Can’t we just agree that what people like during sex is different for everyone?
A sexpert caused a stir this week when she listed “the three most disappointing sex positions for women.” But such language can actually be stigmatising and alienating.
When an individual tries to speak on behalf of an entire gender, you know there are going to be ripples. This week, US-based relationship expert Dr Emily Morse from Michigan listed the three most disappointing sex positions for women.
“There are some sex acts that don’t live up to all the hype,” she said on Instagram.
The positions she said were disappointing were the 69, shower sex, and reverse cowgirl: “Sure, they might look like a good time in porn, but when we try – not so much IRL [in real life].”
Like what you see? Sign up to our bodyandsoul.com.au newsletter for more stories like this.
A huge debate kicked off in the comments, responses ranging from 69 being “very satisfying with a good partner,” to “None of these belong on the list!”
Of course, no one person can speak on behalf of half of the world’s population. Preferences in the bedroom are 100 percent personal and opinions otherwise can actually be quite damaging and alienating.
“Each person has a sexual fingerprint, and we must expand this narrow and linear view that all women like the same things when it comes to sex,” says sex coach Georgia Grace.
“People often ask me for the best sex positions or blow job tips and I never answer which is best because that would be negligent and exclusive.”
So why are we so hell-bent on generalising each other? Humans are unfortunately hardwired to gravitate towards a ‘majority rules’ perspective, says sex and relationships expert Dr. Lurve.
“If you personally don’t like a specific sex position for whatever reason, it is often assumed that someone else might be experiencing those same thoughts,” she says.
“So, it’s more like anecdotal evidence on whether a sexual position is good or bad, definitely not hard evidence.”
Our anatomical makeup can lead to some positions being more pleasurable than others, notes Grace, but she also challenges the notion that position = penetration.
“Sex is so much more than this and for people with vulvas, the most popular positions don’t involve penetration,” she says.
“The majority of women need external stimulation in order to climax.”
Dr. Lurve notes that for some, their favourite positions are a mental decision pending on self-esteem, or a preference to power play (whether you like to be dominant or submissive), or perceived intimacy. For example, some positions allow for more closeness than others, and the ability or not to make eye-contact with your partner can be an influential factor.
But both Grace and Dr. Lurve agree there are no hard and fast rules for what makes a good or bad sex position, but rather pleasure universally should be derived from “consent, protection, and respect.” Other than that, to each their own.
Grace says: “Spend time learning about your favourite positions and ignore any messaging that tells you what you like and enjoy isn’t normal.”