Talking about sex can be hard. We’re taught that talking about sex is shameful, so when it comes to situations when we need to talk about sex we end up feeling awkward or embarrassed. Getting comfortable with talking about sex is a cornerstone of having a good sex life, whether you want to discuss your deepest fantasies or just tell your partner that you need to use lube.
Here are five reasons why it’s important to get comfortable talking about sex – plus a few tips for how to do it!
1. Discuss safer sex practices
Especially before you have sex with a new person, it’s vital to discuss your safer sex practices. Are you going to use condoms or dental damns? When was the last time you were tested for STIs? What intimate acts are you interested in doing together? All of this is important to discuss before you have sex, rather than assuming that your likes and limits and definitions of ‘sex’ are going to be exactly the same.
Remember that you don’t have to jump straight into talking about sex face-to-face! It’s completely fine to have these conversations over text if you’re feeling nervous. Typing these things rather than saying them aloud can be easier, and it will start normalising these conversations and allow your confidence to build.
2. Tell your partner what you want
It can feel awkward to tell your partner that the way they’re touching your clit doesn’t work for you, or to tell them about the new position you want to try, but these conversations are absolutely worth having. You should feel comfortable telling your partner that you need to use a sex toy to get off, or that you’d find it really hot if they played with your nipples while you were having sex.
It’s important that you are able to advocate for your needs and share your wants with your partners. And if what you need is a little bit more slickness, there’s no shame in telling your partner that you need to use lube. Momentum Organic Aloe Lubricant is an all-organic lube that’s perfect for some frictionless vaginal fingering.
3. Talk dirty to your partner
Dirty talk can be hot. Who doesn’t want to hear their partner describe exactly what they’re going to do to them, or have a partner who knows how to ask for what they want in bed? Being able to turn your partner on with your words is a definite benefit of being comfortable with talking about sex. However, dirty talk can also feel embarrassing if you’re not used to saying words describing sex out loud!
To get used to talking dirty, it can help to start by reading erotica aloud. You’ll get used to saying filthy things without having to share your own thoughts and fantasies. The excuse of ‘I have to say it, it’s in the smutty story!’ can be a great excuse to get rid of any embarrassment you’re feeling.
4. Challenge sexual shame
Because we’re raised in a sex-negative society, most of us are carrying around at least some sexual shame. We’re taught not to name our genitals, that our bodies are ‘dirty’ and that our desires are shameful. Most of us have a lot of unlearning to do when it comes to sex, and getting comfortable with talking about sex is an important part of challenging societal sexual shame and owning our own sexuality.
You definitely don’t need to start tweeting photos of your sex toys or sharing intimate details when people haven’t consented to hearing about your sex life. However, there is value in being able to discuss sex and your body in settings when it is necessary – like when ensuring you get the right kind of STI tests or discussing the potential side effects of a new medication with your doctor.
5. Increase intimacy with your partner
Because talking about sex is seen as so taboo, discussing it with your partner can be an incredibly intimate act. It can feel vulnerable to share your fantasies and ask for what you want, but the result is often an increased connection with your partner. As well as being a turn on, discussing what you’re into and communicating honestly about sex requires a level of vulnerability that will bring you closer to your partner.
If this feels intimidating, make sure you take it in turns to share things. Playing a game with your partner like ‘truth or dare’ might help this feel less awkward. Maybe for every ‘truth’ you have to share something that turns you on, and for every ‘dare’ you have to remove an item of clothing. The game will give you a structure to make sharing intimate details feel less scar because you’re both being vulnerable.