Sex Negotiations 201

By Stephen de Wit

If you have read the Sex Negotiations – 101 article you are half way there.  Now the second and for some people the most challenging part: How to communicate with your partner, well let me correct that, how to communicate well about sex with your partner.  We are in a constant state of communication, through body language, silence, moans, grunts, screams, arguments and disagreements when it comes to sex but how do we have caring, respectful conversations about sex? Read on.

Well here we go again, back to grade five.  Honesty, respect and safety are the corners of what I call the “triangle of trust” when it comes to communicating about sex.  Because when you boil things down, at the end of the day it comes down to trust.  The parameters of trust that you build around your sexual relationship can be as wild and diverse as your imagination and comfort level permit.  You can create the sexual relationship of your fantasy.  Believe me, I have and helped others to do just that.


So first off, honesty, now because you have read the previous article and done the self-work you are now comfortable and confident in what you want and why you want it.  Now just tell you partner what you want!  Ha! It’s never that easy.  One of the pitfalls that I have experienced both personally and professionally is when women say what they do not want rather than what they do want. Take a second, how many times have you said, “I don’t want anything serious” or “I am not ready for a relationship right now” or “I don’t like that”?  This is all very confusing for a guy.  Tell us what you do want, tell us what you are ready for, and tell us what you like.  As a guy, if we don’t get that information we tend to fill in the blanks with what we think you are saying.  And that as you well know causes problems.

Assume: makes and “ass” out of “u” and “me

Sure there are assumptions that can be made from these comments but when it comes to communicating well about sex do not assume anything.  As my English teacher once said don’t assume anything because it will make an “ass” out of “u” and “me” to what I will then add: no body gets any “ass” and I want you to get as much “ass” as you want.  So say, “I really enjoy our sexual connection and I would like to continue that and I would like………” or “I want……and what I am picking up from you is that you want ………” I think it is important that we talk so we can create an understanding and something that works for both of us.” This takes courage and practice.  If someone makes you feel wrong for what you want sexually that is a pretty good indication that there is a lack of sexual compatibility. Remember there is no right way, no wrong way, just your way and hey it’s ok!


The second corner of the triangle is respect.  Respect the reaction (immediate) and response (delayed) you may receive.  Mentally prepare for them, write them down.  Best case scenario and worst case scenario and everything in between.  Respect that this may be a difficult discussion for your partner they have not done the personal preparation that you have done.  They may need time, space or something else.  Ask for what they need to process this information and give it to them.

Safe sex

The third corner of the triangle is safety and a crucial component of any sexual relationship.  First is the physical component.  Have the awkward sometimes buzz killing conversation about what your expectations are about safe sex.  Do not compromise!  If someone it trying to convince you other wise: walk away.  As awkward, uncomfortable and difficult as that may be it is far easier doing that then dealing with a wicked case of gonorrhea or syphilis or an unwanted pregnancy.  Safety on the other side of the coin, goes for your partner as well and creating a safe space for them to share with you.  Saying things like “It is really important that I understand what your thoughts are, feelings are etc. on this.”  Can go a long way in giving permission for your partner to share and feel safe.

So go forth and multiply your sex conversations keeping in mind that trust is at the core of it all and working on honesty, respect and safety will help you build that foundation of trust.

Stephen de Wit

Stephen de Wit

Dr. Stephen de Wit is a Toronto sexologist and sexual communications coach. Stephen is on a one man mission to ensure that everyone lives the sexually empowered existence they want.  He has completed his Doctorate of Human Sexuality and focuses his energy on keynotes, workshops, seminars, writing and media appearances always with a fun, interactive, high impact approach.  For more information visit

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