I don't know, he's just sort of faceless.
September 24, 2010 9:09 AM   Subscribe

The person I'm going out with claims they have no sexual imagination, essentially. Can this be true? What can I do?

No fantasies any more specific than just generally having sex, no sex dreams in their sleep, no specific positions would be more fun than any others, no fetishes, no words that get them going, no favorite celebrities to pretend I am, no props or toys, nothing. No requests or specific interests.

I know some people are asexual, but that's not what's going on with this person. They like sex fine, but as far as I can tell it must be the exact same every time for them. If they're telling the truth, which I'm not sure I believe.

My small problem is that I'm bored and tired having to be the only person to adding ideas to our sex life. And it really sucks that we don't get the intimacy that comes from sharing her secrets like we share mine.

My main question is, can I take them seriously about this? I'm not very experienced but every other partner I've had has wanted SOMETHING or been into SOMETHING or at least had SOME ideas. It wouldn't be completely impossible with their personality that this would just be a put-off because they're embarrassed to talk about it.

My other question is, does anyone have advice for how to deal with this? That intimacy is a really big deal to me and I miss it, not to mention I'm getting restless.

Not looking for DTMFA advice right now.
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (46 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite

 
There are any number of reasons why a person might be like this - they may be repressed, they may have hangups about sex, or they might just kind of be that way, and that's fine.

Does she understand that you're bored and tired? It seems like if there's going to be any real way through it, direct communication will be it. You need to make it clear that this is something you need for your continued happiness, but without making it sound like this is a failing on her part. Have some wine, if you're the sort to have wine. Sit on the couch on talk. From there, I cannot tell you, but it'll be a start, and should give you some idea of how to proceed.
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 9:18 AM on September 24, 2010


Does this particular lady happen to display any traits which are typical of the autism/Asperger's spectrum? I ask because I have some of those traits, and I also have a terrifically hard time with the imaginative/fantasy part of Ye Olde Sexe. One thing that might help: constructing a very solid narrative structure, taking the mental burden off her her. By that I mean introducing porn, or describing fantasies out loud, or reading erotica to her, or so on.
posted by julthumbscrew at 9:18 AM on September 24, 2010


My fantasies tend to more involve the seduction/foreplay than the sex itself, fwiw.
posted by The Biggest Dreamer at 9:21 AM on September 24, 2010


I am kind of like that.

It's not that I'm not sexual. Or that I don't have likes and dislikes. It's more that I don't have a ton of imagination sexually. Also that a lot of my specific fantasies are not terribly applicable to one-on-one everyday "mundane" sex (if you can call sex mundane!). Also, to be perfectly frank, it doesn't take a whole lot to get me off. I don't need props or visual aids or improv sessions. I just want to fuck. Most likely in the same way we usually fuck. I don't get bored very easily and kind of like sex the way I like a good grilled cheese sandwich. It's cheese and bread and butter and it's hot and I pretty much like it the same way I've always liked it.

I don't know that this is necessarily a bug. If you are not like that, and are not sexually compatible with someone who is like that, then this might be a DTMFA situation unless you are so wild about your partner in other areas that it doesn't really matter to you. But then you probably wouldn't have posted this to Ask.Me.
posted by Sara C. at 9:22 AM on September 24, 2010 [23 favorites]


One thing to note: the poster never said that the person with the hang ups was a lady. No gender has been specified.

The two pieces of advice that I have are: do they know that this is problem? If they do it's not likely that they are lying, and if they are they are just stupid. Really, to make you happy they would lie and say that they are into something. Secondly, have you talked about getting sexual needs fulfilled outside the relationship?
posted by The Devil Tesla at 9:23 AM on September 24, 2010


I've experienced this at least a couple times when dating and it has turned into a personal dealbreaker, one difficult to explain and problematic to investigate before saddling up.

Is the person you're dating conventionally attractive? This is a common thread running through my experiences, and I've developed a theory that some attractive people just haven't had any expectations put upon them since their partners are just fine to do all the work for a hottie.

I'm trying not to generalize too much, but I think a lot of attractive people just simply haven't had to try. At all: it was always enough for them to just lay there or whatever. This one is easier to suss out beforehand: the more sexually apathetic they were, the worse they kissed.
posted by rhizome at 9:24 AM on September 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


She might not have tapped into her sexual imagination yet. Or she might not know how to express her desires, or is embarrassed to express them. You could try asking her to share her bedroom ideas in a less "scary" way like through erotica or dirty text messages. This sort of expression doesn't come easily to everyone, but it might be easiest to begin with nonverbal communication.
posted by gumtree at 9:24 AM on September 24, 2010


While I don't have all of the information it sounds like you two are just sexually incompatible. It doesn't speak negatively for either of you just that in that way you don't mesh as well. Maybe she's timid and is embarrassed to talk about sex.

If it's important to you then you should talk to her about it. I'm not sure that it would be fair of you to pressure her into coming up with some elaborate sexual plan. Some people are just happy with missionary. I think you need to determine if that's a deal breaker for you.
posted by ThomasBrobber at 9:25 AM on September 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


If they truly don't care, then all you have to do is set up a game of dares, back and forth.

Trust me, they'll develop some likes and dislikes in a hurry. You may find some too.
posted by hermitosis at 9:27 AM on September 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


I know some people who are this way about food (like it just fine, enjoy their meals, but don't spend a ton of time thinking about it or analyzing their preferences or compiling lists of favorites), and some people who are this way about movies and TV, or music-- so it's not hard to imagine that your girlfriend might be this way about sex. It's just not That Big A Deal to some people.

If what you really want is for your girlfriend to be super-adventurous and contributing crazy scenarios all the time, then that might be a dealbreaker, but is it possible you're just feeling as though her lack of suggestions equates to a lack of enthusiasm about sex in general? If this is the case, you could try asking her in retrospect to rate each new thing you try, on a scale from 1-10, say. Having to quantify her enjoyment of various sexual acts might provide a nice low-pressure way for the gf to start sussing out her own preferences, while simultaneously reassuring you that she does actually really like some of the stuff you're doing.
posted by Bardolph at 9:28 AM on September 24, 2010 [4 favorites]


I don't really fantasize. I just don't. I'm easily distracted by things that I don't want to think about during sex, and I'm a very practical person anyway, so it doesn't really do stuff for me.

And when I do, it's not really very sexual -- like, I have a particular thing that turns me on about some people, but it's not "Ooh, you with the big brown eyes, stick it in me!" More like a heightened, "Ooh, brown eyes, NICE!" that sort of... I don't know, heightens my state of happiness. And you can't really fantasize about "doing" anything with just a pair of eyes, can you?

Sure, sex is a little low-key sometimes, but I enjoy it. However, I do really, really love the intimacy I share with my partner. Talking, cuddling, touching, all that.

At my request, we added a new thing to our routine after about 18 months of doing other stuff. I don't know why it took that long to be comfortable, but it did. So some things CAN come up in a seemingly spontaneous way. Other things may not ever come up; it's true that she may be hiding some fetish or other that she may consider too weird. But that's her thing.

If you're missing the intimacy, you may just not have the connection that you'd hoped for. But there are ways for you to just try different things, and if she's GGG, you should just concentrate on enjoying the experience.
posted by Madamina at 9:29 AM on September 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


No gender has been specified.

There was a gender specified. "And it really sucks that we don't get the intimacy that comes from sharing her secrets like we share mine."
posted by grouse at 9:30 AM on September 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Work the Shamu way. Reward the behaviors, rather than seek answers. If he acts more into something, tell him you think its hot. Wear something sexy and then smoothly asks if he likes your X in this. Encourage vocalizations. If he says anything tell him how hot it makes you to hear him say that. If there's a little acting in there, its fine. Encourage him to think more about what he likes.

And tell him, always, what you like about him. Stick only to positive reinforcement.
posted by Ironmouth at 9:30 AM on September 24, 2010


How much experience does this person have? I don't think most people in their early 20s, especially ones who haven't had many partners before, have fully explored the range of things that might turn them on. It's not that they are truly vanilla, they're just defaulting to that because they haven't experienced anything different so far.

Is she at all receptive to the idea of trying new things even if they are your idea? As long as she is, I think you should throw something new on the menu once in a while and see how it goes (not all at once and start small, like blindfolds) She's not going to know her favorite kink until you stumble upon it together, especially if she is not very imaginative or introspective to begin with. You might have to put in a bit more of the leg work in generating ideas at first, but really how bad is that as long as she has fun playing along? It's like complaining that you always have to pick the restaurant when you go out; it's not deal breaker territory. If she's really NOT into trying new things even when she does not have to come up with the idea, then you two have a problem.
posted by slow graffiti at 9:32 AM on September 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


There are books/decks of cards with various suggestions for positions/props/techniques. (I once saw a day-by-day calendar like this.) It might be fun to work through one together for the lulz and I suspect that it might make it easier for your partner to say, "hey this one looks interesting," or "I liked that one thing we did last Tuesday." Or whatever. That way you're not stuck being the cruise director, so to speak, and your partner might get some ideas and find an easier way of bringing them up. Things might get a lot easier once your partner has something of a repertoire to draw from.

Books like this are available in ordinary bookstores, BTW.
posted by corey flood at 9:33 AM on September 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


So, I have a fairly firm policy that what goes on in my head, stays in my head. I have no desire to share my fantasies with anyone, including a sex partner, and if someone were to continue to insist that I do, I'd be pretty damned uncomfortable with it. If that is absolutely critical for you, then yeah, that may not be fixable.

I can't tell if she's not willing to try new things or just isn't able to suggest new things. If it's the former, then a frank conversation about boundaries may be in order (one that takes place somewhere neutral, NOT the bedroom, and may have to involve a little alcohol.) If it's the latter, then you should probably also have that conversation, but talk about whether or not she's willing to read or watch porn and broaden her stock of ideas about sex, so at least she has some basis for reacting to things you suggest.

I also don't know how long you've been together - she may just not be ready for that level of intimacy, if it's a relatively new relationship. Or she's got hangups, or just isn't experienced enough to have strong opinions. Whichever it is, it's going to take some serious, non-sexy conversations about it to figure it out.
posted by restless_nomad at 9:33 AM on September 24, 2010


What you've outlined here as "sexual imagination", sound like a bunch of stiffly contrived scenarios that would leave me feeling kind of foolish and fake. The sights, sounds, smells and sensations of the moment reliably overwhelm me. Your girlfriend may just not be the best match for you, so I don't think there's any failing on anyone's part in this.
posted by bonobothegreat at 9:37 AM on September 24, 2010 [14 favorites]


I don't fantasize beyond imagining sex with a person. I don't think it's unhealthy or abnormal to be that way, either. In fact, I find people who insist that fantasies are necessary for a healthy sex life to be the worst sexual partners. In my experience, they're trying to make up for inadequacies in other areas.

And it really sucks that we don't get the intimacy that comes from sharing her secrets like we share mine.

I'd wager she doesn't get intimacy out of it, but is humouring you. People like her (myself included) are bored to tears with your fantasies. It's like listening to someone's dreams. It's NEVER, ever interesting ever and the dream-teller never realizes this.

Sex is a natural thing--how people can become bored with it is a mystery to me. I mean, do you fantasize during the other parts of your natural life? Is dinner just not dinner unless you're pretending you're Paris Hilton dressed as a pirate?

My other question is, does anyone have advice for how to deal with this? That intimacy is a really big deal to me and I miss it, not to mention I'm getting restless.

Make her orgasm 3 times while you've still got your pants on. You get there and you're still bored and restless and missing something then I think you can safely say the ball's in her court.
posted by dobbs at 9:47 AM on September 24, 2010 [26 favorites]


It wouldn't be completely impossible with their personality that this would just be a put-off because they're embarrassed to talk about it.

My other question is, does anyone have advice for how to deal with this?


You ever see "Stand By Me"? Where that one kid tells the story about puking up pies, and when he gets to what is clearly the end of the story, Corey Feldman says "And then what happens?"

I've known people who've been all "And then what?" when I tell them what I want, sexually. And it makes me think "Jeeez, I didn't know this was a dick measuring contest, I thought you actually wanted to know what got me off." If she's really embarrassed about talking about sex, and if you've been the one who's been suggesting everything, she might be intimidated that the shit she's going to bring to the table won't be freaky enough for you.

Seriously, think about this, if you finally got her to open up and tell you something, and she was like "I'd like you to not wear underwear today so I can think about you not having underwear on", would you be thinking or saying something like "oooh, and then what?" Because baby steps, man.
posted by 23skidoo at 9:49 AM on September 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


My small problem is that I'm bored and tired having to be the only person to adding ideas to our sex life. And it really sucks that we don't get the intimacy that comes from sharing her secrets like we share mine.

Tough cookies sir or madam. You don't get to have a partner who matches everything you want perfectly. She just wants to have sex and either isn't super-interested in experimenting or isn't in touch with her own psyche to the point where she can articulate what she wants. Either way, the burden is on you. Sorry but that's the way it is. The good news is that this means you should just take it upon yourself to concoct some crazy shit and act it out with her. If she's not open to following your lead, well, then you have a problem. But if she's game for whatever, maybe you'll figure out together that she's into weird stuff she didn't even realize! Or you'll just end up awkwardly twisting your ankle, metaphorically. Either way, if it's your responsibility to come up with stuff and be the kinky one, then it's her responsibility to up for anything (well, anything reasonable) enthusiastically and without judgment.

Just stop worrying about how you think things _should_ be and concentrate on having fun with what _is_.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 9:50 AM on September 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


First of all, yes it is possible that she doesn't have specific fantasies.

Also, she might not feel comfortable talking with you about them if she does--some people are just more private than others, even around those they're close with.

Don't give her a hard time about it.
posted by phunniemee at 10:01 AM on September 24, 2010


I am like this. I don't fantasize, I don't have crazy ideas, I don't know what we can do differently. All I know is that I love my partner, I love sex, and I love having sex with my partner. I am open to my partner's sexy suggestions, although I know that my seeming indifference to the suggestions and options can be disappointing to my partner. However, we are very intimate during, and outside of, sexy time.
posted by rhapsodie at 10:18 AM on September 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


The Joy of Sex is a household name, so it's a very unimtimidating way to start. Then there's dirty dice and cards and whatnot.

But if even all that is too distracting, there are some good, simple games. The copycat game is hopefully self-explanitory and super amazing awesome fun. The "where do you want me to touch you now?" game is similarly awesome -- take turns and switch places up -- asking for the same erogenous zone too many times in a row is cheating.

Some people have preferences and just don't know how to talk about them. If you pay attention to body language and then go, "oh, you really like that, more? " that gives them a chance to correct you if you were reading all wrong.

I know that I can suffer sensory overload sometimes. Blindfolds are great, but if even that is too proppy, just take turns staying still and closing your eyes. The bonus here is that when you're the still one, she has to do all the work. When she's the still one, you can figure out the things that produce happy sounds or happy squirms.

Certain meds and historical trauma could also play into not feeling safe to fantasize. Does she masturbate? If not, it may be time for some dedicated mutual masturbation time -- no PIV penetration allowed. The thing is that you sound fed up and that will just silence her more. The rules of good listening apply here and you may want to do some googling on the phrase active listening. Remember: This is the funnest science experiment ever.
posted by Skwirl at 10:19 AM on September 24, 2010


Some people have so much sexual imagination that they could make a spork and a ball of twine sound hot. Some people think fancy lingerie and candles are silly and just want to get to the doing-it part. Both are pretty normal.

It's not clear from your question whether she (or he) likes any of your suggestions at all. I mean, she doesn't seem to be particularly into them, clearly but is she trying them and enjoying herself as usual, or trying them and feeling awkward, or trying them half-assedly, or refusing to try them altogether?

It's also not clear whether or not you like this person outside of the bedroom. You mention the lack of sexual intimacy, but are you close in any other way? If you feel like they're kinda closed off to you on all sides, or it's hard to get them to talk about anything, this just might not be a good match.

One more thing... if your partner is female, consider that women often get the cultural message that they aren't supposed to think about sex. You know those tired jokes about "lie back and think about shopping" or "porn for women" being guys doing housework? Or "good girls don't" or how people tell teenage girls "not to let him pressure you" as if that's the only reason they'd lose their virginity? Yeah. (It took me an embarrassingly long time to realize that it was totally normal and common for women to be interested in sex, and my upbringing wasn't conservative at all.) So that might be a factor.
posted by Metroid Baby at 10:31 AM on September 24, 2010 [5 favorites]


They like sex fine, but as far as I can tell it must be the exact same every time for them. If they're telling the truth, which I'm not sure I believe.

Perhaps she lives in the moment, in her own body and mind. She makes love with you, not some movie star. Why do you want her to change?
posted by Carol Anne at 10:54 AM on September 24, 2010 [5 favorites]


silly sexual games, how to workshops givin by your local sex shop, workbooks like a sexual all about me, increasing intimacy might help. trying to unlock her imagination in general might help ie art class, dance class, writing class.
posted by PeaPod at 11:19 AM on September 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Do you have a sex-positive, non-sleazy sex toy store, like a Toys in Babeland in your town? If so, make some kind of plan that requires that you walk by there. When you do, stop and look in the window, and say, mock-impulsively, "Let's go in!!" then you can walk around and pick up things and talk to the employees and get some ideas going that way. It might help, or it might not.

She may have these things, she may just be very very very very shy in saying them. Or she honestly may be fine with what she is RIGHT NOW. Her sexuality is not frozen in stone and it may well evolve. You have to decide if her current level of participation is a dealbreaker for you or not.
posted by micawber at 11:26 AM on September 24, 2010


Alright, here’s the deal. I can’t help thinking you’re a little naïve. I’ll try not to get into too much gender-stereotyping. I think it’s probably not so much innate gender-specific stuff anyway as it is cultural brainwashing and, well, porn. Your partner is totally normal. Yep. They’re a 100%, healthy, functioning woman. You know how in…well, pretty much just in porn…women have these dirty fantasies where they’re sluts and whatever? Yeah, that’s not real. Here’s the kicker: It’s more of a male fantasy to think women fantasize in a typical male way about sex. Again, it’s male fantasy that women fantasize in a typically “male” way about sex. Myth. Lies. Disappointment lies yonder. Unreal. Untrue. Fake. You should probably just accept this. However, if it’s YOUR fantasy for her to have those fantasies, that’s just peachy. Just be sure you’re framing this realistically. Nothing wrong with asking her to act a little. But that “intimacy” that comes from sharing dirty fantasies? Yeah, that’s often faked. I would be a little less like “what’s wrong with her, why won’t she share her deepest most secretest dirty thoughts?!?” and more like, “it would be nice of her to act dirtier and crazier in bed, for me, ‘cause that’s how my fantasy woman would act.” Key word- fantasy. I mean, what if her deepest most kinky thoughts involves making love on a bed of rose petals in the moonlight or something? (yes, a horrible sterotype, I know) Part of relationships is compromise.

Disclaimer: Not all men and women are the same, this is not true of everyone. But if this applies to your situation, it’s certainly something to think about.
posted by Nixy at 12:08 PM on September 24, 2010 [11 favorites]


The only time I have sex fantasies is when I'm not having sex. When I am, I want to be there, not stuck in my head. I don't think that makes me weird.

They like sex fine, but as far as I can tell it must be the exact same every time for them. If they're telling the truth, which I'm not sure I believe.

Some of us get off on paying close attention to what's going on rather than what isn't. That makes every time unique, not identical.
posted by flabdablet at 1:11 PM on September 24, 2010 [6 favorites]


Alright, here’s the deal. I can’t help thinking you’re a little naïve. I’ll try not to get into too much gender-stereotyping. ... it’s male fantasy that women fantasize in a typically “male” way about sex. ...

If this is your attempt not to gender-stereotype, I'd hate to see what your actual gender-stereotyping is like.

OP, while you might be annoyed that your girlfriend doesn't have more imagination, I think you're exercising too much imagination by imagining you can change how her mind works. Some people don't have any rich visual imagination at all. Apparently, your girlfriend doesn't have a rich sexual imagination. Or maybe she's not comfortable describing it, or she just finds sex fantasies boring or irrelevant to your relationship. Whatever it is, you probably can't change this.

The Joy of Sex suggestion is fine -- but only if you approach reading/looking at this book as a generally useful/fun activity for a couple. (Warning: the book is flawed and dated. The typical alternative recommendation is The Guide to Getting It On, but I actually think the Joy of Sex could be better for your specific circumstances.)

Don't think a book is going to "solve" this "problem." Her sexuality is not a problem to be solved.

When you list a whole bunch of things she doesn't do in her mind (the way you've done in this post), that's off-putting. It's off-putting even to me; it probably feels very critical to her. You can't nag someone into having the kind of sexuality you wish they had. Either accept your girlfriend the way she is or find someone else.
posted by John Cohen at 1:12 PM on September 24, 2010 [8 favorites]


Similarly, yet oppositely
posted by unknowncommand at 1:15 PM on September 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


She may have unrealized fantasies, but she may just have a totally different orientation towards intimacy and sex.

Maybe her 'fantasy' is that her pleasure is the objective of your desire.

Or you are just incompatible as others have suggested.

Focus on wanting to please her, not your constant need for variety, and perhaps she will surprise you with something as you explore together.
posted by abirdinthehand at 1:42 PM on September 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


This might be a simple compatibility issue. She might not have preferences (I'm surprised that she doesn't even like one position more than another--don't they feel different?) or fantasies or be interested in new things.

However, I think it might be worth thinking these possibilities through first:

Do you worry that she's not getting what she wants because she's too embarrassed to ask for it? That would have a negative impact on your sexual relationship long-term. If that is your worry, continue to build trust over time and avoid pressuring her. Make it absolutely clear that you are open to anything she's like to try, and then drop the subject. Asking frequently is annoying, and it might make her self-conscious about sex in general.

I also get the impression that she is leaving all of the decisions about sex to you. Is that the case?

Making all the decisions in a sexual relationship can be sexy, fun, uncomfortable, boring, awkward, creepy, neutral, frustrating. It depends on the people involved and on the relationship. If she is leaving all of the decisions about sex to you, there are two things that might be going on:

1. She just finds it easier to leave the decisions to you--that's what she's used to, it's nice to have variety without having to think about it, and she enjoys pretty much whatever. If this is the case, you should simply ask her to make more decisions. It might take her a while to get used to it, and she might feel awkward, so respond generously and enthusiastically to whatever she suggests.

2. The refusal to state preferences of any kind beyond the most basic "yes I like sex" is something that I have experienced from confused/new/desperate submissives. They don't think the person they're with will dominate them, or they don't know how to ask for it, or they don't realize that they CAN ask. So instead, they try to force the other person to dominate them by being as passive and unreadable as possible. After all, if they never tell you what they want, and you can't figure it out, you HAVE to do what YOU want! Voila! Instant dom!

Well-intentioned or not, it is manipulative, and it can be very uncomfortable for someone to be pushed into that role if they don't know what's going on. That can result in a partner who is exhausted, bored, frustrated, and mistrustful. Often, neither partner can figure out what's going wrong--after all, you get to do everything you want to do, right? So why isn't it fun?

If that's what's happening, then the solution is to get it out into the open. "I make all of the decisions about sex. Do you like it when I do that?" If she agrees, blushes, nods, or refuses to answer, well, there you go: a kink.

What to do with it? Well, that's another really long comment, but I will say that it's totally fine to ask her to be less submissive and/or more proactive sometimes if that's something you want. If she needs you to be in charge in order to get off, and you don't want to do that, then we're back to the beginning: a simple compatibility issue.

Hope you figure this out, if there's anything to figure out, and have fun!
posted by the young rope-rider at 2:18 PM on September 24, 2010


People keep pulling this out and reading it completely different than I'm reading it, so OP, could you come back and clarify?

They like sex fine, but as far as I can tell it must be the exact same every time for them. If they're telling the truth, which I'm not sure I believe.


Is your partner simply not giving you enough information for you to determine her preferences? In which case, yeah, it would be great for her to communicate more, as long as you accept what she tells you and don't push.

Or, is your partner essentially telling you this:

"Every single time we have sex, I enjoy it equally as much as every other time we have sex, no matter what."

To me, this seems VERY unlikely to be true.

Everyone I have ever had sex or discussed sex with likes SOME preferences for certain activities over others, and all of them have had quirky things that bother them or simply don't do it for them.

Of course it depends what you mean by variety, but if you've tried a lot, like you've had oral sex, missionary, fingering, with a butt plug, her on top, you talking dirty, you not saying anything, fast, slow, gentle, rough...and every single time she has the same orgasm and then tells you "yup, I like that exactly as much as I liked that other thing"...well...something is sketchy and I think it's reasonable that you're frustrated and suspicious.

Frankly, this kind of "that was awesome!" "yup, that too!" "everything is awesome"! was something I used to do when NOTHING was awesome but I was too young, nervous, and ignorant of my own body to know what I wanted or liked. Instead of saying so, I just faked like I liked everything that my much more experienced partner tried. Eventually I stopped liking sex altogether because it was never much fun, and it helped kill the relationship.
posted by the young rope-rider at 2:41 PM on September 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


No fantasies any more specific than just generally having sex, no sex dreams in their sleep, no specific positions would be more fun than any others, no fetishes, no words that get them going, no favorite celebrities to pretend I am, no props or toys, nothing. No requests or specific interests.

Yes, that's what I am like. Fortunately, my husband of ten-plus years is much the same way, so it works out fine for us. What gets me going are things like kissing and touching, not words or fantasies or props.

Now, sex doesn't have to "always be the same exact way" for me or the hub--though that seems to be at odds with what you're saying elsewhere in the post--so I am not sure if he and I are on the same wavelength as your partner.

I seriously, if asked, couldn't generate a list of favorite sex positions. There's a relatively small set of positions we both dig and sometimes we are in the mood for one and sometimes in the mood for another, but there's no Sure-Fire Favorites. "Anything that isn't actually physically uncomfortable" is probably equally fine with me most of the time.

I am the same way about food, though; I really couldn't care less what I eat most of the time, even though when I am hungry I would like something delicious, but I never have one of those nights when I'm "only in the mood for Thai" or whatever. Sure, if someone said to me "Here's your haggis and rhubarb pie (my particular least favorite foods)" I would be "oh, er, no thanks" but there are only a few things about which I feel strongly enough not to at least try.

So I don't know if your partner is shucking you, or if she's embarrassed to talk about sex, or if she's not in tune with her own desires, or if she's someone like me who is just down for whatever's on offer but who doesn't have particularly strong preferences of her own. Before I was married, I had some partners who had strong preferences, and I was generally cool about going along with them, but I didn't have strong preferences of my own to offer in return.

As for sexual fantasies, I don't even have them when I am masturbating. My inner voiceover while masturbating is more-or-less "Mm, feels good! Yeah!"

So if what you want is just for her to pick sometimes, then that's a reasonable thing to expect, but if her pick is a little diddling and then some mish-posish, that's her pick and feeling thwarted by it isn't exactly fair. If what you want in a partner is someone who is constantly coming up with new sex games, maybe you guys aren't that well suited.
posted by Sidhedevil at 3:34 PM on September 24, 2010


I think this is just part of who some people are - they might try really hard to accommodate your interests and play along with you, but really they are just not interested and just want the plain vanilla with no chocolate or sprinkles or anything else.
posted by meepmeow at 3:38 PM on September 24, 2010


This reminds me of when my ex pressured me to think about sex and work on our physical aspects all the time. He would literally sit me down and make me read books and watch videos about different ways of lovemaking. I just wanted him to stop harassing me and giving me status reports about our lovemaking. It was SUCH a burden. You might have to drop her because I have a feeling this will eventually piss her off if you keep making her feel inadequate at something she just wants to take pleasure in with YOU.
posted by InterestedInKnowing at 3:41 PM on September 24, 2010 [3 favorites]


No requests or specific interests... every other partner I've had has wanted SOMETHING or been into SOMETHING or at least had SOME ideas.

If she likes sex just fine, then she DOES have requests and specific interests and is into something. Her request and interest and what she's into is the kind of sex you guys usually have.

What she's into just happens not to be very sexy to you and really boring to you. But that's not the same thing is not being into anything.

I suspect, contrary to pop culture and mainstream porn, that this is the kind of sexuality most people have, that most people have little to no interest in upside-down chandelier swinging with Burt Reynolds or whatever. And the fact that they're not doing the chandelier swinging is because that is their preference, not because they're secretly repressed or need to be taught what they "really" want.


And it really sucks that we don't get the intimacy that comes from sharing her secrets like we share mine... That intimacy is a really big deal to me and I miss it, not to mention I'm getting restless.

I don't get this. You know what she's into, even if it's boring. It would be more real and intimate for her to come up with a bunch of wilder stuff that she doesn't have any actual interest in and pretend to be into it? That makes no sense.

I completely sympathize with your boredom and I find it to be understandable. But I think a better way to go about this would be to talk to her about how you need more variety/excitement and really don't want to feel like it's all coming from you. Then she can find her own way of solving that problem. I just think it's better than taking the angle that she MUST be into things she's just not into and getting frustrated when you can't juice them out of her.
posted by Ashley801 at 4:52 PM on September 24, 2010 [4 favorites]


"Every single time we have sex, I enjoy it equally as much as every other time we have sex, no matter what."

To me, this seems VERY unlikely to be true.


I don't find it to be entirely off base, at all. I don't always enjoy sex equally as much as every other time, but I'd say that, given a partner I'm compatible with, it's probably 75% of the time. There's stuff I like, and stuff I dislike, but none of it is particularly worth writing into Penthouse Forum about. I don't really have any secret sexual depths to explore.

And that is OK. There is nothing wrong with me. I'm also not lying to anyone when I say that.
posted by Sara C. at 6:50 PM on September 24, 2010


And it really sucks that we don't get the intimacy that comes from sharing her secrets like we share mine... That intimacy is a really big deal to me and I miss it, not to mention I'm getting restless.

What is very, very intimate is having the capacity to give pleasure to another, just as they want it. You know what she wants; you already have that intimacy you desire so much. So, maybe you should try to figure out the reasons why the intimacy she offers is still leaving you so dissatisfied.
posted by meese at 6:50 PM on September 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Well, I don't know for sure about the girlfriend, but back in the day, when someone wanted me to go into great detail about sexual fantasies, or talk dirty, or some other thing like that, I'd get all kinds of mental stage fright. I could not think of a THING. And I generally have a salty vocabulary. And then I would be "in trouble" because I wouldn't (more like couldn't) come up with something to say or do.

This might be her problem. Not everyone can come up with that stuff on command. Or has enough in the way of detailed, naughty sexual fantasies to share in the first place.
posted by jenfullmoon at 8:28 PM on September 24, 2010


I know some people are asexual, but that's not what's going on with this person. They like sex fine, but as far as I can tell it must be the exact same every time for them. If they're telling the truth, which I'm not sure I believe.

My other question is, does anyone have advice for how to deal with this? That intimacy is a really big deal to me and I miss it, not to mention I'm getting restless.


Maybe I am deluded but I thought that part of developing intimacy was accepting another person as a person. Not some stat that goes in the asexual or repressed or undecided box.

Maybe you could ask "this person" how they like their sex and why they like what they like? Because, seriously, if s/he doesn't know, we don't know. And then maybe tell them how you like it and find some middle ground?
posted by xm at 9:44 PM on September 24, 2010


1. I'm annoyed that this poster deliberately withheld gender information yet everyone assumes the partner is a woman. There ARE kinky women out there, you know.

2. I'd wager she doesn't get intimacy out of it, but is humouring you. People like her (myself included) are bored to tears with your fantasies. It's like listening to someone's dreams. It's NEVER, ever interesting ever and the dream-teller never realizes this.

Damn, I would never want to date anyone who found my dreams OR fantasies boring to tears. Personally, when my boyfriend tells me about either, I find it fascinating and exciting.

Why are people suggesting this person's sexuality is somehow inadequate, or that s/he's unable to organically appreciate love-making? Some people fantasize, others don't.
posted by namesarehard at 2:41 PM on September 26, 2010


I'm annoyed that this poster deliberately withheld gender information yet everyone assumes the partner is a woman.

If that is true, then the poster inadvertently forgot to withhold all the gender information. See my above comment.
posted by grouse at 2:50 PM on September 26, 2010 [2 favorites]


I don't feel it's a matter of fantasizing, many people fantasize but doesn't mean they want them carried out. Like for example, I can have fantasies of being dominated by unicorns or making love in a tub of yogurt, but doesn't mean I really want my SO to come out the closet with a horn on his forehead or fill up the tub with Yoplait. Hell, I might not even tell them because thats something for me to keep. Why should I feel pressured to do something I basically don't want to do or have to feel like I'm not good or imaginative enough? There's plenty of imagination but if my partner is being arrogant and pushy about it, I hope he fantasizes about boots up his ass.
posted by InterestedInKnowing at 9:12 PM on September 26, 2010


Does she masturbate? If she does, does she watch porn while doing so, or read erotica? If so, you could ask her to share that with you.

I have a bit of a similar situation to you. My boyfriend absolutely loves sex, but doesn't really have any very specific or particularly kinky desires regarding it, whereas I tend to have a lot of fantasies and different things I want to try. He actually has revealed a few things over the course of our relationship, but I think many of those were new to him at the time they came to light. So you may need to give it some time and see if things come to the surface, but that may not happen. Either way, you don't want to pressure her about it, just make sure that she feels your relationship is an environment where it would be okay to express those thoughts, even if it's something as simple as "I want to do missionary position tonight."

Basically, you're going to have to deal with it, and try not to put too much pressure on her (not suggesting that you're pressuring her on purpose) because that's exactly the kind of thing that will make her nervous about revealing any potential desires she may have.

(I used "she" and "her" in my comment because the OP wrote sharing her secrets. I'm well aware that there are kinky girls out there, being one myself!)
posted by you zombitch at 10:07 PM on September 27, 2010


« Older California CPA License   |   I'm considering becoming a consultant. What can I... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.