In the Bedroom, Relationships, and More: Men Tell Women the Secrets They Wish We Knew
Every so often the straight women of Reddit ask their male counterparts what “men wish women knew” about them. The answers range from actually kind of helpful sex tips to good things to keep in mind to deeply patriarchal and misogynistic bullsh*t. I was going to make this a round-up for “fun little secrets” for you ladies, but turns out that it’s way more complicated than that.
Way, way more complicated.
So, here’s what the men had to say (and my responses, because I couldn’t let some of this stuff fly):
The “These Make Me Think, Actually” Comments
1. A woman who is confident and forward is one of the sexiest things ever, and a huge ego boost for the guy (sservida)
Translation: “be confident, say what you want, it’s a good thing.” Of course, the idea that you should be confident to be sexy to men isn’t great, but in fairness, someone did ask what men think so I will give that aspect a pass. Encouraging women to love themselves is good, always.
2. The orgasm starts with ejaculation. While the man is cumming, don’t stop what you are doing to look at it, it ruins the orgasm. The orgasm happens during ejaculation and can last up to a minute after the last forceful ejaculate. (not_better)
This is just a good tip. I did not know this—I always kind of assumed that it got too sensitive to keep going after the big finish. It’s always good to understand your partner’s body better. Even though it’s about sex, I like this one.
3. Despite appearing emotionally detached, we are not. We feel emotions like you. (Sbrimer)
Translation: “don’t forget that men have feelings, too.” That sounds so trite, but it’s important. Just because men tend to be terrible at expressing their emotions (thanks, patriarchy and testosterone), it doesn’t mean that they don’t have them. I think the most helpful part about this one is to remember that if your male partner is upset, it’s probably not about you. Just like us, other emotions and stresses affect them. Seriously, I know how this sounds, but I think that a lot of people forget that they’re dealing with someone as complex as they are when they start dating someone new.
4. No doubt women think about sex. But it is always on my mind. Even if I’m preoccupied with work or whatever, it’s on the back burner haha. They really have no idea how much we think about it and what we think about it (mig2433) / Read some accounts of trans men when they first start HRT and they get their first taste of male levels of testosterone.It generally goes “I knew men thought about sex a lot, but I had no idea how much it really was” (thenebular)
I just like this one because it acknowledges that men actually might be more controlled (or as controlled) by their hormones and emotions than women are. Take that “we-can’t-have-a-female-president-becuase-what-about-PMS” people! Thanks for keeping it 100, Mig2433 and thenebular.
The “Sentiment is Good, but Damn, That Delivery” Comments
1. Performing oral sex without being asked is Saintly to most men. (Chingparr)
Translation: “be confident about your sexuality. If you want it (and it’s in a consensual situation) go for it.” There is also a tinge of “give me more blow jobs to be sexy to me,” which is not great—don’t do anything you don’t want to to be “saintly” to men… But if you want to, take control sometimes!
2. Enthusiasm is so much sexier than you think. (Priamosish)
I like the idea here (“women, don’t be ashamed to want and like sex”), but the delivery isn’t great. Sometimes you aren’t feeling enthusiastic, and that’s okay.
3. I like compliments just as much as you do. Shut up and tell me I’m pretty every once in awhile, can make my whole day. (cokeiscool)
This is important to remember—your male friends and partners also want to be told that they look nice sometimes—but it kind of reinforces something that feminists are trying to change: the idea that commenting on someone’s appearance is always a compliment, or that “pretty” is the goal. The fact remains, though, that we all want external validation from those we are close to, so it’s important to keep in mind.
4. If we’re giving signals like we want sex, or trying to arouse you, don’t say things like “sigh I guess we can have sex if you want” or “we can have sex, let’s get it out of the way.” We don’t want you to give into having sex, that makes us feel bad. If you’re not in the mood, you’re not in the mood. Sex, when one doesn't really want to have sex, is not enjoyable and we can tell the difference. (sniperhare)
I like this, because I feel like women need to stop having sex when they don’t want to (#rapeculture at work, folks), but I feel that it needs some nuanced commentary: 1) The last sentence makes this iffy because it low-key implies that the reason to not have sex when you don’t want to is because it’s not as good for your partner; and 2) hey, dude, ever consider that maybe girls do that because you make it seem like you’ll be upset (or scary or whatever it is) if they don’t? If that’s something you’re running into a lot, maybe it’s about how you respond when she’s told you that she’s not in the mood.
Just a thought.
5. If we love you, we want to see you naked. It doesn't matter if you’ve gained weight. Naked is sexy. It doesn't matter if you think you’re a hot mess. Naked is sexy. If you think that dress makes your ass look big (as if that were a bad thing) take it off, cause we want to see you naked. (Yu-AinGonnano)
Again, good thought, poor execution. This guy is basically saying that your “flaws” are more noticeable to you than to your partner. I just don’t like the delivery. Then again, we did ask for their POV, but damn, does it have to be so objectifying all the time?
6. Contrary to popular belief, 15 pumps per second does not constitute the perfect handjob. (ginganinja714)
I didn’t even know where to put this. I put it in the sort-of medium category because it is a helpful tip, I guess (“don’t go to fast”). Then again, I also feel like this is something that’s a little more subjective to be discussed with a partner, and that the flippant delivery negates it’s helpfulness. Has this dude never heard of “constructive criticism?”
The “F*ck You”
1. Shaving (legs, pits especially) may be a double-standard, but it’s one of those great differences that men love. Most of us are hairy our entire lives, so it’s incredibly sexy when your skin is smooth and hairless. (brounchman)
No. I hate this. Shave your legs or don’t, ladies, but here’s the thing—someone who actually has a strong opinion on your body hair? Preference? Sure, that’s fine. But requirement, strong opinion, or anything more than just a personal preference? That’s a deal breaker. It’s your body. If he think’s his sexual satisfaction is more important than your desire to keep your body the way you want, that’s a big, big no.
2. When we look at you for more than a split second, we’re not thinking of furiously smashing you or creeping, it can mean you look great, you have perfect eyes, you look good in what your wearing, your hair is looking great, that smile! It’s a visual compliment. Or occasionally it’s the smashing, but more often than not, you look great. Not really NSFW. Just saying. (Hillhillybawbag)
Do not tell me how to interpret your looks. If I am creeped out by something about you, it’s something about you. Half the comments on this thread were about how all guys think about doing really messed up sexual things to women and many of them have revealed the real level of deeply engrained misogyny (that, somehow, you’ve translated into your own victimization). If I feel uncomfortable, it’s not a compliment and it’s not up to me to change to make you comfortable when I’m feeling threatened. If I’ve said it once, I’ll say it one thousand more times: being worried about women thinking you’re weird or creepy is not the same as women being worried that you’re going to physically harm them. Sorry.
3. Not so much NSFW as it is just something I think women should be aware of. Ladies, you might not have ever considered how much courage it takes for a guy to approach a female he is interested in. I know it goes both ways but, more often than not women expect men to make the first move. With that said, please be aware that not every guy is a player or a mac. Some of us don’t hit on women on the regular, so when we try to introduce ourselves, please cut us a little slack. It’s not easy to walk up to a beautiful woman and say ” I would really like to get in your pants” but not in so many words. (Papa_Bottle)
Read above. Ditto. But I will add that that last sentence just confirms that you only see women as objects of your pleasure. You’re not there to get to know her, you just said you’re there to f*ck her. Women: Do not take advice like this. Hold your ground. Being called a “bitch” by someone you’ll never see again is way better than finding yourself in a situation that you don’t want to be in just to be polite.
4. If you want to get pumped and dumped by a player, put ‘NO PLAYERS’ on your dating site profile. They’ll turn up and show not a single red flag, green all the way. Hey this guy might be the one. You’ll be captivated, then pumped, then dumped. Now, the guy that is a good fit for you will initially give out red flags because he isn’t a player. You need to spend time with him to see if the ‘flags’ are real or just a lack of player skills. (jm51)
No. Just no. Do guys not understand that “red flags” for women are not just “things I don’t like,” it’s like “things that signal that he might wrong me in a very serious way.” Red flags are your gut telling you that something is not right there. Don’t ignore them—GTFO.
That’s all for me, folks. Go forward, learn about everyone, but take it all with a grain of salt. Read the rest of the men’s “secrets” here!