Hi Sh! I have a kind of deep problem. I can never feel totally comfortable while having sex with my partner, or myself. So I’m 20 and I’ve been with my partner for 3 years. I don’t know what it is, but I almost never initiate sex. Ever. Only a few times. I have never achieved orgasm through sex. I used to masturbate a lot with a massager as a teen, but my mom put two and two together and made me feel just awful about it. It was never okay for me to ask questions about sex. I feel just awful for my boyfriend because he is horny all. the. time. and I can’t satisfy him. Since incidents with my mom, I feel ashamed about myself. This is why I don’t masturbate anymore. If I do, it’s like once every couple months just to release the tension. I feel bad for touching myself without the massager. How do over this sense of shame?
We are so sorry you have had such bad experience.
You should never be ashamed of something as normal and healthy as a bit of teenage exploration, or masturbation in general.
We know it’s not much help saying that, it’s great that you know, intellectually, at least that there’s nothing you need to feel ashamed of.
There’s a few issues at work here. First off the fact that you don’t initiate sex. It sounds like that’s because you don’t feel comfortable voicing your desires. That’s something you can work on! Try telling your partner what feels good during sex, this can help you get more comfortable acknowledging your desires. It also might help with orgasming during sex.
Most women will not orgasm from penetrative sex alone, so a lack of clitoral stimulation might be a part of the reason you are struggling to orgasm. Take some time to slow things down, set a relaxing mood, light some candles, take a bath and warm up with lots and lots of foreplay and (lube as always).
If you used to use a massager, go get yourself a new massager, try letting your partner use it on you as well as exploring on your own.
Try giving each other massages or close non sexual touching to help you feel connected to your partner without the pressure of looming sex. You might also be interested in some arousal oil, firstly to help get you in the mood and partly as a way of giving yourself ‘permission’ to be aroused.
It’s worth noting that you seem as concerned by the fact that you don’t feel like you’re satisfying your partner as you do by your own lack of enjoyment. It’s worth talking to your partner about how they feel but don’t feel like you must have sex just because your partner wants to.
If you are able to it might be worth trying to speak with a psychosexual therapist about some of your feelings of shame and the negative attitudes to sex you have been exposed to.
Hope that helps and that you get to a place where you can enjoy a fabulous sex life.
If you have any more questions please send them to email@example.com, if you’d like advice from our sex and relationship expert Sarah Berry please include the subject line ‘Ask Sarah’.
Team Sh! xxx
All names are changed for the purposes of anonymity.