It’s Time For Women To Get An Invite To The Pleasure Party

 Sophia Sinclair
Sophia Sinclair

If “I Can’t Get No Satisfaction” is your sexual theme song, keep reading, my friend. You’re not alone. You see, we live in a very confused culture when it comes to gaining, keeping and cultivating sexual satisfaction.

  • If we enjoy sex, we’re whores
  • If we don’t give our partners the amount of sex they want, we’re prudes
  • If we sleep with too many men, we are sluts
  • If we don’t sleep around enough, we are boring
  • If we cover our boobs, we are too modest
  • If we show too much boob, we are asking for it
  • If our husbands stray, we probably don’t look hot enough
    If we look to hot we might cause the other husbands’ eyes to stray
  • We can’t talk about vaginas because it makes men squirm, but open up a porn website and all you see are vaginas everywhere
  • We are over-sexualized and under-sexualized
  • We are supposed to be both the Virgin Mary and Mary Magdalene at the same time

It seems as though women can’t win when it comes to their sexuality.

Here’s why: the above contradictions have to do with men and their pleasure. Not our pleasure.

Society has programmed women to be givers, not receivers. And – let’s be honest – if we have any hope of feeling pleasure and enjoying satisfying sex with a partner, we need to be able to receive. It’s a pattern that starts young. Researcher and author Peggy Orenstein found that even teen girls were likely to perform oral sex on their boyfriends, but would not expect reciprocation.

Women have the reputation of not loving sex nearly as much as men, but it is simply not true. The problem is that not all women are experiencing true pleasure with sex. If men weren’t receiving pleasure, they’d probably be uninterested too.

Reality check: men aren’t the only ones invited to the pleasure party.

If you’re finding yourself unsatisfied with sex, it’s time to take your pleasure back. Of course it is necessary to partner up with men who care about the pleasure a woman receives and puts in the effort.

It is also important that we take control.

As Alyssa Vitti writes in her book WomanCode:

The bottom line is that you play a huge role in how you experience your sex drive. You’re responsible for turning yourself on – no one has that power but you. Others can enhance your pleasure or take it to a higher level, but the initial experience of being turned on starts with what you’re doing, throughout your day, for yourself.

If you want to feel satisfied, it’s time to take your pleasure back (or maybe take it for the very first time). Here are eight things you can start with.

1. Do Pleasurable Things For Yourself Outside The Bedroom

The perfect place to start! Since women tend to be givers instead of receivers, it’s important to begin practicing the art of receiving pleasure. Many pleasurable experiences aren’t even sexual, but they help prepare you for receiving in the bedroom.

What do you love to do that brings you giddy excitement? These are the things that we often call “guilty pleasures.” Let’s toss the “guilty” and give them a try.

  • Finishing the day with dark chocolate and a glass of wine
  • Getting a pedicure or massage
  • Reading a novel instead of a business book
  • Taking a hot bath
    When you incorporate these pleasurable activities into your normal day-to-day life, you remind yourself you are worthy of enjoying. This primes you up for receiving pleasure in the bedroom.

2. Drop The Shame

Virginity has long been made into a cultural virtue. This automatically suggests that having sex anytime except for during marriage is a negative thing (and sometimes even then). It is not easy to switch off the thoughts of shame and guilt when it comes to not only having, but also enjoying sex.

It stands to reason that if you feel like you are doing something bad (and not the fun type of bad), you are not going to enjoy sex. The guilt and shame that comes along with sex for many women is a massive turn off that prevents real pleasure.

Sex is natural, healthy, and enjoyable. As long as you are fully consenting and excited to have sex with your partner, there is nothing wrong about sex whatsoever. You only have enough space to either hold all the guilt or feel all the pleasure. It’s one or the other.

If sex comes with feelings of shame or fear due to abuse or assault, please seek the help of a licensed therapist. Doing the hard work is so difficult, but it is also so worth it. You deserve to be free.

3. Know What You Want

Many women are not actually sure what brings them pleasure in the bedroom.

Maybe this has to do with our sex organs being taboo to talk about at all ages. Maybe it has to do with the slut-shaming still connected with women and sex. No matter the reason, if you don’t know what brings you pleasure, you have to make it your mission to discover what it is.

Start simply. Do you really understand female anatomy? Many women don’t. A couple years ago the U.K. did a study and discovered half of women between 26 and 35 didn’t even know how to label the parts of the vagina correctly. It’s worth it to learn about your body.

A little self-discovery doesn’t hurt either.

4. Speak Up In The Bedroom

Men often speak up and ask for exactly what they want in the bedroom and elsewhere.

In fact, some will even beg.. and this is something we can learn from them.

It is vital to our pleasure that we start using our voices to express what we want and need from our partners sexually.

You know the old phrase, “ask and you shall receive?” For most women with men who care about them, it is entirely true. But he can’t (and shouldn’t) be expected to read your mind, so you must tell him what you want.

Many women are still afraid to speak up because they will inevitably have to use language that falls into the “dirty talk” category.

Talking about sex does not make you any less of a lady. In fact, it may make you feel like even more of a woman. Using words with your partner to describe what you want him to do will not only help lead you to a significantly more pleasurable experience, but it will also probably turn him – and more importantly, YOU – on.

5. Understand What Selfishness Is…and What It Isn’t

This is a big life lesson for women that extends outside of the bedroom as well.

Selfishness is not thinking about yourself; selfishness is only thinking about yourself.

Only focusing on your partner’s pleasure is not avoiding selfishness; it’s martyrdom.

You can think about both your man’s pleasure and think about your own pleasure every single time you have sex.

As the brilliant author Stephen Chbosky wrote in The Perks of Being a Wallflower, “You can’t just sit there and put everyone’s lives ahead of yours and think that counts as love.”

6. Stop Faking It!

There are two problems with faking the Big O:

1. You are telling your partner that something is working even though it actually isn’t. You can bet that he will keep going back to that same thing believing it is his tried and true method of getting you off. Meanwhile, you’re bored.

2. You are reinforcing in your own mind that your pleasure is not important. Or worse – that your pleasure exists to only satisfy somebody else.

Each of these problems puts your pleasure on the back burner. When you only have an honest orgasm, your man will be able to start learning what really sets you off and will become an even better pleasure giver.

And when you accept that you deserve a real Big O, your satisfaction will start shooting through the roof. Sex is way more fun when it also ends well for you.

7. Choose The Right Partner

Not every man cares whether or not you feel good. If you are with a guy who cares only about his pleasure and never about yours – it’s time to start considering other options. Remember too, if he doesn’t care about making you happy in the bedroom, he probably doesn’t care much about you outside of the bedroom either.

Terrible partner = no satisfaction.

If your partner does deeply care about how you feel and wants to bring you pleasure, you have found a gem. But that doesn’t always mean there’s isn’t something still missing there – that’s when talking needs to come in. Explain what’s pleasurable. Show him what’s pleasurable. Coach him and don’t feel ashamed about it. Also, don’t completely discount the idea of getting a sex therapist to talk through your issues with either. That’s why they are there.

But then, sometimes, you are just not into him. Logically, he may be perfect, but there is real chemistry missing. Then it’s time to start asking yourself the hard questions.

8. Rule Out Medical Problems

For some woman, unsatisfying sex has nothing to do with the wrong positions or partners, but real medical issues. Some cause women to feel no sensation; others cause women to feel intense pain.

For the love of all things pleasurable, my friend, do everything in your power to work with your doctor and make the most of your sex life. If talking to your doctor doesn’t produce good results, move on to the next doctor. Be persistent in making your sexual satisfaction a priority.

Here’s the bottom line: pleasure and satisfaction go hand in hand.
You cannot divorce the two. Sex should be an enjoyable act for both members of the dance. If you find sex to be unfulfilling, boring, and anything but pleasurable – you have the ability to rewrite the story and find your pleasure. No more pleasure problems allowed.Thought Catalog Logo Mark

This post originated on Attract the One.

homebody with wanderlust. lover of books + art + mother earth.

Keep up with Taylor on Instagram

More From Thought Catalog