Need advice navigating first time nerves with a new partner
August 4, 2018 10:36 AM   Subscribe

After a very long dry spell I finally feel ready to have sex again, but not quite there due to a really dumb problem. TMI below:

Long story short, in anticipation of having sex for the first time with a guy I've been dating for a while, I shaved my nether region. Now my lady parts look all red and bumpy, it's a bad case of razor burn. I am really self conscious about this, how do I talk with this guy to spare him an unpleasant surprise? Do I even bring this up? Is there even a non awkward way to talk about this before we get naked for the first time? I am considering taking sex off the table until I heal, but it might take weeks, and I would need to explain my sudden reluctance anyways.

I can't believe I am asking a bunch of strangers about this issue, but the anxiety is hitting me real hard at the moment.
Please help me be more of an adult about this.
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (16 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

Put neosporin on it. Should be perfectly fine in a few hours to overnight. I promise.

Otherwise, just be fearless and honest and fearless. Say your truth. If he's worth having sex with it will be ok.
posted by jbenben at 10:41 AM on August 4, 2018 [5 favorites]

Hydrocortisone cream is the best choice to calm everything down and reduce the swelling. Reapply several times a day. It should not take weeks to heal. In one or two days, things will be considerably better and way more comfortable. Have fun!
posted by quince at 10:44 AM on August 4, 2018 [1 favorite]

I've been surprised by the things that no one says a darn thing about. For two years, in a period when I had at least a dozen hook-ups, I had a large skin tag in my nether regions which no one commented on, even though my proclivities are such that they all had their tongues within millimeters of it.

I suggest either not saying a word or, when you start to get naked, tell him that you groomed poorly out of nervousness.
posted by metasarah at 11:13 AM on August 4, 2018 [4 favorites]

Even if you didn't do hydrocortisone and just went with the current condition, I SERIOUSLY doubt the guy would care. Come on! It's sex with a new partner you like! He should be having too much fun to care.

But yes, hydrocortisone will help. Have fun!
posted by 8603 at 11:18 AM on August 4, 2018 [3 favorites]

I don’t think I’d put hydrocortisone on razor burn, myself, would personally go for the polysporin. Would take a few days, tops. Personally, I’d hold off just because I’d find the self consciousness an additional an unnecessary burden, but that’s me.
posted by cotton dress sock at 11:27 AM on August 4, 2018 [1 favorite]

Unless it's the worst razor burn ever recorded, it should be unburnt-if-still-itchy in a few days.
posted by rhizome at 11:47 AM on August 4, 2018

PSA: to avoid this in the future, after shaving, immediately apply stick anti-perspirant to the area. NOT deodorant; antiperspirant. It apparently causes the pores to seal so that they don’t get irritated.
posted by MexicanYenta at 11:52 AM on August 4, 2018 [2 favorites]

My two cents from probably a generation before you: Only tell him if you are doing so to make him aware to treat you lightly.
You're not a present he's opening! If a new lover reacted unpleasantly to my razor burn, I'd put my pants on and go home. He should be so thrilled to be with you he can't even see straight, not inspecting your skin.
Go forth and be your amazing goddess body self.
posted by nantucket at 11:54 AM on August 4, 2018 [20 favorites]

This is not awkward at all if you guys are both adults. Tell him what you told us, he will find it incredibly endearing. Seriously.
posted by ftm at 12:50 PM on August 4, 2018 [9 favorites]

Give it 3 days to heal, then do it in the dark.
posted by pseudostrabismus at 5:59 PM on August 4, 2018 [1 favorite]

Speaking personally, if it was me I would be less concerned about look than about feel. I know it would not feel good to me to have any kind of friction going on down there, on some of the most sensitive skin on my body, until it was 100% healed and feeling normal.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 9:44 PM on August 4, 2018 [2 favorites]

Speaking as a guy--

we don't care what it looks like. By the time we're close enough to notice, we don't because all we're thinking about is--you know, boom!
posted by BadgerDoctor at 9:52 PM on August 4, 2018 [1 favorite]

nantucket has it.

On the practical side: as others have said, it will take a day or two for the worst part, the rest will disappear shortly. Shower with a natural fiber / jute glove and some soap to make it glide over your skin. Not too hard, not too gentle. Dare to use it when any area is still a bit red (say tomorrow morning under the shower), it helps it heal quicker IME. I do this daily on the days after shaving even when it's not red, to keep it from getting red or bumpy and prevent ingrown hairs etc. Rinse and repeat (literally) after sex as well. Nthing antiperspirant (with alcohol) or just alcohol on it after drying after the shower. You'll be fine in no time.
posted by Litehouse at 8:22 AM on August 5, 2018 [1 favorite]

In the future, grab some TendSkin from amazon. It’s basically liquid aspirin and people with sensitivity after shaving all kinds of parts swear by it. I use it after getting waxed and it’s changed my life.
posted by buzzkillington at 11:02 AM on August 5, 2018 [1 favorite]

Unless I'm misunderstanding, I think part of the OP's concern is that her partner will assume/worry that the bumps = an STI, not the totally normal and common phenomenon that is razor burn. If your partner has some experience, he likely knows what razor burn looks like and won't have that concern. (I am prone to razor burn, and no one I've been with has ever said a thing, and I've never mentioned it.) And if he is concerned but the concern is purely aesthetic, then heck yes you should put your pants on and go home.
posted by gold bridges at 1:32 PM on August 6, 2018

I had exactly the same problem recently, but your razor burn is probably not as horrible as mine was. I was trying to think of a way to explain the issue to my new boyfriend without killing the mood or just making things unnecessarily awkward, but in the end decided not to mention it at all. Luckily he's the romantic kind of guy and put on some candles, so it was barely noticeable. So my advice would be to dim the lights until it heals. But anyway I think guys really don't care about these things at all.
posted by U.N.Owen at 4:14 PM on August 6, 2018

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