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I’ve been with my husband for many years, and our sex life has never been ideal. We never seem to be on the same page. We definitely have different styles and preferences. Things he enjoys, I do not, and vice versa. For example, I enjoy giving him a blow job, but he will take it over and start thrusting or grabbing my head. He gets frustrated and will say I’m so hard to get off, but it’s almost an insult to his masculinity when I offer suggestions. Our marriage is great, but I would like the best sex of my life to be with the man I married. How do we make our sex life work for both of us if we don’t have the same sexual interests?

Our atrocious sex education paired with our cultural knack for social stigmatization has made us really bad at talking about sex. When women ask for what they want sexually, they’re labeled “sluts” or “high maintenance” or “selfish.” Women aren’t taught to vocalize their desires nor are they educated about their orgasms. Women are taught to be sexually passive and submissive and that when in doubt, they should “just take it.” Meaning, they should just take the orgasms they can get, take the affection they’re offered, and accept their sex lives for what they are at face value.

Men, on the other hand, are socialized to know — or at least pretend to know — everything about sex, be in charge of sexual encounters, and be intrinsically able to satisfy their partners. When men don’t do this, they are seen as being “weak” or “not a real man.” If women are taught to “just take it,” men are taught to “just fake it,” blindly stumbling through every sexual situation without stopping to ask for directions…continue reading…