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Speech and communication barriers during sex

By The Love Lounge

The Question

Hi Love Lounge,

I have communication difficulties as my speech is very slow and difficult to understand. I have a ‘friend with benefits’, and she has learnt to understand me better over time. However, she says it’s awkward in the bedroom, when we want to try something different or maybe alter technique, as she can’t understand me so it ruins the moment.  She has to ask repeatedly what I said and it slows everything down…and sometimes stops.  I feel frustrated and now feel I don’t want to say what I’m thinking in case it ruins the moment. So sometimes I go without saying what I’d like to happen.

How can we get round this issue?

Adam

 

Our Answer

Hi, Adam mate – my initial response to a message like this would be to say communication is key to a relationship and it will get better over time as you’ll find your special ways of talking. However, as you are enjoying a FWBs situation things are clearly different, so here are a few practical tips…

Could you maybe plan together what you’re going to do first? Yes, spontaneity can be hot but it’s not the only way to have hot sex. I guess the advantage of FWBs is you have a real chance to experiment without feeling too bad if things go pear shaped occasionally. So perhaps try saying before what kind of things you’d like to try. Maybe you will find things you’d never thought you would both enjoy.

You could also try to be expressive non-verbally. I’m not sure how easy you find making gestures but I imagine it wouldn’t be too hard to find ways of saying with body language ‘Bend’, ‘Harder’, ‘Faster’ etc. It could also be hot for you to have your own personal sexy little code. Most couples when they get into it mainly just communicate through noises, grunts and exaggerated facial expressions. I’m guessing you could do this too.

Also as someone with a speech impairment too I can confirm all my friends have said I become a lot easier to understand over time. So if this person is indeed a friend you could just get used to hanging out more or being in groups when you’re together. I can understand how things get heated in the bedroom, therefore miscommunications seem more frustrating. But if you spend more time talking to each other when you are just hanging out it may be easier for her to tune into you.

And as a general point, please never think this is your problem, because it definitely isn’t. Your speech difficulties are part of you and if she’s chosen to have sex with you that is the whole you – including your speech too. Once you start feeling bad or frustrated at yourself things are just going to get worse. Ultimately it is her that needs to learn how to understand you.

I hope this helps you on your merry way.
Ted

Contact Us

Everyone who writes into our Love Lounge receives an email with a private answer to their question. We then anonymise the Q&A and share them here on our website to help others who may be struggling with the same concern.  Get in touch if you’d like some advice.

Keep up to date with all our Love Lounge articles by following us on Instagram @UndressingDisability or on twitter @ETUKUndressing.

#UndressingDisability

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Male and female hands intertwined on a bed

Comfortable sex with Limb-girdle muscular dystrophy

By The Love Lounge

The Question

Dear Love Lounge,

I live in the UK and I got to know you through your website.
I have Limb Girdle Muscular Dystrophy and my partner wants to have sex and wants me to have children.
I would like to be advised on the best sex positions meant for a person with LGMD and ways of getting pregnant.
 
I’m looking forward to your reply.
Annie

The Answer

Hi Annie,

Thank you for writing to us here at the Love Lounge with your question.  Firstly I must say that I have no experience of LGMD, so I cannot be completely specific in my advice. However, I have read about your condition.

Sex

From your email, I wasn’t completely sure if you were already having a sexual relationship with your partner or if this was to be new ground for you.  Primarily, your concern is to be comfortable and not feel pain during sex. You want to enjoy it too!  You will know what positions your body is comfortable in and to what range of movement you have.  Additionally, your partner can assist you in the movement and clear communication with them about your comfort is essential.  Explain to them prior to doing it, what you think would work for you and ensure you have the confidence that they will listen to you in the throes of passion, should you need to move a limb or such, if it’s becoming too uncomfortable.
If muscle control is difficult for maintaining a position, then a pillow can be a great aid for support.  Either resting a leg against it, or wedging it under your hips to elevate your pelvis, can all help with access!  There is some furniture and specialised cushions that can help you.  Something like this may assist you – Liberator Wedge, Sex Furniture
You won’t enjoy the sex if you’re in pain so please make sure you are comfortable the best you can.

Pregnancy

Now to your point about sex positions and pregnancy… well, from asking a midwife, she has assured me that the positions won’t matter! If the sperm is going to find its way up there, it will do so, no matter what way you’ve done it!  You may want to lie still for a few minutes after sex to prevent the semen dripping out of you, which may increase the possibility of becoming pregnant.
I hope this has answered some of your questions.  For more specifics regarding your condition, I would advise you to discuss with your Consultant as they will be aware of any other health problems that may affect the pregnancy.  But from my own research, it appears many women with LGMD cope in their pregnancy and can deliver naturally with assistance.  But, obviously, you would be advised by your own doctors.
If you need any more help from us, feel free to be in touch again!

 

Kind regards and good luck!
Zoe

Contact Us

Everyone who writes into our Love Lounge receives an email with a private answer to their question. We then anonymise the Q&A and share them here on our website to help others who may be struggling with the same concern.  Get in touch if you’d like some advice.

Keep up to date with all our Love Lounge articles by following us on Instagram @UndressingDisability or on twitter @ETUKUndressing.

#UndressingDisability

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Point of view of somone lying down, looking at their blue jeans. There is a woman in underwear behind mesh curtains

Helping patients who want to experience sexual contact

By The Love Lounge

The Question

Dear Love Lounge,

I have a middle aged male client who I support at home with care. He has progressive MS and is interested in having sexual contact with someone.
I would like advice as to how I can go about helping him. I have done a bit of research into sex workers and it seems like this would be an option? How do I go about getting a sex worker that will assist him with his access needs etc.
Any assistance will be greatly appreciated.
Kindly
S

The Answer

Thank you for reaching out to us, and it’s great to see that you are open to helping your client in this way. He must really appreciate that.

We have considered your question and will advise you of the legalities as well as making sure both you and your client are happy with the process.

It sounds as though you have an open, trusting relationship for him to have made his wishes known to you, and for you to source a way of facilitating this for him.  As well as the booking of someone, there’s the discussions to be had about your part in it.  Would he like you to stay in the house for safety, or go out for a while? Will you be there when the person comes in, will you help undress him etc, or would he rather the sex worker do this? Make your plan together clear, so that you don’t cross any boundaries or make each other feel awkward in the situation.  Say what you both are comfortable with re how involved you will be.

Now with regard to the legalities, the situation is as follows;

The service user must place the booking themselves and make all arrangements.  If the service user is not able to do this (by virtue of their disability) then it is permitted for a staff member to place the booking and make the arrangements for a service user, if the service user is over the age of consent and has ‘capacity’ to consent.

It is best if the client pays over any money to the sex worker themselves as the law still has a grey, and untested, area of ‘procurement’.  If, however, the service user needs physical support to hand over his or her money by a staff member, there should be no problem as long as it is clear that the money is the service user’s own, he or she has asked for this support and the service user is in full agreement with the mutually agreed price for services to be provided.

You may have already found a website offering these services, but one we can recommend is the TLC Trust as they work specifically with disabled people, so have the experience and tact of how to manage many different scenarios.  They may be on the pricey side, but this will be up to your client..

Hope this information helps and we wish you all the best!

Zoe

Contact Us

Everyone who writes into our Love Lounge receives an email with a private answer to their question. We then anonymise the Q&A and share them here on our website to help others who may be struggling with the same concern.  Get in touch if you’d like some advice.

Keep up to date with all our Love Lounge articles by following us on Instagram @UndressingDisability or on twitter @ETUKUndressing.

#UndressingDisability

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blurry gold sparkles

Sex and Bodily Fluids

By Sex & disability, The Love Lounge

The Question

Dear Love Lounge,

I’ve got a question about sex and bodily fluids. I’m in a new relationship with a wonderful woman who uses a catheter and a stoma bag. She has a spinal injury. We haven’t yet had sex but have had very small discussions about it.  She says everything will be ok, and she’ll handle it.  But it’s something I’ve never come across before and would like to know more about it before we do the deed. I feel quite nervous about sex and bodily fluids.

Can you help as I don’t want to ask my girlfriend the little details as she doesn’t seem that keen to talk in depth about it – she says it makes her feel unsexy.

Thanks,

Luke

 

The Answer

Hi Luke,

I can totally understand your trepidation around the area.  As it’s a new relationship your girlfriend may not want to risk losing the ‘spark’ by bombarding you with medical details.  Hopefully once you decide to become more intimate, and she sees you’re not put off by it, the pathways of detailed communication will open up.

And it will probably need to, so that you’re aware of what it’s like for her and to be aware of what might happen.  Sex and bodily fluids, when using a catheter and stoma bag can be a concern if you’re new to it.  I have asked for some advice from our friends at the Spinal Injuries Association to let you know what to expect.

 

Catheters

Your girlfriend will have either a suprapubic catheter (a catheter inserted through the abdomen into the bladder) or a urethral catheter. With a suprapubic, it can be taped to the abdomen to prevent it getting in the way.  It can be drained beforehand and then a spigot or catheter valve can be attached to reduce the amount of tubing. This means you can do away with the drainage bag, so it’s more discreet whilst you’re being intimate.

With a urethral catheter, it can be carefully taped away from the genitals, on the leg or abdomen, allowing some slack to avoid causing trauma.  You’ll need to be mindful of your movement in having sex with a urethral catheter; but it should all be ok if taped securely.  It could be dislodged if accidentally pulled, so be careful!  As the urethra is so close to the vagina, both of you may be aware of the catheter rubbing against your skin.  Again, this shouldn’t be a problem but just something to be aware of.

 

Stomas

With a stoma, the bag collects the waste and this can happen at any time during the day or night.  Your partner may want to empty her bowel before you get down to business.  This can be done with suppositories or an irrigation system (water is flushed through the bowel via the rectum, and it flushes out the stool, to clear the lower part of the bowel).  Then, a cap is placed over the stoma so that the bag is not needed while you have sex.   For peace of mind about any leakages with sex and bodily fluids, it may be wise to use a mattress protector anyway.

Hopefully this information will ease your worries, now you know what to expect.  Perhaps opening the dialogue with your partner, with your new-found understanding, will allay her fears of the situation not seeming sexy.  Showing her you’re at ease with it and want to make her feel as comfortable as possible too, should lead to you both having an enjoyable, happy sex life.

Have fun!

Zoe x

Contact Us

Everyone who writes into our Love Lounge receives an email with a private answer to their question. We then anonymise the Q&A and share them here on our website to help others who may be struggling with the same concern.  Get in touch if you’d like some advice.

Keep up to date with all our Love Lounge articles by following us on Instagram @UndressingDisability or on twitter @ETUKUndressing.

#UndressingDisability

 

Next question
graphic of a male and female in different sex positions using a liberator wedge

Adaptive Tools for Sex Toys

By The Love Lounge

The Question:

Dear Love Lounge,

I heard about you from some of the sex educators on Instagram. I want to know if there are any adaptive tools for sex toys and accessories that can make lube more accessible.

Cheers,

T.

 

Our Answer

Hi T,

You’re in luck! Yes, there are some great adaptive tools for sex toys and accessories that can make lube more accessible.

Liberator Bonbon

One option is to use a sex toy mount like the Liberator Bonbon, pictured below.

adaptive sex toys - a red wedge shaped piece of furniture with a vibrator on the curved side

The Bonbon is a piece of Bedroom furniture that can help someone who has poor dexterity. The toy is placed in the mount and the user can then mount the toy.  Liberator also make other sex toy mounts including the Axis and the Wanda, 2 different styles of Magic wand mounts which give options of how they are used.

On A Mission

Penis owners are not left out when it comes to adaptive tools for sex toys.  Liberator also make Fleshlight mounts such as the ‘On a Mission’ which give the user the chance of a hands free experience. There’s also the Keon by Kiroo which is an automated Masturbator.

Sportsheets Thigh Strap

Another way of using sex toys is to use mounts and harnesses. The Sportsheets Thigh Strap can be used to attach a dildo to the thigh of a seated person. It’s a popular choice for wheelchair users.

Some people prefer sex toys with a suction base so they can stick the item to a smooth surface. This enables them to mount it, giving a hands free experience.

LaPalma

Another adaptive tool for sexy toys that can be used to help someone hold a vibrator is the LaPalma mount from Spareparts. (Pictured below)

LaPalma - looks like a black fingerless glove which has space for a vibrator

The user can attach a dildo to the O mount on the palm. The Lapalma also has 2 pouches that you can insert a Vibrating bullet into to make the dildo vibrate.  It is a useful product for those who suffer with arthritis and other dexterity issues.

Lube

There are a couple of ways to make using lube more accessible.

  1. Choose a brand that uses pump bottles such überlube. This is because some lube bottles are made of thick plastic and are hard to squeeze.
  2. Use an automatic lube dispenser such as the Pulse which also warms the lube. The pulse is not cheap but a lower cost alternative is to use an automatic soap dispenser. Be aware that some dispensers may struggle if you use a really thick lube.

Liberator Fascinator

red throw / fabric sheet

Cleaning up after sex can be an issue for some people. One way to make this a bit easier can be to use a throw such as the Liberator Fascinator which comes in a range of sizes.  They are fluid proof and can be thrown in the washing machine afterwards.

If you want something a bit more permanent on the bed you can get fluid proof sheets made from PVC or Polyurethane which protect your bed and are easy to clean up.

 

Learn More

Follow our Undressing Disability campaign on twitter and Instagram to keep in the loop on all the topics and questions we cover from our Love Lounge. If you have a question you’d like answered then get in touch. We answer each questions privately via email, and then make it anonymous and share it on our website to help others who may be too shy to ask.

#UndressingDisability

 

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condoms against a blue background

I hate condoms

By The Love Lounge

The Question

Dear Love Lounge,

I’m 23 and in a new relationship. I had cancer aged 12 and lost my right leg from the knee down. I’m comfortable in my own skin and after a few pints I’m confident enough to chat up girls and get laid. I’ve been dating someone I really like but she insists on using condoms, and I really hate condoms. I still have check-ups, but the specialist is God fearing and ages with my Grandad, so asking questions about sex feels weird. I reckon with all the chemo I had my tadpoles will not be champion swimmers. How can I find that out so we can ditch the condoms?

Cheers,

Joe.

Our Answer

Hi, thanks so much for writing in!

Honestly? You’re probably not going to like my response but, until your relationship is more established, I think your partner has a very good point. Condoms don’t just prevent pregnancy, they prevent STI’s too. As well as having sex, a new relationship is about gaining trust. And regardless of how many check-ups you have, your girlfriend probably just wants to keep herself safe – and good for her!

What do you hate condoms? If it’s the fit or feel, there are loads of different sizes and textures on the market. Try and be playful about it, seeing which ones feel the best for both of you. Find out where you can get free condoms via this NHS link. 

three condoms in blue, red and silver wrappers

Then, we’d suggest attending your next check up with your girlfriend. Ask to see a different specialist if possible to talk about the impact chemotherapy may or may not have had on your fertility. Or just drop in at your local sexual health clinic, where you can both chat about your worries, concerns, and explore all types of contraception. Only condoms protect against STIs though, so that part really is a trust thing! Build on that, and the rest might just follow. If you sign up to our Undressing Disability Hub for free, you can access our free resource on all types of contraception.

Love Lounge Team x

Learn More & Join Our Hub

We get lots of questions to our Love Lounge. We answer each individual one privately, then make them anonymous and publish here to help more people. Use the search box on our website to look for a specific topic e.g. disclosing disability, or accessible sex positions. If we can help you, then email us. 

Join us on twitter @ETUKUndressing or Instagram @UndressingDisability. You can also join our Undressing Disability Hub for free.

 

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A brown haired woman presses her hands over her eyes exhausted with her glasses resting on her head. Her shoulders are visible and she wears a multicoloured top

Sex, Chronic Pain and Fatigue

By Disability, The Love Lounge

The Question

Dear Love Lounge,

I want to ask about sex, chronic pain and fatigue. I really want sex with my partner, but I might need antibiotics and a few days in bed to recover. I get so frustrated that I have to wonder if the price of doing it is worth it? I feel like I should always be able to offer sex, but I know that it will cause me pain for days. I worry about how this impacts my relationship with the man I love. I’m writing in to ask for any tips you may have!

Thanks,
Belle

 

Our Answer

Hi Belle,

Thanks for writing to us, we get a lot of questions about sex, chronic pain and fatigue.

You’ll have discovered that advice is often targeted towards erectile dysfunction, inability to reach orgasm, or fertility problems which won’t answer your question. On our Undressing Disability Hub, we have a more detailed resource on sex, chronic pain and fatigue (it’s free) for anyone who might want more insight. Here I’m going to focus on what you’ve asked for… some practical tips.

A brown haired woman presses her hands over her eyes exhausted with her glasses resting on her head. Her shoulders are visible and she wears a multicoloured top

Honesty

Find a way to effectively communicate with your partner, letting them know how much energy you have in the tank right now. What you are capable of doing, and whether you’re willing to go ahead and have a great time even if it means you pay for it the day after.  Don’t be too proud, you don’t have to power through all the time.  Revealing your vulnerabilities can often be very bonding for you and your partner.

Positions

If your body has changed because of a chronic condition or disability, then using toys or props might help. It may be easier for you to strategically position pillows for support or comfort. Try new positions that take pressure off certain joints or require less flexibility. Don’t feel you have to over perform to impress if it causes you pain. When you’re not relaxed and enjoying it, your partner will sense your pain and therefore not benefit from your gymnastics anyway!

If dexterity and pain is an issue, using toys on yourself or your partner may take the strain from you doing so much. Let the toy do some of the work! (This article on sex toys for those with dexterity issues may help.)

Preparation

Taking painkillers 30—60 minutes before you’re going to get down to it, may relieve some stiffness and pain.  The next day, take painkillers to manage the potential flare up after your activity.  Keep on top of it so your mind doesn’t always associate sex with pain.  This may help keep you relaxed for the future too. Pain might be inevitable but if you pre-empt it, or fear it, the tension will only make it worse.

Warm/hot showers

Shower solo or together to soothe the body’s aches and pains. Massage can relax those muscles, ease joint pain, enliven nerve endings and be bonding for both of you.  Even if you don’t take it any further.

a shower with water coming out - Sex, Chronic Pain and Fatigue

Timings

When are you most fatigued and most in pain? Try and plan your sexy time to optimise your experience, based on when is best for you.

Reassurance

Either from a clinician or yourself to your partner that they won’t make you worse (let’s say a heart condition where they fear sexual activity might be too much for you).

Don’t just focus on intercourse!

Find other ways to be intimate. Dance together, shower or bath together. Cuddle up, stroke each other or massage. Take time out for romance – candles, putting down your phones and actually looking at each other, sharing feelings and talking. This can all build intimacy and connection, without you paying the price for a having a bit of nookie and enduring pain for a few days.  If penetration is likely to cause horrid UTI’s, then these options are great for avoiding that, when you just can’t tolerate another course of antibiotics!

I hope that helps. Access the free resource on Sex, Chronic Pain and Fatigue via our Undressing Disability Hub. It’s free to join and free to download a wide range of valuable resources.

All the best,

Zoe x

Stay Connected

Join the online conversation by following us on twitter @ETUKUndressing and on Instagram @UndressingDisability 

 

 

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A graphic of a dark haired man and woman in bed together sleeping

Virginity, Sex, Disability and Safety.

By Disability, The Love Lounge

The Question

Hello,

I tripped upon your organization while looking up sex and cerebral palsy on YouTube. I’m writing to you about losing my virginity, sex, disability and safety.

I am 51 years old, spastic quadriplegic born with cerebral palsy and use a power wheelchair for mobility. I’ve had a couple crushes when I was a teenager and in college but that was it. My parents never talked to me about sex other than the most basic education of how one becomes pregnant and the high school sex Ed.

I would like to experience sex before I die, but I also don’t believe in sex unless I am in a long-term relationship. I have been struggling for many years with several health challenges that have made my cerebral palsy worse and left me with unmanaged chronic pain. Due to my multiple health challenges and many family issues I do not have the ability or interest to go out to bars. I am also scared about my safety in dating a man. For example what do I do if I want to have a little privacy to be intimate but due to disability you can’t get away if it becomes more than you want and the other person doesn’t respect that. What do you do?

I’m really embarrassed to email you this but thankful that there is this platform. I feel like a freak!

G x

 

Our Answer

Hi G,

It took great courage for you to write into us and I’m so glad you reached out. I can feel your predicament here in being caught up in a bit of a moral dilemma. Also, you have some big practical issues which are making it more difficult for you.

It would be useful to know more about your family issues which you say are urgent and making it less likely for you to go out. Understanding this, I may be able to see how you could overcome this. Also, if you have any carer that works with you. As they may be able to facilitate you getting out socially and also make you feel safer if meeting someone.

Hearing your concerns, it seems to me that it comes down to a choice of what is your biggest priority now. Is it about losing your virginity? Or is it doing the act within a long-term relationship or marriage?

Currently, with the situation as you describe, it sounds like it will be difficult for you to be getting out and meeting someone. This can take a lot of  effort at the best of times, so with your family difficulties, meeting the right person could take even longer.  Are you willing to wait quite a while longer to lose your virginity within a loving relationship?

If you don’t want to wait, there’s the option of seeking out a sexual encounter, perhaps not in a relationship. This is where it would completely depend on how you feel going against your current beliefs about the parameters within which a sexual relationship should be conducted.  And if you feel you would be comfortable undertaking such an experience.

a graphic of a mobile phone with a person and lovehearts in white and the background is pink

In the UK a charity called TLC have sex workers who work with disabled clients. Exactly for the reasons you say. They guarantee safety and can offer a ‘boyfriend/girlfriend experience’ too. Here is the link to their website. https://tlc-trust.org.uk/

It may be that you could take it slow and steady rather than going full steam ahead on the first time.  There is a cost to this service and it’s quite expensive but the workers are trustworthy and experienced in working with disabled clients.

If this isn’t a consideration for you, maybe try internet dating to try and engage with someone, building a rapport before taking it further. Again, if you have a friend or a carer you can trust, they could go out with you the first time you meet your date. You mention your fear around someone wanting to go further than you want, and how do you stay safe. You’re right, we are more vulnerable as disabled daters and have to think of more options to keep safe.  I would suggest a friend or carer being in the same location as you, but not sitting near you to allow you some privacy and normality for you and your date. If you needed help,  your friend can keep an eye on things and it would be easy to catch their attention. They can then ‘rescue’ you from any awkward situation.

With internet dating there’s another dilemma we all face. Do we declare our disability openly and attract those who are open to dating someone disabled? Or don’t declare it, attract more people, get talking to some people first, then drop the disabled bomb?!

The world of dating and disability can be a minefield. But it can also be fun. Losing your virginity is an important human right and feeling stopped from doing so is deeply frustrating.  Ultimately, it’s your choice with how you wish to go about it.  I just hope your current living situation allows you to make a free choice. It is your body and your life after all. Do what feels right for you.

Best regards,

Zoe

Keep up to date with all Love Lounge chat and our campaigns by connecting with us on twitter @ETUKUndressing or on Instagram @UndressingDisability  

If you’d like to get our experts advice with your own dilemma feel free to get in touch. 

 

Next question
Different Sexual Tests - a bed with handcuffs and a vanilla ice-cream

Different Sexual Needs

By The Love Lounge

The Question

Dear Love Lounge,

My partner and I have different sexual needs. We are both disabled and before getting together had limited sexual experiences. We’ve been together for almost a year and are very open with each other and comfortable in our own skins. It’s fair to say we really love each other and want this relationship to last. The problem is that there’s one thing in particular that really excites her, and it is a complete turn off for me. I have attempted to go along with it, but she knows I’m not into it and it ruins the moment and causes an argument.

It’s becoming an issue and our sex life is suffering. How do we get over this?

Thanks,

Billy

(Billy’s name has been changed and he recieved a private response prior to this Q&A being published.)

Our Answer

 

Hi Billy,

It sounds like you have a strong, happy relationship despite your different sexual needs. I’m encouraged that you’re very open and comfortable with each other. This will hopefully set you in good stead for resolving this issue.

Sexual compatibility is about the shared feelings that you and your partner have about your needs, desires, wants and beliefs around sex.

What To Do When You Have Different Sexual Needs

Ultimately, you and your partner will have to discuss how far each of you are willing to compromise. This will involve very honest, open, frank discussions. And lots of trial and error. It is vital that each of you always feel respected and gives consent.
If you can work together towards a shared goal, this will help. Set some targets, keep giving feedback about how you’re feeling. It needs to be something that you both are keen to achieve, not something that will make you feel under more pressure. Currently it sounds like you’ve tried to fulfil her need but she isn’t enjoying the fact that you’re not enjoying it. That’s a good indicator that you want your love-making to be enjoyable for both of you and your partner isn’t being selfish about her needs.

The Dangers of Forcing The Issue

With different sexual needs, sometimes one person might think that if the couple tries a particular act many times, the other person will get used to it and enjoy it. This isn’t always the case. Doing this can cause trauma and irreversible damage.

So, the compromise, or solution, that you find together will be whatever you BOTH find acceptable, and perhaps fulfilling for both too. No one should be forced to do something they don’t want to and equally if someone is constantly sacrificing what they’d really want to do, it will build up huge resentment.

What If We Can’t Resolve It?

The key is to recognise that both of your feelings count. When in a relationship with another, your partner’s feelings are just as important as yours. By working within this frame, you will have mutual respect and are more likely to share your honest feelings with each other knowing they will be safe and valued. If your opinion of something differs, that’s ok, but to dismiss the other person’s opinion or feelings as not mattering, then begins a problem which will just push you further apart.

Ignoring the disparity between two people’s sexual tastes will never work. The problem will become bigger and impact on other areas of the relationship. If you are unable to find a mutual compromise, then therapy will help to repair resentments. It will offer a safe space for you both to share your feelings and concerns, without shame, accusation, or guilt. The therapist will facilitate each partner to be heard and will notice patterns and hidden meaning in what you’re both saying. (Learn more about what sexual therapy involves in this episode of Undressing Disability Podcast.)

How sexually different are you?

If it seems impossible to find compromise or your tastes are far too different, it may be time to call an end to a relationship. If you are both unable to satisfy each other, is it fair to stay in a relationship full of resentment, frustration, and angst?

If your different sexual needs were a matter of frequency, and you’re near the desired target of your partner, then compromise would probably be easy to achieve. However, if your partner is into kink and you’re into vanilla and neither are wanting to compromise by doing a bit of both, then it will be much harder to make it work.

Both could set each other free to find a partner whose sexual tastes are more compatible. And therefore, you may be more fulfilled in a different relationship that matches your needs. This wouldn’t be an easy choice and would be the last resort, but sometimes the gap is just too vast.

With your desire to stay together and your openness and love you have for each other; I feel you will manage to have the important talks. Respect for each other will be key here.

I wish you the best of luck in finding a compromise!

Zoe

 

Got a question our Love Lounge team can help with? Get in touch.

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My partner hates my vibrator - red and black lacy knickers with a black vibrator positioned on the top

Partner Hates My Vibrator

By The Love Lounge

The Question

Hi Love Lounge,

My partner hates my vibrator and well, I love it and don’t wanna to give it up. I also don’t wanna give up my boyfriend as he’s kind and funny and genuinely a good guy. I have limited mobility in my fingers and have always used vibrators, they hit the spot every time.

I’d never really mentioned it to my boyfriend, but he found one in the bedside drawer and was very annoyed about it. He says I shouldn’t need it now that I’ve got him and stropped off in the huff.  He’s usually pretty laid back, so I laughed thinking he was joking but no, deadly serious.

He isn’t a talker and I’m struggling to understand the issue here or how to approach it with him. Can you help me out?

Thanks, Lisa

(Names have been changed for anonymity and we send a private answer prior to publishing here on the blog.)

Our Answer

Hi Lisa,

Thank you for getting in touch with us. First up, you are definitely not alone! ‘My partner hates my vibrator’ are words we hear regularly at the Love Lounge.

The main reason for this is that a partner can feel inadequate or jealous if you are able to orgasm with a toy easier than you can with them. They might think that you prefer the toy to them. The size of vibrator you use could also make them feel self-conscious about how they physically compare.

The first thing I would suggest is to try and talk to your partner about it. Explain why you like using a vibrator but reassure him that it is not a replacement for him. Explain that you use a vibrator because of your mobility issues and that it makes masturbation easier and more pleasurable.

The next step then could be to introduce sex toys when you are having sex. For example using your vibrator whilst your partner watches. The other option is to invite your partner to use it on you which may help him feel more involved and less threatened by it.

Couples Toys

You could also try a couples’ toy. Here are a few examples of products that you could use together.

The Hot Octopuss Atom Cock Ring is very powerful cock ring and enhances pleasure for both partners.

The Satisfyer Double Joy is a great product that can be used whilst having sex. It can also be used for Solo Play with your partner controlling it using a Smart Phone App.

You could also buy him his own Sex Toy that he can either use on his own or you could use on him.

A good product to start with would be the Tenga Egg Masturbator. The super stretch material gives the user a different sensation when masturbating. There is a wide range of different textures available but this one has little hearts embossed on it.

Another product is the Fleshlight Stamina Unit which is a great Sex Toy for someone with a penis.

Stay Connected.

If you have a dating dilemma or question that relates to sex and disability get in touch. Follow us on twitter @ETUKUndressing and on Instagram @UndressingDisability. You can also join our Undressing Disability Hub for free. It’s a friendly network of experts, researchers and people who have an interest in learning more about sex and disability. There’s free resources to download too.

 

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