How to Start the Conversation Blog

How to Start the Conversation Blog

How To Talk Your Partner About Sex And Pleasure

Talking about sex is hard. Telling the person, you love that you are not happy with your sex life is even harder. In fact, it might feel impossible to start a conversation about all the things you don’t like about having sex with your partner. You might feel that airing your dislikes will make your partner feel rejected, or like you don’t love them anymore — and that’s not necessarily true.

You cannot expect a partner to know what you like unless you tell them. People sometimes think that if their partner really loved them or cared about them the other person would do exactly what they wanted. But none of us is a mind reader! No two people want the same things, have the same fantasies, or want to be touched in the same ways.

Remember that whether you feel physical pleasure in response to something a partner does is not an indicator of their “skill” as a lover. What a previous partner liked may not be what gets you off, since each of us is different. (

How To Talk To Your Partner About Prevention

Before talking to your partner, speak with your doctor about getting an STD test so that you know your health status and risks. And once you know your own status, don’t hold off on discussing STDs — it’s best to have this conversation before you have sex with a partner, says Julia Bennett, MPH, director of learning strategy for education at the Planned Parenthood Federation of America. That way, you can enjoy a healthy sexual experience without worrying about risks.

Having a plan in place can help make the conversation easier. Think about what you want to say and what you need to know from your partner. One way to kick things off is to talk about your most recent STD test and ask if your partner has recently received one, Planned Parenthood suggests.

 Besides determining whether either of you currently has an STD, you’ll also want to consider what kind of contraception you’ll use and if either of you is having sex with other people, which will affect how often each of you should be tested for STDs. It’s critical that both of you know what to expect and how you will stay safe, no matter the sexual activity.

This conversation doesn’t have to be overly formal or complicated. Just be upfront when letting your partner know that before you have sex, you want to know what you’re each dealing with and take steps to stay safe. (

How do I talk to my partner about getting tested

The best time to talk about getting tested is BEFORE you start having sex (including oral sex). Getting tested with a new partner is super important and one of the best ways to prevent STDs.

Here are some ways to start the conversation:

  • “This is hard for me to talk about, but I care about you and I think it’s important. How do you feel about going to get tested for STDs together?”
  • “FYI, I got tested for STDs last month and I didn’t have anything. Have you ever been tested? I want us to make sure we’re taking care of each other.”
  • “I think it’s important to be honest, so I want to tell you that I got tested for STDs last month and found out I had chlamydia. I took medicine, and I don’t have it anymore. But it showed me how common and sneaky STDs are. Have you ever been tested?”
  • “Let’s get tested before we have sex. That way we can protect each other.”
  • “Many people who have an STD don’t know it. Why take a chance when we can know for sure?”

There are other things you may want to talk to your partner about, such as:

  • Sexual history – the number of partners you’ve had and what kind of protection you used (for example, condoms or dental dams)
  • Risk factors – like whether you’ve had sex without a condom or used drugs with needles

How do I talk to my partner about test results

There’s no one right way to talk to your partners about having an STD, but here are some basic tips that might help:

  • Try to stay calm and remember that you’re not the only one dealing with this. Millions of people have STDs, and plenty of them are in relationships. Try to go into the conversation with a calm, positive attitude. Having an STD is simply a health issue, and it doesn’t mean anything about you as a person.
  • Know your facts. There are a lot of myths about STDs out there, so read up on the facts and be ready to answer your partner’s questions. Let your partner know there are medicines that can cure or help treat your STD. Safer sex can also help protect your partner.
  • Think about timing. Pick a time when you won’t be distracted or interrupted, and choose a place that’s private and relaxed. If you’re nervous, you can practice out loud to yourself or a friend you trust. It may sound strange, but practicing saying the words can help you figure out exactly what you want to say and feel more confident when you talk to your partner.
  • Safety first. If you’re afraid that your partner might hurt you, you’re probably better off with an e-mail, text, or phone call. Call 1-800-799-SAFE or go to the National Domestic Violence Hotline website for help if you think you might be in danger.

Try not to play the blame game when you talk to your partner. If one of you tests positive during your relationship, it doesn’t automatically mean that somebody cheated. It can take a while for STDs to show up on a test, and most people don’t have any symptoms. So lots of people have an STD for a long time (even years) without knowing it, and it can be hard to tell when and how someone got it. The most

important thing is that you both get tested. If it turns out only one of you has an STD, talk about how you can keep the other one safe.


 Sample Talking Points with Your Partner

What we talk about when we talk about sex:

Intimate conversations aren’t just about pleasure. Other topics about sex can include:

  • sexual health
  • how frequently we’d like sex
  • how to explore unknowns
  • how to deal with differences in what we and our partners enjoy

Talking about these topics can also help build a foundation for a better relationship as you learn about each other and explore new things together, all while being on the same page.

It’s also worth getting past the discomfort to talk about health, particularly sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and birth control. Avoiding these vital conversations might be endangering your health and altering the future you’d hoped for.

  1. Are you currently using birth control? Are you open to the possibility of pregnancy? What birth control precautions do you want to use?
  2. hat barriers do you want to use? What kind of sexual activities are you willing to enjoy without barriers?
  3. What kind of touch feels good to you? Where are the places that you especially enjoy being touched? How do you want to be touched, caressed, kissed, and/or held? The more you explore and know your own body through masturbation, the clearer you can be about what kind of touch you enjoy.
  4. What are sexual activities you know you like and want to do? Ones you have never done but think you might like to try? Ones you might be willing to try? Do you have fantasies you would like to talk about, role play (pretend to act out), or act out?
  5. What are the sexual activities or fantasies you are not willing to explore? Are there places on your body that you do not want to be touched?
  6. Type of relationship that you want: Committed or non-committed? Friendly or romantic? Sexual or non-sexual? Monogamous or non-monogamous?
  7. When were you last tested for STIs, and what were the results? Which STIs were you tested for? Not tested for? How many sexual partners have you had since your last round of testing? What were the STI statuses of those partners? What is your history of STI infection?


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