Initiating sex can sometimes feel like an intimidating idea, regardless of whether you’re in a new relationship or are trying to reignite an old flame with a long-time lover.
The fear of your advances being rejected, dismissed or unnoticed is a hard thing to acknowledge, but it’s something worth overcoming. As a sex coach, I’ve come across many clients who dread making that first move. But it doesn’t have to be so difficult. Here are some tips on how to make initiating sex a more fun and playful experience.
Don’t Leave It Up To One Person
Many people still buy into the myth that, in the case of heterosexual relationships, it is more often the male who initiates sex. But regardless of which gender tends to initiate more, if one initiates more than the other, this can be damaging to a relationship.
Believe it or not, initiating sex is often as intimidating for a man as it is for a woman, and it’s incredibly important for the health of your sex life to share the responsibility (and fun!) equally between you and your partner. This makes both parties in the relationship feel attractive and desired by their partner, and also keeps them reassured that their lover enjoys having sex with them.
Learn Your Lover’s Sex Initiation Language
Studies have shown that many people, even those in happy relationships, aren’t happy with the way their partner initiates sex. Just as there are different love languages, there are also different “initiation languages” when it comes to sex. It’s important that you and your partner discuss this and learn what each other’s preferred initiation language is so that you can approach one another in a way that the both people are receptive to.
For example, some prefer to be approached physically, others verbally. Sometimes, being asked directly “Do you want to have sex?” can be a turn on, whilst, at other times it can take the passion and curiosity out of the moment.
Most people are open and receptive to more than one initiation language. A lot of it depends on their mood, and having a conversation about personal preferences and boundaries can help make both planned and spontaneous initiations easier for the both of you.
Expand Your Sex Menu
Sex doesn’t always have to mean intercourse and orgasms. To prevent things from getting boring, it’s good to switch things up every once in a while. Create a sex menu with your partner where you write down what you’re into or would be up for trying.
Make sure you include ways to be intimate that don’t involve intercourse. Activities like a sensual massage, reading an erotic story together, or even something like having a long, hot bath together. Expanding your definition of sexual activities to include other forms of connection and intimacy should help bring you and your lover closer and lead to easier, playful initiations.
It’s OK To Be Turned Down
It’s easy to feel hurt and think you aren’t desirable when your initiations are met with a “no” or indifference. But in reality, you can’t expect your partner to always be in the mood when you are. Libidos fluctuate all the time due to various factors, and it’s important to be able to handle a “no” and a “not now”, without harbouring resentment. Next time you are rejected, let your partner know you’re glad that they’ve been honest with you and that they feel comfortable enough to tell you they’re not in the mood. There’s intimacy in honesty!
You can always build intimacy in the moment through other non-sexual ways, which may mean more to your partner at the time. If you feel it’s been too long since you and your partner enjoyed sex, however, it may be time to seek professional help from a sex coach.
Extend the invitation
Unless explicitly agreed, sexual initiation is best received as an invitation, not a demand. No partner should ever feel pressured or guilted into having sex. Initiating doesn’t have to immediately lead to sex. Consider making initiating sex a much longer experience that could start hours or days before the act of sex actually takes place. This is a great way to build anticipation and sexual desire. Just remember that your partner is not a mind reader – and those “subtle, sexy” clues aren’t always as obvious as you think!
It’s best not overthink the mechanics of initiating sex. Focus instead on the qualities that increase your chances of playing together – enthusiasm and confidence. If you need a little inspiration, here are some ways to bring the fun back into initiating sex.
- Make it a game – There are many games that can help kickstart the mood and make initiating sex more playful. You can buy these games at an adult store or simply improvise with what you have. We’re talking naked Twister, sexy Blind Man’s Buff or Naughty Truth or Dare – the possibilities are endless.
- Send out a “sex signal” – It doesn’t have to be quite as obvious as Batman’s Bat-Signal, but establishing a sign to tell your partner you’re in the mood can make it easier to initiate intimacy – plus it’s always fun to have a secret language only you two can understand.
- Surprise package – Buy a new sex toy, lingerie, game or roleplaying costume then send your lover a picture during the day and ask if they would be interested in trying it out later. Send them a cheeky photo or leave the item on your bed for them to discover.
- Shower sex – Next time your parter is in the shower (and not in a rush!), join them. Lather up their body and see where it goes.
- A tantalising tasting – Try preparing a sexy meal together (try something simple and classic like chocolate-dipped strawberries) and proceed to feed each other in bed.
- Dance it out – put on your favourite tune (or a sultry little number) and invite your partner to dance with you. Try grinding your hips against you partner’s and look deep into their eyes.
- Talk dirty to me – Sexting is a great way to initiate sex with your partner over a longer period and can also be used as a means to find out how your partner’s day is going to see if sex may be on the table. New to flirting over the phone? Here are some tips on how to get started.