I write and speak a lot about myths we encounter when it comes to sex, and there are plenty. This is understandable when you consider that a myth is a widely held falsehood, and when we are not really encouraged to discuss sex from a mature (but fun) perspective, it’s easy for sexual myths to be persistent. The myth I’m addressing here is the myth of the good lover. If we asked most people what a good lover is, I suspect the majority (and particularly men) would say it’s being attentive and giving to their partner, making sure that their needs are met and that they are satisfied. I also suspect that for those people who aren’t particularly sexually confident, they aspire to getting to the dizzy heights of providing their sexual partners with untold pleasure, therefore becoming a sexual tyrannosaurus. And this, right here, is the myth. The idea that to be good in bed is to be giving and selfless. Even as I’m writing “good in bed” I’m feeling acutely aware that this is a statement that we measure ourselves and others against and that in itself is a problem. Clients often tell me that they are having a conversation with themselves when they are attempting to have sex their (often new) partner about how they measure up in comparison to their partners previous lovers. A voice asking “am I doing this right? Is this how they like it? I’m I as good as the last?” When we are attempting to be selfless and giving and possibly combined with thoughts of our performance, we are immediately drawn away from our own pleasure. We are solely focused on the other and there is a good chance that the other is solely focused on you. Which, if you bring this to it’s natural conclusion means that there is a good chance that neither of you are accessing your own pleasure to the degree that you are capable of.
A good lover will take, not give. They will concentrate on their own pleasure. They will take absolutely pleasure from how their partner looks, tastes, smells, feels. They are completely present and engaging all of their senses. A good lover will allow themselves to receive and enjoy every minute of being indulged without worrying about being selfish, because they know that (if desired by their partner to do so) they are going to reciprocate and take full pleasure from doing so. This is by no means that same as the now cliched idea of the guy who comes and simply rolls over and goes to sleep, whilst a frustrated partner is furious beside them. A good lover is the one who makes their partner feel desired and sexy, that they are thoroughly enjoying them, that they are the only thing they are capable of thinking about in that moment in time. They are experiencing the absolute pleasure of being with their partner.
Another vital ingredient that makes a good lover is communication. People are potentially rolling their eyes at this as it tends to come up in every piece of writing about sex, but it’s because it’s key to everything. Although I’m not suggesting it’s easy for people. However, if you want to be a good lover, you need to know what your own desires are, be able to communicate that to your partner and also be able to ask what they like too. Everyone is so different that you simply can’t make the assumption that what got a previous partner off is going to work for your current one. Assume nothing, it’s always a good place to start.