Ideas for desensitizing during sex?
October 7, 2014 10:28 PM   Subscribe

Ever since I had a vasectomy and stopped using condoms, I've become insanely sensitive during sex, often lasting all of 30 seconds before climax. I used a condom for the first time in years the other day and it was fantastic, dulling the sensations just enough to last as long as I wanted. Is it possible to accomplish that without condoms?

I used condoms for over 20 years of heterosexual activity. The few times I did not was for planned pregnancies and I don't remember sex being much different feeling back then (besides being generally more pleasurable and less hassle).

A few years after we were done having children, I got a vasectomy and ever since then my penis has become incredibly sensitive to vaginal sex with premature ejaculation becoming the norm for the first time in my life (I'm a 45ish year old healthy male). Any time I "put some oomph" into it (aka: use the same muscles you use in a Kegel exercise), I will climax mere seconds later. It's been embarrassing and my partner has been understanding, but I find it frustrating to constantly have to apologize for the one or two minutes of actual intercourse each session. We've prolonged foreplay as a result but I have had lots of trouble with this.

After years of dealing with it, I decided to try a condom to see if the decreased sensitivity would help. It was like night and day, and for the first time since the operation I could basically last as long as I pleased. Instead of two minutes, we could go for thirty. Instead of one or two positions, we could try them all. Sex still felt great, it just felt about 10% less "frictiony" in a way that kept a climax at bay for as long as I wanted. It was a welcome change, but I can tell my partner thought the whole thing a bit weird, and remarked that condoms feel a little strange inside, and in the future I wouldn't want to lean too much on this crutch.

Is there any alternative to condoms that would accomplish the same slight desensitization? We've tried lots of lube (didn't help), slowing down, stopping often, keeping my mind off sex while doing it, etc but I'm open to trying anything that will give me the delay and the control that a condom did. Anyone have any suggestions?
posted by anonymous to Health & Fitness (11 answers total)

Please yourself; once a day, every day. If that's not enough, twice...or trice...
posted by Sonic_Molson at 10:30 PM on October 7, 2014 [2 favorites]

Different lubricants? Possibly something thicker might help, and not too much, may reduce friction a little.

But, for a little while - why don't you run with the condoms? They work! Try some different ones out.
You might actually build up some tolerance by using condoms for a bit, as you grow re-accustomed to PIV without immediate climax.
posted by Elysum at 10:48 PM on October 7, 2014

As a woman, I find condoms uncomfortable and drying. I also rarely want sex to last for 30 minutes; with adequate foreplay, 5-10 is enough to make me come and longer sometimes makes me dry and uncomfortable. YPartnersMMV, talk to her to see what she thinks, too.
posted by amaire at 11:12 PM on October 7, 2014 [12 favorites]

The masters and Johnson technique is the go to for this. Practice bringing yourself almost to the point of climax, then stop, and keep doing that. Then try similar with your partner included. Note that this can be quite frustrating initially, but this should help increase your self control over time.
posted by Cannon Fodder at 12:04 AM on October 8, 2014

Desensitising lube/spray/cream is a thing - the active ingredient is usually something like lidocaine, and a small dab can be enough to slow things down by decreasing the amount of sensation.

Disclaimer: I have never used this, am not a dude, do not own a penis, etc. I just know it's a thing that exists and seems to work for some people.
posted by terretu at 12:43 AM on October 8, 2014 [1 favorite]

I've never had sex without a condom, but i do know that for me 30 minutes+ with one is potentially irrititating (physically) and can be boring a frustrating (emotionally). If you weren't lasting 30 mins when you were using condoms before, she might also be concerned that there's another reason you're lasting so long now (eg. "Is he not attracted to me enough to come?") Or she might be annoyed that you're holding on so long when she's over it or she might be worried about why you've started using them again, as the young rope-rider suggests.

Have you actually spoken to her about this??
posted by kinddieserzeit at 4:48 AM on October 8, 2014 [1 favorite]

I would suggest a long conversation with your partner. She might be very confused about your condom use if you don't discuss it. She might not mind its as much as she might be worried about why you are switching (STD?), or irritated if she feels like you are dragging things out longer than she would like.

I agree completely, and that conversation will also help you see how she is understanding how sex works for you. People, men and women both, can have unrealistic ideas about arousal and sex ("If she was attracted to me, she'd get wet"; "If he wanted to last longer he would, he must not even want to try") and usually you are going to get better results by being open and communicating directly about these things and then approaching it as a team.
posted by Dip Flash at 4:56 AM on October 8, 2014 [1 favorite]

Desensitizing creams or sprays sort-of, kind-of work. But, they will also spread to your partner which can sometimes have unwelcome results, including irritation and loss of sensation on her part. YMMV, obviously.
posted by Thorzdad at 5:34 AM on October 8, 2014

Ask your partner if it is okay with her to start out with the condom and then she may take it off at any time, with the understanding that you will finish once she takes it off. She may enjoy the power of having you finish on her command.

How is your recovery time? A quick finish isn't necessarily a bad thing if there is an encore performance in the wings.
posted by myselfasme at 5:45 AM on October 8, 2014 [3 favorites]

There is now an FDA-approved desensitizing spray, called Promescent. Available OTC! Trial sizes available by mail order.
posted by bennett being thrown at 10:40 AM on October 8, 2014

If you haven't been using lube, give it a try. I'd start with ordinary KY. Depending on various factors, it can reduce the feeling of friction to almost nothing. I've the impression that some of the trendier lubes are designed to get more friction-y as matters progress.

It may or may not help to time pauses and/or changes of position as needed.
posted by SemiSalt at 11:40 AM on October 8, 2014 [1 favorite]

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