Sex Basics

Most guys are confident in their abilities in bed. As an adult male, you have to be. But while we’ve all given ourselves silent pep talks before an encounter and patted ourselves on the back after, our self-assurance may actually be misguided. We’re not all the skillful lovers we would like to think we are.

In fact, many men might actually be embarrassing themselves more than they know. As a popular thread on Reddit showed, a disconcerting number of us put in underwhelming performances without recognizing it. In some cases, we ignore everything but the all-important orgasm, while other times we prove ourselves to be woefully unfamiliar with the female anatomy.

We may sincerely believe otherwise, but when it comes to the fundamentals, too many of us are making serious — and avoidable — mistakes in the sack. Next time you get down with someone for the night, be prepared.

10. Foreplay Is More Than A Means To An End

As one Reddit poster noted, foreplay is not simply a means to an end. Some guys rifle through it, though, kissing here and caressing there, as they disrobe in anticipation of the act they appear desperate to begin. Meanwhile, their partners are left to feel as though they’re incidental to the endeavor. While the penetration itself may seem synonymous with the act of coitus, that’s not what it’s all about. Guys would be best served to take it slowly, enjoying every aspect of the encounter as they get to know the woman they’re with. A well-paced build-up — the make-out, the undressing, the reciprocal oral sex — will mean a more fulfilling encounter and, more importantly, a standing invitation for more.

9. Silence Is Not Golden

Men are taught to admire the strong, silent type — the guys who, no matter the circumstances, stay steely and stoic. But while that lack of emotion might work in your favor at a poker tournament, it won’t play out quite as well during sex. Instead, it risks alienating your partner by leaving her to wonder if she’s actually pleasuring you. There’s no need to exaggerate your feelings — leave the heavy moans and contorted facial expressions to the guys in porn — but you can let your partner know you’re enjoying her company in a genuine way. How you articulate this is your choice. And if you’re still not convinced, ask yourself this: What would you think if she were completely mute during sex?

8. It’s Not All About The Orgasm

In any sexual encounter, there’s at least a tacit understanding that you’re both there to come. And, though circumstances are unlikely to alter that objective, it shouldn’t be the only thing you have in mind. When guys approach sex with a laser focus on the all-important orgasm, they generally lose sight of the path to the climactic moment. They wind up pressuring themselves — and their partners — to hit the proverbial finish line as quickly as possible. Rather than rush it, why not enjoy the experience as a whole? You’ll prolong your pleasure, and your partner will feel like she’s with a guy who actually knows what he’s doing. The conclusion, though delayed, will be a lot more satisfying for everyone involved.

7. Just Licking Her Does Not Excellent Cunnilingus Make

To guys reared on porno — which means a lot of us — performing oral sex on a woman means a lot of quick licks at the labia majora, followed by brief, orgasm-inducing penetration with your tongue. But while that might look good on screen, the labial tongue lashing is not a technique we recommend. When it comes to cunnilingus, don’t be shy — you’ll want your face nice and close to her vagina. As one Redditor wrote, “You gotta get all up in that stuff.” It will feel much better for her, and likely far more erotic for you. Trust us: The more timid option will make you look utterly inexperienced.

6. Use Your Digits Wisely

Digital penetration is a normal part of foreplay. But some guys get overeager and confuse their fingers for penises. As a result, they finger their partners with a vigor normally reserved for sex, as though they’re offering a taste of what’s to come. All this proves, however, is that they have no idea what a woman wants, so they’ve resolved to go hard and fast. You should aim for a more measured approach, taking care to acclimate her to the feel of your fingers as you gradually insert more of them. There’s room for some intensity, but a little nuance will go a long way.

5. No One Likes A Jackhammer

It shouldn’t take a Redditor to tell you that simply pounding away at a woman during sex is a surefire turnoff. Nonetheless, many men do, convinced that it will ultimately bring their partners to orgasm. There is no nuance, no build-up, no feeling. This approach is synonymous with inexperience. Rather than simply thrusting away from beginning to end, you’ll want to vary your speed throughout sex. Gauge your partner’s response and let it inform your movements. If she asks you to go harder, oblige. But if the moment calls for it, go slowly. Sensitize yourself to her needs. You’ll last longer, and you’ll both be happier for it.

4. Her Clitoris Is Not A Scratch-And-Win Ticket

Here’s something every guy will tell you: Don’t ignore her clitoris. Any woman you meet is more likely to come from clitoral stimulation than any sort of penetration. But to many men, this is an invitation to rub relentlessly in order to make their partner climax. As you’ll learn, though, the clitoris is extremely sensitive, so too much force can actually prove painful. You’ll want to approach it carefully — and always with neatly cut nails!

3. Keep Her Whole Body In Mind

When you have sex, you aim to pleasure the woman you’re with. So it makes sense that many guys focus on the one or two sensitive areas of her body. If she responds to your attention to, say, her neck or thighs, why look for other ways to please her, right? Not quite. Though this notion is understandable, it’s also incredibly shortsighted. The law of diminishing returns applies everywhere — even in the bedroom. If you’ve worked her neck for a while, move down to her breasts. And you may not want to focus too heavily on her clitoris, where overstimulation can sometimes prove unpleasant. So keep things varied. No woman dreams of a predictable, inattentive lover.

2. If You Like It Rough, Make Sure You’re Sweet Afterward

There’s nothing wrong with a little rough sex if it’s consensual. Many women freely admit that they enjoy being slapped and, occasionally, even degraded a little during sex. But you should never, ever take it too far — no one wants to leave the bedroom in need of medical attention — and you should always remember to show some compassion afterward. No woman wants to feel as though she’s, as one Reddit poster put it, a slab of meat. When it’s all over, make sure you pay attention to her immediate needs, which will likely mean some snuggling and cuddling. She will thank you for it.

1. Don’t Stress Out About The G-Spot

The location of the G-Spot, or Gräfenberg Spot, has long eluded men. For the record, it is widely understood to be a couple of inches up the anterior vaginal wall, between the vaginal opening and the urethra. Your search will probably be less scientific, so, per one Redditor, once you’ve inserted your fingers into her vagina, curl them as though you were asking someone to come toward you; the spot you’re looking for will feel rippled. But don’t let that elusive area become the be-all, end-all of your sex life — and don’t convince yourself that it can induce an orgasm for every woman. Take the time to ask her what she likes and search for her body’s hotspots. Wherever they are, discovering them will earn you some serious points.

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