The way you make love is not a secret. Sure you probably do it behind closed doors or with the lights off, but your technique (or lack thereof) is not a mystery to the world.
I don’t even have to know your name to know how good you are (or will be) in bed. Despite prevailing myths that you’ve got to take a test drive before you say “I do,” I recommend you stay in the front seat and keep your eyes open.
The way you drive broadcasts how you (will) make love.
You refuse to signal? I bet you keep your mouth shut about what you want sexually.
You wave pedestrians to cross instead of pretending you don’t see them? You know how to see your lover.
You nab the parking spot before the person waiting for it has a chance to move forward? I bet you think good sex is when you climax.
You tailgate? um. Nevermind.
You wave a left-turner to cross in front of you while the traffic is backed up? You know how to delay your gratification for someone else’s.
You text while driving? I bet you multitask in your mind even while you’re pretending to be “all there.”
We’ve all got goofy blind spots in our driving, and in our love making as well. But neither multiple sexual partners before marriage or well-guarded virginity blesses us to have a great sex life. I’ve heard enough sexual frustration from virginal honeymooners (upset because the guy is too freaking big and the girl is too freaked out) as I have of heartbroken veterans who go into marriage with sexual experience and technique.
Sexual frigidity runs among sexual virgins and sexual veterans.
I’ve heard enough stories to know that the only thing that matters in bed is not size (are you listening guys?) it’s not even technique. It’s the seemingly unsexy virtue of patience.
As a friend who was a virgin on her honeymoon told me, “I wish I could tell my younger self how good sex could be. Back then it was about getting what you want. Now it’s about pleasing each other and making sure we both orgasm. I love that he isn’t finished until both of us do it. Because we both love it. Some women are like “I do it for my husband”, or “Sex is about making him climax.” But for us his orgasm doesn’t signal an end to love making.”
And any guy will tell you he has the most pleasure when … his wife is also having the time of her life.
And women, how much fun do you have knowing your turn, then his turn, then your turn, and then his turn, and making him so happy he’ll be reminding you how much fun he had the next day. Patience.
Impatient lovers are not good lovers. And perhaps the best test of patience is the capacity to wait to have sex until you’re married. In fact, the muscle-building work of waiting to do it are the exact muscles you’ll need to make sex meaningful, creative and yes, even hot in your married life. To learn to wait until your wife can tell you what she wants, to wait because your husband wants to try this position, to wait because your wife is traveling or because your child is unwell or because your husband is debilitated: these are the patience muscles of good married sex.
Because, let’s face it, if you can’t wait a few years (yes, even with hormones raging) and keep your pants on, what makes you think you can wait through the debbie downer side of the marriage vows when your hormones say leave for greener pastures? I’m talking about the “for poorer . . . in sickness . . . for worse” times that make our eyes dewy on the wedding day.
The New York Times, in “The Downside of Cohabitation” reveals the same idea in a recent study. Cohabitation better sets you up for . . . divorce, not a successful marriage. Why? because cohabitation doesn’t deliver it’s promises, it’s neither low-risk nor low-cost.
Living, loving, sleeping, sharing with another person is never low-risk or low cost.
Sex before marriage cannot activate vulnerability or safety, though it tries to promise just that. Whether you have sex before or after marriage, sex cannot be the glue that holds you together. It’s the fruit of the union you already have.
Jason works in finance. He’s 33 year old and happily married to the woman who had their baby five months after their wedding.
He minced no words telling me that sex before and after marriage felt much the same, physically. He explains:
Eating ice cream for every meal will always feel good, but it’s not what you’re ultimately made for. You get feedback from you body, it’s not good for you long-term. Same with sex. It’s hard to get the feedback from your body because at the time pre-marital sex feels great, you feel closer with the person you’re with. You kind of know it’s false, but you don’t see immediate feedback like in ice cream binges (higher weight, less energy). In a way premarital sex is more thrilling because you’re breaking the rules. It ties you together in a way that tangles your emotions. Breakups feel way more painful, more like a divorce. (I loved hearing a guy say this!)
Sex is playing with fire.
Why avoid sex before marriage? because it’s silly, Jason said. You’re intensifying the relationship into a marriage situation because you want intimacy, but you really don’t get intimacy, yet. Desiring physicality with someone I wasn’t married to was silly, it was like trying to eat a fifth bowl of ice cream thinking I’ll be happy, or feel nourished.
His advice to wait on sex before marriage? if you have physical stuff in your past, stuff you regret, have changed and repented about, I don’t advise you to introduce this, or confess this at the beginning of your dating relationships. Save the “I’ve already done x, y, z” for later, post-engagement conversations. Because once a guy (or girl) knows you’ve already done that, he or she’ll want to try to get you to that line, or past it to create the same kind of intimacy you had before. We all just want to know we’re the one, we’re the closest you’ve ever been. You’re not obligated to dig up past, repented sins in new relationships. To confess your mistakes at the front, rather in the middle or near the engagement… it’s almost overwhelming to the new relationship.
I saw the thread of patience in Jason’s words, too. To wait to reveal, emotionally and physically, requires patience. And when we don’t have the wisdom to know when? Take a cue from the generations and ages of religious teaching that says wait until marriage.
What do you lose by waiting?
And how much do you gain?
I once asked my husband how he waited to make love when I asked for more time. He explained, “I turn my desire into hope.”
Is there anything quite like a man who wants to wait for you? Or a woman who is storing up desire for your next (or first) sexual encounter?
Hope, patience, fulfillment: these are the ingredients of the greatest love stories on earth.