Sex is a minefield. Did she really come? Does my dick look like a windsock? If I politely suggest something kinky, will she call the police?
We put five sex-savvy twenty-something professionals in a room, plied them with beer and got them to counsel each other on what they’re worried about when it comes to the horizontal shag-shuffle.
What If My Penis Is Too Small Or Weird?
From ‘is it big enough?’ to ‘it bends to the left’, nobody wants to be That Guy Who Has The Hilarious Penis. Or The Penis That No One Can Feel. Or The Penis That Reminds People Of A Sad Carrot…
James: Personally, I’ve worried about if my penis is weird every day from the age of 11.
Gina: Look, my ex had a nine-and-a-half inch penis. It was massive. He bruised my bladder to the extent where I nearly wet myself all the time and had cystitis for six months.
Maddy: I’ve had a small one and I didn’t know whether he was inside me… I want to get filled up!
James: In the dictionary, next to ‘What Men Worry About’, is a drawing of you.
Maddy: I stayed with him for two years though!
James: Will you marry me?
Gina: My mate’s boyfriend had a penis that was so small she couldn’t give him a handjob. I’d always say average is the best size. And all penises are fun.
Dr Anna says…: “If you think a penis has to be a certain size or shape, it’s usually just society telling you that. And how valid is that, really? Bring up this fear with your partner. If it’s something you can’t change, then learning to accept it will make you stronger.”
Should I Wax All My Pubes Off?
Lots of girls (and an increasing number of guys) are worried about the state of their downstairs garden. Nobody wants to be known as Kate Big Bush...
Alex: I’ve been caught out when my bikini line is bigger than usual – on one occasion, I think I saw him take a pube out of his mouth and spent the next two days in emotional anguish.
Rey: I wouldn’t dump a girl I fancied because I got a pube in my mouth.
Rey: Shit happens! Sex is a bit of a shambles at the best of times, so I say the hairier the better! Shows you don’t give a fuck.
James: Mate, I wouldn’t go as far as to say “the hairier the better” because down that road, darkness lies. It’s sort of like how it’s nice if a girl is wearing sexy underwear, but it’s also nice when she’s wearing my old T-shirt from sixth form.
Rey: Alright yeah, it’s just different. You might have a preference, but you’re not going to let it get in the way of a good time.
James: You don’t open your presents at Christmas and take issue with the wrapping. I don't have a perfect vagina Just like worrying about the size and shape of your penis, girls are equally concerned that their vagina resembles those ‘beef curtains’ everyone bangs on about…
Rey: There’s neat but then there’s too hidden away, if that makes sense. I’d rather it was a bit more meaty.
James: Yeah, similar to penis size, there are extremes. You’ve got a Barbie vagina and then you’ve got Zoidberg from Futurama.
Gina: But guys grow up watching porn, and see these tiny pink little vaginas before they’ve even seen a real one…
James: I grew up on porn and all that happened when I saw a real one was I thought, “Oh, OK that’s not what I saw in porn.” Just like how in real life, men don’t all have seven-inch cocks.
Dr Anna says…: “This is also understandable because we have some strong cultural ideas about what’s ‘normal’. But how realistic are these ideas? Don’t focus on it because there’s nothing to worry about.”
James: A girl once asked me to pick her up so we could have sex against a wall. I’m quite weedy, but I tried and dropped her head-first on to a radiator. Things like that stay with you.
Maddy: You know, I think it’s OK if a guy can’t pick me up, but I’d fucking love it if they could.
Gina: It’s a nice thing to do. I was bigger than my ex-boyfriend so he didn’t chuck me about naturally. But I sort of wanted him to.
James: But small guys want to as well, they just can’t!
Maddy: It’s not a dealbreaker at all!
Alex: You occasionally think, “Ooh wouldn’t it be cool if he did that” but there are more important things in sex than worrying about that.
How Bad Is My Sex Face?
In films, an orgasm produces an expression mixed with sexy ecstasy and unadulterated lust. In reality, you tend to look like you’ve got your hand trapped in a door…
Alex: I do worry about this in, er, post production, as it were. I think that I should have attempted to look sexier.
James: Nobody gives a shit about that! All men are thinking is: “God, I hope that’s real. I hope she actually came.”
Did She Actually Come?
Forget sex faces – it’s more important that the other person’s not faking, right? Unfortunately, the faker is way more likely to be the one who doesn’t demonstrate their orgasm quite so volcanically…
Alex: I guess it’s a legitimate fear, because I’ve faked it if they needed a bit of a boost.
James: Oh God. Just tell the truth. With no other act would you praise poor work.
Alex: But sometimes he’s doing a great job, I’m having a brilliant time, but I know I’m not going to come. I don’t want him to think he’s crap in bed when he isn’t!
Gina: A lot of girls don’t orgasm easily, and it’s not like guys have that same issue – for girls, sex without coming isn’t necessarily bad sex.
Rey: You always vocally exaggerate how good it is. I could be silent if I wanted to, but that’d be a bit weird. Isn’t the whole pretending to orgasm thing just an extension of that?
All girls: Yes!
Maddy: And your noises could push them over the edge. Or you over the edge.
Dr Anna says…: “This is simply the fear of, ‘What if it wasn’t real? What if she didn’t have a good time?’ and that’s a very understandable fear. Accept that there’ll be differences of levels of enjoyment with different people. There are huge expectations of what sex is going to be, but not everybody’s going to have a great time every time. Discuss it with them!”
Do I Pong Down There?
You’re getting busy when you had no idea anything was about to go down, you’ve just been throwing yourself around to Hips Don’t Lie and now your crotch smells like gammon…
Gina: My boyfriend once Lynx-ed his balls. Don’t.
James: I’m so aware of this that I’ve actually got a set of wipes that I keep in my bottom drawer.
Rey: If you don’t have wipes, hang it over the sink and douse it in water: the gentlemen’s dip. Or you could always buy a flavoured condom?
James: Yeah, if you’re 15 or in 1998.
Rey: I’d never send a nude photo of my girlfriend to my mates. But if my mate showed me a picture of his naked girlfriend, I’d totally look.
James: I’d definitely look if someone showed me one. But, no, I wouldn’t send one.
Maddy: What, even if it was a one-night stand?
Alex: I don’t feel comforted by this, for some reason.
James: Sorry. Is this real?
I'm Into Kinkier Stuff. How Do I Tell Him/Her?
For example, how does one broach the topic of playful bondage? Do you just give it a go and hope for the best? Write a note on headed paper? Discuss it during the morning commute? Too many questions…
James: When a girl tries out something risky, it’s hot. If I try something risky, I look like an idiot.
Rey: Like, if I was into choking, what if they think I’m trying to kill them?
Maddy: I like that sort of thing, but you can’t just get straight to it in the first five minutes of meeting someone! Just start slowly and talk about it first!
Gina: If you don’t ask, you don’t know!
Rey: I’d give anything a go if a girl asked me to. Once a woman shoved her pants in my mouth, and it was great as a one-off. I’d have sex with a shoe if she wanted me to.
Dr Anna says…: “All of it comes down to the newness of the situation. You have to talk together about things like this, because if you’re not letting your partner communicate about what they want and need, which in this case is rough sex, then they’ll find it some other way.”