Miss Information

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Our sex is unsatisfying, and I'm starting to resent my boyfriend despite his best attempts.

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Dear Miss Information,

I've been dating my boyfriend for six months. We've been having sex for four months, about every day, sometimes more than once a day. He always comes. I never come.

My boyfriend is very open to trying anything I want. He gives me oral, fingers me, fucks me hard, makes love sweetly, handcuffs me to the bed if I want, etc. I'm very attracted to him and truly respect him as a person. I've only ever had sex with one other person, and that person didn't make me come either. I feel like the problem is me, but I don't know what to do about it. When I masturbate, I keep my panties on and rub against a sheet or blanket until the friction on my clit makes me come. There doesn't seem to be a way to replicate this during sex. Direct stimulation ends up causing pain and sensitivity after a minute or two.

I love my boyfriend, but I'm starting to feel resentful about our sex life. He always comes; I never do. I'm starting to view sex as something time-consuming, painful, and messy. But as much as I feel resentful toward him, I'm mostly angry at myself for not being able to make this happen. Any advice?

— Left Out

Dear Left Out,

The "a" key snapped off my keyboard yesterday. Of course the broken key would be a vowel, and a useful one. Rather than bang my keyboard against a wall, which is what I want to do, I'm going to take it as a cosmic nudge to place this column in someone else's capable hands. If you need me, I'll be quietly weeping and rocking — two verbs mercifully devoid of A's.

My good friend Christina Stennett is a sex coach, and your question hit my inbox at a fortuitous time — which is a more professional way of saying "several days before Christina and I had plans to drink together." Not only does Christina know sex, sexuality, and the related industries inside and out, but the woman also knows her way around a (fully functioning) keyboard. I floated your question by her, and she sent back these suggestions. Her response is so complete that I have nothing left to add, short of Mystery Science Theater 3000-style asides. (Don't worry — I'll spare you.) Here's Christina:

1. Stop keeping score of you and your boyfriend's orgasms. He's not getting orgasms in spite of you, so let go of the resentment and anger. It just makes sex suck for unnecessary reasons.

2. You can integrate your masturbation technique in the bedroom. In fact, you should orgasm first before having sex with your boyfriend. Not only will you be naturally lubricated (which makes sex all the more fun), but you'll have the space to feel pleasure without having to rely solely on sex. Before he even touches you, have him handcuff you to the bed. Masturbate just as you described in your letter. Have your boyfriend kiss you, touch you, gently squeeze your nipples — pleasure you with his hands and mouth and not his penis. Depending on your tastes, you can role-play and make him force you to come, letting him tease your body while you rub against the bed sheets. Make this entire moment fun and pleasurable for you. Take as much or as little time as you want. This is your time to get an orgasm.

3. If you want to really want to combine your friction technique with sex with your boyfriend, you should also consider dry humping. All you have to wear are panties. He can be naked. While you make out together he can rub himself against you. If he doesn't like how the fabric feels against his penis, lend a helping (and preferably well-lotioned) hand. Play with when you want your boyfriend to pull those panties aside and fuck. Have a condom close by; while he's putting it on, you can masturbate with your underwear.

4. You don't have to come with your boyfriend during sex. There's no wrong time to have an orgasm. And it's okay if one of you comes and the other one doesn't. Sex is not about the orgasm but about the experience itself.

Thanks, Christina! I want that last line on a poster above my desk. For more of Christina's writing, check out her blog. And Left Out — have fun!

Want to find someone to consider dry humping? Find them on Nerve.