People always tell you about the sex you *should* be having. This helps you work out what kind of sex you like and might *want* to have.
There are a lot of rules about what counts as ‘real sex’. I hate that. I really really do. Firstly, not everyone has the genitals required to have ‘real sex’ (like penis in vagina sex for example). Secondly, it creates a pressure on people to do something they might not want to do (consent, innit). Lastly ‘real sex’ doesn’t do it for a lot of people, lots of people find ‘real sex’ is dull sex.
Homework – make a list
Write down as many different sexual things that you can do with another person. Think about it for a few minutes to give yourself enough time to use your imagination. Also be really specific about what, where and how. For instance rather than just writing down ‘oral’ does that mean licking or sucking or both? If you can’t think or need a few ideas there’s a list at the bottom, but please try and think of your own list first.
Once you’ve done that go through the list and mark them with OMG YES, or Not For Me, or Hmmm. These mean.
This is all the stuff that you are really comfortable, happy, enthusiastic, excited about doing. Stuff that fits in with your values (about what you think is right) but also stuff you feel personally ready for. (Remember that just because someone has put something in their yes pile doesn’t mean they will always want to do it. You have to make sure that there is consent before every time you both do something.)
Not for me
This is stuff you really aren’t into. You might be scared to do it, it may make you unhappy. It might be something you think is wrong, or something you aren’t ready to do now or may never want to do. The kind of things in this pile are the things you definitely would not want someone to do or try and do with you and the kind of things you would want to say no to.
This is the pile where you might not know enough about it so you might want to do your research. You might want to talk through how that might work out and what it might entail. It might be something you need to prepare for or work up to – maybe there’s a risk of STI or pregnancy or other risk that you need to take care of first. It might be something you want to do but only when you can rely on your partner a bit more.
Sharing your lists
You can then use these lists to help you to tell someone what it is you want. If you get them to do this homework too then you can find out from each other what you’re into. You might find this easier to talk about via email or something. You could text each other what you’re into.
How to do sex talk and communication
If you’ve shared lists try to keep talking about what it is that you want to get out of the sex that you want to have, what concerns you, what you’re excited about generally. Knowing what you and what the other person wants is the key to both of you having enjoyable sex. Also what we like and don’t like can change – so make sure you keep checking in with each other
List of sex things
In case you find it difficult coming up with your own lists of things, you can use this list of things below. They are all random and are not in any order. There are loads more than this. Some won’t apply to you – depending on what is in your pants. Just see this list as a starting point to help you come up with your own. You could copy and paste some of these things into a text maybe?
Warning – this is a list of sexy things. You probably don’t want to do all of these things (that’s kinda the point).
- Gently stroking a naked knee with the tips of your fingers
- Nibbling ear lobes and gently licking partner’s ear
- Deep sexy kissing with tongues
- Massaging each other naked
- A gentle kiss on the cheek
- Kissing on the lips
- Fingers tracing the inside of wrists and hands
- Licking or sucking a penis or clitoris
- Stroking naked nipples
- Kissing face, eyes, neck, ears and cheeks
- Solo masturbation in front of them
- Having vaginal sex (with fingers, penis or sex toys)
- Stroking a penis or clitoris directly
- Having anal sex (with fingers, penis or sex toys)
- Touching chest, body or bum with clothes on
- Getting totally naked
- Love bite
- Sending a text saying they are turned on
- Watching something sexy with someone
- Holding hands
- Giving a shoulder rub with clothes on
- Dressing up in sexy clothes for someone
- Stroking the penis or vulva through their pants
- Whispering sexy thoughts in their ear
- Eating food off each other
- Rubbing genitals together
- Lying naked up close against their back (spooning)
- Wearing just underwear with someone
- Rubbing naked bodies together
- Sending a sexy pic (over 18 though)
- Having hot frantic sex with clothes on (dry humping)
- Spending the night in bed with someone
- Agreeing to sex with more than one person
- Sharing sexy fantasies
Comment below if you like. I moderate all comments before they appear, so don’t be cheeky!
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© Justin Hancock, 2023
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Justin Hancock has been a trained sex and relationships educator since 1999. In that time he’s taught and given advice about sex and relationships with thousands of young people in person and millions online. He’s a member of the World Association for Sexual Health.