We all know that, when it comes to relationships (of any kind), communication is KEY. No matter how well you communicate on a regular basis, that doesn’t exactly make talking about sex any less awkward. Especially when you’re trying to ask for something new in bed. 

There’s a fine line between not wanting your partner to feel offended or embarrassed, but also wanting to enjoy sex to the fullest. And that, friends, requires a conversation. 

In fact, according to The Gottman Institute only 9% of couples who say they’re uncomfortable talking about sex, also claim to be sexually satisfied. We don’t love those odds…

So much so, that we have created this handy guide to not only cover how to ask for what you want in bed, but how to do it in the simplest & most effective way possible. It’s time to get out of your head and into your pleasure. 


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Know What You Want in Bed

This may seem obvious, but to ask for what you want, you have to know exactly what you want when it comes to your sexual desires.

It’s easy to just say “I’m not satisfied with our sex life.” However, you need to be able to pinpoint exactly what you need from your partner in order to help your sex life live up to your desires. When you sit down to have a conversation about sex; be able to clearly lay out what it is that you want to try. If you’re not exactly sure what you want, do some research! 

Tips to Discover Your Sexual Needs & Desires…

Use solo sex to discover what types of sensations and touch feel best to you

Watch porn and take note of what positions, techniques, etc. that you might be interested in trying

Use guided masturbation audio sessions to shake up your solo routine

Talk to your friends and see what they’re into

Make a list of everything that piques your interest. Separate this list into columns entitled ‘HELL YES’ ‘MAYBE’ and ‘NOT FOR ME.’ This list will help you define both your sexual interests and your boundaries. For example, you may be into being tied up, but not sure if you’d be into more intense BDSM play. Great! Put bondage under ‘HELL YES’ and BDSM under ‘MAYBE.’

Boundaries can change from day to day, person to person, and experience to experience. Doing an exercise like making a ‘sexual desires list’ is a great place to start in providing specific suggestions to bring up with your partner.

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 How to Ask for What You Want in Bed

 There are two ways to ask for what you want. One takes place outside of the bedroom and the other happens while you’re having sex. 

Outside of the Bedroom

 When asking your partner for what you want outside of the bedroom, try to keep things positive. An easy way to guide your partner is simply by telling them what you do like. Keeping things affirmative will open up the opportunity for your partner to want to make enthusiastic changes in order to bring you pleasure. That being said, if they’re doing something you really don’t like, you should never be afraid to speak up and let them know. Here’s some tips on asking for what you want in bed before or after you get down to it:  

  • Take the initiative to open up the conversation: “I know talking about sex is awkward, but there’s a few things I want to try out. Are you open to hearing about them?”
  • Tell them your favourite parts of the sex you have together. Is it the foreplay? Is it when they play a more submissive role? Give details!
  • Text them the next day with something like “I’m still thinking about when you did ____ last night.”
  • Send them visuals (photo, video, etc.) that depicts a move that you want to try (p.s. always get their consent before sending)

Plus, if you’re looking to try something that you’ve never done before, that’s a conversation that should always take place outside the bedroom.

During sex, inhibitions are lowered and your partner may feel more open or pressured to say ‘yes’ to something that they’re not 100% interested in doing. You never want anyone to feel physically or emotionally unsafe, so if you’re looking to try something completely new ~ it’s always better to have a talk before things get hot & heavy. You never know what someone else’s triggers may be.

inside of the bedroom

That doesn’t mean you can’t give verbal and/or non-verbal cues during sex to enhance the experience. Here’s a few great ways to guide your partner inside the bedroom:

  • Push your hips closer or kiss them more deeply when you’re fully enjoying the experience
  • Encourage your partner with phrases such as: “That feels so good.” “I love what you’re doing.” “Don’t stop.”
  • Guide their hands or mouth to where you’re feeling the most heat in a given moment
  • Show them the techniques that turn you on by touching yourself in front of them 
  • Let yourself give in to pleasure by vocalizing or moaning (no faking it!)
  • Be direct and literally tell them what you want: “Grab my ass” “Hold my wrists” “Pull my hair”

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Be Open To Feedback

Once you start the conversation of discussing what you want in bed, it’s a lot less awkward than you think it’s going to be. It opens up new channels of intimate communication that will continue to feel more natural over time. Plus, it will only work to bring you and your partner closer. 

With that being said, don’t forget to be ready to receive any feedback your partner may have for you. This is all about creating the best sexual experience for BOTH of you. 

Asking for what you want in bed isn’t always a comfortable conversation. Talking about sex can feel silly, and learning the ropes of how to talk to your partner can feel weird and downright awkward. But the more you communicate your needs, the easier it will feel and the better your sex life will be. So it’s worth the weirdness! Embrace the awkward and keep talking.

Meet the author...

Meet the author...

Jennifer Doan is a Confidence Coach, writer and orgasmic activist. She is on a life-long mission  to help feminists own their sexual confidence by amplifying pleasure and giving less fucks. She believes virginity and gender are social constructs, sexuality is as fluid as her iced coffee and that EVERYONE deserves to feel empowered by sex.