Thursday, February 2, 2012

Questions and Answers

1) Many women report that they have difficulty having an orgasm during sex with a partner. What could you tell a woman who has this issue? What products, if any, might you suggest and why?

First off, I would tell her that many women have difficulty having an orgasm during sex for a variety of different reasons. She is not alone. This is a completely common concern and has no reflection on either partner’s performance in the bedroom, nor their affection towards each other. One reason that women have this issue is due to pressure to orgasm. Just like a male-bodied person may have difficulties maintaining erections when pressured, women can be distracted or too flustered to orgasm if there is too much attention on the matter at hand. I would suggest practicing taking deep breaths and communicating with her partner about what is going on in her mind. Nerves can be pretty off putting and a stressed out body means clenched muscles and an unhappy body. She needs to feel at ease to be aroused, to which communication can help. I suggest practicing foreplay with the partner, and if that is already happening, extending it. A nice massage and heavy petting can really help relax the body. For this I would suggest a Rub Me bar or any other massage product. Small toys like a Fingo or a Pleasurette may help to stimulate arousal while still enjoying some intimate foreplay action. Avoiding jumping right into sex is also a great benefactor of foreplay, as it lets the body get comfortable with different touches and sensations and extends the sexual session.
Another reason that some women have trouble having orgasms is because they expect orgasms during sex to be the same as orgasms during solo play. In Sex for One the idea of mutual masturbation is brought up as a way to show your partner how you cause arousal and pleasure in your solo play, which can lead to ideas of how to incorporate it into the bedroom. How can a partner know what turns you on if you don’t tell them? Make sure to also learn from their own solo play practices, because arousal goes both ways! Orgasms are generated differently depending on the location of arousal, for example clitoral verse vaginal stimulation. A large majority of women can orgasm through clitoral stimulation, which is often ignored during penetrative sex. I would suggest stimulating the clitoris during penetration, using fingers, partner’s fingers, or a vibrator. If you have a favorite vibrator that you use in personal play, it would be a great addition with your partner. If this is the first time you are bringing a vibrator into the bedroom I would suggest something small and quiet that does not distract or take away from the sex. Again something like a Pleasurette, or the Form line by Jimmy Jane would be great toys that are small enough to be pressed into the palm of the hand or against each other’s bodies.
I would also strongly suggest reading materials like The Multi Orgasmic series or I <3 Female Orgasm. Informative guides can give the individual a much better idea of what is going on with their sex lives than any person can.

2) A customer says that she’s heard about the G-spot, but doesn’t know anything about it. What are two things that you would tell her about the G-spot?

The first thing I would say is that the G-Spot does exist, but people respond to it differently. Many women think they do not have a G-Spot because they cannot “find it”. Fact is, G-spot stimulation and response is different for every person, so you may be playing with it and not even know! Many women build up in their head what G-spot stimulation is supposed to feel like, but the fact is that some people love it, and some people don’t. The G-spot is an area of tissue about two to three inches inside the upper floor of the vaginal canal that is very sensitive and can cause sexual orgasm for some. For some people when it is stimulated it can feel like there is a lot of pressure happening inside their vaginas, which can be pleasurable, and for others it can feel uncomfortable, as if they have to pee. The best thing with any sexual exploration is to relax and take your time. I would suggest putting aside some time with yourself or with your partner for G-spot exploration.

The second thing I would say is that the G-spot responds to pressure, more so than vibrations. Whilst vibrations are enjoyable, just vibrating it will not stimulate the G-spot. A good technique to find it is to insert fingers or a toy and pull gently towards the belly button. In Expert Guide to the G-Spot Tristan Taeromino refers to this as a “come here” motion with your fingers. She also suggests using toys that have a strong hook and when having it inserted, make sure that the hook is pointing towards the belly button. In the GV Guide to the G-Spot the importance of sexual arousal is brought up in regards to finding the G-Spot. The G-Spot is most sensitive and reactive when the vagina is aroused, so foreplay before searching is highly recommended.

3) A customer says that he’s interested in exploring BDSM. Name two books that you might recommend to him and why you chose them.
One book I would recommend is SM 101 by Jay Wiseman. First off, Jay Wiseman is a great community figure and his book, though slightly outdated, is a great overall of a wide range of topics. As a community figure, Jay knows what he is talking about. It is also written from a personal narrative and not factual and hard to read. It reads as if you are having a conversation with him. I also really appreciated how personal the book was and how you can tell that his advice comes from experience. It also gives you space to jot down your thoughts about the topics that he brings up, which really makes reading the book seems more like having a conversation with him.
Another book that I would recommend is The Ultimate Guide to Sexual Fantasy by Violet Blue. The book explores and demystifies the world of sexual fantasy and lets the readers explore their own sexual fantasies without judgment or reprehension. What I really appreciated about the book was that she brings up ideas as well as explanations in regards to fantasies, and does so on such a wide range of topics. The book explores fantasies that can be acted up, and the taboo, and gives suggestions on how to play with certain fantasies without harming yourself or others as well as breaking any laws. I also really appreciated the stories that were placed in between sections that gave example to how the fantasy can be thought about and practiced.

4) List three things that you might tell a customer who has never tried anal sex and is curious about it.
First off, I would tell the customer that though there is much controversy and debate over the topic of anal play, it is totally safe and fun, if done properly. Of my three tips for customers, I would tell them to communicate, relax, and don’t be afraid to use lots of lube, as well as other safer sex supplies. Communication is very key in any type of sexual play, but especially when attempting anal play. Anal sex can be physically painful if there is no communication, as well as emotional. Approaching anal sex is an intimate topic and there may be some mixed feelings about it! People who have been raise thinking it is a sin may even have guilt! Both parties can end up with a negative experience if they do not talk. In the Ultimate Guide to Anal Sex for Women partner communication is a very key aspect before approaching anal play. Anal play for either partner can be an enlightening as well as sexually empowering experience. My second tip would be to relax. The anus can tighten due to stress, things cannot be inserted, and if attempted can cause a painful experience. I would advise the person to relax as much as possible when exploring with the anus. Practicing pushing the anus open is a good way to get in the right mindset, since it gets the anus ready for some type of interaction. In Tristan Taormino’s Expert Guide to Anal Sex she talks about the importance of lubricant, and repeats many times that you can never have enough. Therefore, my third tip would be to use lots of lube! A good water-based gel will help lubrication for insertion as well as provide a protective cushion for the anal walls. In addition to lube, I would recommend using safer sex items such as gloves or condoms when inserting things like fingers or toys. They create an easy cleaning opportunity in case things get dirty, or you do not want to have to rush from the room to clean. Just slip them off and throw away!

5) A customer wants to buy her first dildo and harness. What are two things that you would tell her?
The first thing I would tell her when picking a dildo is to think about what she and her partner would like. This may seem like an obvious answer, but many times what one partner likes is not in fact what the other person does. A toy can be too large or too realistic looking, or not something that one partner finds very sexy. Communicating with your partner about what type of toy you are looking for can really enhance your experience. For example, if you specifically want to explore prostate stimulation, I would suggest picking out something curved in order to hit the prostate. The same goes for g-spot stimulation. In The Adventurous Couple's Guide To Sex Toys picking out toys is seen as a couples activity, and can be seen as a type of foreplay for later sexy encounters.
For buying her first harness I would recommend a style where you can switch out rings as well as choose whether or not to have a back panel and one that has adjustable straps. The reason behind this is because you can switch up different toys as well as explore and adjust where you want the toy to sit on your body. I would also suggest trying on a harness and seeing how you like the fit! Harnesses are like pants, and you can’t tell how you look or feel in them unless you actually try them on.

6) What are two common sexual concerns or issues faced by older people? What would you suggest to someone who is facing them?

In the book Still Doing It many of the stories involved the concern that as one ages, they will become less sexual. Many of the writers disagree with this statement, stating that they are still sexual and sexually active and enjoy many, if not all of the same activities as they did when they were younger. Some do note that sex does seem to change as the body does, but it doesn’t mean that sex is not fun. Certain positions or action may be a little more difficult, but with negotiation and discussion sex can still remain just as fun! Sex is evolving, and though it may change, it is still sex and the person is still a sexual being, no matter what their age. What I would suggest to someone who is facing this problem is to explore various forms of sexual arousal, whether during solo play or with a partner. Honestly I would also suggest books like Still Doing It where there are personal stories that the person may relate to.
Another common concern is around the embarrassment of the body not performing the same functions are they used to do. For example, an ageing male-bodied person may not be able to have erections quite as often or at all. This can cause embarrassment, which can lead to him avoiding having any sexual interactions at all. What I suggest to someone who is facing them is to talk to their partner as well as other people their own age. These “problems” are not unique, they are just not discussed. Looking into other forms of sexual performance, like instead of having an erection, using a dildo on a partner, would also be something that I would suggest

7) Many of our customers have questions about Tantra. How would you describe Tantra to them?

Tantra is a spiritual sexual connection between and mind and the body. Its actual definition varies depending on the person and their background with the topic, but a majority of the time it will be related back to spirituality and sexuality. In Tantric Sex for Women the author discusses how Tantra can be both a partner experience, as well as an individual one. One of the reason Tantric practices is great is that they are not meant for specific genders or sexual orientations. Tantra can be practiced by anybody and to whatever level one aspires to. A large part of Tantric practice is focused on the movement of energy, whether it is through your body or from one partner to another. Sexual energy can be found all over the body, and is not just focused on the genitals. This is a great practice for people who want a spiritual connection to sex and who want to incorporate meditation and relaxation into their sexual lives.

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