5 myths about sex that are ruining your relationship
Sorry, but unfortunately, we weren’t born with an instruction manual about how to do life. Or how to do sex. Sex is supposed to happen naturally, all by itself, so when you run into roadblocks, you can feel like there’s something seriously wrong with you or your relationship.
Take it from a pro, if sex really did happen all by itself and it was magical every single time, then there would be no need for me to have a job, or for the hundreds of books, magazine articles and podcasts about sex.
You can find sex advice everywhere. You’ve probably Googled it yourself. Look on Amazon and you’ll have plenty of advice about how to have better sex, more sex, bigger orgasms, and better orgasms. You can find hundreds of online articles about sex and get sex advice.
I recommend many of these resources to my clients (like my guide to pleasure resources, here) and to anybody else who’ll listen because many of them contain gold dust.
But sometimes all of this sex advice can feel a little overwhelming, can’t it?
What do you do when sex is causing fights in your relationship and you can’t meet in the middle?
While I can’t promise to fix your relationship, I can reassure you that often what causes conflict about sex isn’t about the sex itself, but on how you think it “should” be. You can blame the media, terrible sex education, bad advice from your older sister or brother.
Whatever the reason, while you may think that you’re pretty open-minded, I’ll bet there are still some unhelpful myths about sex that you’re believing that are ruining your relationship.
These are the 5 most common myths I see.
1. If you’re into one thing, that you’re into it all the time
Maybe you’re into spanking, can’t get enough of anal play, you love rough sex, or slow sex, tickling, vibrators, role play. Or all of them. Or none of them. Whatever it is that you’re really into, there’s pressure that you must therefore always like it.
At any time. All the time.
Maybe you felt confused if your partner told you that they’re really into rough sex, so when you went for it really hard, they froze and told you to stop. Or you felt frustrated when your partner told you they have a very high sex drive, but suddenly is too tired and keeps turning you down.
Or perhaps you feel pressure because you know that you’re really into having your g-spot stimulated, or you love being taken from behind, but today, you’re just not feeling it but feel like a fraud because you’ve told your partner how much you love it.
What do you do? And what gives?
This is a longer post in itself, so I’ll give you the condensed version:
Nobody is into everything, all of the time, no matter the context.
You may love mushroom pizza, but it doesn’t mean that you want it for breakfast, lunch and dinner every day. Or maybe you love cult horror films, but that doesn’t mean that you want to watch it every day because you’ve got to be in the right mood for it. You may love it when your dog sleeps next to you, but not on nights where you need a long sleep because he keeps kicking you.
Catch my drift?
Just because you’re into one thing, it doesn’t mean you’re into it all the time, with anybody.
So take the pressure of yourself, and off of your partner.
2. If you really love each other, your sex drives will always be in sync
Blame movies, rom-coms and all of the classic love stories ever told for this annoying myth.
Two lovers (and they are always heterosexual, obviously) fall into each other’s’ arms, clothes fly off, and they melt into each other- there’s no communication, awkward moments, fanny farts or leg cramps- and climax at the exact same time.
Maybe when you first got together you were at it like rabbits, but now you can’t synchronize when you’re both feeling horny and it’s driving you bonkers.
Does this mean you don’t love each other enough? NO! It means that you are different people with different body clocks, needs,
Every human is unique and different, even if you are the most connected couple you know who agree on everything and do literally everything together. (LOL, you know those couples are a myth!).
Even with all the love in the world, our bodies are different and are constantly changing. Our needs, wants and desires will change, and sometimes life can just be bloody stressful.
No couple can be 100% in sync, all the time because that’s not realistic or a healthy expectation.
Do you always feel hungry at the same time? Are you tired at the same time? Obviously not. Is one of you a morning person while the other a night owl? Do you love spicy food while your partner hates it?
You are two different people, so stop putting pressure on your relationship that you will both always have matching sex drives and desires.
You need to start having conversations about sex outside of the bedroom, find a way to meet in the middle, and remember that your partner is not responsible for your sexual satisfaction: you are.
3. There’s a “right” way and a “wrong” way to enjoy sex
Somebody, at some point, decided what was “good” and “healthy” sex, and what is the “optimal” amount of times and duration to have sex. You’ll read this in lots of sex advice books, and some “gurus” will try to teach you exactly how you should be making love to your partner.
(Can you feel my eyes rolling already? Because they are).
When you get hung up, or your partner gives you grief about how you “should” be enjoying sex, I guarantee that this will fester into very unsexy resentment. This is different to how you actually enjoy sex, how you feel pleasure in your body and your desires.
I’m talking about how you’re “shoulding” on yourself.
Maybe you love a quickie, you like it rough, you like it long and slow or you can’t get off without being restrained. Maybe penetration doesn’t do it for you at all, or you prefer anal stimulation.
Just no. How you feel pleasure is how you feel pleasure, end of. As long as it abides by the “safe, sane, and consensual” decree, and it’s between adults, anything goes.
Don’t let anyone- including your partner- tell you that you’re doing it wrong or what you like is wrong.
4. Real sex means penetration
What IS sex? We’re sold the idea that REAL sex always means some form of penetration. If you received any sex education, it would have involved putting a condom on a banana because the only real sex is sex that involves a penis going into a vagina.
Let’s scrap this right now, because it’s just bloody boring.
What if you experience vaginal pain? What if you’ve just had a baby and you’re still sore, torn and don’t feel quite right down there? What if you or your partner struggle to get an erection? What if intercourse isn’t how you climax (most women/vulva owners cannot climax from vaginal penetration alone)?
We get so hung up about how sex must always mean penetration that you can miss out on all of the fun you can in other ways.
If penetration is your thing, by all means, enjoy it and own it. But if you’re not in the mood for or in the right space for it, you can still absolutely enjoy sex.
5. Sex must always finish with an orgasm
Orgasms are wonderful. I love orgasms and want you to have as many as possible.
But they aren’t everything. What happens if one of you finds it hard to orgasm? Or you can only orgasm a certain way? Or what if an orgasm makes you feel so tired afterward that it’s not worth it?
Many women struggle to come: in sexology the word is “anorgasmic”, but in sex coaching we say, “pre-orgasmic”. If you’ve ever had a partner put pressure on you to orgasm, you’ll be nodding your head when I say that this is the least sexy thing you can do and will shut her down quicker than your parents walking in on you.
Guys, as much as you want to please your lady and take her to heaven and back, the more you pressure her, the less likely she will come.
This works the other way around, if you’re a guy who struggles to come and your partner takes it personally, I bet that is a huge buzzkill for you.
Sometimes you’re too tired to come, but you still want to be close to each other. And you still can! Focus on all the other yummy and pleasurable things that you can do and take the pressure off to orgasm.
Enjoy the ride, stop worrying about the finish line.
Do you need some more help finding your sweet spot as a couple? I can help. As a clinical sexologist and sex and relationship coach, my mission is to help you experience real bliss, pleasure,