You had questions Sydney! So we have got relationship and sexual health expert, Chantelle Otten, to help you out!
Advice for approaching a guy and making the first move? Sick of being the ‘shy girl’ waiting for someone to approach me.
Now I can understand why some women can be a bit hesitant to make the first move, putting yourself out there can be hard! We’re saying “Hey, I like you!”, before we know that they like us. That’s huge! But there is amazing power in making the first move and I strongly believe we just need a bit of confidence to make that first move impactful.
Remember, rejection is always a possibility, but that’s totally ok. When we put ourselves out there we might not get the reaction we are hoping for but no one has a 100% success rate, so don’t be discouraged from making the first move if it doesn’t always work.
Know that confidence is sexy – a woman who knows what she wants is so appealing. Approach with confidence and don’t forget you are amazing.
Finally, never underestimate the power of simply walking over and saying “hello”, the best first moves are often super simple. If you’re doing it virtually, on Bumble you can use the Questions Game feature as a fun way to make the first move with your match – this is when you ask your match a question but the answer is only revealed when you have both responded. There are pre-loaded questions if you need some inspiration, or you can be creative and make your own!
I haven’t had sex in over 5 years. I am seeing a man who wants to get intimate but I’m scared because I haven’t done the deed for so long. How do I build the courage?
It’s completely normal to be nervous, be kind to yourself and realise doing something you haven’t done in years takes courage.
The key to tackling sex after so long is to GO SLOW, and when I say this I mean take your time walking through the bases. Start small, with kissing and touching over the clothes, get back in touch with your high school selves! Then take it up a notch, let’s shed some layer and explore each other. Building our courage is also about building trust with our partner, so get comfortable with each other. When you finally feel comfortable and ready, and maybe even aching for it, sex will be the logical next step. Remember, focus on pleasure.
Let’s talk sex frequency. How often should we be having sex if we are in a long-term relationship?
Every three hours if you’re home together, and then once before work and once before bed if you have to spend time apart. Three times on Christmas, one and a half times on birthdays but you get every second Tuesday off.
Doesn’t sound doable? Well that might be because there is no perfect sex frequency number out there! Everyone is different and every relationship has different needs. Some couples want sex every few days, while others might be very happy with sex at least once a month. It all depends on what feels right for you AND your partner.
I see a lot of couples that have issues finding that right frequency because two people can have very different sex drives. So if you’re feeling like you’re not getting enough sex, or maybe even that you’re having too much, it might be time for a chat with your partner. Communicate openly and honestly, and get creative in how to compromise. Maybe we have sex once a week, but another night of oral or manual stimulation. Maybe we have sex on weekends but have kissing and cuddling intimacy during the week. Find what works for your relationship.
What are some of the impacts technology has had on sex and relationships? Good and bad.
Technology in relationships can be a great tool of communication and connection, particularly in this time of distance. Virtual dating is huge – many of my clients tell me they have managed to stay romantically connected to partners they are not living with in lockdown through virtual dates.
As far as sex, app controlled sex toys are another amazing addition to long distance intimacy. When technology is about connection and pleasure it can really help support our relationships.
On the negative side, one of the biggest impacts I hear about is phone addiction causing distance within a couple. The classic example is a couple in bed together, both on their phones, not speaking for hours. Phones at the dinner table, when watching TV or even when out on a date is also a big “no” from me. This can lead to less connection with your partner, and you eventually lose intimacy. Technology can be an amazing asset in relationships and the bedroom, just be mindful of how you use it.
For those that are single and dating right now, I’d be surprised if you haven’t already considered or gone on a video chat date. Bumble was one of the first apps to introduce video chat, and I love it because you can get to know your match on a much deeper level than over text, but you also don’t have to give out your personal information like your email address or phone number before you are ready. While it may seem daunting at first, a virtual date is a great stepping stone between matching and heading out IRL.
I’ve never had an orgasm during sex, is there something wrong with me?
There is NOTHING wrong with you. Let’s remove the social idea that everyone should be having multiple orgasms during penetrative sex, its just not true. Now there are lots of reasons and things that can impact our ability to orgasm with a partner or during sex. Sometimes we simply aren’t getting the stimulation we need. A great pounding can be fun, but for most of us vulva owners, if we’re not saying hello to our clit at the same time it’s going to be very difficult to orgasm. Sometimes we’re nervous and not fully relaxed with our partner, maybe it’s a new relationship or our first relationship, but that tension is also going to impact orgasm. Often we get stuck in our heads during sex and can’t relax into our bodies. And sometimes we need some outside help to show us what might be blocking our orgasmic potential.
How do I talk to my partner about spicing things up, is it best to chat about it during sex or another time?
I would say it really depends on how you want to spice it up! Some light spanking? Probably fine to ask for during sex. Latex and rope bondage? Probably needs a conversation well before sex. I would also use it as a way to start fuelling our erotic fires. Talking about what you both want, fantasies and sexual wishes can be a huge turn on, whether you get to tick items off the list or not.
If you have something really specific in mind you want to try, have the conversation before bed and maybe even out of the bedroom all together. Explain why this new thing is so exciting and arousing for you. Get your partner excited about it too! If you’re not 100% sure what you want to try, then get brainstorming together, but give your partner time to really think about it. In the moment they might not be able to think of much, nerves and pressure can get the best of us. So maybe you can both make a spicy fantasy list, then do some erotic show and tell.
I’m always in the friend zone, what can I do to move away from this?
Friend zone is such an interesting concept, as to me this is about how we show our intentions. So often, particularly if we aren’t confident or outgoing, we wait a REALLY long time to express our feelings. While we might have always liked this person, we haven’t actually shown it to them or been direct. Therefore, we aren’t seen or considered as a romantic possibility because they don’t know how we feel! They aren’t mind readers, and often we might think we’re giving little ‘hints’, but really we are whispering in a tornado.
So next time you’re on Bumble or you meet someone IRL and you want a romantic connection, tell them that! Say ‘Hey, you’re amazingly cool and I would love to date’, or ‘I really like you, more than a friend’, or even ‘I would love to take you out on a romantic date’. Now they might still only see you as a friend, and not return your romantic interest, which is okay, but if you never ask you’ll never know.