Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.
Though last week’s column on sexy playlusts might have led you to believe that sex is always going to be sunshine and sensual rainbows, we’re going to get a little more practical this week. We will be tackling (no pun intended) how to handle intimacy when it becomes a little too much to handle. Ever been punched in the face during foreplay? We’ve definitely been there. Ever had bodily fluids where you didn’t want them? Yup! Ever gotten your feet tangled when trying to take off your skinny jeans, fallen onto your girlfriend, and elbowed her so hard that she cried for a solid 15 minutes? That might just be me… Anyway, this week we’re going to talk about how to come back from any mishap with solid communication and a good sense of humor!
JoyGasm: I am absolutely no stranger to the sex mishap, mistake, accident, injury, whatever you’d like to call it! As I’ve said multiple times before, I’m a pretty awkward dude. Sexytimes with me are often half (objectively) suave moves and half me accidentally snorting, falling off the bed, whacking my elbow on things, or being completely unable to get bras off (THAT SHIT IS HARD AND I WEAR ONE). However, I also have great sex. Often.
Just because you happen to have a reallllllly awkward moment does not mean everything is ruined. On the contrary, these moments can be great times to check in, do some triage of injuries, and maybe tell a joke or two.
I’ll give a nice example. I am completely a grandma and have what one might call a “bad hip.” It often refuses to stay in its socket. This can result in sharp, excruciating pain upon accidentally bumping it the wrong way or being on top for too long (This is the worst. I love being on top). This awesome thing about me means I have to be really up front with anyone I’m sleeping with so that I don’t absolutely scare the shit out of them by stifling a scream when it hurts. Because that happens. Often it results in pain rage. I try not to be mad but it REALLY HURTS DAMMIT!
If you know this is going to happen, maybe clue your partner in! If you know you’re not particularly coordinated, yet your ladylove keeps insisting that you work on mastering the Karma Sutra, you could probably let them know that flexibility isn’t your strong suit. This is just practical, people! However, if something happens that is completely unexpected, you have two options:
1. Roll with it. Sometimes this really funny thing happens when two naked ladies lay on top of each other; I’ll call it the boob fart. It’s awkward, it’s silly, but you know what? It’s probably going to happen at some point and you can just laugh and move on with your hook up. Things like this are great ways to connect with your partner on an adorable emotional level while also feeling sexy. There’s nothing as awesome as looking into your love’s giggly, smiley eyes AND getting to fuck her two seconds later.
2. Address it right away. If someone gets injured, starts crying anything other than tears of joy, or is clearly in need of a break, check in. If you’ve got a bloody nose, it’s probably not best to keep soldiering on. This, however, is still a place where a properly timed joke could work. It can definitely lighten the mood! But don’t let a joke take the place of talking about it. Laughing off something serious can be a bad move, especially if someone’s feelings are hurt or they feel embarrassed. For example, there’s nothing worse than realizing you still have your period by seeing it all over your girlfriend’s hand. Things like this can make you feel like the biggest, grossest idiot on the planet. But, if you talk about it right then and there, nobody has to marinate in their embarrassment for the next two weeks! If you tell your partner how you’re feeling in the moment, you can gracefully move on and make sure everyone is feeling all right. You might not end up continuing the sex, but checking in about what’s going on is way more important! the moral of the story here is that mishaps don’t have to be the kiss of death for your sex. They can be hilarious and fond memories to look back upon, as long as you handle them with poise and maturity. Or make a fart joke. Either way, TALK ABOUT IT.
Annie Choke-ly: I am not a smooth person by any stretch of the imagination: I trip a lot, often run into things, and seldom gracefully recover from doing either. As you can probably guess, this lack of grace does, in fact, carry over into the sexual-encounter setting. Let me be clear though: I’m pretty fucking fun in bed. The only thing is that in my case, “fun” can either mean being totally on and sexy or just plain hilarious and a little mortifying. I’ve fallen off the bed face-first, queefed MULTIPLE TIMES IN A ROW in the middle of sex, and kicked quite a few partners in their faces in failed attempts to sexily switch to a 69ing position.
My solution to these sometimes horribly embarrassing situations? Usually, the first step is to just laugh it off. What else can you really do? How can anyone take themselves seriously when they’ve had like five vagina farts in the middle of what had been great sex? Call me crazy, but I can’t (although, to be fair, I can’t really take myself seriously in any situation). In my experience, these funny scenarios are actually GREAT for two reasons: you and your partner have shared laughter together (which usually does not stall the action for long) and now have a hilarious story to remember/tell all your friends/write about in a sex column! I’ve found that these moments have an odd way of making the subsequent sexual experience that much more enjoyable if both parties agree that it was a funny incident. If one person doesn’t find it so funny, take the opportunity to have a conversation about your perspectives on the incident! In my clumsy case, I usually chalk it up to the hilarity at the heart of having sex.
This being said, sometimes you have awkward sex moments that aren’t clearly funny. Example: a few weeks ago I was riding my boyfriend and then we had the awesome idea of switching to my reverse cowgirling; what could go wrong, right? I aced the first step of rotating 180 degrees. Nailed the re-mounting, if you will. But then as things started picking back up, I landed at a wrong angle and… bent his member (pretty far, based on his reaction). Obviously instances such as these are not when you should begin laughing hysterically. While sex can be funny, it can also sometimes be a little painful (shoutout to anyone who’s tried butt stuff — fun, but Lord knows it takes a little work). These mishaps are times when communication and patience are SUPER important! An “are you okay?” should be obvious. Taking time to recover might be necessary. This is an ideal time to cuddle, ask if your partner is okay, and think about how to avoid such situations in the future. Then comes the best part: getting back in the saddle and employing those avoid-dick-bending strategies! Make not-so-funny mishaps teachable and communicative moments and bouncing back won’t be a problem.
JG & AC: In short, we feel like all we ever tell you to do is talk to your partner incessantly. However, this is the truth. You should do that. Even when talking means talking about how somehow there’s now a little poop in the bed after your recent escapades. It’s not the most comfortable conversation, but when sexual mishaps happen, they should be addressed! Accidents happen! (Sing to the tune of “Miracles Happen” by Hilary Duff.) Embrace it! If you take yourself too seriously, you must be joking.
Featured image courtesy of http://www.nonverbal-magazine.com/