Selfish or uneducated lover?

Originally Published: November 7, 1997 - Last Updated / Reviewed On: March 10, 2006
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Dear Alice,

My boyfriend has been having sex since he was thirteen years old, and yet when he's with me he makes no attempt at pleasing me. He doesn't know how (or he doesn't try) to turn me on, and he never helps me reach orgasm. In fact I never have reached an orgasm with him. Besides this he is a wonderful loving boyfriend. How do I approach the subject tactfully? And if he really is clueless, how do I teach him how to do it right?

Dear Reader,

Clearly, you deserve to get as much pleasure as your boyfriend seems to be having, both by yourself and with your boyfriend.  It's also possible that your boyfriend is uneducated rather than selfish. His track record in other areas of your life is the primary indication of that.

Over a cup of coffee, how about just saying, "Honey (or whatever name you usually call him), you know I'm not having orgasms with you, and I'd really like to, and I think this is how... If you touch me in a certain spot in a certain way, and I moved in a special way, I think it would work. Why don't we try it? I could show you this afternoon." Or, "How about when we are getting it on, I'll show you what I think might work?"  Another way to communicate your message is to actually show your boyfriend what to do while you are having sex, by taking his hands in yours and moving them the ways you like being touched. 

You also might need to slow your boyfriend down.  Sometimes young men are in a hurry to get to the goal, intercourse, and they forget the pleasant part of the journey.  They race through three bases, ignoring any feelings along the way, to get to home base.  But if there isn't enough stroking, kissing, caressing of a woman's body and of her clitoris, the woman's pleasure center, then vaginal penetration by fingers or by a penis can be boring, unpleasant, and even painful.  You and your boyfriend may also benefit from a little "research" to learn more about sexual response in women.  For example, you both can search for your clitoris and see how it works.  Get and read Rebecca Chalker's book, The Clitoral Truth: The World at Your Fingertips.  Do you know about cunnilingus, oral sex on a woman, and why it works for many women?  Get and read Ian Kerner's book, She Comes First: The Thinking Man's Guide to Pleasuring a Woman, and also The Best You'll Ever Have: What Every Woman Should Know about Getting and Giving Knock-Your-Socks-Off Sex by Shannon Mullen.   Read them together.  Learning about sex can be non-threatening and, sometimes, even a turn-on!

Most men are eager to learn to please their partners.  They long to be even better lovers... Your boyfriend may just need to know to please you and you are the only one who can teach him about the unique way you come. If this seems hard to do, just remember your potential for pleasure together, and then tell him that you don't want to miss another opportunity with him for pleasure and even fireworks.

Alice