It can be hard to ask for what you want in bed. Tips, and role modeling
with Reid Mihalko from ReidAboutSex.com and Cathy Vartuli from TheIntimacyDojo.com
Reid: This is awesome. We’re going to get so meta. We’re talking about how you can give your partners upgrades about certain things…
Cathy: In bed.
Reid: In bed.
Reid: I’m Reid Mihalko from ReidAboutSex.com…
Cathy: Cathy Vartuli from TheIntimacyDojo.com.
Reid: We’re just going to do this about the last video, we were kind of rolling and going with it and it was getting really long and so Cathy…
Cathy: Yes, Reid?
Reid: I really love shooting videos with you.
Cathy: Aw, I’m so glad
Reid: One of the things I would love to do is to try to keep an eye on the time so that we can try to keep our videos to three or four minutes, because that seems to be the sweet spot for a lot of our viewers and if we could do that, that would just open up things for me around shooting video, and it would just feel really, really good. What do you think about that?
Cathy: Wow, thanks so much for saying something.
Reid: You’re welcome. Thanks. That’s role-modeling the appreciation sandwich!
Cathy: I would like to role-model with the man talking about touch, because I think a lot of men are role-modeled that society’s like “You’re supposed to be tough. You’re not supposed to ask for what you want. You’re just supposed to be turned on by whatever happens.”
Reid: Yeah and you know men, with air quotes around men but masculinity in acculturation is where, one, we’re supposed to know exactly what to do, which is why people asking us to change things can feel like, not just for men but for women too, like criticism. Because somehow we’re supposed to get everything perfect the first time so the appreciation sandwich can be really useful there because there’s an acknowledgement, then the meat of the sandwich, which is the upgrade or the request, and then another appreciation. That works really well on men, women, however you identify, whatever your gender because it’s actually just really nice to sandwich requests between two slices of appreciation and acknowledgement.
Reid: Yeah, like we’re not supposed to say anything. We’re just supposed to grin and bear it. The classic example, when I’m teaching blow job workshops is to get men and women to realize that we, (penis owners out there), are afraid to speak up during receiving fellatio…
Cathy: Because you’re afraid it’ll stop?
Reid: Yeah, We’re afraid we’re going to say the thing that is going to stop all blow jobs forever from occurring to us. So the stakes are high, the stakes are high. Let’s imagine this is post-fellatio, or during fellatio. Either way, it would be more of the like, “Cathy …”
Cathy: Yes, sweetie?
Reid: I really appreciate you doing anything to my genitals, that’s just really generous of you and awesome, and what I want to ask is, it feels like the back of your teeth on my cock, and I need to try to figure out, like maybe it’s a position thing, or maybe… I would like less teeth and I know that that’s a tricky thing, so I would love to explore different positions to see if we can figure out why and when that’s happening. Would you be willing to geek out with me about that?
Reid: That would be awesome. Thank you.
Cathy: Now, would you please tell everybody that I don’t use too much teeth when I fellatiate.
Reid: I mean your mileage may vary but now know how to talk to Cathy.
Cathy: Oh my god!
Reid: You wanted to role-model!
Cathy: I know, but…
Reid: This is the thing, for penis owners, it’s really like, the toothy blow job is better than no blow job. This is how, at least in my mind, this is how it’s occurring. We will sit there and hope that it stops, and that there will be some sort of telepathic communication and breakthrough. Cathy, it was just an example, I’m not saying that Cathy gives toothy head. I’m not, I’m not but this would be a way that you could talk about these kinds of things.
Reid: The other thing would be, in the moment, understanding that it’s going to be tricky, because for me, I’m in that place, of “Ah, I don’t want to say the wrong thing.”
Reid: What we can do is you can build into your relationships that talking about your fear, about saying the wrong thing, when you’re not having the sex. You’re like, “Hey, there’s a thing that I just want to share about me. That a place I go when I’m having sex is I’m afraid I’m going to say the wrong thing and that there’s never going to be any sex for me ever again, so can we make it okay for me to say to you, ‘Hey, I’m in my head, can I make a request?'”
Cathy: I honestly would rather know during sex, because if I’m trying to please someone, if I’m going down on someone, I want them to enjoy it.
Reid: Mm-hmm (affirmative)
Cathy: It might be that I’m getting tired, the angle might be bad or whatever so knowing right away that it’s a problem…
Reid: That’s the best example ever. Leave comments about this.
Cathy: Everyone in the world’s going to think that I’ll bite them.
Reid: I don’t know.
Cathy: I haven’t had reports of biting. One of the things to remember is not to just use the appreciation sandwich when you have a criticism, but to appreciate other times too, because I’ve noticed that I have a friend that uses the appreciation sandwich a lot, but only when there’s a problem, so when he starts appreciating me I’m like, oh, it’s going to happen now.
Reid: Oh, there’s a problem. Yeah. Use the appreciation sandwich for a lot of things, or just appreciate anyone who’s giving you head, whether it’s toothy or not and it’s about communication. I’m just using that as a silly example. It exists in all areas of life, not just in the bedroom.
Reid: But again, and look, now we’re at six minutes now, so we can’t even follow our own advice. Leave your comments below. Tell us what you think about the appreciation sandwich, and the things maybe that you find difficult speaking up about in bed. We’re not alone.