At a time when many women feel pressured to add sex to their Superwoman to-do list without feeling like they get much in return, Slow Sex by Nicole Daedone is a much needed and welcome invitation for women and men to strip down to the bare essentials of a woman's authentic sexuality so sex can fill her up, rather than deplete her. A must-read for any woman who hasn't fully accessed her orgasmic potential and yearns to more fully embody the intimacy and surrender a loving sexual relationship can bring to a woman's wholly healthy life." -- Lissa Rankin
I teach female orgasm. More specifically, I teach a practice called OM or Orgasmic Meditation, which turns our idea about what sex is (and isn’t) on its head. It’s a practice where a woman lies down and her fully clothed partner—often but not necessarily a man—strokes her clitoris for fifteen minutes in a very specific way. Simple? Absolutely. Complicated? Whoa, baby. When I first introduce the practice at workshops, notepads start falling on the floor, necks get flushed, and I can barely find anyone who will make eye contact with me in the room.
Once they get over their shock, my female students have a lot of questions. What’s the point? What can I expect? Why should I do it? And, above all else: How am I supposed to get my partner to do that with me? I can’t even get him to take out the garbage!
Beautiful women who can take the world by storm in every other area of their lives are so often paralyzed when it comes to getting their needs met by men. I know—I was one of those women. We can manage the kids, the laundry, a full-time job, and still make it home in time to throw a fabulous dinner party. But getting the support, love, and intimacy we crave from men? It’s a puzzle we just can’t solve.
Thankfully, I discovered an important clue a few years back that I now pass along as often as possible. It’s a lesson I learned modestly to say the least: from a trip to the local grocery store. At the time I had just moved in with a bunch of women, and one of the chores I’d been assigned was to do the shopping. So I spent a lot of time running to and from this particular store, in spite of one inconvenience: the weird, freaky looking guy behind the meat counter. I always felt like he was ogling me. I could feel his eyes watching as I paced back and forth in front of the refrigerated case evaluating the chops and steaks. I kept my visits to his counter as brief as I could, and said as little as possible while I was there. As a result, I never asked questions or got recommendations. Many a cut of beef I bought at that store turned out to be a disappointment.
What was different about this trip was that three of the women I was living with had come along with me. You can imagine my surprise when, upon entering the store, my friends did not ignore the freaky dude as I always had. In fact, they walked right up to the counter and started talking to him. I was so shocked they were speaking to him voluntarily that it took me a moment to notice that they weren’t just talking, they were flirting with him! They asked his help choosing just the right cut (which, for the record, was obvious from the recipe we were making) and graciously adopted his suggestions for other items we might enjoy, teasing him lovingly all along the way. I was shocked by how….nice they were being to this man. Why were they being so nice?
The answer was that they knew the secret I didn’t know: that the most effective way to get the help you need from men is to be nice. To meet them where they are, with approval, and then show them how to please you by making requests and approving some more. Now it’s safe to say approval was not something I knew much about back then. I probably would have equated it with ass-kissing. Or maybe I would have said it was demeaning to him (a favorite defense of modern women) to expect anything less than 100% perfection from him. Disapproval, on the other hand? Uh, yeah. I knew that one. He didn’t do what I asked of him, he got the silent treatment. He was wearing the wrong shirt for his shoes, he got summarily sent back to his bedroom to put on something that matched, for crying out loud. He said the wrong thing on the way home from dinner? No sex tonight for you, mister.
He worked at the meat counter, had a comb-over and sounded stupid when he talked? He wasn’t getting my attention.
But that day in the grocery store I watched those women approve of the store clerk in all of his awkwardness. I watched as their humor and attention brought out the best in him, how he began to sparkle and shine right there before my eyes. Soon he was giving us free samples to take home and looking up nutritional information to answer our questions. He was being extremely, enjoyably, lovingly helpful. It’s safe to say that at that moment, he would have done anything to please us.
It’s hard for my female students to hear, but the way I had behaved before that day is the way I see most women behave around most men. This includes, perhaps especially, the men we love the most. We have not been taught to be nice: to make polite requests free of resentment, to give compassionate corrections without anger, and to praise him for the things he’s doing right before telling him the things he’s doing wrong. Instead, we’ve learned to be on watch for negative behavior, and to subtly punish him for it—in the form of passive aggressive criticism, withholding of sex and affection, and the silent treatment.
The lesson I learned that day is that to get what I want from my man—be it taking out the garbage or stroking my genitals during Orgasmic Meditation—all I have to do is stop disapproving of him and start actively approving instead. To let go of any sense of entitlement and blame (“he should be more thoughtful,” “he got home late and it’s all his fault that we’re going to miss our dinner reservations”) and instead, begin to carefully educate him. Compassionate correction—delivered without charge, because it is not resentful, entitled, or blaming—is always welcome, because it sets him up for future success. And showing genuine praise for a job well done incentivizes him to listen the next time you ask for a favor.
Being nice requires us to move past our pride and let go of resentments from past wrongs. We have to be vigilant to avoid patterns of shutting him out or giving him the cold shoulder when he misses the mark. But I can say from personal experience that it’s worth the effort. He gets everything he wants: your attention, praise, and love. In exchange you get the help, support, and intimacy you’ve been looking for. All of this, for the price of just a little sugar.
Oh, and the garbage gets taken out to boot. What could be sweeter than that?
In this exercise you will give your man precise feedback as he is pleasuring you. You will need privacy, a timer, a man you are cultivating, and approximately fifteen minutes for this exercise.
Begin by explaining to your man that the goal of this exercise is for you to learn how to give him precise, replicable feedback on how he can bring you pleasure. That you are going to set the timer for fifteen minutes, and during that time you will be giving him feedback on the sensations you are having that feel good, and what he’s doing to create those sensations. Together, choose a sex act you would like to practice on. I would recommend oral sex—having him pleasure you—because it allows you to lie back and pay attention to the exercise rather than worrying about your own performance.
Whatever you choose, set your timer for fifteen minutes. (Setting a timer creates a sense of safety for both of you. There is no expectation that he will bring you to climax and no performance required on your part. It sets the stage for this sexual encounter to be a learning experience for both of you.) Once the timer is set, ask your man to begin pleasuring you. From the moment he starts, notice what feels good to you. Do you like where his hands are? The amount of pressure he is giving you? Do you like the way he starts by kissing your inner thighs, and only slowly draws his lips up toward yours? Remember to keep your focus on what feels good, rather than on anything you would like him to change.
Once you’ve started noticing, begin to formulate a compliment. It is sometimes difficult to articulate what we want to say while we are in the experience of pure pleasure, but do your best this one time. Once you have a compliment on the tip of your tongue, consider whether it is giving him specific, replicable information. For example, you might be thinking:
“I love the way he is touching me.”
While complimentary and true, this is a very broad statement. He is likely using a lot of different varieties of touch, and probably isn’t even all that aware of what he’s doing. (If he’s fully engaged, giving you oral for his own pleasure, he is being moved by something deep within him rather than paying attention to where his tongue is at the moment.) So you’ll want to get more specific.
“I love the slow speed of his tongue running up my inner lips.”
“The way he has his hands on my hips, pressing down with just enough pressure, feels really good.”
“I am getting a lot of pleasure from the way he is sucking gently on my clitoris.”
These compliments give a specific action item that he can file away for future use. While our bodies are always changing and you may not like that same “move” in the future, you are at least giving him something specific to try.
Once you have your specific compliment formed, gently say it out loud.
“I love the feeling of your tongue running along the edges of my outer lips.”
Let that pleasure melt away, and return your attention back to the sensation of his mouth on you. Notice when you feel the next peak of pleasure, and articulate another compliment. Once you have made sure it is specific and replicable, speak it out loud. Continue giving him compliments every minute or so until the timer goes off.
Then, don’t be alarmed if he gets up and runs into the other room to get a pen and paper. What you’ve just given him is pure gold to a man: the key to pleasing the woman he loves.
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