How To Hit A Woman?

MAN: “This is so great, you’re so great.”

WOMAN: “I know, I can’t believe this. I’m so into you right now.”

MAN: “Do you want to…?”

WOMAN: “Yes, I do. I’m ready.”

MAN: (bravely) “Tell me how you like it.”

WOMAN: “I like…”

MAN: “Don’t be shy. I want you to feel good. Tell me what you want.”

WOMAN: “I want you to slap me.”


It’s happened to almost every guy I know. Things are going well, supremely well, better than you have any right to reasonably expect things could ever go. You’re in bed with a woman, making out, and it seems she would like to have sex with you. In that moment, it always feels like a miracle. You’re delighted and instantly think about throwing a parade, but you handle it with calm, damnit, because you’re an adult human being. And, honestly, a parade would only give her a chance to change her mind. So you proceed as normal, until something strange happens. She makes a request, but that’s not the issue, requests are totally cool with us. We’re modern, progressive love machines. We’ll do whatever it takes to make our women happy. But this woman, your woman, tells you what that request is. She wants you to slap her in the face. Or spank her. Or choke her during sex. And then we men, well, we get a little terrified. When it happens to me, I instantly turn into Woody Allen.

WOMAN: “I like to be choked. You know, just a little.”

BRIAN: “You wanna be…uh…you wanna be…uh…did you say…choked?”

WOMAN: “Yeah, but playfully. You know, while we’re having sex.”

BRIAN: “Right…right…playful, like a game. Like a game where we’re sleeping together, and…uh…at the same time I’m trying to kill you?”

WOMAN: “If it makes you uncomfortable, we don’t have to–”

BRIAN: “What? Uncomfortable? I’m not uncomfortable, I just, I think I’m having a little bit of a heart attack.”

WOMAN: (Aggravated. Silent.)

BRIAN: Would it be a turn-off if I called my shrink?”

Look, men are used to receiving sexual requests that we have no hope of fulfilling. Happens all the time. But this particular request, the suggestion that things get a little rough, is a whole other can of beans. Because here, not only is your partner likely to end up unsatisfied, there’s also a chance she’ll be physically injured as well. And that’s a lot to sign up for. We can handle the face that says “No, I didn’t climax, but you’re nice so I’ll pretend I don’t really care.” That face and us have become old friends. But if there’s even a 1% chance that that face might have an added tinge of “Oh, and also, you hit me too hard,” well, that would break our soul in pieces. Honestly. We would never be repaired. So what do we do?

Spanking, I understand. I mean, I don’t understand it, but there’s generally some extra padding back there, so I suppose we can make that work. But slapping? Choking? Why are those even on the table? I dated a girl once who liked to be choked during sex, and every time I tried it, I felt like a serial killer. She hoped to comfort me by telling my I could just do it lightly, and it worked great until she realized my version of lightly meant placing two fingers on her neck and applying enough pressure to maybe seal an envelope. It was clear then that she thought I was a wuss. But look, guys don’t have any framework for choking. We don’t know what a fun amount of oxygen to be deprived is. I mean, how do you choke someone lightly? That’s like saying, “just stab me a little bit.” Either you can breath or you can’t, there’s no really no such thing as light asphyxiation. And no matter how badly she wants it, there’s a lot of programming that requires overriding before a man can physically hurt a woman. Even if his wussiness hangs in the balance.

So really, I don’t know what the answer is. There is no clause in a guy’s instinct that says it’s OK to slap a girl as long as it’s after midnight and she’s really turned on. Just as there isn’t one in a woman’s that says she’s not allowed to be into pain if it makes her dude feel kinda like Woody Allen. I guess we’re all just going to have to live with sex being either a little strange or a little disappointing. Hey, it’s gotten us this far, right? TC mark

image – Shutterstock


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  • Emil Caillaux

    Slow claps all around. Very, very nicely written.

  • of doom. (@mikeofdoom)

    If she wanna be choked, choke her damnit.
    If she wants to be slapped. SLAP HER DAMNIT!!!

    • Oliver Miller

      No-ooo. No slapping. Mega-pass.

      • Brenda

        Good answer!

      • guest


    • Nichole Jackson (@EarthToNichole)

      If you know the person well enough and she’s into that kind of think (and let’s be real, a LOT of women are into that kind of thing) I don’t see the problem. Light slapping is different than “oh fuck did I just give you a black eye?” slapping.

  • Jim Khoury

    Wait till she asks you to treat her like a pony after dating for four months.

  • Only L<3Ve @

    […] Thought Catalog » Love & Sex Add a comment […]

  • Dave Carmocan

    I’m glad I am not the only person that feels a little weirded out by this. I understand that it’s all in good fun, it’s just that my dad was abusive to to my mom so it has created some awkward situations.

  • Welp

    I couldn’t be the only deviant who does these things willingly and without being asked to do so, right?

    • mary yo

      my type of guy…

  • Kay

    As a woman I find this article greatly amusing, love it a lot! Great work Brian

  • tara

    hahahaha best antidote to the Fifty Shades of Gray craze ever!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Rob Vincent (@rob_t_firefly)

    I love that the google ad on this page is for a Christian dating site.

  • Ruth Tam

    “We’re all just going to have to live with sex being either a little strange or a little disappointing.”

    Ain’t that the truth. And overall, I liked this piece a lot! You wrote about sex without actually writing about sex.

    • guest

      lol thats the biggest bull shit ever! people who do it and people who ask for it are weak

      • stan

        wwait, what?

  • S

    I guess I somewhat understand the trepidation, but let’s be real here–during oral sex, we’re essentially choking ourselves with your ample-sized meat wands (Could I say that in a more uncomfortable way? No? Good.), but the second your hands get involved in the choking, it’s too much?

    • H

      Best comment ever.

      • guest

        lol both of u r dumb lol

      • H

        lol yeah we are lol. lol lol lol lol I love lol

    • Brian Donovan

      I guess, yes, S, that is what I’m saying. Without the meat wand bit though, because it would be weird if I said that. Although, I’ve just said it, haven’t I?

    • Veronica

      I think there’s a key difference between oral sex on a guy in which the person being choked is the person doing the work of chokin (usually–the guy could be thrusting into your mouth but I’m ignoring that for the moment) and hands-around-throat in which there’s a separate choker and chokee. To me, the first scenario feels much more comfortable and safe because you’ll only choke yourself as much as you want; no fear of accidentally hurting someone else.

  • Joe

    It’s not that weird, a lot of women just like the feeling of being physically overpower by a man – not that they WANT to be, but that feeling is sorta biologically there, and since they don’t want to be slapped around for real, this is the best way of feeding that urge.

    • JK

      “biologically there”? really???

    • AH

      It’s definitely NOT biological. Psychological, yes. And it’s not really all fun and games if you look into the reason most women who want to be overpowered want to be overpowered (you can almost always take a look into her past and find some sort of trauma and/or abuse.

      • Joan


    • Brian Donovan

      I don’t think it’s weird at all. I’m just bemoaning my inability to do it without feeling like a creep. This is far more a dude’s issue than a lady’s, I think.

    • Sophia

      Joe, what you’re talking about is rape culture, which includes the fucked up belief that women secretly want to be ‘victims’ of men’s aggression, or as you said, be ‘physically overpowered’ by a man. Not saying that some women don’t actively desire to be submissive – plenty do – but to say it’s “biological” is bullshit.

      • Brian Donovan

        Uh oh. Not looking good for Joe!

  • scytle

    This is exactly why you should talk about these things well before any sex is about to happen. When you are out at lunch, or talking a walk through the park, not when all your clothing is off and you feel vulnerable. Why are people so reluctant to talk about what sort of sex they want, but in the OKC profile they will list the 40,000 things they want in a partner (down to the exact type of shoes you must have).

    If you want this kind of sex, you need to be up front about it, if you don’t want to have this kind of sex you need to tell the person asking you for it that you don’t want to do it.

    The moment we all stop treating sex like its this gold plated holy object that us mere mortals are not allowed to touch, is the moment we all start getting laid on the regular. And not just often, in the ways we want to get laid.

    Sexual repression is silly, and dangerous, fuck who you want, fuck how you want, be up front about it, and don’t judge people for being up front about it.

    • Brian Donovan

      All the women I’ve been with HAVE discussed it beforehand, and it was still awkward. You’re either the sort of person who can detach your non-sexual mind during creative sexual behavior or you’re not, and I’m afraid I’m not.

      • Linda

        I take the same approach as SCYTLE. Everyone has a kind of sex that they want and it exists within certain parameters, some being more flexible than others. It is your responsibility to lay down those parameters to your partner, BUT it would also send off some warning flags with me if the other person wasn’t even concerned about those boundaries to begin with.

        I would never want to have to detach myself from sexual play because I wasn’t into it, and I would be disgusted with myself if I thought I was forcing a partner into that situation. If that particular act wasn’t an absolutely necessary part of sex, I’d say, “No big deal,” and move onto things that we both enjoy and are comfortable with. If it was a necessary part, I’d probably choose to stop seeing them sexually, because there’s no way in hell I can enjoy something when I know that the other person finds it unappealing. My mentality isn’t to blame someone (or myself) for having different preferences. I just know that this person and I are not a great match and that we could both find more satisfaction elsewhere.

    • PiratesLife4Me

      I definitely just got an image of a couple enjoying a nice lunch in a public restaurant. All the other Subway patrons are chatting away about the weather or looking forward to a baseball game they are later attending, as this one couple loudly and confidently discusses how hard he should squeeze her throat while inside of her. I see your point Scytle, but it’s not exactly a casual conversation two people should have in any general location. Yes, have the talk before the clothes are off, but maybe in the privacy of someone’s home. :)

  • Jàck Cazir (@JackCazir)

    Or maybe you could treat the woman you are with as a responsible, thoughtful adult who is aware of the risks and rewards associated with whatever possible sexual activity they’ve been brave enough to communicate to you, and indulge them.

  • Brian McElmurry

    somethings don’t seem like something that would turn you on until you try it. I think choking and spanking are better in the LTR because you both know you love each other, and hate each other a bit, so it all makes sense ;-)

  • LeShaun Johnson

    My girl likes to be slapped, choked, spanked. It’s awesome. If you’re into that kinda thing, then why not? If you’re not and she is, you might as well say goodbye, cause that’ll definitely make you feel insecure knowing she thinks you’re a pansy.

  • AH

    I like to be occasionally tossed around a bit–but I am well aware that this goes back to a lot of the abuse I suffered when i was younger (and anyone I’ve talked to about this–which is kind of a lot since I majored in sexuality and gender). Great article, but I wish this would have been addressed a little more.

  • AH

    Also–what about all of us girls that have been slapped around and/or choked by men when it was unwanted?? In my experience, this is a bigger problem than a man not wanting to indulge his partner…

    • Brian Donovan

      Understood, AH. And yes, the negative side is certainly the bigger problem, but not really one that ‘s in my wheelhouse to discuss. I do more of the laughy laughy than the thinky thinky.

  • Abby

    I’m a fan of all of the above. Trust me, I’ll tell you if it’s too much.

  • Avery Loves (@averyloved)

    The real problem here is that you’re a bad lay. Plenty of men are into S&M, and don’t turn into a prude jellyfish at the mention of it. Ever heard of good, giving, and game? If you want to have painfully vanilla sex, go ahead. But the only problem here is you.

    • Jàck Cazir (@JackCazir)

      Gotta know your ABGs:


    • Lady

      If you find vanilla sex painful, then you’re not doing it right. Good old fashioned fucking can be the hottest damn thing in the world. Have your kinks and enjoy them. By all means. Nothing wrong with it. But let’s not act like there’s something wrong with not adorning your sex with a million bells and whistles. There’s something to be said for just simple touch. Hell, there are mountains to be said.

      • Welp

        Pray tell, how does one say mountains?

    • PiratesLife4Me

      I think you’ve missed the point of this article. Not being into S&M, or having different kinks and sexual interests than your partner, does NOT make you a bad lay. It’s all about finding someone compatible, and awkwardness can ensue if one person likes something the other is not into. So I’m glad you like to get a little rough when you’re getting physical, but that in no means makes you a good lay.

      Don’t worry, Brian, I got your back!

  • Lady

    I would never want a man to expect me to do something that made me uncomfortable, and I feel the same way for men. If you don’t want to do it, please god, don’t do it. We don’t have to indulge every idiotic thing someone suggests in bed. Truly, one can be “sex-positive” without turning sex into some anxiety-ridden test of your ability to do things that feel completely unnatural to you. The answer here is simple: If a girl NEEDS to be slapped or choked to get into sex, well, she should find herself someone who is into that sort of thing. And if not, it’s no big deal to say no. No means no! :)

  • guest



    NOW RAPE ME!!!!!!!!

    I SAID RRRRRRRRRRRRRRAAAAPE MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • beating

      i would let chris brown beat me anyyyyyyy day hehehehh

      just as long as he cums on my faceeeee 8======D~~~~~~ O-: xoxo

  • ks

    You need to open your mind. And read Dan Savage.


    Because the biggest “don’t” in sex is to ask someone about their kink and assure them you want to know / won’t judge / are game for anything, and then to “RUN SCREAMING FROM THE ROOM.” In caps, no less. There’s no better way to make sure you suck in bed than to make someone feel shitty for telling you what they really want. I’m not saying you shouldn’t be nervous to choke someone, because you should be, but your reaction (whether fictional or otherwise) was awful. That woman was absolutely spot-on when she was aggravated and silent.

    Don’t put any other woman through your sex mind games until you read a few Savage Love columns, and certainly don’t put another woman through your boring vanilla sex. Zzzzz.

    • m

      Since when did not hurting someone during sex make it “vanilla?” I guess i’m no fun because i don’t have the urge to slap somebody while i’m trying to make them feel good. Don’t tell someone to open their mind while you criticize them for doing something different than you. The guy was making a joke about sexual differences, not judging the women for theirs.

  • zeezs

    I can never understand women who enjoy a tinge of violence in sexual activities and I am a woman myself. I guess its because I grew up watching my mother being hit by my father and since then my point of view of physical violence is towards the negative side. I’ve always been scared of being hit especially by men, even worse for sexual pleasure.

    • Christina

      i dont know if this is the best analogy but its like when having sex and its going great, we are pleasure seeking humans and we just want something extra to feel something more. like if you’re already pretty drunk and feeling nice, why do we drink more? just to add to it. being smacked (lightly, i would never want the shit hit out of me, but like something light) just adds more to something thats already going good.

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