June is Effective Communications Month and June 6 is National Sex Day. So it’s the perfect time to think about how you and your partner communicate about the s-word. Talking about sex–what you like, what you don’t like, what you fantasize about, what sex means to you, how your body is changing as you age, how often you have sex, etc–can be daunting! But it’s sooooo worth it. Effective communication about sex is the hidden path to intimacy, spiritual experience, and sexual satisfaction.

In this article, I’ll explore why talking about sex is so hard, what it’s vital, and my best tips for making sex talk easy and fun.

Why is Talking About Sex So Hard?

You haven’t been taught good sex words.

When it comes to sex, Sheri Winston, author of Anatomy of Female Arousal notes we only have three choices for vocabulary: boring, dry medical terms (penis, vagina, intercourse); sleezy, slang words (dick, cock, pussy, fuck) which often double as insults; or baby words (vajayjay, weiner, make whoopie). None of those terms lend themselves to sincere communication about sex. 

You’re afraid of hurting your partner’s feelings or creating a sense of failure.

Breaching the delicate topic of sex is hard enough when you like what’s happening, but it’s nearly impossible when what you have to say might cause some emotional bruising. What if what you have to communicate might be received as an insult?

You’re not sure what you want in the bedroom.

In my practice, I see this more often from women than men. Women often do not know how they want to be touched and leave it up to their partners to take the initiative. If you don’t know what you like or what you want, it’s impossible to communicate any more than a general sense of dissatisfaction, which of course, isn’t really that helpful. 

You’re not that invested in the relationship.

Talking about sex is hard, and when you don’t really care if the relationship lasts, you might just keep mum until the momentum runs out and things get complicated or boring.

You feel ashamed about your body, fantasies, desires, or long-standing ruts.

This is a biggie. If you feel self-conscious about those stretch marks or the extra weight gain, ashamed of the dirty little fantasy you have, or embarrassed by the habits you perpetuate, it’s like pushing a boulder uphill to actually talk about it.

You don’t set aside time to talk about sex.

Let’s face it. We’re all busy. And when talking about sex is so uncomfortable, it’s likely to get relegated to someday in favor of work, kids, and house chores. Trouble is, someday never comes.

Here’s Why It’s Vital to Talk About Sex

Somehow, you and your partner have to create a sustainable space to talk about your sex life. Why?

Communication is vital to the intimacy you crave.

Intimacy–the ability to see the Divine Soul in your partner–comes from authentic, tear-inspiring communication. Intimacy results from baring your deepest and sometimes ugliest self, being heard and understood, and most of all, accepted just the way you are. Yeah, it’s an incredible risk, but if you never give your partner a chance to experience the true and unfettered you, loneliness and shame will have their way with you.

Sex is pure power: it will injure someone if there’s confusion.

This isn’t a popular idea, but it’s one I’m sure you’ve experienced, and it’s probably broken your heart or enraged you or made you see someone as a total idiot rather than as a manifestation of God. Sex is raw power. Think of it like a firehose on full blast. When firefighters are communicating and in sync, the firehose puts out flames. When they are not, the hose quickly gets out of control and causes damage. Sex is just like this. Without communication, riding on blind assumptions or worse, stereotypes born of pornography and movies, the power of sex breaks hearts and creates lasting resentments.

Sexual satisfaction is nearly impossible without good communication.

Really good, satisfying sex is the result of unifying bodies, hearts, minds, and souls. All that unifying requires fantastic, respectful, authentic communication. It’s asking and listening that helps partners awaken to feelings they may not have considered. It’s sharing honestly and with integrity that plants seeds for Oneness between lovers. 

Communication keeps sex spicy and juicy.

Satisfying lovemaking, at its most basic, is pure sharing who you really are and receiving your partner as he or she really is. As we age and grow and expand, we need to keep our partners updated on the latest versions of ourselves. Maybe there is something new you’d like to try. Maybe you have a new health issue, like menopause or erectile challenges, that needs loving accommodation, creating new ways for you two to connect. Talking keeps you up-to-date with one another in a sizzling way.

My Four Best Tips for Making Sex Talk Easy and Fun

Communicating about sex doesn’t have to be awkward. It really can be fun, and well, sexy, when you know how to do it. Let’s begin by setting the stage with vocabulary.

  1. Choose new words.

If you’re frustrated by the limited choices for your “down there” areas, keep reading. Tantra gives us beautiful, poetic, ancient Sanskrit words for our genitals. These words really change the game, trading out the disrespectful, immature language for words that are sophisticated and lovely.

Vagina, pussy, cunt . . . meet the word yoni. Yoni (YO-nee) translates literally to “sacred cave.” It means every part of the female anatomy from the waist down, including womb, ovaries, vaginal canal, clitoris, labia, plus a woman’s essential feminine essence. That’s a lot in one word! It denotes a woman’s sexuality cannot be reduced to parts, but that her body, mind, soul, and spirit are intricately connected. I love how the word yoni is easy to say, sexy, classy, and respectful. It’s much easier to ask for “oral pleasure for my yoni” or “my yoni is swollen with desire.”

The added bonus? Many women find it erotic to frame their anatomy in poetry.

Men get a beautiful word, too. Penis, wiener, and dick . . . let me introduce you to the word lingam. Lingam (LING um) translates to “wand of light.” The word lingam recognizes the incredible gift of healing, of life force, of magical power the owner of a lingam can weild. Like yoni, lingam is easy to say, sexy, classy, and respectful. You know exactly what your man means when he says, “My lingam loves the feel of your warm, loving touch” or “Lingam feels right at home in your welcoming yoni.”

Now that you have new words for your genitals, let’s think about the different kinds of sex the terms fucking, making love, and coitus connote. 

Fucking is playful and maybe quick when you’re pressed for time. It’s genitals having a romp, and may or may not include heart, mind, and soul.

Making love could take all afternoon and involve an array of Tantric techniques to engage the body, mind, heart, and soul for an orgasmic smorgasbord.

Coitus or the less formal having sex can refer to trying to make a baby or perhaps the dependable sequence you two may have fallen into. 

Of course, all those terms can overlap. You can fuck to make a baby when you’re ovulating and only have the lunch hour, for example.

Asking each other what comes to mind with each of the terms for sex can be a fun way to get the conversation rolling.

  1. Schedule a time to talk about sex.

You schedule parent/teacher conferences, a weekly call to your aging mother, maybe even regular family meetings. Why not schedule a time to check in with each other about sex? You can go out to dinner (ask for a quiet table) and take turns asking each other, “So, how do you feel about our sex life?” This can be scary at first, but if you’re brave and kind to one another, you’ll find the conversation rewarding.

In time, it’s possible to become so comfortable talking about sex, you won’t need to schedule. The communication will be like a running stream between you both, and you’ll bring up questions or share observations whenever they strike you.

  1. Use good listening skills.

Keep in mind, if you and your partner are virginal when it comes to discussing your sex life, it’s likely there’s a lot of vulnerability. It can be hard to speak your mind, and hard to hear what your partner has to say. You can make your partner feel safer by using good listening skills. Here are some juicy tips to get you started.

  • Invite your partner to open up with phrases like, “Would you share with me how you feel about the way I kiss you?” or “I’m curious as to what orgasm is like for you?”
  • Listen by making eye contact and nodding. Be careful about your facial expression, especially if you’re hearing something challenging. Watch your partner’s body cues as well as listen to her words.
  • Repeat what you heard. “So, I hear you saying you like the softness of my lips, but that sometimes I have bad breath. Is that right?”
  • Always thank your partner for sharing with you, no matter what you hear.
  1. Talk about sex while you’re making love. Use words if necessary.

Communicating about sex doesn’t have to involve words. Your beautiful body is one big communication port. If you like a touch you’re receiving, think about how your body language reflects your pleasure. Lean your body into the touch. Draw your partner closer to you. Make a moan. Drop your jaw and exhale loudly. Let your body writhe. If you still need to use words after all that, keep it simple. “I like it when you do that” or “more, please” are all you need to say. The wonderful thing about this communication is it often leads to more excitement for both of you.

Not liking the touch? Your body can communicate that, too. Withdraw your body and begin something different, like a deep, sexy French kiss. Lift your partner’s offending hand, and place it somewhere else on your body where you like it. Is the touch something you’re not ready for? Curl into a ball and say playfully, “That’s too much!” 

  1. Use the Talking Stick ceremony.

When you need to communicate in more detail, or talk about things that could cause hurt feelings, nothing beats the talking stick. This ceremony has rules that MUST be followed, or you could really hurt each other. But, when you “stick” to the rules, you’ll discover an incredible depth of communication that can shift your intimacy into overdrive.

For this ceremony, you’ll need a bit of preparation. Gather together a talking stick, timer, pillows or comfy chairs, and quiet background music with no lyrics. Make sure you will be completely undisturbed for at least half an hour.

The talking stick is any object you two decide upon. It could be a long-stemmed red rose, a candle (be careful of the flame), a photo of you two, a ski hat you picked up in Aspen, etc. Choose an object that you two can pass back and forth. 

Turn on your quiet music, place the timer and talking stick within reach, and get comfy sitting across from one another. 

Open by gazing lovingly into one another’s eyes for three deep breaths. Access each other’s hearts and souls. Remember, this is a ceremony for love and honest exchange.

Decide who will talk first while the other will be the listener. The talker can take the talking stick and start the timer for two minutes.

The talker has two, uninterrupted minutes to share whatever is on his or her mind regarding sex. 

Rule #1 – The listener (the one without the stick) says NOTHING–this is vital–only listens. There is no commentary from the listener. No defense, no rebuttal. 

Rule #2 – The talker takes the full two minutes, even if she feels she’s run out of things to say. Sometimes, things pop up when we give them time to come to the surface.

Rule #3 – When the timer goes off, the talker finishes her thought. The listener’s ONLY response is simply, “Thank you.” The listener is not responsible for what was just said. His only job is to hear it.

Now, pass the stick to your partner, switch roles, and set the timer for another two minutes. Repeat the exercise.

I find talking stick works best when each of you takes three turns. After the ceremony, thank each other for listening and go do something else. Resist the urge to defend yourself or comment on what your partner said.

You may wonder what good comes of sharing your thoughts if your partner isn’t going to comment. The real gold in this exercise is the safe planting of seeds. For example, if you told your partner you wanted to try anal sex and spent two minutes going into detail about why this excites you and what it would mean to you, your partner can hear this without feeling threatened or pressured. You have planted the seed, and who’s to say that a woman who loves you and respects you, who wants you to feel sexually satisfied, might not be willing at some point to explore? At the very least, she heard you and did not express judgment or shut you down. 

You two have communicated. That’s priceless.

Dakini Leah is a Certified Tantra Educator through the Ohonu School of Tantra; a Certified Meditation Teacher through the Meditation Organization, and a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Kentucky. She trained directly under Carla Tara, who is widely respected in Tantric circles for her expertise and ethics. An intuitive, Dakini Leah combines her training with Divine guidance to provide a personalized, highly effective therapeutic experience. Since 2013 she’s helped over a thousand couples and individuals use the power of their sacred sexual energy for healing, intimacy and self-development. In keeping with her lineage, Dakini Leah is dedicated to the highest ethical practice and integrity with each and every client. 

To work with Dakini Leah online or in-person, contact her for a complimentary 30-minute discovery session. 970-242-5094