That Vibrator: Built for two. The rationale.

I may be taking off the training wheels, but I want to forge right ahead with the topic from the last post about using vibrators with your partner.

I know. I should probably take things slow and discuss why and how you should be using a vibrator. But we’ve done that a few times. HereHere (this one is a series). And here

So without further ado, let’s talk about partner sex with a vibrator. First, we’ll lay some groundwork; then we’ll get into the nitty-gritty.

One thing I often hear from women is, “I don’t think my partner would like it.” In fact, that was the reason of 15 percent of respondents in our MiddlesexMD survey who don’t use a vibrator. Another 4 percent said “my partner disapproves.”

In the gentlest possible way, I’d like to ask if this response is based on assumption or actual conversation. Have you discussed introducing a vibrator into your sex play? Because in my experience and that of other sex therapists, most men aren’t threatened by vibrators, and some find them kind of hot.

My anecdotal evidence is backed by science. In the study of vibrator use by Dr. Debby Herbenick, of the 1,000 men who were asked, 45 percent reported having used a vibrator, usually during sex with a woman.

Boredom is a huge disincentive to sex.Another barrier mentioned by Kate McCombs, MPH, is the notion that an orgasm with a vibrator is a cheat, which harkens back to that misbegotten standard of our youth in which the only real orgasm was a vaginal orgasm. Well, now we know that 70 percent of women don’t orgasm with vaginal penetration alone. And at this stage of life, I’d like to suggest that all orgasms count. To paraphrase Woody Allen, “I’ve never had an orgasm that wasn’t right on the money.”

If one or both of you are shy about taking this particular plunge, here are some good reasons to nudge the boundaries of your comfort zone.

  • Oh, those elbow, hips, and knees. Sex can be acrobatic, requiring pressure on joints that don’t work so well and repetitive motions that can be hard to sustain. A vibrator is a little comfort measure that allows things to happen quickly (or not) and reliably without so much work or pressure on the joints.
  • Make it last or make it happen at all. Maybe it takes longer for you. Maybe you need more stimulation. Maybe he can’t quite last as long or get it up. A vibrator makes things more reliable and less frustrating for both of you. One respondent to our survey was surprised to find her libido flagging after menopause…“when necessary, the vibrator assures a pleasurable experience for both my husband and me.” Says another, “It removes any anxiety about how long it’s taking, or is it working…” It’s going to work, and it can take as long as you want.
  • Break the monotony. You know the moves by heart. You could (and maybe you have) done them in your sleep. Boredom, especially after decades with the same partner, is a huge disincentive to sex. That’s where a vibrator (and other sex toys) can spice things up and introduce some creativity and play into your ho-hum routine. In our survey, over 20 percent of you agreed that you use a vibrator “to supplement intimacy and playfulness with a partner.” That is a very loving and wonderful use for this gizmo.
  • Know thyself (and thy partner). How can you let your partner know what you like if you don’t know what you like? A vibrator is a great tool for self-discovery, for finding out where the nerve endings are and what pressure and speed works best. You can also experiment on him. You may discover some new sweet spots.

In the end, while vibrators can be a fun toy and a helpful assist for flagging libido and waning sensation in the nether regions, whether or not you incorporate them into either personal or couple use is totally up to you.

In the realm of sexual intimacy, while I think it’s good to explore boundaries and maintain an open, questing spirit, if an experiment becomes too uncomfortable or anxiety-provoking, then a loving partner will back away. A vibrator for personal use is your decision (“It’s your orgasm,” writes one blogger), but introducing it into sex with your partner is a tango that requires a little more sensitivity.

More about that in a future post.

 


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