One of the more difficult things in our intimate lives is to change our lover’s behaviour. If we say something negative (“ I don’t like it when you do x”), the response is often negative. If we say something positive (“ I’d like it if you did x”), then often the response is negative too.
What’s going on?
Part of it is the insidious influence of shame. We’re expected to know what to do and how to be, so any criticism undermines that, which in turn produces a defensive, unhelpful response.
So what can be done?
Well, in the spirit of giving, I’d like to give you an exercise to try. I’ll describe the exercise first, then the thinking behind it.
Find a time where you don’t have time constraints, you won’t be interrupted and you’re both fresh and relaxed. Pick some nice relaxing music you both like. Warm up the room. Warm up some coconut oil and some castor oil.
Start by sitting opposite one another, eye gazing. When you feel that you have established a steady, tranquil, loving connection, ask your partner to lie down on their belly. Have various pillows and cushions to hand to make them comfortable.
Start with your hand on the back of your partner’s heart, then start massaging their shoulders, back, bottom and upper thighs with the coconut oil. Put your heart in your hands and touch intuitively. Spend quite a long time doing this. Gradually focus more on the bottom, and then on the area around the anus. Use castor oil for that area.Go very slowly and gently.
Adjust your partner’s position so that they are lying more on their side, and one of their knees is up. In particular, adjust your partner’s head so you can make comfortable eye contact with each other. Have one of your arms on the side of your partner’s body in such a position that they can comfortably place their hand on your arm. Ask your partner to have particular awareness of their middle finger, as that is how you will be communicating as the exercise develops. Explain that you will try to touch them in as close a way as you can to how their finger is touching you, and have a signal for pause ( one tap, say) and stop (say, two taps).
With your own middle finger ( wearing a glove) touch the opening of the anus. From this point, pay equal attention to
- the quality of the eye connection between you and your partner
- What you are feeling with your finger, with regard to receptivity and resistance
- What you are feeling on your arm from your partner’s middle finger
Don’t do anything unless all three are in alignment. Go extremely slowly. IF you feel invited in, enter very slowly and gradually, always responding to what you feel from moment to moment.
When you finish the exercise, cover over your partner and lie in contact next to them, gradually separating.
( I’m deliberately not giving specific strokes, as people almost invariably treat these as prescriptive, rather than as examples)
It doesn’t have to be the anus. I just chose that because it’s universal.
The point of the exercise is primarily to develop empathetic connectivity, the sense that you are empowered and are choosing what touch you receive, rather than being done to. And that you matter. The eye contact is crucial, because it means YOU are being touched, not just ‘the body’. It should feel very tender and feeling, quite tearful possibly.
If your partner can experience this, then that can become part of their repertoire. And then, sexuality becomes a matter of connectivity, rather than performance.
In other words, you can change your partner best, not by giving them instructions, but by broadening and deepening their sense of possibilities.
If you remember the principles, you’re absolutely free to vary the specifics as much as you like.