“40 Ways Men Fail in Bed” Deconstructed

I was reading through a group on FetLife (a kink and fetish social networking site, kinda like Facebook but for kink) a little while ago and found this list of “40 Ways Men Fail in Bed” which had been copy and pasted from a joke site. Now, I do realize that having been taken from a joke site this is meant to be a joke… but there were just WAAAY too many points I either personally disagreed with or could see how someone else might like them. So, for fun here is the list and my rebuttals/ opinions/ musings on each:

1) NOT KISSING FIRST. Avoiding her lips and diving straight for the erogenous zones makes her feel like you’re paying by the hour and trying to get your money’s worth by cutting out nonessentials. A properly passionate kiss is the ultimate form of foreplay.

I’m kind of on the fence about this one. On the one hand, I do love a good kiss. On the other, a “properly passionate kiss” very rarely gets me as wet as some other forms of foreplay I can think of, and there are some situations when kissing actually isn’t necessary for good sex. I can even think of one or two circumstances when kissing might actually be a turn off.

2) BLOWING TOO HARD IN HER EAR. Admit it, some kid at school told you girls love this. Well, there’s a difference between being erotic and blowing as if you’re trying to extinguish the candles on your 50th birthday cake. That hurts.

I am behind this 2000000%. Personally, my ears aren’t that much of an erogenous zone to begin with so I don’t really get much out of people doing things to them except on very rare occasions. But even if I liked having someone lick or suck on my earlobes and then blow lightly over the moist flesh, I would NOT want someone to blow directly into my ear canal. I had a boyfriend in highschool who did this once in a non-sexual setting and I started bawling like a baby. It didn’t even physically hurt all that much, though it did hurt a bit. Just something happened in my head between the physical pain and the sound and I just started crying uncontrollably. The fact that he kept fucking doing it over and over because he couldn’t fathom why I was reacting the way I was should have been all the evidence I needed to run away and never go back to him, but I was a teenager and teenagers are idiots sometimes… Point is, I know there are people who might really love their partner to do this to them, but I cannot stand it. I would advise that no man do this unless their partner (no matter what sex or gender their partner is) explcitly asks for it.

3) NOT SHAVING. You often forget you have a porcupine strapped to your chin which you rake repeatedly across your partner’s face and thighs. When she turns her head from side to side, it’s not passion, it’s avoidance.

This one is just bullshit. There are plenty of women who love facial hair on their men. There are also plenty who don’t. No one should base their appearance on what they think others are going to find attractive. Focus on what YOU think looks good and what makes YOU happy. It’s all good as long as you practice some basic hygiene.

4) SQUEEZING HER BREAST. Most men act like a housewife testing a melon for ripeness when they get their hands on a pair. Stroke, caress, and smooth them.

I don’t know about most people, but when I’m testing melons at the grocery store I knock on them. Like with my knuckles. I have never heard of or experienced any man KNOCKING on boobs. And even if you change the word “melon” to something that actually might happen, like “peaches” or “tomatoes”, it still doesn’t work because most people don’t get rough when checking such things for ripeness. That would just bruise and/or poke a hole in the fruit. If you’re going to make an analogy, at least make sure it makes sense.

As for the intent behind this one, I both agree and disagree. I don’t particularly like fingers digging into my breast. But I also don’t get anything whatsoever out of touches that are overly gentle. I need a nice firm grip, if anything. That said, there are women who like to have their breasts squeezed roughly with fingers digging in. This is another that I would suggest not doing unless she specifically asks for it. Or, if you have enough dexterity and control, apply very little pressure and increase it slowly until you find the pressure that makes whoever you’re with uncomfortable. Know that limit and stick to it.

5) BITING HER NIPPLES. Why do men fasten onto a woman’s nipples, then clamp down like they’re trying to deflate her body via her breasts? Nipples are highly sensitive. They can’t stand up to chewing. Lick and suck them gently. Flicking your tongue across them is good. Pretending they’re a doggie toy isn’t.

I hate this one. SOME nipples are highly sensitive. Some are not. Even with highly sensitive nipples, some people LOVE teeth on their nipples. Biting does not automatically equal puncturing, ripping or tearing. People have control of their jaws and can easily apply varying degrees of pressure. Again though, due to the ease with which you could cause a great deal of unwanted pain, either don’t do this without being asked or build it up until you find the line. It’s not a difficult thing to do.

6) TWIDDLING HER NIPPLES. Stop doing that thing where you twiddle the nipples between finger and thumb like you’re trying to find a radio station in a hilly area. Focus on the whole breasts, not just the exclamation points.

Everything I said about #5, plus some people get virtually nothing from the experience if you focus more on the whole breast. I can have small orgasms just from someone “twiddling” and biting my nipples if they know what they’re doing. Whereas I get almost nothing out of attention to the rest of my breast.

7) IGNORING THE OTHER PARTS OF HER BODY. A woman is not a highway with just three turnoffs: Breastville East and West, and the Midtown Tunnel. There are vast areas of her body which you’ve ignored far too often as you go bombing straight into downtown Vagina. So start paying them some attention.

Ok, this is true about 98% of the time. The other two percent are people who like consensual non-consent play, any time you’re having hot, frantic, I need you RIGHT FUCKING NOW sex, and quickies when you really don’t have a lot of time. If you have some time on your hands, use those hands to touch a few other places.

8) GETTING THE HAND TRAPPED. Poor manual dexterity in the underskirt region can result in tangled fingers and underpants. If you’re going to be that aggressive, just ask her to take the damn things off.

I don’t even understand this one. I don’t wear panties, and I haven’t pretty much since I first became sexually active, so I’ve never had this become a problem.

9) LEAVING HER A LITTLE PRESENT. Condom disposal is the man’s responsibility. You wore it, you store it.

I agree, but mostly from a practicality standpoint. In my experience, it doesn’t make any sense for the woman to take the condom off for the guy. The potential for the guy to twitch in some way unexpectedly and cause a mess as she’s pulling the condom off is high enough that it makes more sense for the guy to just do it. And if he’s taking it off there’s no reason he can’t throw it away.

10) ATTACKING THE CLITORIS. Direct pressure is very unpleasant, so gently rotate your fingers along side of the clitoris.

Some people really like pain. This is another that I wouldn’t do unless explicitly asked.

11) STOPPING FOR A BREAK. Women, unlike men, don’t pick up where they left off. If you stop, they plummet back to square one very fast. If you can tell she’s not there, keep going at all costs, numb jaw or not.

I don’t think this is just a women thing. I think this is an everyone (with a few non-standard exceptions) thing.

12) UNDRESSING HER AWKWARDLY. Women hate looking stupid, but stupid she will look when naked at the waist with a sweater stuck over her head. Unwrap her like an elegant present, not a kid’s toy.

There are women who get off on being humiliated. Though in general even for them I would agree with this point. Having your shirt stuck as you’re taking it off isn’t terribly humiliating, it’s just kind of silly. Though, that can be a good thing during sex. If you never, ever laugh during sex then you’re probably doing something wrong.

13) GIVING HER A WEDGIE DURING FOREPLAY. Stroking her gently through her panties can be very sexy. Pulling the material up between her thighs and yanking it back and forth is not.

Um, what? I am thoroughly confused.

14) BEING OBSESSED WITH THE VAGINA. Although most men can find the clitoris without maps, they still believe that the vagina is where it’s all at. No sooner is your hand down there than you’re trying to stuff stolen banknotes up a chimney. This is okay in principle, but if you’re not careful, it can hurt – so don’t get carried away. It’s best to pay more attention to her clitoris and the exterior of her vagina at first, then gently slip a finger inside her and see if she likes it.

I think for the vast majority of women in most situations this is true. We need time to get wet enough for penetration. If you don’t wait, it can be uncomfortable. If you really have to put your hand down there, focus on the outside until we’re wet enough for you to slip in with minimal friction.

15) MASSAGING TOO ROUGHLY. You’re attempting to give her a sensual, relaxing massage to get her in the mood. Hands and fingertips are okay; elbows and knees are not.

Do people who are not trained masseuses actually do this*? Regardless of whether it’s sensual or not, if you do this without training you can cause serious damage. Don’t. Just don’t.

*By “do this” I’m just talking about the elbows and knees thing, not massages in general.

16) UNDRESSING PREMATURELY. Don’t force the issue by stripping before she’s at least made some move toward getting your stuff off, even if it’s just undoing a couple of buttons.

I think I would agree with this from a consent standpoint with a new partner, but you don’t really have much to lose if you’re with someone you’ve been banging for a while. If they’re not in the mood to go quite that far and you know each other pretty well then all that will really happen is you’ll have to put your clothes back on.

17) TAKING YOUR PANTS OFF FIRST. A man in socks and underpants is the worst. Lose the socks fist.

Meh. Yea, this looks kinda silly… but how much do you want to bet there’s a fetish for this?

18) GOING TOO FAST. When you get to the penis-in-vagina situation, the worst thing you can do is pump away like an industrial power tool – she’ll soon feel like an assembly-line worker made obsolete by your technology. Build up slowly, with clean, straight, regular thrusts.

This is completely and totally subjective. Some girls might want to be pounded hard all the time, some might just like it sometimes, and some not at all. Learn about your partner and you’ll know when you should and shouldn’t do this.

19) GOING TOO HARD. If you bash your great triangular hip bones into her thigh or stomach, the pain is equal to two weeks of horseback riding concentrated into a few seconds.

I’ve had bruises, but never anything as severe as described here. Unless you’re REALLY, REALLY bony (or she is) you’re probably ok.

20) COMING TOO SOON. Every man’s fear. With reason. If you shoot before you see the whites of her eyes, make sure you have a backup plan to ensure her pleasure too.

Yes. Unless orgasm deprivation is an intentional part of your play, definitely make sure you do something to get her there, especially if she had been building up and was almost there and then you came and she didn’t.

21) NOT COMING SOON ENOUGH. It may appear to you that humping for an hour without climaxing is the mark of a sex god, but to her it’s more likely the mark of a numb vagina. At least buy some intriguing wall hangings, so she has something to hold her interest while you’re playing Marathon Man.

Again, yes. Just yes. And don’t you DARE get angry and petulant if she wants to stop before you’ve come. If it really takes you ages to come and she’s been trying to satisfy you and just can’t take it anymore, then finish yourself off. Don’t be an asshole.

22) ASKING IF SHE HAS COME. You really ought to be able to tell. Most women make noise. But if you really don’t know, don’t ask.

I agree, but I wouldn’t judge by noise. Noise can be faked, plus most women actually get quiet at the moment of orgasm. You know how some people will laugh so hard and long that eventually their laughs become silent? Orgasms can be a lot like that. However, muscle spasms and twitching should be a good indicator. Personally, I move and twitch during build up and then my body goes rigid except for a few muscles that spasm. And as for the last part about not asking if you really can’t tell, yea it’s highly likely that if you don’t know then it didn’t happen. If you don’t know, but she did have an orgasm what’s the worst that can happen? You just continue until you’re sure or she stops you. Simple.

23) PERFORMING ORAL SEX TOO GENTLY. Don’t act like a giant cat at a saucer of milk. Get your whole mouth down there, and concentrate on gently rotating or flicking your tongue on her clitoris.

Every girl is different, but I’d say this is probably good advice overall.

24) NUDGING HER HEAD DOWN. Men persist in doing this until she’s eyeball-to-penis, hoping that it will lead very swiftly to mouth-to-penis. All women hate this. It’s about three steps from being dragged to a cave by their hair. If you want her to use her mouth, use yours; try talking seductively to her.

Never, ever say that “all” of anyone hates something. There is ALWAYS an exception.

25) NOT WARNING HER BEFORE YOU CLIMAX. Sperm tastes like sea water mixed with egg white. Not everybody likes it. When she’s performing oral sex, warn her before you come so she can do what’s necessary.

I’m tempted to say that if men are expected to recognize when we’ve cum then we should be able to recognize when they’re cumming, but ejaculation and orgasm are not necessarily the same thing. Plus, even if they are there’s a difference between recognizing it as it happens and recognizing it before it happens. So, I’d say overall I agree with this one. Even if she likes the taste and intends to swallow before you even get started, it’s nice to have some notice so you can prepare.

26) MOVING AROUND DURING FELLATIO. Don’t thrust. She’ll do all the moving during fellatio. You just lie there. And don’t grab her head.

Again, subjective. Some girls like it when you fuck their face/throat. Just make sure you’re with one of them before you do this.

27) TAKING ETTIQUETTE ADVISE FROM PORN MOVIES. In X-rated movies, women seem to love it when men ejaculate over them. In real life, it just means more laundry to do.

More laundry to do? Really? You know what would fix that? Taking off your fucking shirt and bra for the blow job. In REAL life this particular sex act has almost nothing to do with laundry and everything to do with personal preferences. Some girls actually do like this. Just find out before you do it and you should be fine.

28) MAKING HER RIDE ON TOP FOR AGES. Asking her to be on top is fine. Lying there grunting while she does all the hard work is not. Caress her gently, so that she doesn’t feel quite so much like the captain of a schooner. And let her have a rest.

I mostly agree with this. Caress, hold, grab, squeeze, smack various parts of her anatomy, pinch and thrust up into her. Don’t just lie there unless you have some medical condition that won’t allow you to really participate. Like if you’re dead. Or paralyzed. Or unless she’s tied you up or otherwise indicated that you are not allowed to move.

29) ATTEMPTING ANAL SEX AND PRETENDING IT WAS AN ACCIDENT. This is how men earn a reputation for not being able to follow directions. If you want to put it there, ask her first. And don’t think that being drunk is an excuse.

Yes and no. Accidents DO happen. But if it happens more than a couple times, it’s going to be really annoying, even if she is ok with anal.

30) TAKING PICTURES. When a man says, "Can I take a photo of you?" she’ll hear the words "__to show my buddies." At least let her have custody of them.

Disagree. Yes, there are guys who are huge assholes, but I don’t think most of them make this request with the intent of showing others and I don’t think it should be assumed they are. If you don’t trust him not to show people, don’t let him take the picture. It has nothing to do with who has “custody”.

31) NOT BEING IMAGINATIVE ENOUGH. Imagination is anything from drawing patterns on her back to pouring honey on her and licking it off. Fruit, vegetables, ice and feathers are all handy props; hot candle wax and permanent dye are a no no.

NOTHING is a no no unless the SPECIFIC woman involved says so (well, except things like murder). Fuck you, discouraging hot wax. Just because it’s not YOUR preference does not mean it’s a “no no”.

32) SLAPPING YOUR STOMACH AGAINT HERS. There is no less erotic noise. It’s as sexy as a belching contest.

I don’t even understand this. Things happen during sex.

33) ARANGING HER IN STUPID POSES. If she wants to do advanced yoga in bed, fine, but unless she’s a Romanian gymnast, don’t get too ambitious. Ask yourself if you want a sexual partner with snapped hamstrings.

I’m not sure what being Romanian has to do with it, but mostly yea. Don’t automatically assume she’s flexible enough for that position you saw on the internet. Experiment, but take it slow the first time to make sure it will work.

34) LOOKING FOR HER PROSTATE. Read this carefully: Anal stimulation feels good for men because they have a prostate. Women don’t.

Which is not to say anal doesn’t feel good for women. It can. Just don’t go searching for something that doesn’t exist.

35) GIVING LOVE BITES. It is highly erotic to exert some gentle suction on the sides of the neck, if you do it carefully. No woman wants to have to wear turtlenecks and jaunty scarves for weeks on end.

Some women wouldn’t bother with the turtlenecks or “jaunty” scarves. If you’re a biter or sucker, just make sure beforehand that she’s into that and where she’s ok with having those marks.

36) BARKING INSTRUCTIONS. Don’t shout encouragement like a coach with a megaphone. It’s not a big turn-on.

Again, personal preference. This one doesn’t hurt anyone really, so if it’s your default go ahead and go with it. Just be conscientious enough to ask later if she’s cool with it.

37) TALKING DIRTY. It makes you sound like a lonely magazine editor calling a 1-900 line. If she likes nasty talk, she’ll let you know.

Yes and no. Some women aren’t comfortable enough with themselves to ask for stuff like this. If you want to test the waters, just start out light. Don’t do things like calling her names at first, give commands and/or describe what you’re going to do to her using dirty words. If she’s into that, wait till later and say she seemed into it and you don’t want to overstep your bounds so ask if you can use other words next time, if she’s ok with name calling etc.

38) NOT CARING WHETHER SHE COMES. You have to finish the job. Keep on trying until you get it right, and she might even do the same for you.

Overall, yes. There are times when both people don’t have to come. Sometimes some women will get you off just because they enjoy giving you pleasure, just like some men do, but overall, yea.

39) SQUASHING HER. Men generally weigh more than women, so if you lie on her a bit too heavily, she will turn blue.

Yes, and it has nothing to do with men generally weighing more. Even if she weighs more than you, you could conceivably impede her breathing.

40) THANKING HER. Never thank a woman for having sex with you. Your bedroom is not a soup kitchen.

Personally, I agree with this. I don’t adhere to it. I thank The Keeper, especially if he does something for me I know he’s not particularly fond of or if he does something with absolutely no intent of getting off himself. But most of the time I don’t really want to be thanked for sexual things. Other girls might like it though, so just don’t overdo it and if she says to stop, either stop or make it a very, very occasional thing.

And for pretty much the whole list, keep in mind communication is really the only key. If you communicate and learn each other’s preferences the sex can be amazing.

Oooh, and I just found a “40 Ways Women Fail in Bed” list. Maybe I can persuade The Keeper to make a post about that one? We’ll see.

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