Why Won’t They Initiate Sex?

“Nina, how do I get my partner to initiate s3x?”That question comes up on a weekly basis in my DM’s or IG stories. What’s underneath that is more likely, “How do I get my partner to WANT to sexually engage with me more often?”. I would bet that if you and your partner were in the mood and the flirting was there, and you happen to be the one to lean in to start the make out session first, you wouldn’t feel “rejected” or frustrated because they didn’t kiss you first. You’d know you were both into it – and you’d enjoy the hell out of it. Am I right?

The issue isn’t that they aren’t initiating, necessarily. The issue is that they aren’t INTERESTED in sex, period. You feel like you are always the one who has to drop hints. You are the one who has to awkwardly make up innuendos to see if they’ll at least nibble at the carrot you just dangled. You are the one who feels rejected, defeated, and resentful. So, you resort to blatantly angry statements like, “You never initiate sex!” or “Why don’t you ever want to have sex?!” or “I have needs to ya know?!” Sound familiar?

Here’s the inside scoop.

Not only do most heterosexual couples have different sex drive types (if you want to know which one you are – click here!), but we ALLLLL have different erotic formulas. I look at erotic formulas like this…TURN ONS – TURN OFFS + YOUR UNIQUELY REQUIRED PHYSICAL STIMULATION = YOUR EF

This is probably the source of most sexual frustrations, in my opinion. It looks simple. However, behind that equation lives shame, embarrassment, and a lack of understanding of how both our bodies and human sexuality work. Many couples never have the fantasy conversation because we are too nervous about what our partner will think. We aren’t super clear on our turn-offs or how to articulate them, and many people (especially cis women) aren’t 100% clear on the physical stimulation they require for orgasm. So, you can see why this isn’t the easiest formula to figure out.

So, instead of focusing on WHO is initiating sex, be inquisitive about WHAT would make them WANT to have it in the first place. Just something to think about…😉

Why Do We Eroticize Our Fears?

Have you ever found yourself fantasizing or eroticizing the exact thing that you fear (or are insecure about) in your relationship?

Let’s say you’re insecure about your partner cheating on you, yet you find yourself fantasizing about your partner with another person. Even more confusing, you may be…gasp…turned on by it!I hate to break it to ya…but you’re not “weird” or “broken”. You don’t have “bizarre fantasies”.

Often, our fantasies can be therapeutic for us. It’s no different than speaking to people who have experienced childhood trauma that are immensely turned on by BDSM. In our fantasies, and even in consensual sexual play, we can create and control our environment – something that was NOT the case when the traumatic event took place. When we have fears or insecurities about something in our relationship, and create a fantasy where we are in control – it can be very settling, believe it or not.

So, in the case of infidelity fears, you may fantasize about your partner cheating on you, you walking in, and JOINING! Does this mean you want it to happen? No, of course not. I have yet to meet someone who is excited about infidelity. However, in that scenario, you are in control of your fear, versus having it happen “TO” you.

So, next time you find yourself fantasizing about something that you are actually afraid of happening in your relationship, understand that it’s often a coping mechanism that our powerful minds help to create to put us in control (at least mentally).

Penis Pressure…Be Gone!

May be an image of one or more people and text that says 'You know how I know that people still don't believe that women orgasm from clitoral stimulation? Because straight men are still taught to worry about the size of their penis, and how long they can "last" in bed. realtalk WITH NINA un ed unfiltered imperfect unashamed'

Yep. I said it. And I’m saying it with so much freakin’ love.

The value that our culture puts on penises is not only insanely unwarranted, but it’s detrimental. It causes immense anxiety and pressure for men, and it causes women to feel broken and in need of “fixing”. Additionally, over 75% of women have faked an orgasm to protect the ego of their male partners – and for what?! Most men (at least the good ones) would move heaven and earth to please their female partner – and to watch/hear/feel her orgasm. Guys, am I right?!?

This is nobody’s “fault”. It’s a tremendously unfortunate consequence of antiquated, shame-heavy, phallocentric “teachings” about sex and pleasure (or lack thereof 🙄). And ya know who benefits from all of this? Not a damn soul (nope, not even men). When women (or anyone) aren’t enjoying sex, they are less likely to be turned on by the idea of it. When women aren’t turned on by the idea of it, their desire tends to decrease, causing the classic, “My wife lost her sex drive” DMs in my inbox.

Recently, a male friend of mine asked me this question…”Nina, how the hell can women stand NOT having an orgasm with men when they have sex? I couldn’t imagine only getting off here and there, or not at all!” My response to him was painful…but true.

Women were taught to please men, and that our pleasure is secondary (at best). We were also taught that we *should* be able to have an orgasm from penetration alone. So, not only have we learned not to prioritize our orgasm, but the way we were taught to experience it, is not accurate. His question sat with me for a bit. I really thought about what would happen in a heterosexual relationship if the woman always got off, and the man rarely did, or had to fake it. If you read that, and couldn’t fathom that being the case – therein lies the issue.

It’s normal and accepted within our culture that women’s orgasms are hard to come by (pun intended), elusive, take “too much work”, and are a burden on the man. So, in case you’re like the majority of folks who NEVER received pleasure education (because, God forbid we experience pleasure without the desire to reproduce🙄) – I’m gonna lay it out on the table… The clit is quite literally made from the same erectile tissue as the penis. They’re twins. Ignoring the clit is like ignoring the penis. Treat it accordingly. How huge a penis is, or for how long a man can penetrate a vagina, are probably some of the least important things when it comes to female orgasm. Take a deep breath, guys. Your tongue, your hands, her hands, or a vibrator will most likely get her there, far before a penis alone.

Your penis doesn’t make you good in bed. Ya know what does? Being attentive, being curious, never wanting to stop learning, being vocal, slowing down, tapping into her erotic mind, and encouraging her to share her fantasies (and not responding with defensiveness or judgment). If she wants penetration – rock on! But please don’t assume that’s the deal breaker. You are so much more than a penetration machine in the bedroom. Give yourself credit where credit is due, will ya?

So much love (and orgasms) to all,


Questioning Your Relationship?

If you’ve ever asked yourself, “What if there is someone else out there for me? Someone better?” – welcome to being human. Think about it. We naturally question most big decisions, right? Is this the best deal on a car? Is this the best house choice? Is this trip worth this much money? What if I just left the perfect job for the wrong one?

Yet, when we question our relationships, we see it as some massive red flag that must mean something serious is wrong, and that our relationship is doomed (this is NOT referring to toxic/abusive relationships – in which case, yes – it is a red flag and can be serious).

Seriously, though…

There are 7 billion people in the world. Chances are, there IS someone else out there (probably several) that could be a potential partner. However, what are you willing to risk losing with your current partner in hopes to gain something with someone else? Meaning, is there someone else out in the world who is more attractive than your current partner? Ummm…duh. Of course! However, are you willing to potentially lose the emotional safety, for example, that you feel with your current partner?

When we don’t have the concrete data of how the “what if” situation could pan out, we tend to design it in our mind without flaws. So, let’s say you are questioning what life would be like with someone who has a higher paying job than your current partner. You’re daydreaming about the freedom you’d have and how your current financial stress would just vanish into thin air. You’re probably not thinking about the possibility that making more money could also mean more hours, more responsibility, and often higher stress levels. We don’t think about that part, because our fantasies (even non-sexual ones) are flawlessly created in our minds. I mean, why the hell would we conjure up a picture in our minds that sucked, am I right?

The “perfect” partner doesn’t exist. You know how I know? Because HUMANS. AREN’T. PERFECT. So, how the f*ck could we possibly put TWO imperfect people together, and expect perfection? Additionally, we are constantly evolving throughout life. So, what might be “perfect” for you in year one of the relationship, may not work for you in year five. This is the norm, but we don’t talk about it. Instead, we see thousands of messages on social media that preach otherwise.

It’s the old “80/20” rule that you may have heard. People sometimes lose the 80% that they already have, in hopes of finding the other 20%. I think we were designed to constantly seek a higher level of satisfaction in life; which on the surface seems like a cool thing. The downside is that we can’t compare our reality to a fantasy-based “what if” scenario, without our reality always falling short. A great exercise that I will often do with clients to ground them in their relationship, is to have them talk about how they met, what drew them to each other, and what they value about their relationship now. Unlike fantasy “what ifs”, we have actual data to reflect on when talking about our current relationship.

So, instead of asking yourself if there’s someone else out there for you, ask yourself what you would you be willing to potentially lose to find them?

The Boudoir Shoot That Wasn’t For My Husband

“Neen, that’s such an awesome gift for your husband!”

“Oh my God, he is going to love it!”

“Does your husband know that you’re doing this for him?”

It wasn’t a gift for my husband. It was a gift for me…from me.

The pictures above are four of 187 that were taken for a boudoir shoot back in 2017. I had lost a few pounds, and was barely a year into being self-employed as a writer. I felt like a new woman!

In terms of my career, I felt free for the first time in my life. I never really enjoyed being an employee. Truth be told, I was notorious for getting lost in my work. I never turned down a request from a boss, was terrified to ask for a raise, and always worked late. I was an overworked, underpaid, ball of stress – and it was crushing my soul and everything around me. I would quit a job every two to three years, thinking the grass was greener on the other side. Then, I realized it wasn’t. The grass was green where I chose to water it, and I was done watering other people’s lawns (said with sass).

Ok…back to the boudoir story.

I decided to hire my friend (a photographer), to do the shoot. I had absolutely no idea what to expect. She told me to start adding photos to a Pinterest board, to help give her a feel of what I was going for. Honestly, I had no clue. My internal “sexy meter” had been on zero for the better part of a decade, and this new found feeling was very, well…new. The photos I added to the Pinterest board were generic and not “me” at all. I didn’t even know this version of “me” yet…but I was about to.

We scheduled a date, and she instructed me to look for some outfits that would make me feel sexy. Again…what is this “sexy” feeling she’s talking about? I was a Mom with two kids (still am), who just left a steady (albeit awful) job with a decent paycheck. I was feeling horribly guilty for putting my family in that position, and was embarrassed whenever stressful money conversations came up with my husband.

Needless to say, I followed the instructions that were given to me, and spent some time on Amazon. I even ventured to the mall (pre Pandemic), but found myself in tears as I tried squeezing my thighs into thigh highs. Note to self: My thick thighs prefer to be free.

The day before the photo shoot came faster than I do with my magic wand (thanks Hitachi!). I had scheduled a hair appointment at a real salon. I say “real” for a reason. It’s important that I distinguish that from my usual choice of hair salons; the $15 places that don’t even wash your hair. What can I say? I’m as basic as they come.

After about two and a half hours at the salon, I left with balayage (Google it), and a Brazilian blow out (Google that, too). I went to bed that night with knots in my stomach. What on Earth was I thinking? I have loose stomach skin, cellulite, and I had only recently tapped back into my sexuality after quite the hiatus (sorry, babe).

The next morning, it was business as usual. Everyone left the house for school and work, and I was alone. I hopped in the shower, did my make up, and actually blow dried my hair. The doorbell rang. I threw on my husband’s robe and dashed to the front door. My friend, Emily, was standing there with a camera around her neck and a bouquet of roses.

“You can keep these, but I bought them for the shoot.” She smiled, and handed them to me.

I laid them down on the dining room table, and helped bring all of her equipment into the house. I still wonder if my neighbors saw me walking back and forth from Emily’s car in a robe…with my hair done…and make up on.

After some finagling of equipment, and nervous laughter on my part, we were ready to start.

“Ok, tell me what to wear.” I showed Em my options.

“Let’s start with that black sheer teddy! I think it will be perfect for the dining room table scene I have in mind.”

The what? There’s a scene she had in mind? A scene? What the fuck am I doing?

I rolled with it. I was a new woman, right?

She instructed me to get up on the dining room table. I kept imagining the table collapsing underneath me, my ego being crushed, and crying as I ran up to my room. Alas, that didn’t happen.

She started giving directions like, “Lay on your back. Yup…now arch it. Now put your legs in the air and cross them. Now hold these roses to your lips!”

This woman was no joke! She really did have this all planned out. Scene after scene, she would call out directions, and I would somehow (eventually) follow them correctly. Each outfit change completely shifted my energy. I felt like a new character in each scene. Who were these women? Come to find out, they were all me.

She somehow managed to tap into every side of my sexuality, which is a bit strange since I wasn’t even aware that they existed. I vividly remember one of the scenes. It was the setting you see above with the white shag carpet.

“Ok, go lay down on your stomach. I want to make sure we get your butt in these shots.” She was so confident, and such a non-alarmist; both of which I needed in that moment.

I started to fumble around a bit, and she could tell I was stiffening up (and not in a good way).

“Wait! I got something for this exact situation!” She turned around and dug into her big bag of goodies and pulled out a portable bluetooth speaker. “I have a play list for you. Let’s see if this helps.”

One of the first songs was from Nine Inch Nails. Although, I definitely don’t listen to NIN on the regular, this time they just hit different. Out of what felt like nowhere, I began to just give in to the process. I didn’t even feel like I was in my own skin. I was rolling around on that rug like a toddler throwing a tantrum (except, not really).

“Now, pretend you’re having the best sex of your life! Pretend you’re having multiple orgasms!” The camera kept clicking as the words left her mouth.

Wait, what?!?

For a split second, I was certain I was going to vomit. But, I didn’t. Instead, the imagery that she had so clearly created for me, took over on that white shag rug. I look back at the shots from that scene, and I have no doubt that the Nina in those photos was somewhere else in her head; a skill that helps to quiet my brain in the bedroom to this day.

The entire shoot went on for over four hours. We were both sweating, and I pulled a few muscles while trying to “get into character”. I also may or may not have had a glass of Riesling to calm my nerves.

When Emily left, I only had about a half hour or so before my kids got home from school. I remember just staring at myself in the bathroom mirror, barely recognizing the woman staring back at me. I liked her, though. I liked her a shitload better than the woman I saw four and a half hours prior.

I realized I had shut down a MASSIVE part of who I was (am). A part that I know many women have ignored most of their life. The consequences of embracing our sexuality were just too great, am I right? So, many of us went along for the stifled ride, and played it “safe”.

Many aspects of my life have changed since that day in June of 2017; none of which I regret (no, not even the 10-15 lbs I’ve gained since then). This blog isn’t necessarily a push for women to do boudoir shoots (although, I HIGHLY recommend it). What it is a push for, is for women to start making noise when it comes to their sexuality – pun intended. If you feel stifled and bored, it might be because you’re not being honest with yourself about what you require to feel sexually alive. I know speaking up is something we’ve been taught NOT to do, but I’m here to call BULLSHIT.

As a Sex Coach, this is one of the most common challenges I see for female clients. The shame and guilt that we have been trained to feel about our sexuality, is problematic to say the least.

Speak up. Watch porn if you want to. Read erotica if it turns you on. Share your fantasies with your partner – yes, even that one. Masturbate. A lot. Buy sexy clothes because you fucking can. And remember who the hell you are, and who you deserve to continue being.

Much love,


Relationship Comparison

If we had a dime for every time we compared our relationship to those we see online, we’d all be rich. Am I right?

If you have never compared your relationship to someone else’s you see online, you can stop reading now; this entire article will be irrelevant to you, and will be a colossal waste of your time.

For the rest of us…listen up.

As a sex and relationship coach, I ‘sorta-kinda’ feel like I have at least SOME credibility here.

You’d be hard pressed to find a person who hasn’t seen the quintessential social media “gush posts” (I just made that up – FYI). You know, the ones where the person shares all of the amazing things about their partner and the life they share? Yeah, those. If you find yourself comparing your relationship to the social media highlight reels, try to remember a few things:

  1. The inner workings of their relationship are different than yours. Do you have any idea how DIFFERENT the criteria is for relational satisfaction? Even if (and that’s a big IF) they are nauseatingly happy together all the time, you have zero clue what they require to be ‘happy’ in their relationship. As a matter of fact, if you ‘copied and pasted’ their criteria to your relationship, it’s very possible that you would NOT be satisfied. Let me drive this point home a bit. I conducted a little poll on Instagram asking about the level of satisfaction regarding foreplay and passion. I also got private messages about how passionate some of these relationships were. At face value, one could start thinking, “Oh man…I wish my relationship was passionate and filled with lust. I miss that so much…”

    Here’s what you DON’T know by simply looking at an IG poll: Some of the people that messaged me are in ethical non-monogamous relationships. Are you? Others were in relationships less than 6 months. Are you? Some had gone through horrific phases, and have had insanely difficult conversations to get to the point where their sex life has been renewed a bit. Have you gone through awful phases and had the hard conversations? Comparing your relationship to others is, quite literally, comparing apples to oranges.

2. Social media is a highlight reel. When is the last time you saw posts that looked like this…

“My husband is driving me fucking crazy. He’s a selfish lover, and doesn’t help at all with anything around the house. Honestly, I can’t even stand to be around him right now. Sometimes I wish I could just run off and live my life alone.”

“My wife is driving me crazy. She’s judgmental of my sexual desires, and refuses tomeet me in the middle on ANY of my fantasies. We fight all the time, and honestly – I’m struggling with staying faithful.”

“Sometimes I wonder if my partner is the right one. What if there’s someone that’s a better fit for me? We seem to be on different pages lately, and I’m worried we can’t get back on track.”

Exactly. You haven’t. But, you know what? Those are some of the struggles that are more common than not. Those are the challenges of many couples that I speak with (both personally, and professionally). Social media posts are a SNAPSHOT in time; milliseconds of a person’s life. That post may be indicative of the moment, but rarely the entire relationship. Relationships ebb and flow like everything else in this life.

So, remember when you see a “gush post”, you are only seeing the glory – not the story.

3. We live in a society that thrives on comparison. We live in a world full of instagram filters, “thirst traps”, and “influencers” that also happen to be incredibly attractive. We are constantly struggling to decide if authenticity will bring us followers, or if we should just show what we think people want to see. We literally EXIST in a virtual reality more than we do an earthly one. You know what’s easier to do in a virtual reality? Yup – FAKE IT. And so many of us have mastered this art, unfortunately. Seeing what we lack is easy – especially in the world we live in. The HARD part is realizing what’s actually important to you, and not just trying to “keep up with the Jones”. Sometimes I wonder if we didn’t have social media, if our level of overall life satisfaction would sky rocket. I’m inclined to say yes.

But, since social media isn’t going away anytime soon, the best I can do right now is write a blog about it. Until next time, if you want to compare your relationship to anything, compare where it is now, to where you’d like it to go next. From there, have conversations about how to move in that direction as a couple.

There is no magic formula for relationships; and even if there was, we’d all have different ones.

Bi-Bi, Taboo!


You just thought about a woman, didn’t you – yeah, I don’t blame you. Our culture sorta pushes that in our face. Women hook up with women, and it’s “hot”. Men hook up with men, and they’re gay. Makes total sense, right? (eye roll).

One of my (many) exhausting habits is challenging belief systems. Not to be a pain in the ass (although, I’m sure I can be), but to constantly check in with myself to see if my current beliefs actually make sense to me. They may feel comfortable due to how long they’ve been renting space in my head, but do they really make sense to me? Are they serving me, or closing me off?

Our culture equates man-on-man action (and love) to “femininity”.

I’m going to stop right there. How can two MEN being sexual with each other, be feminine? Ohhhhh, I get it – because FEMALES are the only ones who are supposed to be sexual with men. Got it (insert culturally internalized homophobia). I am LIGHT YEARS away from being homophobic (I mean…duh…it’s me) – but that belief system sorta smells like it, does it not?

Besides, have you ever watched men have sex with each other in porn? I’m talking about homemade, REAL couples having sex – not the performative shit. Just like woman-on-woman, you will find powerful “fucking”, as well as slow, soft, and sensual love making. My point is, sex isn’t a gender thing. It’s kinda like, oh…I don’t know…a HUMAN thing.

Second, femininity is seen as “soft and sensual” in our culture. Yes, women TEND to be more soft and sensual, but how do we even know if that’s a nature or nurture thing? Perhaps both? Now, I don’t know if you’ve ever seen porn clips that include dominant females, but ummmm…they are certainly not all puppies and flowers. Contrary to popular belief, women can be incredibly powerful and dominant in bed. Furthermore, there are plenty of heterosexual men who PREFER a dominant woman. On a personal note, if you knew how many women I’ve spoken to who WISHED they could dominate their male partners, you’d question the whole “all women are soft and sensual” shit. Besides, you actually don’t have to choose one or the other. Shocking, right?! Yet another cultural message blasted to smithereens. NEXT!

I recently asked a gay male friend of mine if he knew any bisexual men that I could have on my podcast. I assumed if anyone would know a bisexual guy, it would be my gay guy friends.

“HA! I don’t even know any. With us, it’s sorta like…you’re either gay or straight.”

Interesting, I thought to myself. Is bisexuality in men not even a thing in gay culture? So, if bisexual men don’t feel accepted or understood in the straight community, and the gay community doesn’t really see them as bi, but more likely gay – then no wonder the topic isn’t discussed!

I’ve spoken to several straight-living, stereotypically masculine men who have told me they were curious about men – some have even entertained their curiosity. Now, try to imagine what those men look like…

Would you be surprised if I told you they were all happily married to women? How about the fact that one of them was a very muscular police officer? Or what about the man who was very passionate about his religion? 

There’s also this other thing. You can be attracted to the same sex, but not interested in a relationship with them. I know women who are sexual with women, but have zero desire to have a relationship with them. Men are no different. I’m learning (yes, I am always learning), that even down to how we connect to a sexual orientation is impacted by gender norms.

Ya see, fear is what keeps us from talking. When we don’t talk, we hold onto our personal experiences and thoughts. We keep them in a box that is locked away – only to be shared with a select few, or none at all. In reality, many of us have similar “stuff” in our boxes. Most of us will spend our entire life with the box closed, far away from anyone who could potentially break into it.

So, if you’re a straight man reading this, and you’re wondering if you’re the only one who has been curious about what it would be like to be with a man, you’re actually not as “special” as you think you are; no more “special” than a woman who is curious about other women. The difference being that society has deemed the latter more socially acceptable. On what grounds you ask? I’m still waiting to understand that, too…

“You Should Take a Bic to that Thing”: A Pubic Hair Love Story

Mr. American Express

I was a 17-year-old college sophomore, and he was a 26-year-old credit card salesman that caught my eye on campus. I know…not the best start to a love story. Rest assured; the love story is not about him.

He exuded sex appeal. His smile, his dark eyes, and his natural flirtatious energy were capturing the loins of most college girls that walked by – including mine. As I tried to briskly walk by him to avoid the awkward, “No, thanks”, he nearly clotheslined me with his arm.

“Fill this out and come back to me. I’ll give you a mini back massager.” He winked and handed me the credit card application.

I hastily filled out the application that I had no business filling out.

“Done! Now, where’s my back massager?” I used air quotes when I said the words ‘back massager’, and he chuckled.

“Damn, girl! You don’t play around do you?” Apparently, he was impressed by my diligence and fast turnaround time. He handed me a little white box, told me to enjoy it, and smirked as I snatched it from his hand.

Masturbation Opportunist

Being the vibrator Queen that I was (and still am), I saw anything that vibrated as an opportunity to be…creative. I was off to my dorm room to test this thing out. Taking it out of the box, I saw it was one of those little handheld massagers with four ‘legs’. My wheels were turning as to how the hell I could position this to make it a decent vibrator. What can I say? I’m a masturbation opportunist. I digress…

Anyway – to my massive disappointment, the damn thing didn’t even turn on. I was now stuck with a non-functioning, four-legged vibrator, and soon-to-be credit card debt. Me being me, I stuffed the ‘back massager’ back into the box and waltzed my sassy ass right back to him.

“Back already?” He had an air about him – not cocky, but definitely more than confident.

“Don’t get a big head. I’m back because the vib…back massager you gave me is busted.”

After some playful banter and a new ‘back massager’, we exchanged numbers. I know…that escalated quickly, right?

We talked on the phone, he met my friends, we spent time together, and we inevitably got…physical. As a serial monogamist, this “hook up” vibe was new to me. The only relationships I had up until that point were two long-term boyfriends of three years a piece!

I’ve Lost That Loving Feeling

One night, my roommate was staying at her boyfriend’s apartment, so I invited Mr. American Express to my dorm. We started making out, and he quickly moved south with his mouth – something I was NOT expecting. Like most women, I was taught to be insecure about my body; especially my vagina.

Naked, I laid back on my unstable bed that rested on cement cinderblock risers (ahhh…college life). I kept telling myself that he was older and more mature than college guys; that he’d probably seen so many bodies, and I had nothing to be insecure about.

He parted my legs and kissed my thighs. I remember being so impressed with the sensuality of the moment. He was taking his time. And then…

“Ya know, you should take a Bic to that thing.” He looked up at me from between my legs.

How I didn’t vomit on the spot was beyond me, but I kept my shit together. Being so young, I didn’t know to be furious – I only knew to be mortified.


Yup – I THANKED him for his oh-so-worthy criticism of my body. My SEVENTEEN-year-old body. Apparently, the pubic hair on my thing wasn’t that off-putting, because he continued. My entire body was tense, and I had a lump in my throat the size of Texas. I could feel my legs instinctively wanting to close. I had instantaneously become disgusted with my body; the same body that I had shared with two amazing boyfriends who never said a word about my pubic hair. Were they lying the whole time? Were they disgusted, too? Were they telling their friends how repulsive I was? Everything I ever thought – or didn’t think – about my pink parts, was now in question.

“Baby…,” he rubbed my inner thighs, “…you need to relax and enjoy this. Just lay back and let your nerves go.”

I closed my legs and pulled his head up. “I’m all set, thanks.”

I was crawling out of my skin. I put on a smile to hide the extraordinary embarrassment I felt. He left soon after that, and I never (to this day) confronted him about his sub-shitty choice of words.

Needless to say, our dating experience was short-lived.

Hairless or Bust!

I shaved for the first time that night, and NEVER again let my pubic hair grow. Ever. I spent the next 22 years obsessively tending to my pubic hair, including spending thousands of dollars on laser hair removal – which, by the way, did NOT permanently remove it. At 39-years-old, I was so over shaving every day. Razor burn sucked. I hated stubble. I hated it all. To be honest, I felt like an imposter. As a Certified Sex Coach, how could I hate my own damn vulva?!? I needed to do the work to move through this – fast.

So, waxing was my next option. It was affordable, and easier than shaving every day. I texted a waxing specialist that came highly recommended. I bombarded her with a million questions.

“Sure thing! I just need about two weeks of hair growth before your first appointment.”

Wait…what?!? Two weeks?! Fuck no!

“Aye…never mind!” I texted her and quickly shut it down. Two weeks was NOT happening.

Months went by. More shaving, more stubble, and more vulva-directed hate. I couldn’t do this anymore.

I opened up Instagram. I messaged the waxing guru, and we set the appointment.

The next two weeks were going to be a total mind fuck. I anticipated zero intimacy with my husband. I warned him, so he wouldn’t take it personally. To be totally candid, I didn’t even expect to have any self-love sessions either (yes, women masturbate – eye roll). I was that repulsed by my pubic hair. I hadn’t seen more than a millimeter of hair on my body in 22 years.

Two weeks had passed, and I became (almost) desensitized to seeing some foreign follicles on my lady parts. I would stare at it in the shower, and glance down a few times as I got dressed. I must have asked my husband to look at it a thousand times. I think I was waiting for him to affirm my fears and tell me how gross it was – but, he never did.

The Final Shift

The wax appointment came and went. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have a wave of relief come over me when I looked down and saw the smoothest skin I’d ever seen in my entire life. A razor didn’t hold a candle to this wax stuff (pun intended). I’ve since gone on to become an avid wax client, and still prefer no hair. However, there’s a BIG difference in my relationship with my pubic hair.

During the four to six weeks in between wax appointments, hair makes an appearance. I’ve learned to love the softness of the baby hair that slowly grows in (no stubble – thank you wax!). I am not repulsed, nor do I avoid intimacy in between appointments. I have zero urges to shave, and frankly, I’d be happy if I never saw a razor again. I never thought that one waxing appointment at 39-years-old, would be the catalyst to unlearning societal messages that I’d held onto for decades.

For the record, I have since paid off all of my credit card debt, and my Hitachi wand blows that four-legged shit show of a ‘back massager’ out of the water. So, Mr. American Express, that thing’ you wanted me to “…take a Bic to…” – it’s called a vulvaand mine prefers wax.

*Links within this post are affiliate links, and I may earn a small commission from them.*

I wanted to freeze when she asked. Instead, I leaned in…

Talking to your kids about sex can be insanely uncomfortable. Period.

“Neen? How the hell do I talk to my kids about sex?”

Ugh. Makes you wanna barf, right? Look, I’m a Certified Sex Coach and I talk about this for a LIVING – and I still get sick to my stomach when my kids ask questions. I wrote a blog on this that you can find here https://www.realtalkwithnina.com/…/when-do-the-birds…/.

I’m also REALLY big on sharing REAL stories to connect and help others. So, here’s a true story that happened last night in my house…I had been preparing for my sex drive workshop for a few weeks. Well, the other night, my curious daughter saw the title of the workshop. I knew she saw it, and my first instinct was to avoid the conversation and quickly click off the tab. Instead, I leaned in. It went like this…(I used a teasing/sarcastic tone, because that tends to ease awkwardness in my life.)

“You don’t have to pretend you didn’t see the title of the workshop, Miss. Nosey!” (she smirked). “Well, yeah…I did see it. I can’t help looking at what you’re doing.”

“It’s totally ok. It’s not a bad word. The word sex doesn’t mean JUST what we talked about before (note: she knows what penetrative sex is). It means so many things to so many people. The bottom line is that it has to do with different types of affection in relationships – kissing, hugging, making out, etc. This is important in relationships to feel connected. Ya know how Mommy and Daddy smooch sometimes, and you get grossed out? (she laughed) Well, that’s one way that we love to connect. Sometimes, though, in relationships we can feel disconnected. We can be fighting over something, stressed over something, and overly busy, and we don’t WANT to be affectionate. What do you think happens when couples don’t WANT to be affectionate?”

She paused for a sec. “Well, I guess you guys would probably not be happy together, and not want to be around each other. That probably feels bad and can cause other problems.”

“EXACTLY!” I smiled. “So, Mommy is giving a workshop so people can understand what makes them WANT to be affectionate, and what makes them NOT want to be affectionate. If we know these things about ourselves, and can explain them to our partner, what do you think can happen?”

“You can get along better and be happier.” She seemed almost bored at this point (mission accomplished – LOL). “Yup! So, that’s what this is all about. So, when you see the word ‘sex’, understand it can mean a million things to a million different people.”

That was it. That was me. Talking to my kids about sex.

Sometimes (well…a lot of times…), the more fear and taboo vibes we instill around the subject, the more damage we do – and consequently, the more challenges we have later in life around the subject. Again, every child is different, and you know your child best. I just thought I’d share one way of handling these things, in case it helps 😊

Sexy is an Attitude

I’ve been invited to speak on the topic of “sexy being an attitude” more than once. I believe most of us have struggled (or are struggling) with this in life, because it’s hard to open our eyes in this country and NOT see a gazillion images of photoshopped, airbrushed, and filtered images. But, let’s take that out of the picture for a hot sec.

There are some “universal” traits that most humans look for, based on biology and evolution. Things like symmetrical facial structure, hip-to-waist ratio (child-rearing), strength (think hunting and protection), etc. Other than that, there is such a MASSIVE spectrum of what constitutes sexy, and it changes throughout time due to cultural norm shifts. Many of us seem to be “chasing sexy”. By that, I mean we see what the latest trend of beauty is, and then we chase after it. Here’s the problem though…that changes.

Trends change. Cultural norms change. WE, AS HUMANS, CHANGE. Remember when it was all about being thin? I do! I grew up in the 90’s, and that was the ONLY body type to have or you were somehow less attractive by default. Now we see how “thick thighs save lives”, men making TikToks about their love of the FUPA, the “Mom bod” movement, normalizing cellulite, Dad bods, etc. Depending on who you surround yourself with (real people, and social media culture), your body acceptance shifts. This is not rocket science. This is NEUROSCIENCE and SOCIAL SCIENCE. We compare by nature – and when we are surrounding ourselves with certain visuals and messaging, eventually your brain wants you to assimilate.

So, here are a few tips to get ya started on “leaning into sexy”:

1) DANCE NAKED. OFTEN. For no one but yourself. Put on sexy music (or Twerk radio, if you’re me), and just dance naked. At first, your head will mess with you and focus on all the parts you don’t like. So, imagine an audience who paid to see the EXACT type of body you have, and keep dancing.

2) UNFOLLOW accounts that don’t make you feel good. I follow body positive accounts on instagram, and if you want recommendations, just say the word.

3) MOVE. I don’t care if you go to the gym, work out at home, take walks, jump rope, work in the yard, or dance – just MOVE. There is a CHEMICAL reaction in your brain when you exercise. Again, this is not my opinion – this is science.

4) MASTURBATE. Yup, I said it. If you have barriers blocking you from doing so, and you’d like to work through them, reach out – I got you.

And that’s my show for the night. Thank you for attending.


The idea of a soulmate sounds romantic, and some do believe they’re out there – but you know me… I always have to share another perspective. Notice I said PERSPECTIVE, not ultimate TRUTH.

So, if you’re struggling in a relationship, or question the one you’re in, or you’re single and waiting for the “special one” – this post may be for you.

My opinion on the matter goes like this…You CREATE the relationship that works for you. Some can accommodate, some cannot. Considering 50%’ish of marriages end in divorce, I’d like to think there is more than just one person we can spend our life with. Otherwise, those divorced folks are screwed if they want to find love again – and I have EVIDENCE that is not the case. Actually, I know several people who have found INCREDIBLE partners AFTER their divorce (more on my thoughts on that another time).

Thinking that ONE person has to have every single thing you’re looking for will inevitably lead to disappointment, and is truly unfair to your partner (and to you!). Your partner may not be the best lover you’ve ever had, but they have other things that you value more (and you can always hire a sex coach – ahem, ahem 🤷‍♀️). You may have different parenting styles, but the loyalty and trust you have is in a different league. You may wish you had a partner with a similar family life as you did growing up, but the way they handle your personal struggles is second to none.

Like most things in life, I see relationships as a give and take. Could you find someone else that has some of the things your current partner doesn’t? Of COURSE! But will they ALSO have everything you love about your current partner? Probably not. Additionally, we change. You could be riding along problem free for 10 years, and then someone loses a job, gets sick, changes sexually…and then what? You need to adjust. More than once.

Focus on your core values. If you don’t know what those are, take time to think about them. When I coach recently divorced, or single people, it’s one of the things we always discuss. What are your hard NOs and MUST HAVEs? Most of the peripheral stuff can be pretty malleable if approached correctly. I don’t believe you should settle for some toxic relationship. That’s not the message. The message is that NO relationship is perfect. HUMANS aren’t perfect, so how the hell can putting TWO of them together be perfect? I often wonder if our focus shifted on seeking compatibility versus perfection, we’d fare better?

As I said to a friend earlier today, I believe the pillars of a strong relationship are based on honesty, trust, vulnerability, and communication. And even more importantly – totally aware that shit shows happen, and you both need to grab the wipes to clean it up.

Much love,


The “Perfect” Relationship Myth

I want you to know something. I personally believe (read: this is an OPINION) that long-term relationships have moments…and even phases (think months, or even years) where you swear you’re alone. Yes – even while you’re IN the relationship. Your sex drives don’t match. Your communication styles are polar opposites. You argue over parenting techniques. You barely recognize each other, and you feel like you’d be better off apart. Then one of two things happens: You either move through it and stay together (and that move through process looks different for everyone), OR one or both decide to go your separate ways. Sound familiar?

There is SO MUCH SHAME around relationship struggles. I see it ALL THE TIME. That’s because somewhere along the line, we were taught that relationships/marriages just sorta “happen”- and if it doesn’t, then you’ve “failed” at relationshipping (it’s a word. I just made it up.) Like, if it was a “good” relationship, it would seamlessly happen with no effort required.

Can you imagine how your perspective would be different if we were taught to EXPECT difficult times? To EXPECT to desire other people? To EXPECT to question if we are in the right relationship? To EXPECT to argue over parenting, sex, and money?

Maybe we wouldn’t be so afraid and avoidant when it comes to conflict. Maybe we’d learn more effective communication skills, and focus on self-awareness. Maybe we wouldn’t have as much guilt about totally normal thoughts.

The human experience for most of us (if not all) is a series of shit shows, fu*& ups, and painful lessons. It’s ALSO a series of elation, excitement, awesome sexual experiences, and butterflies in our stomach. It isn’t supposed to be one or the other. You can actually be a totally worthy human being and have BOTH the good and the crappy. Imagine that! 🙄

If a relationship doesn’t work out, you’re not a failure. You’re human – welcome to the damn club. If your relationship is going through a rough phase right now and you want to fight for it, then fight for it. If your relationship has agreements that differ from your friends/family, but works awesome for you guys, rock on!

None of us are immune to relationship struggles. NONE. OF. US. So, can we just sorta throw the shame stuff out the window? It has no place here. 

You’re a Man

Lately, in both my personal and professional life, I have witnessed men struggling more so than usual, and my heart aches. I am, and will continue, serving ALL HUMAN BEINGS. I will help you challenge belief systems that make you feel anything other than worthy and valid.

Remember that pointing out the pain of one group does not, and never will, diminish the pain of any other group. So, tonight, this one’s for the guys…

“It’s as if you were created only to feel a select number of emotions. Should you need to feel anything else, your default is to go back to the original allowable few. Your only instructions are to keep going long after your batteries have run out. When you break – and you will – you should know how to put yourself back together without any help. You don’t require help. You’ll be ok – you’re a man.

You will experience loss and pain. But don’t speak. People will question your allegiance to societal constructs, and we all know we can’t have that. But, you’ll be ok – you’re a man.

You are to hunt – food, enemies, and women. Hunting anything or anyone else is inherently “wrong”. Should you feel the urge to hunt otherwise, refrain. You’re good at hiding your soul, remember? You’ll be ok – you’re a man.

You are to sexually ravish others. To be ready, willing, and most importantly, able. At all times. Every time. Your handful of allowable emotions can never interfere with this required way of being. Should you struggle, avoid all related conversations and move on. Be silent about your fears, insecurities, and most definitely, your faults. Deny them at all costs, especially in the bedroom. You should easily be able to disconnect and compartmentalize. It’s ok – you’re a man.

You will face confusion, loss, anxiety, hopelessness, depression, intrusive thoughts, sexual shame and guilt, and abuse. Funnel it all into anger. Get angry. Anger is safe. Anger is allowed. You’ll be ok – you’re a man.

So just be a man, and you’ll be ok…until you’re not.

And when that day comes, I urge you to break every damn rule you’ve been prescribed. I beg you to feel all of the forbidden emotions, and feel them as hard as you can. Let anger be your last choice, and no longer allow it to be the sheep in wolves clothing. Break down. Make it known when you DON’T want to have sex, and when you want to relinquish dominance and control. Face trauma and process it with a professional – because you DESERVE healing. Love whoever the hell you want to love. Be afraid. Be a protector one day, and need protecting the next.

It’s ok not to be ok…you’re a man.”


Is the MFM/Hot Wife Fantasy Common?

Q: I’m a 54 yr. old male. I’ve had numerous partners, and lived out some fantasies. But my biggest one is to do a m/f/m or hot wife scenario. This gets me so hot. Is this common?
(heterosexual, male)

A: If I had a nickel for every time I was asked this question…

For context purposes, I’m going to address this question in terms of heterosexual couples. However, partner sharing is by NO means, just a “heterosexual thing”. Also, I might use the term cuckolding and hot wifing interchangeably. Cuckolding is a term that refers to watching your partner have sex with someone else. Side note: “Cuckqueaning” is the female equivalent of cuckolding. It’s when a female enjoys watching her partner being sexual with someone else. Anywho…

I’m happy to report that you are, indeed, “normal”. As a rule, I tend to steer clear from the word “normal” when talking about humans, because it really doesn’t exist – nor does it validate or invalidate any of our emotions.

Back to the fantasy…

On a psychological level, there is so much about this fantasy that makes sense. The bottom line being that it goes against societal expectations. Period. Men are expected to be territorial and not want another man to “win their prize”. I know you can’t see me, but I’m rolling me eyes – big time.

When it comes to our sexuality, it should be common knowledge (although it is SO not) that the more taboo – the more out of the norm a thought is – the MORE arousing it can be. If the norm is that men should never look to share their wives, or actually desire (gasp!) to watch their wives be sexually pleased by another man, then guess what? The OPPOSITE is usually what would be more exciting to fantasize about. Rarely will a man (or anyone, really) tell me that his biggest fantasy is something that he does on a daily basis.

Let me parallel this for a hot sec. I am OBSESSED with prison and death row documentaries. Why? Because I have never been to prison or death row, and it’s a life that is so foreign to the one I lead. Does it mean I am secretly some serial killer who wants to be read my last rights as I sit strapped in a chair? Negative Ghost Rider. It actually has LESS to do with the ACTUAL content of the documentary, and MORE to do with the fact that it is so far from my reality. Sexual fantasies are no different.

There are a number of directions this could go as far as explaining why a man might have this fantasy (all valid, by the way), but what really matters most is that there should be ZERO shame around it. So, let me try to shed some light on this fantasy for anyone else who has it (and I know there are many).

Especially in long term relationships, men can start to see their female partner in a light that doesn’t scream naughty vixen (don’t be fooled, women are HIGHLY sexual). Often, their wife might also be the mother of their children. This dives into the Madonna/Whore complex – where men have a hard time seeing their wives as sexual.

With that in mind, seeing their wife with another man is like seeing her in a totally different light! It reminds the husband that his wife is indeed a sexual being, can easily shed that pure and innocent hat, and turn into the object of desire very quickly. Additionally, there may be a surge of competition that comes up for the husband while he’s enjoying the view of his oh-so-innocent wife getting manhandled from behind by another man (you’re welcome for the visual). There could also be an ego and pride aspect to it. You have this super hot wife, and other men want her. You’re the “King”, and all of these men are looking to you as this lucky SOB who has the hot wife (*pats yourself on the back*).

Another reason could be compersion. Compersion is finding joy in witnessing another person’s enjoyment of something. A non-sexual example would be watching your child having a blast on the swing set, or seeing them win an award and being ecstatic about it. However, we’re clearly not talking about non-sexual things right now. Sexually speaking, compersion is finding happiness in witnessing your partner have a joyful sexual or romantic experience with someone else. This term is common in the polyamorous community, but is also a valid term in this hot wife example.

You wanna get clinical for a minute? Let’s talk evolutionary theory. Sounds fun, right?

Sperm competition is an evolutionary theory that when men suspect (or know) that their female partner is having sex with other men, it increases their desire to ejaculate inside their partner to, quite literally, compete with the other men’s sperm. It’s like a race to the egg! In the early 2000’s, there were two different studies done regarding sperm competition. One found that there was actually more sperm in the ejaculate when men watched cuckolding porn [1]. The other study found that when men suspected their female partner to be unfaithful, they tended to thrust harder during penetrative sex [2]. Some scientists argue that this may be a subconscious effort to force the other men’s sperm out of the woman’s vagina – or at least force the other sperm out of the damn way!

So, here you are thinking there is something “wrong” with you for being turned on by hot wifing/cucklolding, when in reality it may be an evolutionary response!

The moral of the story is this: Underneath the psychobabble rant I just went on, and far beyond the evolutionary theory that I just vomited, please know that YOU. ARE. HUMAN. Your fantasies are valid whether or not they are “normal”. Normal is not the goal with our sexuality. As a matter of fact, the word has ZERO place in the human experience at all. You know what is the goal, though? Consensual, safe, authentic, vulnerable, fulfilling, pleasure – and that will look different for all of us.

[1] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1617155/
[2] https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S1090513803000163

From the Boxing Ring to the Bedroom: Couples and COVID-19

fighting couple angry marriage

There is no beating around the bush here. Being held hostage in your home with your partner is no walk in the park. And, if you’re like me, you also have kids to (pretend to) homeschool, all while working and trying to keep everyone alive. Nothing about this situation screams sexy. As a matter of fact, everything seems like ONE. BIG. LIBIDO. BLOCKER. Sound familiar? You’re not alone.

When disaster happens in life, regardless of what it is, we tend to focus all of our energy on it, and neglect everything else…even our relationships. It’s sort of backwards, considering what we need MOST right now are our relationships – intimate, and platonic. So, how do we stay connected to our partners during a time of high stress and internal (and external) chaos? Here are a few tips.

  1. Carve out time for yourself, without your partner. I know it seems counterproductive, but living on top of each other is more of a desire smasher than you think. Absence makes the loins grow fonder…or is it heart? or both? Color, paint your nails, shave, take a hot bath, read, clean out your closet, watch Netflix, etc. If you have kids, take turns doing this.
  2. If you have children, keeping life as “normal” as possible will not only help them with their anxiety, but also you with yours. Getting them to sleep at the regular time gives you and your partner time alone. This leads me to my next tip…
  3. Make time to connect. To be honest, if your sex drive isn’t off the charts right now, (understandable) do something together that doesn’t necessarily involve sex. Maybe watch a movie together. Laugh at your favorite YouTube clips. Play a fun couples question game (there are thousands online). Set up an adult friend virtual hangout on Skype, Zoom, or Facebook messenger!
  4. Communicate. Holy hell, communicate. Everyone deals with anxiety and fear differently – especially within heterosexual relationships. What may come out as anger, might really be underlying anxiety, fear, or overwhelm. Sometimes just checking in with your partner is a nice opening to a vulnerable conversation. Something as easy as, “Hey – how are you holding up with all of this? I know we haven’t talked about our personal feelings much. Is there anything I can do to help you (and ultimately us) get through this with less anxiety?” Especially with kids, we tend to focus on how they are adjusting, and we forget that adults are just as impacted by the disruption in our “normal” life.
  5. If your sex drive is there but you require a bit more to get in the mood due to so many blockers, you can use this time to up your game! Buy a new toy! (Bellesa is having a 20% off sale right now, but when it’s over you can always use my code NINA15 for 15% off AND free shipping! Just sayin’…). Try out a new genre of porn together. Read erotica. Write your own erotica and share it with your partner (this can be super hot, by the way.) If you are both still working, or not together for any reason, sexting is a big YES in my book. Just make sure your partner is ok with receiving messages of that nature while at work (NSFW, anyone?).
  6. Try to get some exercise. Yes, sex is exercise, but beyond that, too! Go for a walk, do some fun YouTube dance fitness classes, hell – some of these TikTok fads I’m seeing are practically cardio!

Bottom line is this – give yourself a break, go easy on yourself, and go easy on your partner(s). It’s all one big cluster fu*% at the moment, and we may be here for a little bit before things settle. Anytime there is a disruption in our norm, our brain spazzes out a bit. It’s OK. It’s Friday – grab a drink with your partner tonight and do something after the kids go to sleep. If you’re sober, nix the drink and do the rest. After all, we really are all in this together.

Tensing to orgasm?

Photo by Malvestida Magazine on Unsplash

Q: I am a 45 yr old female and have been with my husband for 15 years. The missionary position is the only position I can have an orgasm. I tense everything up in order to have an orgasm. I have always done this. I’m in pretty good physical shape, but my hips are always sore the day after we have sex. I’ve tried to stay relaxed and it either takes much longer or doesn’t happen. I’m not complaining, but just curious. My question is: Why do we tense up our muscles in order to orgasm?

(heterosexual female)

A: First and foremost – it’s AMAZING that you’re having orgasms during intercourse! Many women cannot, so kudos!

Let me preface this by owning that I am not a Doctor or medical professional. However, I am a woman with a vulva/vagina, and I research and read about sexuality for both personal AND professional reasons, so there’s that…#sexgeek.

Most people actually DO tense up as they build to orgasm! You are not experiencing anything abnormal or uncommon, whatsoever. Self disclosure: I am the same way! There are a few reasons this might be the case. First, when our bodies are aroused and working towards orgasm, blood flow increases to our genitals. By tensing our muscles, it helps that process happen faster. Many people (penis AND vagina owners) tighten their muscles – often from the waist down. There are, however, people who find themselves tensing their upper body as well!

On a totally different and possibly unscientific note (aka: me just speculating and making something up that COULD be true): When a woman tightens her Kegel muscles (think, the muscle that can stop us from peeing midstream), the glans of her clitoris (the man in the boat that we all see on the outside) sort of retracts a tad. I’ll give you a sec to try it…

Ok…we’re back. Now, follow me here for a hot minute…

Sometimes, if the pressure of the stimulus (tongue, fingers, toy, etc.) is too much for the clitoris and you clench to retract it a bit, the clitoral hood sort of buffers the stimulation to make it more tolerable to receive the clitoral stimulation.

How amazing are orgasms, right?! It’s as if our body innately does what it needs to do for our specific orgasm – “specific” being the definitive word. Women (with vaginas) tend to differ greatly in the manner in which they orgasm. From what arouses them, to the environment that needs to be created, to the actual mechanics. And it’s allllllll good!

In terms of your hips being sore, that is most likely from the constant tension during arousal while you’re working towards an orgasm. That may mean you’re tensing your butt as well (also super common) as one of the muscle groups to aid in orgasm. By tensing your butt muscles, your hips sort of drive forward as well.

Because I am not there in person to see how your hips move during sex, my other thought is how you’re moving your hips (or if you are moving them at all). Women often like to grind against the pelvic region of their partner during penetrative sex to make clitoral contact. If that’s the case, you may want to try asking your husband if he can position himself differently where HE is doing the grinding of his pelvis on your clit, versus the other way around.

Lastly, you could experiment with allowing yourself to go back and forth between tensing and then relaxing, versus staying tense consistently. It depends on how uncomfortable your hips are, and how much you want to change that outcome. I understand wanting to cut down on the time it takes, but if your sore hips are bothering you enough to want to switch things up a bit, then go for it!

Regardless of what you choose to try, just know that each of us has our own unique “orgasm formula”, and the ONLY goal is to make it work for YOU. It sounds like you’re ahead of the game! ENJOY!

Should I be a #HotWife?

sexy wife hot woman
Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash

Q: Hey Nina. So my husband and I have been married for 15 yrs and together for 22. Very recently, he’s talked to me more about me having either like a boyfriend or just another person that I have sex with and then come home to him. He has mentioned that he thinks it would be so hot to watch someone have sex with me. We’ve been talking about it more and more.

At first, I thought this might be a way of him getting to have sex with someone else. I’m the only person he’s ever been with. He says it’s not, and that he hasn’t really found anyone that he would be interested in anyway. He works with a bunch of people who are younger than us, in their 20’s, and I guess this is more of a thing with the younger generation. He says we have our relationship and our love and this would be just a pleasure/fun thing.

I’ve been thinking about it more and more and was confiding in a male friend of mine that doesn’t know my husband. He thought it was interesting too and we wound up sexting the other night. I must admit, it was really hot. And my husband thought it was hot too! I think I’m into it now and my friend and I are working on a meetup time to kinda Netflix and chill. He says there is no pressure.

My husband is an analytical person and says he has thought this through thoroughly. What are your thoughts on this? I’ve expressed my fear to my husband about this possibly ruining our marriage, but he says no. Is this just another way to spice up a long term marriage as long as all parties involved know the terms and agree to them?

A: Hi there! Ahhhh…the infamous hotwife fantasy! The desire for a man to see his wife with another man is usually referred to as “cuckolding”, or being a “hot wife”. It can take many forms depending on what you and your husband are seeking out of the sexual experience. Some men enjoy being humiliated as they watch their wife with another man. Some men love to see their wife as the object of desire of another man, knowing she is “his” to reclaim afterwards. My best advice for this is to think about what exactly you want out of this. If it is to “fix” a marriage, I would advise against – big time. If it’s to spice up a marriage, I would think about what could go wrong and see how you would both handle it.

Questions like: What sort of contact is allowed with the other men afterwards? Does your husband want to know these men, or do they have to be strangers? What happens if you start to have feelings for another man? How will you navigate it if you start to feel that this is pulling you further from your husband, rather than closer? How will you communicate negative feelings?

Bottom line is this – consensual non-monogamy is becoming more openly discussed as we learn more about human sexuality. It can absolutely spice up your current relationship and enhance communication. On the flip side, there is also a risk that it can go south (and not in a good way), and you want to be prepared for that before jumping in. I would suggest starting slowly. If you are both comfortable with sexting other people and sharing that together, then go for it! Talk about the next steps as you go. Always communicate about your feelings and be honest about what does and does not work for you.

Best of luck!

Should we open our marriage?

open marriage open sign

Q: We have been seriously talking about opening up our marriage and I think I’m ok with it now. At 40 and having been out of the dating scene for 20+ years, I’m not even sure how to go about finding someone. I’ve been talking to a friend of a friend that may be interested and we have sexted once, but I’m not sure if he’s really down or not. Do you know other people that have open marriages? I’ve been hearing that the younger generation is more ok with open relationships. What are your thoughts?

A: Consensual non-monogamy seems to be getting quite the press lately, and I think a lot has to do with the internet. Although the idea of having multiple partners has been around for ages (think concubines, harems, etc.), it’s becoming less taboo because of the ability to connect virtually with so many others who are curious as well. I also believe that as we evolve, we are always looking to better “adapt” to new knowledge that we acquire.

A brief history lesson, shall we?

The truth, whether it’s easy to hear or not, is that sexual monogamy is not a biological “thing”. It’s a cultural and religious construct that many are content to align with. Marriage was more of a business/logistical decision to protect and preserve property and assets – it did not begin for love and sexual pleasure. Sexual monogamy was born out of wanting to control who women slept with so there was never a question as to who the child belonged to – again – this was important in terms of lineage and the passing down of assets.

Bored yet?

So, here’s my own take on what’s happened to monogamous relationships…

The main reasons for creating marriage and monogamy have sort of gone away for most of us, yet the expectations have remained. If someone is royalty or insanely wealthy and they want to know who their biological child is, we have paternity tests now. So….there’s that.

Now, we have monogamous couples who are married and wondering where lust and passion have gone, or why they are struggling to be satisfied with one person for a lifetime. Humans are not designed to be sexually monogamous. As a matter of fact, there’s only about 3%-5% of mammal species (humans included!) that are monogamous for life.

The urge to stray will be there because of human nature, but what we choose to do with that urge is what makes the difference. I speak to so many people who are riddled with guilt over lusting after someone else, and I have to explain to them that I would actually be MORE surprised if they weren’t! So, what do we do?

We make a choice. Sexual monogamy is a daily choice that we make – oftentimes without thinking. The truth is, we all have the free will to walk out and be sexual with someone else. So, what keeps us from doing it? Well, we already know that there are many who DO choose to act on the urges, and the consequences can be devastating to the relationship. Some may remain sexually monogamous but feel bored and resentful, and others may not have any issues with being sexually monogamous at all! Then there’s the rest…

If you haven’t watched the Ted Talk by Dr. Jess O’Reilly, titled “Monogamish”, do yourself a favor and watch it. This is where I believe most people fall in terms of monogamy. Research has found that very few relationships THRIVE in 100% monogamous relationships, and very few THRIVE in 100% open relationships. The majority of us actually exist somewhere along the spectrum. Now, before you take that the wrong way, let’s talk about what I actually mean by “spectrum”. Relationships aren’t always black and white in terms of sexual behavior.

So, what sort of behaviors can be found on this spectrum? Mind you, these would all have to be CONSENSUAL and AGREED UPON or else you’re risking betrayal, infidelity, and ultimately, the end of a relationship. To give you some examples (from more vanilla to less vanilla):

  • Flirting with other people (with your partner knowing)
  • Discussing people that you both find sexy, and maybe using it as fuel in the bedroom
  • Going to a strip club together and watching your partner get a lap dance
  • Sexting a third party (again, with your partner either participating or knowing that you’re doing it)
  • Exchanging videos or pictures with another couple online (there are safety tips to this, so please don’t do this if you haven’t thought it through. The internet can be amazing, but also very dangerous.)
  • Going to sex clubs to watch others have sex
  • Occasional make-out sessions with a mutually agreed-upon third person
  • Agreeing on specific parameters for consensual non-monogamy (i.e. must be in a different state or certain distance away, certain sexual behaviors being off-limits, not engaging in sexual behaviors with the same person more than once, no exchanging of contact information, etc.)

To answer the other questions – yes, I do know people who have open relationships. Does it work for them? Yes. Does it work for everyone? Nope. The younger generation seems to be more open to it, but they are also more open to other non-traditional lifestyle choices as well. So, I think as a general rule, younger folks seem to be likely to challenge the status quo, rather than roll with it.

My personal thoughts…

  • I think it can be a viable option for some long term relationships to keep the spice alive, and satisfy the sexual and emotional urge for variety.
  • I think people sometimes jump into it way too quickly, and unfortunately, it’s not something that can be erased. Remember that fantasy is almost always better than reality.
  • There MUST be agreements and parameters along the way
  • Take it step-by-step, and don’t go from sexual monogamy directly into sex with others – try the smaller steps first (see the list of monogamy spectrum examples above) and build a foundation as you go.
  • Communication is non-negotiable. Jealousy is a human emotion and not to be ignored. Just talk about it.
  • Opening up a marriage should never be done to save a failing one.
  • To remotely begin to navigate an open marriage, your CURRENT relationship should be as foundationally sound as possible.

I urge you to do your research first. Check out online communities of others who have been in the lifestyle for a while, and pick their brain. Sometimes, we get so excited about something sexual, that we neglect to think about what could go wrong. Seeking a sex therapist is also another option to help navigate this process.

Soap box over.

Extramarital Tickling

Photo by Bianca Berg on Unsplash

Q: I love tickling women in bondage. It’s a huge sexual fantasy for me. My wife isn’t into it at all. I’ve sat down with her and told her how much it means to me but she really doesn’t want to try it. If I tickle other women and just not tell her about it, am I justified?

A: Good for you for being open about what you want! The downside is, our partners are not always going to be game for what we want, and that’s ok. There are a plethora of fantasies that we have, and to expect our partners to entertain them all would just set us up for disappointment, right?

So, here’s where we make choices in relationships. In my personal opinion (and that’s all it is…an opinion), I would highly discourage engaging in behaviors behind your partner’s back. That rarely, if ever, ends well. It also starts to place a massive wedge between the two of you, and intimacy is about connection, not betrayal.

When I work with clients, I try to get to the psychological experience they are seeking. After all, sexuality is actually more about our psyche than anything else. So, what about tickling a woman in bondage gets you excited? What feeling does it create that is arousing? Often we can find several other activities that can elicit a similar response that your partner may be up for!

I would also be curious as to the reasons your partner is not comfortable doing it. Is it being tied up? Is it being tickled? Maybe there’s a middle ground that you can meet on. For example, let’s say she doesn’t like the idea of being tickled, but she is ok being tied up. Maybe you can use a feather on her to cause pleasure, but not tickle her. Maybe you can use temperature play and rub an ice cube on her body.

Often we are uncomfortable with what we don’t know. If this is something foreign to her, maybe show her what it looks like. Show her a clip of the fantasy you’re seeking. I’d also challenge you to think about how you would react if she wanted something sexual that you were not comfortable with. What sort of ways would you try to navigate the situation to try to satisfy her desires without doing something that makes you uncomfortable?

My first line of defense will always be honest and open communication with your partner. If she is adamantly against it, and you feel like this is a deal-breaker for your marriage, I would explain to her that your desire for this is strong, and you want to work together to figure out a way to experience this without jeopardizing your marriage.

If it’s something that isn’t a deal-breaker for your marriage, I would either try to find a happy medium, or you may just have to chalk it up to the fact that our partners aren’t always going to be up for what we want sexually! I’m pretty confident that if you can try to dig and figure out exactly the feeling you’re looking to experience, you’ll find a million other sexual things you can do to get that desired feeling – and who knows – she may be ready to explore it with you!

Good luck =)