Do you and your partner agree on what you consider to be normal marital sex or do you each have some notions that the other finds disgusting?
Should you do THAT in bed?
Sex writer Susie Bright(link is external) notes that adults exhibit childish reactions to sexual practices that are new to them, much like little kids who are offered a vegetable they haven’t seen before:
But darling, you haven’t even tried it.”
“I don’t care. I hate it!”
It’s not a good idea to force yourself to do anything that repels you. At the same time, you may want to push yourself to be experimental, especially if you have a loving and generous partner.
Elizabeth, a therapy client, hated the idea of receiving oral sex. The idea was so distasteful to her that she ruled it out of bounds. This might not be a big deal—or could even be a relief to some men–but giving oral sex was incredibly important to her partner’s erotic life and his sense of connection to her.
Over and over he let her know that her refusal or inability to try was a terrible loss to him. He was also understandably upset that he always initiated these conversations. Elizabeth never considered that it was her responsibility to open a conversation in which she acknowledged how difficult this loss was for him. After some years they both agreed not to talk about it, and Elizabeth’s husband tried to mourn his loss.
One night Elizabeth had a vivid dream that her husband was having oral sex with another woman. In the dream he was telling this woman how much it meant to him. “Something turned in my brain when I woke up. ” Elizabeth told me. “I felt a profound sadness to think I had imposed this ironclad rule. “ Then she added, “And since it was my dream, maybe I was the woman in the dream– and maybe I should at least try to be that woman.
At first, Elizabeth had to push herself to have oral sex. It never became her favorite thing, but to her surprise it became quite pleasant and, with time, pleasurable. Her husband, for his part, was delighted and grateful. Because one thing always leads to another, gradually they both became more experimental and imaginative in bed.
Don’t wait till you have a transformative dream to hold these seemingly opposite truths in your mind at once:
“Don’t force yourself to do anything sexually you really don’t want to do”
“Try (for yourself and for your partner) to do new things that you think you don’t want to do.”
No expert that can tell you how to choose between these two truths on any particular day. As I say in Marriage Rules(link is external), you’re the ultimate expert on how you want to share your body with your partner. But you will benefit from trying to hold both of the above truths in your mind with a sense of curiosity and possibility.