The Rough Ends of Rough Sex
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE
Because if you could have done it alone, you’d probably not be here.
By Eugene S. Robinson
Rough Stuff Too Tough?
EUGENE, SIR: I like rough sex. Just recently. I mean just recently I’m embracing this side of myself as a reality and not part of some kind of a disease that I was OK ignoring like I have been. I have tried to keep my healthy marriage healthy by communicating some of this to my husband. He has been good so far at being willing. But he is too worried about hurting me even though I have told him to not worry and we have a safe word. Biggest problem though is humiliation, which I love and which he absolutely does not. Him faking it has been a disaster. All of which has ruined what sex we do have because he thinks he’s not satisfying my new tastes (and he is not) and while I’m OK going back to what we had done he feels like this is humoring him. What to do? — SG
Dear Rock Meets Hard Place: Why are S&M and fellow travelers B&D so easily packageable in movies like 50 Shades of Grey but so not so in real life? Which, I guess, is fundamentally the question you’ve just asked. A question I file under “old dog/new tricks” or other philosophical quandaries connected to whether or not people can really be taught to dance, or act. Or anything else really that involves the sublime: tact, intuition and/or being truly open and willing to embrace the new.
The good news is with time, patience and encouragement he can be brought along to be the kind of dom you need. The bad news is that time, patience and encouragement are not so sexy.
You don’t say how long you’ve been married but this does constitute a real crisis especially if you’re long term marrieds. Everyone should expect the relationship to grow and also might healthily expect to grow with it but where you are is slightly akin to saying “you know what would be fun? Learning Farsi!” It might be fun. It might also be impossible even with lots of time, patience and encouragement. Especially since clearly you’ve got a headstart and have been in a place he’s trying to get to and part of your whole deal is very specifically not leading but being led.
In a less than healthy scenario you’d start doing things to encourage the humiliation factor. Specifically: getting caught having your needs met elsewhere. But this could get messy. OR you two could join a club where likeminded other couples meet and immerse yourselves in an environment where what you want from him will seem normal. He will either adapt or not and if he doesn’t others there can help in a non-threatening way. As long as he can watch and like watching.
If he doesn’t budge at all? You’re in trouble. But relationships are all about budging so here’s hoping things work in your favor.
Definitely Too Tough
EUGENE, SIR: My girlfriend and I have been experimenting with rougher types of sex. So one night I have her meet me in an abandoned lot. I dragged her from her car and held her face down on a pile of garbage while we had sex. She was protesting but not using the safe word so I kept going. She now claims I went too far and doesn’t want to see me anymore. We’ve been together eight months. Wtf? — Craig
Dear Damned If You Do: Reminds me of an old National Lampoon comic strip where a woman is asking her man to hit her while they have sex. He stutters, not knowing what to do, so she says “use the brush.” He reaches for the hair brush and hits her in the head with it. She screams “OW!”, calls him a moron. Strip over.
While I am uncertain of the dimensions and the groundwork of your couple kink it seems to me that her line in the sand is “face down in garbage-strewn lots”. You know this. If you care enough to be writing me about it, you care about this. Pleading your case in the court of her though given the dimensions of your rough kink as you’ve laid it out for me, seems inadvisable.
She’ll either realize that you were a victim of circumstance, do the math and figure out what we just figured out – that you’re well intentioned and things got away from you two – and return. Or she won’t. Lesson learned either way though: baby steps before you jump straight to garbagey lots.
EUGENE, SIR: My mother was visiting and found some bondage gear I had tucked away while she was straightening up and I was at work. She very nicely put them all in a box instead of where they had been spread all over my closet floor. Not a word about it. But now I’m creeped out and uncomfortable. This just happened. I mean she’s still here. What do I do? — Black and Blue in the Face
Dear Busted and Bondaged: Deal with it. I mean it’s a don’t ask-don’t tell world, baby. If she has questions, she’ll ask. If she doesn’t ask? She’s got no questions.