Are you mad about having to educate your partner about your body? Congratulations, you’re an active participant in your empowered sex life, says Dorothy Black I’ve heard the following phrase with increasing regularity from women: ‘Why do I have to teach a guy how to be a good lover?!’
It’s usually said in anger.
The frustration is understandable: it’s often a comment made by a Woman who feels compelled to teach her man-child how to ‘adult’.
Whatever my feelings about this life choice (stop taking responsibility for emotionally under-equipped grownups), the question about why we need to ‘teach’ people – men in this case – to pleasure us properly is one that deserves an answer.
Because the answer can challenge stereotypes that keep us from a satisfying sex life.
For one thing, no man should be expected to know how to pleasure you better than you can ‘show ‘n’ tell’ him.
Besides, where do you think young men first get their info about women’s pleasure? Do they absorb, through osmosis, The Joy of Sex hidden in their parents’ cupboard?
As young adults, schoolroom whispers, Hollywood and X-Tube are generally our only sources of info into the art of lovemaking. Hardly ideal, but it’s the best most of us have.
No one I know popped into the world a fully formed Mae West or Don Juan. Certainly, my first attempts at exploring unfamiliar body parts weren’t exactly popping with pizzazz. Come to think of it, neither were my first explorations of bodies that had the same genitals as me.
But we live and learn. And we learn by asking and talking and telling.
A woman told me that guys could ‘just Google’ how to be better lovers, and she was right. The internet isn’t just a pit of fake news and porn, it’s also a vast source of education if you know what to search for.
But a Google answer is only the theory before the practical. Come jiggy time, you’ll still need to verbally express what works for you, because every person is different and a touch that might get you off, could freak another woman out.
You’ll only ever get the sex you want by being clear about the sex you want.
And “being clear” doesn’t mean wishing upon a star that your lover telepathically knows your pleasure programme. It means actively teaching that sexy son of a gun what works for you.
It also means taking responsibility for your own education.
I asked this same woman if she had ever Googled techniques about male genital massage. I got crickets. Had she ever Googled touch techniques pertaining to her own body, I asked. She hadn’t.
Surely what’s good for the gander, should be good for the goose?
Showing a new lover what I like – and choosing a partner who can engage in this space - is an act of empowerment for me. It means I know my body and how to tap into its pleasure. It means I have a voice and choice in the sex life I create for myself.
Between this and a world of Mae Wests and Don Juans, I’d choose this.