Dear Lou,

I’m a 28-year-old woman and I’ve always had a great sex life (well, after the first couple of experiences, anyway). I do have a problem though, with the doggie-style position. I find this to be very uncomfortable, sometimes even painful. I know it’s not that big of a deal because there’s lots of other things to do in bed. If it hurts, just don’t do it, right? Duh. But I don’t want to just not do it because I’ve heard some of my friends rave about how great it feels, and I feel like I’m missing out on something. The other stuff can get tiresome, doing it over and over. Plus, I’m worried that there’s something wrong with me, inside. Is this common, and is there a different way of doing this that will be pleasurable?

Thanks,

No Rear Entry

Dear No Rear Entry (hey, a pseudonym, woohoo!),

Well, here comes my insurance policy on giving sex advice: Everyone is different. I doubt anything is “wrong” with you physically, but make sure you get your yearly gynecological exams anyway. Provided you do that, and sex isn’t painful for you all the time, I’d say you’re in good working order, vaginally speaking. But, here it is again; every woman’s vagina is different, certain universal qualities notwithstanding. During arousal, the uterus changes angle and vaginas come in slightly varying lengths. It could be that in doggie, your lover is simply hitting a tender spot or is thrusting too deep. That kind of pressure is great for some, agony for others. But you might find a rear-entry stance that works for you if you modify just a tad.

First, ask your man to use shallow, gentle thrusts. Take your time; slowly work up to a more intense tempo and depth, until you hit your threshold. If this doesn’t work, though, don’t be discouraged. Remember that angle thing I mentioned? If you learned about this position from porn, you’ll know that the woman is typically on her hands and knees, glaring back at her co-star, brimming with lust and making some strange “Ooo” face. Ditch that; change the angle of your vagina by going to elbows and knees. Or even lower, flattening your arms straight in front of you on the bed (or floor or pool table) and lowering your butt a little. Also, try being at a 90-degree angle with something under you for support. You and your guy get on your knees on the floor (have something soft to kneel on, especially if you’re Meridian-Kessler Spanish tile people). If he bends you over the bed, or whatever flat surface you choose, this may keep your back straighter, offering a more pleasurable experience.

But wait, there’s more! If these don’t work, there are rear-entry positions that involve lying down that might bring you joy and fulfillment. Lie down underneath him while he thrusts, or place a pillow under your abdomen to raise it a little. This frees up your lover to either enter you by hovering over you push-up style, on his elbows or kneeling. Finally, have a go by letting him spoon you as you lay on your sides. Open up for him by taking your free leg and swinging it back and over his leg. His hands are free to roam your breasts or stimulate your clitoris or whatever, and it’s much less strenuous for the man.

I haven’t covered them all, but this is a good list to start with. If you find yourself wanting to widen your repertoire of sexual positions, you could probably do with a good book. I personally prefer Paul Joannides’ Guide to Getting It On! (Fourth Edition, Goofy Foot Press). The main thing is to have a sense of adventure. Don’t be fettered by conventional sex “wisdom.” Try new things; find what flicks your Bic. Enjoy!

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