Introducing sex toys to a relationship is an effective way of spicing things up, learning more about one another’s bodies and boundaries, and enhancing mutual sexual gratification. However, not all people are as open to the idea of using them as others – and for a multitude of reasons.
But what do you do when you want to incorporate sex toys into your relationship but your partner flat out refuses? How can you navigate such a sensitive subject and settle on an outcome that suits you both? Read on and we’ll tell you everything you need to know…
1 – Open Communication
Has your partner rejected any attempts to discuss the subject further? The following tips may help broach the subject with more success in the future:
- Start by creating a safe and non-judgmental space for open communication. Choose a time when you both feel relaxed and comfortable, and avoid bringing up the topic in the heat of the moment.
- Express your desires and intentions clearly, emphasising that introducing sex toys is about exploring new experiences together and enhancing mutual pleasure.
- Encourage your partner to share their thoughts and concerns openly, allowing them to express any reservations or fears they may have.
- Listen intently and do not speak over them if they open up to you.
2 – Patience and Understanding
It can be frustrating when you know that the introduction of sex toys in your relationship could well be the remedy you both need. However, you need to first understand why they are so hesitant:
- Understand that your partner’s hesitation may stem from a number of factors, including: cultural or personal beliefs, insecurities, or simply a lack of knowledge about sex toys.
- Be patient and respectful of their feelings. Avoid pressuring or shaming them for their initial reaction – that is not a healthy or helpful way to get what you want.
- Reassure your partner that their feelings are valid, and emphasise that exploring sex toys is a shared decision that should enhance both of your sexual experiences.
3 – Educate on Health Benefits
The main cause of shame and stigmatisation surrounding sex toys is largely attributed to a lack of knowledge:
- Educate your partner about the potential health benefits of incorporating sex toys into your relationship. For example, explain how certain sex toys can enhance pleasure, increase arousal, and lead to more frequent and intensified orgasms.
- You can also discuss the benefits of using sex toys if your partner struggles with certain sexual challenges or physical conditions. Just tread lightly and highlight the fact that these toys can provide additional stimulation and help overcome such limitations or difficulties without shame.
4 – Addressing Feelings of Inadequacy or Low Self-esteem
Remember that one of the most likely reasons for your partner not wanting to introduce sex toys into the bedroom (particularly if they are male) is feelings of inadequacy or low self-esteem:
- If your partner expresses concern about feeling inadequate or that they are being replaced, reassure them that sex toys are not a substitute for their presence or intimacy – merely a way for you both to have more fun together.
- Reassure them that sex toys are tools to enhance pleasure and explore new sensations together, not a reflection of their performance or desirability.
- Reaffirm your attraction and desire for them, highlighting that incorporating sex toys is about mutual pleasure and shared exploration.
- You can also try reminding them that they are the only person you have ever felt broaching the subject with. This might remind them that you are in it together and that you love and desire them all the same – regardless of whether you use toys or not.
5 – Considering Different Paths
If you have tried everything you can and your partner is flat out refusing to entertain the idea, you may wish to consider the possibility that you are on different paths. This is even more important if your partner is controlling and has expressed that you are not allowed to buy any sex toys for your own personal use:
- In some cases, despite tireless efforts to discuss and address concerns, both partners may have fundamentally different views on the role of sex toys in the relationship.
- If you find yourselves at an impasse, it may be necessary to consider whether the differences in sexual preferences and desires are compatible in the long term. Can you let it go? Or rather: should you have to?
- Remember that sexual compatibility is an important aspect of a healthy relationship, and it’s okay to acknowledge and respect each other’s needs and boundaries, even if they differ and ultimately lead you to separation.
- Don’t let the fear of being alone coerce you into staying in a relationship that leaves you feeling unfulfilled. You deserve sexual gratification and if your partner is unwilling, well, you’ll find plenty of opportunity elsewhere with online dating.
- It may also be worth exploring sex therapy or couples counselling if you’d prefer not to give up on your long-term relationship.
Introducing sex toys to a relationship requires open communication, patience, and understanding. So, create a safe space, respect your partner’s feelings, and make sure they understand that you are not dissatisfied or wanting to replace them; that you simply want to enhance your mutual sexual pleasure and explore new sexual experiences together.