Q.How do I get the sex I want?
My cheat sheet for your wife or girlfriend on how she can deepen your relationship by taking the lead in bed
A: Love Lessons from A guy
Heres a question: Guys, how would you rate your current sex life?
It's an A: 16 percent
It's a B: 28 percent
It's a C: 24 percent
It's a D: 14 percent
It's an F: 18 percent
If you're shocked by the above statistics, well, I'm not surprised. Aren't all guys just happy to get some? Isn't sex to a man like leftovers to a dog -- we don't care if it's Chick-fil-A or filet mignon? Clearly, that assumption is wrong. Fifty-six percent of the men we polled rated their sex lives as no better than a C. Out of 2,500 men, that's 1,400 who find their bedroom action unsatisfying -- and surely all of them can't be dating Dame Edna.
What's going on here?
The men I've spoken with -- through the Men, Love & Sex poll, through my research and studies, and in my forty-some years of listening to other guys -- all seem to have one desire: They all wish their girlfriends or wives would turn the bedroom into a Sadie Hawkins dance once in a while.
On a scale of 1 to 10 (with a 1 being an anesthetized surgical patient and a 10 being a coked-up rocker), men rate the sexual aggressiveness of their current or most recent wife or girlfriend as a 5. What do we want? According to our poll, it's an 8. Add in the fact that when men rate their best sexual experience -- as in, best sexual experience ever -- one common theme stands out: She takes charge. Take these guys as examples:
Andy, 31, a Web designer in California, says the best sex he ever had was when his girlfriend at the time steered the entire sexual situation -- even though it involved her much more than it involved him. "She spontaneously masturbated in front of me, and she didn't let me touch her or get myself undressed," Andy says. "She asked me to tell her that she was turning me on (and she was!), so as I told her how sexy she was, she came closer and closer until she finally did shudder to an orgasm."
John, a 27-year-old law student in Georgia, says that he's turned on by the fact that his girlfriend's aggressiveness in bed is a little bit like a man's. "Recently I came home and she was dressed like the innocent school girl. Skirt, glasses, stockings -- the whole look," he says. "She took control of me and rode me over and over until she had an orgasm. God, do I love it. The sex is so great."
Kyle, 36, who's been married for four years, says that aggressiveness isn't necessarily about being kinky or crazy or doing anything that the woman's uncomfortable with. He says, "One time, my wife seduced me first by phone, while I was at work, just by telling me that she couldn't wait for me to get home. Then when I walked in, she had left me a note at the front table to 'get comfortable and come to bed,' where she was waiting. Then we had some awesome sex."
Joseph, 31, who's been married for five years, says his best time came when his wife took the lead throughout the whole session. "I came home from work and the lights were low and music was playing and my wife was dressed in lingerie," he says. "She met me at the door and we kissed and touched each other all over and then she pulled me on top of her and grabbed my butt and tried to pull me in deep as she groaned, and then we both had an orgasm and fell asleep."
But you're probably thinking: Don't men like to take the lead? Doesn't it excite a man to feel like he's in control? Wouldn't most guys prefer throwing the touchdowns to kicking the extra points? To which I would respond: Brad and Angelina. If they're the universally accepted sexiest couple in the world, then I ask you: Who do you think gives the orders in bed?
Men like to think of themselves as the hunters. But we don't necessarily want to be hunting possum, and we sure don't want you to roll over and play dead; we'd rather feel like the hunt was between two creatures of equal sexual power, and that once we have you in our sights, you'll be just as aggressive as we are. We want you to "meet our urgency," as Bruce Springsteen might have put it. You have the ability to recharge us, sexually -- in the form of assertiveness, seduction, and, dare I say it, even a little nagging. Touch me here. Clothes off. Get on top of me.
That's the kind of ordering around no man will ever get tired of hearing.
1. HOW FREE SHOULD I BE DURING THE FIRST TIME WITH A NEW GUY?
I've been seeing a guy for a few weeks, and we've messed around a fair amount but haven't actually slept together. I know I shouldn't really be comparing myself to other women he's slept with, but of course, there's a side of me that wants to be his best, that wants him to really remember it. On the other hand, I don't want him to think I'm a whip-using weirdo. What's enough to impress a guy in bed without him thinking you're too crazy or maybe even worse, too experienced?
You're right: There's a difference between showing enthusiasm and putting on a production worthy of a Super Bowl halftime show. Your goal should be to show him that you're sensual, open-minded, and, most of all, that you're into him. What you don't need is to prove to us that you're part cowgirl, part trapeze artist, and part opera singer. The thrill of the first time--the proof that a woman like you wants a poor schlub like us--is enough to make it special.
For example, Marcus, 29, a landscape designer in Florida, says that the first time he has sex with a woman isn't the true indicator of how their sexual relationship is going to be. "I've been with women who are usually pretty conservative the first time," he says. "But after that, you usually get a better sense of what they're like sexually. The thing that really turns me on with a new woman is pretty simple. It's when she shows that she's just hungry for me, like if she doesn't have me now, she'll go crazy." A great sexual experience is just like a great road trip--we want a partner who's enthusiastic, adventuresome, who smells good, and who knows how to drive a stick.
We don't need a stunt driver.
2. HOW DO MEN RATE A WOMAN IN BED?
Look, I know how it is. A man is never going to criticize a woman in bed, or tell her that she's anything but great--because if he does, he knows he'll never get any ever again. But how does a woman know if a guy thinks she's really good in bed?
I once worked for a boss who demoted an employee not by calling him into his office and giving him the news straight-up, but by posting an org chart on the office bulletin board showing the poor guy a level lower than where he thought he was. Not the best way to build employee loyalty, but it illustrates a point: Nobody likes to give bad news. And more important, nobody likes to give bad news to someone they have to be with day in and day out.
What men say when they're out of the line of fire, however, is that they're not looking at your "performance," or comparing you to other lovers. They're looking at your enthusiasm--how you respond to their touch, how much you seem to want to touch them. "I've had great lovers. One ex-girlfriend tried to do everything different every time--red scarves over the lights, new positions, you name it, and it was great," says Brad, a 32-year-old sporting goods rep. "But I'm with someone else. The sex is totally different with her and more traditional, but it's still great and fun and intense, just a different kind of great." In a guy's mind, we're more concerned about the next time we're going to have sex--not the last time. Men are to sex what Wile E. Coyote was to the Roadrunner--even if we feel like we got an anvil dropped on our head, we're already plotting our next approach.
But if you really want to know what he thinks of you in bed, here's the sign: You know how some men can be on their best relationship behavior when they're pursuing sex--by being extra loving, romantic, and caring? A man who just had great sex will also be on his best relationship behavior afterward.
3. HOW MUCH SEX DO MEN NEED?
I've been married for six years, and the amount of sex my husband and I have dropped off pretty significantly -- from three or four times a week to maybe once every two weeks. I can't really give you a great reason why--probably a combination of being tired, and maybe feeling like it's become too much of a routine. But I sometimes worry that it's not enough for my husband--I want him to be satisfied, but it's hard to find the time and energy to make it happen more often. Is our relationship in trouble?
Here's the thing -- most men understand, and accept, the realities of growing into adulthood. (I know, this doesn't explain Charlie Sheen, but that one's got me flummoxed.)
The fact is, we too feel the pressures of jobs, kids, even body issues, and we too wonder if we're giving you the sex you need. The rapid-fire sexual machines that we were when we first met may become more like popguns, and the wild inventiveness we once brought to lovemaking can turn into something more akin to assembly line work. John, who's 43 and has been married for 15 years, says that he's a realist. "Do I expect to have sex with my wife three times a week, the way we did when we first got married? No. Even I don't have the energy for that, as much as I may think I want to," he says.
And again, most of us are fine with that. (Shut up, Charlie Sheen!) But as with anything, a drop in quantity shouldn't be accompanied by a simultaneous drop in quality. John continues: "There are times when I can tell my wife is having sex with me because she feels it's her 'duty' since it's been a while since the last time we had sex. Nothing's worse than that feeling." The key is not to worry about frequency, but to set aside time when both of you can be equally into your lovemaking and make a point of savoring the experience. After all, the older we get, the more we understand why a single bottle of fine Scotch is worth more than five cases of Old Milwaukee.
What You Now Know about Men
Sometimes, the thing that makes sex most memorable is that it begins with you wanting it.
When it comes to your involvement in sex, noise always trumps toys.
As a relationship matures, a man will stay satisfied if the emphasis is on quality, not quantity
Any personal health questions or problems mental or physical. Please consult your physician !
Wishing You Great Sex!
Glen Edward Mitchell
Got a question? Ask Glen!