“I love anal play and anal sex, but it always feels a little degrading for me.”
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I love anal play and anal sex, but it always feels a little degrading for me. My boyfriend is super respectful when we do it, but I can't help thinking he – and most men – feel somewhat superior for getting to stick it into my ass. I hate to think he validates his masculinity by fucking me from behind, and him not letting me get anywhere near his region only reinforces the superiority/inferiority dynamic. Is there a way to ever get comfortable and to change these internalized misconceptions (both his and mine) about anal sex?
Hmm. Sounds like you've got a little cognitive dissonance going on when it comes to your butthole. It's no big deal, really. All you have to do is identify why anal sex feels a little degrading for you, and if I had to guess, there was probably a guy in your past, perhaps the very guy who introduced you to butt play, who also got off on dominating you inappropriately, or at least behaved in some manner that made you feel degraded, and now you associate those emotions with taking it up the ass in general.
Like most women, I'm guessing you went through your bad boy phase in your early 20s, and while you were expanding your sexual horizons (a good thing) you also spent time in romantic relationships with a dirtbag or two who treated you like absolute shit (a bad thing), and it would seem you're still storing some of that emotional baggage up your butt.
The biggest clue here is that you feel there are power dynamics at play with regard to anal sex, but not necessarily with regard to oral or vaginal sex, because I assure you, the kind of men who feel superior for getting to stick it into your ass are the kind of men who feel superior getting to stick it anywhere.
If your boyfriend really is super respectful around your butthole, and you do in fact love anal sex, then take a hot minute to step back and look at your sex life retrospectively. Identify and acknowledge the source of your degrading feelings about anal sex, and then leave that mess in the past where it belongs.
Now, as for your boyfriend's attitude towards his own ass, there's not really much you can do. If he doesn't want anything up there, then that's his loss, but don't make it about a superiority/inferiority dynamic when it's really about your boyfriend just being typical and unadventurous. Most dudes are just like that. They go their entire lives not realizing they've got a prostate in there that can do tricks. Poor bastards.
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