In Line at the Buffet: How to Ask for What You Want

Q. How do I tell my partner to do things like change position and give me oral sex the way I do for him? 

A. Do you know what the shortest distance between two points is? It’s a straight line. I ask because the answer to your question, and really, to anyone who asks this question, lies in the most direct solution: Ask. Just ask.

But… if the answer were that easy, would you be asking me, instead of him? Would women all across the board be sending in similar questions ? Would countless conversations like this be relegated to back rooms and anonymous self-help columns? Would we have article like “5 Moves Women Love In Bed But Can Be Too Afraid To Ask For“? Or “50 Hot Tips All Women Wish You Knew“? I mean, the list of ill-titled and hetero like a “T” type articles, tipsicles, and listicles litter the ground like a fairground after a bad get together. Ask in morse code! No, ask in smoke signals, that’s sexier, more mysterious. Oh, smize it to him! He will know exactly what you mean. Why is it that if the answer to all these questions, all the things that we hope for in sex, or want, or aren’t getting, all of the things can be potentially solved by just asking our partner? Or rather, why is it we are asking everyone but our partner?

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not advocating not asking the general peanut gallery sex questions. Oh no, please. I quite enjoy my job and certainly don’t want the questions to stop. But when your morning consists of a cup of coffee accompanying an inbox full of questions that range from what kind of lube is edible, to which butt plug is best if I want it to match my living room curtains, you begin to notice certain patterns, reiterations of certain questions, if you will. Questions that, while worded differently or asking for one sex act over another, all come down to a strangely simple, but still not yet solved question. Do we dare generalize? Yes, we do. Why is it so hard for women to ask for what they want during sex?

I don’t think that everyone struggles with this, but I do think it is indicative of the bulk of sexual experiences, as well as lived experiences of women. We have to ask for what we want. Always. We also usually end up demanding if you want to get very honest. If we are lucky, then we bump along life, just kind of going with the flow, until one day, we realize, oh, is no one is going to pitch for us? It doesn’t always come from a malicious place, of course, but the status quo never really has to be. Let’s get real here: if you have been a woman on this earth for more than t-minus fifteen seconds, you might know that we are always expected to do something. Or nothing. Or just kind of lie back and be complacent, and I don’t mean that for just in the bedroom.

Imagine that we are at a buffet. A very gender-essentialist buffet,  for semantics sake. Now, the gentleman in the room? They have a free pass to the buffet. I mean, all you can eat. They have access to everything: the salad bar, the hot bar, all the jello they can eat. There are personalized plates and napkins for them, and everyone is just so happy that they are eating so much. No need not to encourage them to do so otherwise, right?  Now, for the ladies? Well first off, we didn’t even get an invitation to the buffet. I mean, we were expected to show up at some point, but now we are having to wait in line. The buffet looks pretty amazing, but there’s not a whole lot that looks like it was expecting us. When we are finally able to go to the buffet, someone has put a rope around all the areas we really want to go to, relegating us to the salad bar, and personally? Unless that salad bar has some tacos that can put on top of all the salad, it seems very… limited. What gives? The dudes are chomping on macaroni and cheese and pumpkin pie, and we’ve just got access to the crappy salad bar. But don’t you like salad? I thought all women liked salad!  Besides, aren’t you on a diet? All the signs are pointing that the only area the women can really eat from, is the salad bar. We want the amazing buffet, but it doesn’t seem like we are supposed to want it. We are just supposed to want salad. So we eat our salad.

Remember that shortest distance is the straight line conversation we were having? The salad bar is why it can be so ridiculously difficult to make that journey, even though it is just a mere few inches. Some people on this earth are told from day one that the entire buffet is all theirs. Some of us? Well, we get the salad bar. This doesn’t mean that eventually some of us walk right up to the rope guarding the extensive buffet and ask, ” Can I have some?” In fact, we do — and it is then that we are allowed in. But perhaps it takes a certain amount of sucking on salad to realize that just because it is the way that this party has been designed, doesn’t mean it’s the way it should stay.

Another point I know we are all casually thinking about: How come those folks at the buffet don’t seem interested in inviting us over to feast on the buffet? I won’t hang them completely out to dry, though like those who get tired of feasting on wilted lettuce leaves, I believe it takes a certain amount of them indulging themselves on every dish before they realize that what is the point of a party if only they are eating? Wouldn’t it be in their interest as well, if the buffet was extended to everyone? Wouldn’t everyone just enjoy themselves more? Don’t get me wrong. There will always be the few guys at the end of the buffet stuffing everything in their mouth, worried that someone who hasn’t gotten any might just take a little of their entire buffet. These selfish motherfuckers, while encountered by everyone at almost every party, should eventually be avoided at all cost.

The shortest distance in between two points is, in fact, a line. But that line, like your simple ask for reciprocated pleasure, is laced with a whole lotta socialization and expectation. Most of it unrecognized by the dominant buffet goers. This does not mean you should not ask. Oh, I encourage you to ask. I encourage you even more to demand. But when we look at the party that most of us have been hanging out at for the last thousand years or so, we can all understand why it is easier to go up to a fellow salad eater and ask, ” Hey, how do you think I can get some of the buffet?” So your partner? The one who is feasting on all those delectable dishes that you have been thinking about for as long as you have been at this party? Ask to have some. Yes, he should be sharing with you, yes, he should ask you what you want, but he hasn’t thus far, and it may be because privilege is a hell of a thing, or it may be because he is a selfish asshole. Only asking will let you know which of the two it is, and what you need to do from there. Ask for the buffet. Demand it. If he doesn’t want to share, fuck that shit and go find you someone who will. You deserve someone who is going to share the best of the dessert bar with you.

Got a ques­tion to ask, sub­ject you’d like us to dis­cuss, or myth you’d like us to bust? Keep em’ com­ing! You can send us an anony­mous mes­sage via the Ask Us! fea­ture here.


By TheLadyMiss

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