How to Talk to Your Wife or Girlfriend about Oral Sex

Many men find oral sex to be a sensual and intimate part of lovemaking, but not all women are readily open to giving it or receiving it until there is some discussion to address their fears and put them at ease. It can feel uncomfortable or even awkward to start the conversation, but talking about intimate matters with your partner will help build trust and intimacy even if she's initially opposed to the idea. The first step is asking, but know that there are more respectful, open ways to do it than others.

Approaching the Topic Respectfully

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    Talk broadly about your sexual desires and fantasies together.[1] This can be an awkward conversation to bring up, but it is also a light-hearted and fun conversation once you both agree not to judge each other. What fantasies or styles do you like? What silly but sexy ideas rev your engines? Do you share any? Remember, this isn't a deep, serious conversation, but it brings up the sort of conversational intimacy that can lead to discussion of oral sex:
    • Make lists of your top five dream places to have sex, even if some of them are unlikely or humorous.[2]
    • Browse through a sex book or website like Kama Sutra, noting fun or adventurous positions to try.
    • Share any fantasies or secret desires together, asking hers as well. If you can find ways to make both of you happy, this conversation will get much easier.[3]
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    Slowly ramp up your sexual adventures if oral sex seems too far off. If you feel like oral sex is something you want, but it is maybe moving things too quickly, start with smaller adventures. Make a bigger deal of foreplay, which is a safe way to take small risks and learn more about each other. Try some dirty talk. Kiss all over each other's bodies, getting comfortable with every inch of each other. As these thresholds are crossed, oral sex will become less of a big topic and more of a natural next step.
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    Check in about your sex lives regularly. If you're in a committed relationship you can't have one talk about sex and then never bring it up again. Why would you?! Whether the conversation is about oral sex or not, checking in with each other about your sex life is important to grow and build a relationship together. Moreover, it makes it far easier to broach the topic of oral sex when you have a history of open and honest sexual discussions.
    • Once you're comfortable together, are there new things you want to try (oral sex or otherwise)? Ask her the same question.
    • When sex comes up, don't shy away from it. "What do you think about our sex life these days," is a good, open-ended way to start talking.[4]

Talking About Her Feelings

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    State your desires in plain, open terms. Once you're talking about sex, don't try to beat around the bush or subtly get her to bring up oral sex. You need to be upfront if you expect her to be the same. Remember that your sex life is shared, not yours alone, and to make this about both of you, not just her.
    • "I'd like to find ways to bring more oral sex into our lives."
    • "I think the two of us should start exploring oral sex, if we're both comfortable."
    • "I really enjoy going down on each other, and I'd like to try and make it a more important part of our sex life."
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    Listen to her opinions without comment, giving her the floor. Listen, even if it's not what you want to hear. Genuinely listen to you partner expressing her thoughts and concerns. She may or may not have much to say, and what she says might not be to your liking. You have addressed your desires, and even if she says no, she's aware of what you'd like. It will stay in her head, and if you're nothing but supportive, respectful, and understanding then she may feel more confident and trusting once she's had a chance to think about it on her own terms.
    • Remember, all you can do is say your desires -- be honest about your own desires and she will be about hers.
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    Remember that your sex life is shared, not some bargaining chip. Comments or ideas like "I'll do the dishes for a week if you go down on me" aren't going to build the trust and love needed for a happy sex life. The things that go on in the bedroom are communal, not services that she gives you for a job well done, no matter what that job is. If you want her to feel valued and comfortable (and thus more likely to find common ground), don't treat this like a transaction -- treat it like a conversation.
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    Consider why your wife or girlfriend might be put off by oral sex. Oral sex can be scary for some woman. Some women can easily feel as if their air supply is compromised and like they may gag and choke. She's putting herself in a vulnerable position and it's important that you understand this. Some women fear hurting their partner or just getting it wrong. Without complete sexual trust, these activities could result in her feeling a great deal of anxiety, helplessness, and discomfort. If you dismiss her concerns and only focus on your desires, you're not putting her at ease.
    • Ask her why she dislikes or feels uncomfortable about oral sex and be ready for the answer. Remember that there are likely sexual acts that you, too, are uncomfortable with.
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    Ask her how you can make the experience more pleasant or comfortable for her.[5] There are a lot of ways you can make things better for both of you. Maybe she'd like a little more grooming or manscaping or would prefer if you both showered together beforehand to clean up. Maybe she's wanted to talk about oral sex as well, and would like you to also consider going down on her. Whatever her reasons or ideas, you don't know until you ask.
    • Do you like to initiate sex, then move on to something else? Oral sex is an intimate act, and is more likely if you value and set aside time for your sex life.[6]
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    Recognize that oral sex is not a one-way street. Guys can go down on girls as well, and if you want to bring oral sex into your relationship, you need to be comfortable performing oral sex as well. This is a great way to not only put her at ease, but slowly incorporate new things into your shared sex life without making her initiate everything.
    • Never use oral sex as a passive aggressive bargaining chip -- "I did it, now you should too." Not only is this disrespectful it has no chance of putting her at ease and making oral sex a permanent part of your relationship.

Moving Forward Together

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    Try to keep sex fun and light instead of serious and strict. Ignore the movies, which portray sex as a deeply serious act of soul-wrenching power. More often than not, especially in committed relationships, sex is a fluid, often-awkward, and always fun activity that only you two share. Having a light-hearted attitude may seem like useless advice, but people are way more willing to try something new when they can laugh off any initial issues or awkwardness
    • If you like something in the moment, let her know! This is the best way to build comfort, trust, and a great shared sex life.
    • If something goes "wrong," simply smile! If something goofy happens, like you fall off the bed somehow, don't be afraid to laugh -- it won't kill the mood.
    • Successful sex lives are about feeling calm and comfortable, and no one is more at ease than when smiling and laughing with their significant other.[7]
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    Let her initiate oral sex after your discussion -- don't pressure here "now that you've talked." Never make demands, get upset, force her to give you oral sex, or blatantly ask for it, especially as things are heating up. You've said your piece, and she's said hers, and there is no need to start pushing it now. When she's ready, she'll initiate things herself.
    • If you've discussed ways to bring oral sex into your relationship, and several weeks or months pass without any change, you should bring the conversation back up during a quiet, respectful moment.
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    Incorporate oral sex slowly into your sex life instead of making it the spotlight. Not all oral sex has to be to completion. A good way to make her more comfortable is to bring oral sex into foreplay, then moving on to positions you're both more naturally comfortable with. This can help her start to find her comfort level and keep the conversation alive and find a level of compromise.
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    Let her have control of her body, choosing her own speed and style. She needs to feel completely safe. Make sure she knows, if you hold her head or her hair while engaging in such intimate relations, you'll always maintain enough control of yourself to be able to avoid restraining her head in the heat of passion. It's fine, and can even be desirable, to hold her hair out of the way, or place your hand on her head or shoulder, but it should be in a way that's very gentle and comforting to her.
    • If she becomes uncomfortable and wants to stop early, that's okay. Remember that, for a woman who may not enjoy oral sex, these first steps will help her become more comfortable over time.
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    Ask her what she enjoyed or what she'd like to try next time after sex. This isn't a debriefing, and you don't have to do it every single time you sleep together (it will get old, fast), but you should feel free to talk about your sex life together. After the act, as you're hanging out and cuddling, ask what she enjoyed. Figure out if there were some things she can do without, and be sure to keep it light and laugh-filled. You're a couple, and you likely discuss every meal you cook after eating it -- there is no reason you can't share this same openness after sex.
    • If she's just exploring oral sex, let her know how much you enjoyed it! Staying silent may make her feel like it was unappreciated or, worse, that she is no good at it and shouldn't keep exploring.[8]
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    Remember that these are extremely intimate acts, and may take some time to come out. If approached with love, trust, openness, and understanding, this can be a mutually shared, and mutually satisfying experience for both partners. You sex life is an ongoing, living part of your relationship, and will grow and evolve if you give it attention. Keep talking, keep being honest, and keep loving each other and you'll both be happy.
    • Know that, if you've talked honestly, you cannot take this personally. Her refusal or desire not to go down is not necessarily a sign she "doesn't love you." Trust her responses and find a way to work things together instead of freaking out.
    • Disliking oral sex isn't a great reason to break up with someone, but a lack of sexual compatibility may be. Make sure both parties are willing to listen, compromise, and work together.
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    Understand that your partner might never enjoy or want to engage in oral sex. Different people are aroused by different sexual acts. Just because you talk to her and listen to her and do all of the above, does not entitle you after any amount of time to expect her to "come around" on the subject. The same is true for yourself. If she suggested an act that you simply don't enjoy, you would not want to engage in it, regardless of how nicely she asked you about it. Respect her decision. She does not owe you oral sex or have to take it because you want to give.

Working on Her Pleasure

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    Make the same effort to discuss oral sex for her as for yourself. Talking about oral sex isn't just about your needs. As a couple, you've both got a responsibility to help each other enjoy your sex life, meaning you should bring up your own questions about what to do and what she likes when talking about oral sex.
    • "Do you like when I go down on you?"
    • "Are there things we can do to make sex more enjoyable for us?"
    • "I'd like to bring more oral sex into the bedroom for us both -- what do you think?"
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    Let her lead the discussion, putting her needs first. This isn't the time to push your wants and desires, this is about her. Oral sex is frequently something one partner does for the other, letting them relax while you pleasure them exclusively. This doesn't mean that you shouldn't enjoy it and feel comfortable as well (you absolutely should!) but that you should place her pleasure first as long as it falls in your comfort zone.
    • If she is uncomfortable about oral sex, ask her why. Commonly, women are incorrectly led to believe their vaginas are "dirty" or "shameful," and that no guy wants to be there. Assure her, for you, that this isn't the case.[9]
    • Are there things she knows she doesn't like? Things she knows she loves?
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    Be honest and upfront about your own desires, concerns, and/or hold ups.[10] If you want her to be honest about her feelings, you've got to do the same. Not all guys feel equally comfortable with oral sex, and that's okay -- this is why you're talking about it. In order to best help her oral sex, you'll need to be comfortable too. That means admitting if parts of oral sex make you uncomfortable or, on the flip side, if you'd really like to start going down on her more often than you do now.
    • What stuff is off limits to you?
    • What things would you like to add or try in the future?
    • How do you feel about performing oral sex?[11]
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    Use oral sex as foreplay to begin learning together. The pressure of completely pleasuring your partner through oral sex is very high, especially if it is a relatively new act. Instead, use oral sex to "warm up" for things you're more comfortable with. You'll both be more willing to experiment, and you can slowly work up to longer or more intimate acts without the pressure of one person doing all of the work.[12]
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    Pay attention to her feedback in the act. She is the only one who can say if something feels good or isn't doing much, so listen to her! Assure her that you won't be offended she tells you to try something else, as this is the only way to learn what works for her body. Even more importantly, have her clue you in when you're doing something good, helping you focus in on the things she needs and loves.
    • Listen to her voice, moans, and body language as well. Remember to pay attention to her, not yourself, for the best experience.
    • If she's not comfortable talking during sex, or giving feedback, consider a simpler system -- perhaps she can tug your hair lightly if she likes something, or she'll tap your shoulder if what you're doing isn't quite working.
    • If she seems to enjoy something, keep doing it. Pleasuring your partner is not some complex game of chess -- stick to what works![13]
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    Always ask consent before moving forward, especially if you've never tried something before. New positions, experiments, and tricks are an exciting part of your sex life, but that doesn't mean they should be surprising! Asking consent doesn't mean killing the mood or stopping sex in its tracks -- you can easily make it a part of foreplay or light dirty talk (ex. "I really want to ______, would you like that, baby?"). Consent is an ongoing process between lovers, not a single conversation, but this actually makes it easier to stay on the same page in bed. If you're trying to bring oral sex into your sex life with some spontaneity, first say:
    • "Would you like if we tried ________"
    • "Do you want me to continue?"
    • "I'm going to _______. Tell me if you don't like it!"[14]
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    Ask her what parts she liked after you're done. A good place to start might be things you thought you did well, suggesting "did you like it when I tried __________" or "would you like if I kept doing __________ more often?" Don't pressure her for an answer -- many times she will be too engrossed in the sex to stop and think about what she liked -- but just asking is a good way to show her that her pleasure is a priority for you.
Dr Rohit Bhaskar, Physio
Dr Rohit Bhaskar, Physio Hey, I am founder of Bhaskar Health and completed my Graduation in Physiotherapy from Uttar Pradesh University of Medical Sciences. My clinical interests are in Chest Physiotherapy, stroke rehab, parkinson’s and head injury rehab.

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