Q: I am a 38-year-old married woman. My husband of 18 years is 22 years my senior. I credit my husband for giving me a good life and helping me pursue goals. But my husband is a type A professional, and that has played out in the bedroom. He has always been disinterested in my pleasure. When our kids were little, I did not want sex as often as he did (“only” twice a week). I suggested that he masturbate in the shower if he wanted a morning quickie. His answer: A married man “should not have to pleasure himself.”
That attitude about my wifely duties also translates into myriad other household tasks that fall into my lap. Hubby, by the way, does not fall into my lap. If I ask for oral, he tells me to “clean it really, really well,” then he’ll “think about doing that.” This makes me feel disgusting.
I have tried to spice up our sex life. For years, it has been penis in the vagina, missionary position or doggy style. It can feel pretty “rapey” a lot of the time, as he typically comes at me rounding third base and then—bam—it’s over in five minutes. If I initiate or get on top, he loses his erection because I am “attacking him.”
A few months ago, I told a friend that I had never once received “enthusiastic oral.” She said it made sense that my husband didn’t enjoy doing it because it was a “domination thing” that mostly submissive men enjoy. A little information can be a dangerous thing. I started visiting online domination forums. I hinted about these interests to my husband and got shot down (of course). This is a huge contrast to my new “online friends,” who would love to meet and orally service me. Two of these “sub males” want me to “own” them.
This is heady stuff. I have spoken to each of them on the phone and exchanged hundreds of e-mails. (Meeting strangers sounds scary, I know, but I have kept my identity secret and have insisted on knowing these gents’ real and verifiable info.) I want to take this into “real life.” This is the happiest I have been in my entire life, and I want to act on these desires. My husband is my only concern. He is my best friend, and I don’t want to lose that. I feel like I can’t even tell him about the online stuff. He is so rigid. I am stuck. How do I deal with this? —Don’t Offend My Man Ever
A: On the one hand . . . a man who demands “rapey” sex on his schedule for 18 years, makes his wife feel bad about her genitals, and isn’t open to trying new things is begging to be cheated on. So go ahead and get some enthusiastic oral from those sub males, DOMME, you more than deserve it.
On the other hand . . . you say your rapey, pussy-disparaging, sex-shaming husband is your best friend (baffling!) and you don’t want to lose him (equally baffling!). And without a doubt, a guy with his retrograde attitudes about sex, gender roles, and “wifely duties” would divorce you if he found out you cheated on him—and some days it feels like most people who cheat wind up getting caught—so you probably shouldn’t take this into “real life,” as it could wind up nuking your marriage.
But on the other other hand . . . your husband sounds like the type of guy who would regard your secret online life as cheating—the hundreds of e-mails, the phone calls, the hours lurking on domination websites—and divorce you just the same if he found out. So you might as well go ahead and fuck those subs, DOMME, because if you get caught—and you probably will—you’ll be in the same trouble whether or not you got some enthusiastic oral from a sub male in “real life.”
Q: I’m a 25-year-old woman who can only get off lying facedown and rubbing my clit against a pillow. The orgasms are great, but it limits the ways I can get off with my husband. For instance, the only way I can orgasm during sex is being on top and rocking back and forth on him in a similar manner. I’ve never climaxed during oral or hand stimulation, or in any other position. All of that feels nice, but I never climax. My husband has been very understanding and is fine with all of this (he even finds the way I masturbate “hot,” though I hid it for years out of shame), but I really want to be able to do more. I’m also concerned about this being bad for me in the long run, like how the “death grip” is for guys. How can I teach myself to masturbate correctly? I’ve been reading up online and hearing conflicting suggestions—and most of them are for men. I’m currently abstaining from masturbating for a week in order to become more sensitive and then trying to get off only with my hands while on my back. Some say to take a month off of sex, too? It’s all very stressful, and I’m terrified of never being able to get off the conventional way since I’ve been doing this since childhood.
—Can’t Really Use Direction
A: Forgive me in advance for the mixed messages I’m about to send you, CRUD, although I promise they won’t be nearly as mixed as what I just sent DOMME.
I’ve advised guys with Death Grip Syndrome—aka Traumatic Masturbatory Syndrome—to keep masturbating but to use a lighter touch and a lot of lube. (Not all of these guys are clenching their dicks too hard; some are rubbing up against pillows like you, CRUD, or even—my personal favorite—sliding their dicks between mattresses and box springs.) But here’s the difficult part: If they can’t come with the lighter touch and more lube, they don’t get to come. No reverting to a tightly clenched fist (or a pillow or a crusty mattress set) after 20 minutes of “trying.” Allow the pressure and frustration to build long enough, and a dick will adapt. A new groove will be carved—but they may have to keep at it for months, plural, not a month, singular. And go ahead and have sex, but, again, no death grip, no pillow, no mattress.
My advice for you, CRUD, is the same as my advice for the boys: If you want to learn how to get off in other ways, masturbate regularly—constantly—but without the pillow. If you don’t come, you don’t come. Focus on the pleasure you are able to achieve, and give it at least three months. It’s a very good sign that you aren’t entirely dependent on a pillow—you can get off with/on your partner. Most people with TMS aren’t so lucky. And it’s a lot less awkward to grind on your partner pillow style when you want to come than it is for a guy to shift from penis-in-vagina sex (PIV) to penis-in-between-mattress-and-box-spring sex (PIBMABS) when he wants to come.
That said, some people with DGS/TMS simply aren’t able to retrain their junk. But you don’t have to live without orgasms for the rest of your life or view yourself as damaged. After giving your junk a chance to adapt, CRUD, you may have to accept that this is how you get off—this is how your junk works, this is how your orgasms happen—and let go of the shame. Enjoy the fingering, enjoy the oral, and enjoy the fucking, and then, when you want to get off, maneuver your husband into a position that works for you and shamelessly grind away.
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