No matter how good your sex life with your partner, it can seem really intimidating to bring sex toys into the mix. Nobody can touch you like you can touch yourself—and nobody’s hands, no matter how skilled, are as fast as your favorite vibrator!
Sometimes partners can be hesitant to accept toys in the bedroom. On the one hand, they may feel that you like the toy more than you like them, and on the other hand, they may just feel out of their depth.
Over half of cis women surveyed have used vibrators, and of those who own toys, 80% use them with partners. If you have a vagina, it's way more common to orgasm from masturbation than during partnered sex, so showing your partner exactly how you climax with a toy can help to increase your overall sexual happiness as a couple.
The good news is that most sex toys are adaptable, and can be used by any gender, and in any couple. All it takes is some commitment, and a little imagination, to make it work. All of us want to please and be pleased in the bedroom, and it’s easy for feelings to get hurt in that vulnerable state. The most important thing is that you respect your partner, and accept that their needs may differ from yours.
Look at it this way: toys should make things easier, not harder. You can worry less about your orgasm, and so can your partner—you both get to focus on the play, not the end game. If you’re one of the 70% who relies on clitoral stimulation for orgasm, you may feel a lot of pressure to cum during sex, even in positions that don’t provide that stimulation. A vibrator can be a total game-changer.
That doesn’t mean you prefer your toys over your partner. Here are some tips and tricks to painlessly introduce toys into partnered play...
Timing is everything
Don’t bring this up with your partner right before you have sex, or right after—you don’t want them to feel intimidated, or inadequate. Instead, open the discussion in a comfortable, private space, and accentuate the positive about your partner.
Ideally, you’ll introduce toys into a relationship where you have already built trust, have good communication and a good level of sexual compatibility.
If your partner needs to be reassured, it helps to tell them how hot you think it would be to use toys, or how hot it would be for them to use them on you. It’s really not that much different from trying a new sex position—one of you may get more out of it than the other, but the point is that it’s new and exciting for both of you.
Go slow and steady
You may know your toy like the back of your hand, but if it’s new to your partner, take it slow and let them get comfortable with it. Tell them verbally, or with touch or eye contact, that you like what they’re doing with it—encouragement is key!
If your partner’s on the fence, it’s good to start out with smaller toys, like the or Mini from Iroha. You might also suggest a beginner's butt plug—if you’re both end up enjoying them, you’re on a more level playing field, and it’s more like you’re sharing an experience. Need more info on using plugs? Find it here!
Shop for something together
There are tons of cool toys out there made specifically for more flexible play, both solo and for couples. In general, a toy that your partner can control, or at least participate in using, is a good place to start—once they see how much pleasure they’re able to give you with the toy, they’ll be more willing to accept it into the relationship. Your partner is less likely to see the toy as competition, more of an ally in the bedroom.
Like with anything, communication is everything. Start small and see where it takes you!