I have an occasionally inappropriate family member who likes to tell fascinating stories that might not be best suited for the younger generation.
But because we love him dearly and the stories are so engaging, when he pulls up with a tale, we find ourselves hanging on his every word all the while knowing that he’s saying too much and going too far.
A couple of years ago, during one of our family gatherings, we were up until the wee hours of the morning talking about life, marriage, and aging. This family member told us that early on in his marriage, he wasn’t always faithful. But throughout the many decades of their marriage, which included children, taking care of older relatives etc, they came to have a greater understanding and appreciation of one another. And his indiscretions became less and less frequent until they ceased all together. From his words, I couldn’t tell whether he stopped cheating because he began to value and respect his wife more or because his appetite for sex simply waned over the years.
Either way, he shared that during the later years of his marriage, he found that something unique happened. While his sexual appetite decreased, his wife’s accelerated. He interrupted the flow of his own story to burst out laughing.
“And she says the craziest thing when she wants it.”
Imitating his wife, my relative took his voice up a few octaves, scrunched up his nose, and said in a sing-songy tone:
“It’s dick time!”
He burst out laughing again.
In case you’re wondering which part of his story was inappropriate, this was it. He told us that he didn’t know why his wife went about it that way but he did not find it arousing.
I sat there completely silent, waiting for this moment to pass. I wasn't sure how I was supposed to respond to this information.
But in the years since I heard that story, I’ve thought about it quite a bit. And now that I’m married now, I have even a bit of sympathy for my relative’s wife. Because honestly, women, and Black women particularly, aren’t taught how to ask for sex.
We can blame it on socialization. As Black church girls, sex is seen as dirty and evil outside the context of marriage. The problem with type of teaching is that not only is it inaccurate, it’s particularly unhealthy when that girl turned woman finds herself unable to embrace her sexuality even when she’s "supposed to," in a [heterosexual] marriage.
More often than not we take our social cues from media and movies. But the majority of romantic movies feature White faces. And I don’t know if you’ve noticed but White people do things a bit differently than we do. There’s porn but most of that is too ridiculous and unrealistic to incorporate into our bedrooms.
Then there’s the probability that if you’re sleeping with a higher desire, most likely male partner, you likely haven’t had that much practice.
A little over a year or so ago, my husband asked me, “Why don’t you ever initiate sex?”
“When would I have a chance?”
The onus of asking for sex generally falls on the one who wants it more. And in my marriage, that’s not me. So it’s not a skill I have to use often. Listening to the Love Hour podcast the past week, the idea of women asking for sex came up again when they spoke to Laurie Ann Watson, a woman who is the higher desire partner in her marriage. She also spoke about women not knowing how to ask for sex.
The conversation made me ask the No Sugar No Cream’s Instagram followers: “ Do you initiate sex? How so?”
I asked because I wanted to know if other women struggled with this and also because a nigga could use some ideas. Because I have to have more tools in my arsenal than “Let’s go to bed” and “Can we have sex, please?” Not to mention, I don’t want my husband telling the next generation that my initiation game was whack.
Check out some of the responses below.
“One way is by passionately kissing then the bodies talk to each other after that.”
“With the guy I’m currently dealing with, I just get on top of him and start kissing him.”
“Just scoot your booty…or say there’s a meeting in my bedroom.”
“I say, ‘I’m horny. Let’s do this.”
“Usually caressing the meat while we’re kissing is enough to get things going.”
You might notice that a lot of these responses are non-verbal. Truth is, there is immense vulnerability in verbally asking for sex, knowing that your partner could possibly reject you.
But part of the beauty of sexual intimacy is baring your true self, your true desires in hopes that you’ll be able to enjoy the connection of physically uniting bodies and spirits with another human being.