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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Sex Basics and Sexual Health » sex and related issues

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Author Topic: sex and related issues
fiveanddime
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My boyfriend and I have had issues with sex our entire relationship. We have had manual sex, and we're each other's first sexual partners. We haven't progressed further. We did attempt intercourse on several occasions, but neither of us really knew what we were doing, I wasn't physically ready, and he developed some anxiety around the issue.

Lately, things have been heating up again, but I get nervous approaching him sexually (he doesn't have a problem touching me). I'm worried I'm going to screw up (even though he said that I shouldn't worry about it), and I get embarrassed asking him what he wants me to do. He's very supportive, but it's still awkward for me.

We talked about it, and we recognized that we're both bad at saying what we want (sexually). Communication tends to be through noises or guided hands, but there are definitely times (like this one) when it would be helpful to have verbal feedback, we're just both afraid to ask, and I'm not good at volunteering.

I make loads of sexual jokes with my friends, and I'm totally comfortable with sex (with this partner) in the abstract, but for some reason, I just freak out in the bedroom.

How can I get more comfortable talking?

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Claire P.
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Hi Fiveanddime!

Have you checked out this article yet? It's a pretty great jumping-off point for your kind of question:

http://www.scarleteen.com/article/sexuality/be_a_blabbermouth_the_whys_whats_and_hows_of_talking_about_sex_with_a_partner

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fiveanddime
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Had a look, and it looks helpful!

I'm actually just having a hard time getting over some anxiety about being physical, which is what makes it hard for me to talk to him. I've never been good at using explicit terms to talk about sex, with this guy or in previous relationships, and I also have some body image issues.

I think I'm not totally comfortable with being sexual, and I don't know how to change that.

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Robin Lee
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HI fiveanddime,

Can you talk a little more about where you think this anxiety is coming from? It sounds like it includes some body image stuff on your part, but I'm wondering if there's anything else you can think of that's contributing to the anxiety.

Being comfortable with sexuality is certainly something that can be worked on, but it's also something that can often come with time and familiarity. What aspects of being sexual with your partner make you feel particularly uncomfortable?

ON the flip side, what aspects of being sexual or physically intimate with your partner do feel alright to you right now?

--------------------
Robin

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fiveanddime
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There are a few problems. First, as I mentioned on another thread, my boyfriend and I will probably have to break up at the end of the school year because we're going to jobs in very different geographical locations, and we can't be sure of our plans after that. We haven't decided anything yet, but given the jobs we'll be taking, visiting and even time to talk is going to be difficult. I think this "expiration date" is causing me to pull away from him, and it's probably not helping with the sex thing.

Also, I've never been overly enthusiastic about sexual things. I'm not interested in porn, for example, and I've never enjoyed watching it. There are some (common) sexual activities that make me uncomfortable. No one has ever pressured me to do these things, but I've always been shy about sex.

What feels right NOW is cuddling, making out, and sometimes if he does something more sexual. I get nervous when I take charge.

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Heather
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If your boyfriend is your only partner right now, I'd say that addressing your feelings about the relationship knowingly coming to an end first would be the best approach here.

Can I first check in with you about if, knowing that this is something you both plan to end in six months or so, you want to be continuing to engage in sex of any kind?

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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fiveanddime
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We talked about the future of our relationship recently, and at this point he isn't 100% sure what he's going to do (which job he is going to take and where he is going to go). Moreover, we haven't decided whether moving far away would me a definitive end to our relationship, especially if he's planning on going somewhere else in a year (could be closer to me, for example). He said that he doesn't feel like it's worth worrying about until he knows what he's doing. That makes sense to me, but I still worry a lot.

I'm definitely still attracted to him, but I think that the anxiety about the future of our relationship is affecting my stress levels and libido. Once we know what's going to happen (whether we'll break up or not), that might change, but I don't know. I guess I could take sex off the table until then.

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Heather
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I can certainly see how it could have an impact. I'd be surprised if it wasn't, if this wasn't something you walked into comfortable with things being iffy like this.

Would you feel better taking sex off the table for now, do you think?

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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fiveanddime
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Maybe. I don't know. There are still a bunch of things I haven't done, and I'm curious, but maybe it's not a good time to experiment.

On another note, should you expect a lot of hormonal/mood/libido changes going OFF the pill? I stopped taking it after my cycle ended last week, and I'm wondering whether that's contributing.

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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Basically, going off a hormonal method is often a lot like going on one. So, for sure, changes around all of those things tend to be common, and generally last anywhere from a few weeks to around six months for most people.

I hear you about the sexual curiosity, and it's not like there's anything wrong with that. I think the thing to figure out, though, is if the timing and interpersonal environment right now is the right one for you for that or not.

I mean, there are always going to be sexual things we haven't done, as it were, even after decades of a diverse sexual life. And we may have opportunities to explore some of those things, but the opportunity alone doesn't always mean it'll be the right time or situation for us.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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fiveanddime
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Good to know about the pill.

Still trying to figure out how to handle the sex anxiety talk, but I'll let you know!

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