Dear Dr. Jenni,
I come too fast. Like within 30 seconds of penetrating my girlfriend. I’ve had this problem for almost four years. It’s getting so bad I don’t want to have sex anymore. How can I last longer in bed?
—Panicked About Penetration
Your concern is quite common. I’m curious about your masturbation habits. Often, men get absorbed in a fantasy trance and quickly pleasure themselves. I suggest re-training your penile response when alone and connecting into your arousal spectrum. For instance, make number one symbolize a flaccid penis with no arousal, 10 symbolizing orgasm and ejaculation, and nine symbolizing ejaculatory inevitability. The challenge is to thoroughly feel the sensations of two through eight. When masturbating, take yourself to a six or seven, then back down to four. Then return to seven or eight, then back to five. Then return to eight and allow yourself to orgasm and ejaculate. The trick here is to touch (literally) into four through seven. So often, these numbers get passed by rather quickly, and yet these are the “stamina numbers.”
Once you have mastered control by yourself, it’s time to try the numbers with your girlfriend. Again, try to refrain from falling into a trance where four through eight happen so suddenly that before you blink, you’ve hit ejaculatory inevitability. When starting with penetration, go slow, and ask your girlfriend to be the “quiet vagina,” where she stays very still and silent. This helps you focus on your task. After a while, you can progress to a place where she is more active and engaged.
In the end, if you ejaculate too quickly, don’t get anxious. You have a tongue, fingers and toys of all sorts to help prolong her pleasure! Remember, it’s about the journey of connection and pleasure. If one person hits orgasm before the other, it doesn’t mean sex is over.
Dear Dr. Jenni,
We’ve lost that perk. Our first year and a half of dating entailed lots of sex. I know the so-called honeymoon stage is way over, but I’m sorely missing sex and have no idea how to recoup it.
—Longing for More Sex
Your question addresses the most familiar issue I see in my practice. The frequency of sex experienced during your dating days can often diminish when both parties fully acclimate to one another. Basically, comfort can engender routine, and sex can start to feel less exciting.
The solution here is to press “restart” on your sex life. When something is new and thrilling, you want to repeat it over and over. Creating a new and exciting sexual atmosphere may require a little ingenuity, but it’s very possible. And very fun!
For starters, embrace this task as a journey you are about to undertake with your partner. Though it may seem counterintuitive to schedule sex when it already feels routine, it is essential to make sex and pleasure a priority. Set up weekly intimacy dates where you carve out a window of time with your honey to be together. If you have three kids and two full-time jobs, this may be just one hour a week. If you have a more flexible schedule, this can be a five-hour leisurely weekend window.
Once the weekly structure is there, filling in the content becomes fun. Take turns initiating and driving the date. Share fantasies. Enact fantasies. Role-play. Make a game where no intercourse is allowed. Pull out the oil and do a sensual massage.
In short, you want to toss out the old script where sex followed an ordered set of activities. Make a list of a dozen different activities in no particular order.
Then sample one each week as if they were delicious hors d’oeuvres. The goal is to have pleasure with one another on a weekly basis. The more innovative you can be, the more frequently you may find yourselves being sexual!
Jenni Skyler, Ph.D., is a sex therapist and board-certified sexologist who runs The Intimacy Institute in Boulder, www.theintimacyinstitute.org.
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