For this, you need to feel safe. You need to trust the person. Your vulva needs to feel calm, cool, and collected. I would suggest an hour of external play. Just kissing, talking, hugging, cuddling, maybe naked. I would HIGHLY suggest genital stimulation on the woman. Men and women are different in this way. Men don't need to have an orgasm and tons of stimulation before sex (although that can be lovely for them, but they don't always need it). Women, especially if it's your first time, need to be WETTER THAN THE OCEAN, and relaxed. Breathe. It is not going to hurt like the worst pain ever, it's just going to feel new. It didn't hurt me at all, and I didn't bleed. I also know girls who did bleed. And who it did hurt. It's all so situational and circumstantial. If you take it slow, if you're wet, if you're ready, if you trust your partner, if you're turned on by each other, if consent has been given... then take it slow and see what happens. Let him go in soooo dang slow that he may even lose his erection, who cares just start over again. Sex is silly and messy and definitely not supposed to be perfect.
UNLEARNING SEX ROUTINE
Even if you master sex with one person which is arguably a shame, because then you have nothing to learn or new to try and then it may get boring or routine, then sex with a new person will be entirely different.
Pierre and I are in the process of un-learning our sex routines and go-to's. We are trying new things and asking questions and starting to try out some of our fantasies that we finally trust each other enough to act out. Never mindlessly fall into a routine with someone, constantly try to explore their body like it's a gift from the heavens. Trust me, you never know all there is to know about someone sexually. There is always something else to try, somewhere else to do it, some toy to put on or insert, or someone you can add into the equation.. if you're into that! Monogamy is not the most natural human default and if having more lovers gets your heart racing, by all means, go for it.
SO SAY YOUR MAN DOESN'T WANT TO GO DOWN...
To start off, you never want to force someone to do something they don't want to do. That being said, a man ignoring your clitoris would be like a woman totally ignoring the penis during sexual intercourse... it's just not right. The external part of the clitoris that shows is just the tip of the iceberg, the whole structure looks more like this:
These two diagrams basically show that there is a major internal part of the clitoris that plays the main role for internal orgasm, the clitoris extends all the way inside and is the cause of "vaginal orgasm." So, at the end of the day, ignoring the clitoris is like ignoring the primary sex organ of a woman. I think a lot of men don't understand this. They believe penetration is the end all be all of sex because that is what has been represented in movies, porn and even a lot of medical science, done by men. So explaining this to your man may begin to help him understand why external arousal is so important for you.
LET'S CANCEL THE WORD FOREPLAY
!!! It's 2020 we do not need to be referring to some of the most beautiful, sexy and complete ways to have sex as "foreplay." In "The Ethical Slut" Dossie Easten and Janet Hardy write that "Sex that's limited to perfunctory foreplay and then a race down the express track to orgasm is an insult to the human capacity for pleasure." Humans are capable of so much more! Sex can be so much better! I am personally starting to explore the before and after penetration moments, the hour before sex where you're laying together and just touch is the most sexual thing.
BACK TO GETTING YOUR MAN TO LOVE YOUR CLIT
It kind of bothers me that this is something we so easily forgive in men (myself included- I once dated a guy for seven months who licked my vulva all but three times), because women who won't suck dick are not given the same love and understanding. In fact, that boyfriend I had would make me suck his dick before sex... the fucking irony! I needed that warm up, too! But I was younger and didn't know I could ask for these things, and I didn't know how wrong it was I wasn't getting what my body needed.
Sex is just as much about giving as it is about receiving. Pleasure and connection should be the ultimate goal of *most sexual endeavours. Perhaps your man fears vulvas, perhaps he's scared he won't know how to do it and he will feel emasculated, perhaps he's heard from his friends that "pussy smells and is gross." Whatever the case is, you have to guide him through it and tell him it will be okay. I used to not suck penis a lot because I was scared I wasn't good at it. But let's go in order of the three problems I just listed.
1. Your man fears vulvas. If this is the case, you have a couple of options. If you're into it, you could find some good ethical porn of women touching themselves and experiencing themselves sexually and let him watch it, or watch together. Odds are, this will take some of the fear away, and be an overall arousing introduction to real women and real vulvas. If all he's watched is mainstream porn than he hasn't probably seen much genuine masturbation, or real vulvas, or oral sex being performed. He has not seen the vulva as an integral part of a woman's sexuality, that's not what Pornhub is showing. For more on that, read My Sex Manifesto. Another activity you could try is planning a night together at home, buying a bottle of wine and lighting some candles. Have a glass together and sit around in lingerie or just your underwear. When you feel comfortable, ask your man if he would like to watch you masturbate, only trick is, no penetration sex allowed. This is a night of Oral-Only. Masturbate for him, moan and touch yourself and go to town like no one is watching. When you're all done, if you're not too sensitive, ask your man, "Wanna taste?" And see how he feels. You could also watch him masturbate, or begin to touch him and give him pleasure. Show him how happy you are to play with his penis in your hands or your mouth. Show him that giving pleasure is fun.
2. He's scared he won't know how to do it. I think this is so understandable, like I said, I once didn't feel comfortable sucking dick because I just thought I was making a fool of myself. How I got over this? I just asked my damn partner what he liked. I took the pressure off getting him to have an orgasm and I focused on all the parts of his body and paid attention to what made him harder, what he loved. I kind of hump his leg when I'm sucking him and this can feel so good for me while I'm doing it. Tell your man that he can ask questions, that it's okay if you don't come this first time. If you want to start yourself off or finish yourself off that's okay. Let him be involved in the process. Let it be a learning experience.
SIDE NOTE ON PUSSY GROOMING
YOU DO NOT NEED TO WASH YOUR PUSSY WITH SOAP. THIS WILL ACTUALLY FUCK UP YOUR PH AND MAKE YOUR SMELL BE A LITTLE OFF. UNLESS YOU ARE USING A SOAP SPECIFICALLY FOR PUSSIES THAN IT IS OKAY. ALL YOUR PUSSY NEEDS IS WATER. WASH WITH WATER IN THE SHOWER MAKING SURE TO GET IN-BETWEEN THE LIPS AND UNDERNEATH THE CLITORAL HOOD. THEN WHEN YOU GET OUT OF THE SHOWER, PUT ON SOME ORGANIC OLIVE OIL ALL AROUND YOUR VULVA. THIS WILL BALANCE OUT YOUR PH, HYDRATE YOU, AND REBUILD VAGINAL TISSUE FOLLOWING ROUGH SEX. THIS IS ALL YOU NEED. YOU DO NOT SMELL WEIRD, YOU DO NOT NEED TO DOUCHE, YOU ARE PERFECT. WATER AND OLIVE OIL BABY.
BACK TO GETTING YOUR MAN TO LOVE YOUR CLIT
3. He's heard from his friends that pussy is gross. Well, um, besides that fact that this is just plain dumb, ask him to deconstruct this thought. Are all pussies the same? Does he love you? Does he love your body? Does he actually think your pussy is gross? Maybe he can try it before canceling it forever? You could try getting some flavoured lube, or even just putting on some olive oil before sex. This will make the pussy have another flavour and scent. This might ease him into it. You can always try 69, which is super fun for sharing mutual pleasure. Go down on him like he is a motherfucking sex god, and show him that it's fun to go down on your partner. Some previous advice I gave can also help with this particular problem.
There is no "right way" to do sex. If you're just starting out, you must really understand this. Your first couple of partners, your first long term partner are learning experiences. And really, everyone should be a learning experience. Everybody and every body is different. You may come to have a more solid understanding of what you like, and of what you need. But even you will one day get a kink you never knew you had or discover a position that just blows your fucking mind. Remember that sex is not all about penetration and there are so many lovely ways to share sex together without the penis going into the vagina. Pleasure is immeasurable, don't do yourself a disservice by trying to measure it.
Lots of love to all my readers. Now go get to it ;) xx