It's an age-old question that's been fueling the plots of romantic comedies for decades. It's no secret that men and women have different tastes and preferences on what they like between the sheets. But when it comes to actually speaking up about the things that get us off, women in particular have a tough time requesting the sex acts that get them going — or being upfront about what's just not working for them.
I mean, can you blame us? We don't want to kill your spirit, or make you think that we're ungrateful for all the effort you're putting into trying to please us. But we do want to reach the promised land of orgasm on occasion, too.(sex advice)
Luckily, women have no problem voicing their opinions to other women where their bedroom preferences are concerned. So I asked a few ladies for their honest take on what they really wish that men knew about sex — and they didn't hold back. And to back up their feelings and offer a few ways to rectify these scenarios, I looped in a few sex and relationship experts to provide some insight.
Read on to discover five important things women really wish you knew about sex.
1. We Take Time To Get Turned On:
"I wish that men knew that our minds work in completely different ways when it comes to getting (and staying) turned on," says Marie, 25. "Whereas my boyfriend will instantly get hard when he sees me take of my clothes, I'm sorry, it just doesn't do anything for me to see the same! No offense to him or anything, the male body just doesn't make me weak. For women (or at least me), enjoyment during sex isn't one-size-fits-all. It's trial and error. Men need to try new things with their lady, and test and test again until they get it right!"
Relationship expert April Masini echoes this sentiment. "Women take longer than men do to warm up," she says, "so if men really care about the woman they’re with, and want her to have a good time in bed, they’ll take this truth to heart. Many times women try not to make the guy feel badly about his rushing, and so they don’t really say that it wasn’t so great for them. Truth is, they’d rather be reading a good book. It was just that disappointing because his need for speed was the main event." So how can you make sure the woman you're doing it with wouldn't rather be catching up on some romance novel on her Kindle than getting it in with you?
"When men slow down and focus on what’s happening between them, and to her, it’s not just better sex — it’s more intimate and a stronger bond," says Masini. "In fact, the sex begins long before the clothes come off. Romancing her and making her feel valued will pay off later in the evening."
2. We Don't Always Want Sex To Last For Hours:
"I wish men knew that sometimes we want them to finish fast," says Claudia, 31. "Nothing personal but sometimes we've got stuff to do, and we're doing them a favor by throwing them a bone when we're short on time in the first place! I feel like men feel all this pressure to last super long, and that sucks. But I also feel like sometimes men keep at it for longer than they even want, too, just to prove something to themselves. But really, it'd save everyone a lot of time if we could just be upfront with how long we really want to go for!"
Of course, we don't want to hurt your feelings. But if you're just guessing at the length of time your partner really wants to go for and the two of you are on completely different pages, are either of you really winning? "If a woman has other things on her mind, she'll just want it over with," says relationship expert Jacqui Olliver. "Respect her needs, don't constantly push her for sex. Psychotherapist Tina B. Tessina stresses the importance of communicating these types of things with the person you're doing it with — and vice versa. "It’s so important to be able to talk to your partner about sex," says, "Especially when it comes to what you want at the moment. You have to work it out together, because both of you have a say in it." To feel out how long your woman is looking to go for, Tessina recommends asking her for a quickie, and gauging her reaction from there.
3. The Stuff You See In Porn Isn't Actually What Women Like:
"So many of the guys I've slept with just revert to that jackhammer move that you see in porn all the time," says Stefanie, 24. "Or they'll try to do some ridiculous cum shot on my face without giving me any kind of warning. But that kind of hardcore, dirty sex doesn't do it for me, and I think that's also true for most women. Sure, you can slip that in sometimes — but it shouldn't be like that from beginning to end. And please, please don't come on a woman's face unless you give her some fair warning. It's just rude."
Aside from the obvious issues with trying to translate porn into the bedroom (for example, your woman probably isn't into having two other blondes join you for a gang bang), the constant switching of positions that porn involves can be problematic for women when they're trying to reach orgasm. "Porn encourages a male to go hard and fast and constantly change positions," says Oliver.
"In reality, unless she asks you to go hard and fast or change positions, she doesn't want you to. Every time you change position without her asking for it, you will return her to the beginning of the arousal scale — the measurement of how much pleasure you are feeling. It's a slow, even rhythm which keeps a woman in the orgasm zone."
4. Super Hot Makeout Sessions Get Us Wetter Than Anything Else:
"For men regarding sex: A hot make out session will always get me wetter than trying to mindlessly finger me," says Lisa, 27. "The art of foreplay where making out is concerned definitely gets lost in the shuffle more than it should. Yes, our lady parts are important and you need to make them a priority — but tease us a little, will you? Also please don't try and make circles with your penis inside of me. It's literally doing nothing!"
It's true that men and women get turned on differently. Going straight for the D is usually a sure bet when it comes to getting a guy going — but not so for women. "Kissing and foreplay can be great turn-ons and can make intercourse better," says sex therapist Michael Salas.
"All too often, men jump right into wanting penetration, which can miss out on a great connective opportunity." As far as "mindless fingering" goes, Oliver says to focus on two key areas in order to avoid wasted effort. "There are two points which create the ultimate in vaginal sexual feeling, the clitoris and the G-spot," she says. "Unfortunately most men assume the G-spot is mythical because they can't find it!" If you're not sure whether or not you've succeeded in finding the G-spot, stick to the clit. If you're not sure where the clit is… it's time to do some homework.
5. There's No One Move That Works For Every Woman:
"I understand the line of thinking, I really do," says Janine, 27. "Because for most things in life that we're successful at, it's possible to do the same thing over again and replicate that success. I think men get into that mindset, but getting a woman off isn't the same as figuring out what sports move is going to earn you a slam dunk, or whatever. But whatever move got your last girlfriend off every time has the potential to seriously fall flat on the next woman you sleep with. But I feel like that's so hard to communicate to men."
Fun fact: All vaginas are shaped slightly differently. I'm sure you're thinking, "So are dicks," but it's really not the same, since the difference in shape impacts what areas feel best when touched. Basically, this means you're in for some trial and error. Or, you know, just ask her what feels good. "It's your job to make sex enjoyable for her," says Oliver. And vice versa, of course. "Ask her to show you how she likes to be touched. Find out what her needs are so that you can fulfil them. Don't assume that all women have the same needs and wants."
Check in with your lady from time to time while you're doing the deed, and see if there's any way you could be making it feel better for her. The effort alone is a total turn on, and you'll be way ahead of the game than if you had just opted to break out your signature move and hope for the best.