How do I get my man to try bondage? Can sunlight boost my libido? Does exercise increase penis size? Sexploration answers your most intimate queries. Got a question? E-mail us.
Q: My husband and I have been married for 30 years and have an enjoyable sex life. But he is vanilla and I am hot fudge raspberry caramel! I get turned on by the idea of bondage. We tried it and I loved it. He tries to accommodate if he can, but just isn’t that interested. We’ve gone to counseling; he wouldn’t talk about sex. But I can’t get over my desires. I love him and my marriage.
As a teenager, I worked at a Baskin-Robbins and never once made the leap from mocha almond fudge to ropes and handcuffs. But I did learn that one person’s vanilla is another person’s Indonesian cinnamon and that no two people ever completely agree on their ice cream. And let’s not get into the whole sorbet versus ice cream debate. Granita? Don’t go there!
Now if people have such disagreements over frozen desserts, imagine how many individual tastes there are when it comes to sex, especially when you are asking him — after 30 years — to take up the bondage challenge.
Charley Ferrer, a sexologist, therapist, dominatrix and author of “The Latina Kama Sutra” (some job description, no?), often counsels couples who find themselves at odds over one partner’s desire for a little more kink. She has suggestions.
First, you should be very clear with him about what it is you want him to do and what you want from the experience. Just saying “bondage” can sound vague, leaving him standing over you with a bungee cord and a confused look on his face. For most bondage lovers, Ferrer explains, “it is all in a connection you make with the person when putting [them] into bondage, the touching, feeling, being close. There is also the feeling of being immobilized and feeling vulnerable, being able to give up that control.” Making it clear to your husband the feeling you enjoy during bondage can help him understand.
Second, you could ask for something simple to start. Ferrer often tells couples to try toilet paper. Uh huh. Toilet paper.
“Go crazy with the Charmin, then allow the [bound] person to keep themselves restrained and say, ‘If you break your bonds, I’m stopping,’” explains Ferrer.
Easy restraints, like the kind you can slip your hand in and out of, or ones with Velcro holds are sold in many adult stores these days, and Ferrer suggests graduating to those so that the bound person can easily pull their hands out. Restraints are also great if you’re short on time and don’t have time to play with all the ropes or are unsure of the safest way to tie someone up. Ferrer also recommends the book “When Someone You Love Is Kinky” (Greenery Press) or trying a “kink-friendly” therapist like her.
Q: Can increased sunlight ramp up one’s libido?
Maybe. Sunlight can lighten mood, and studies in some animals show that males produce more semen and have higher levels of sex hormones in spring and summer. On the other hand, according to the National Center for Health Statistics, more babies are born in August than any other month, which means there was some hanky-panky going on during the holiday season.
British researchers from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine wrote in an article published in the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, “The trends point consistently to an increase in sexual activity and unsafe sex occurring at or around the Christmas period, and a longer but less pronounced subsidiary period of increased sexual activity and unsafe sex coinciding with the summer vacation.” Despite the short days, all that nog, mistletoe and gift-giving leads to sex. And while summer vacation may expose you to more daylight, it seems having good time is an even better libido booster.
Q: Is penis size hereditary or can the muscle be developed like others in the body?
Not sure where you went to school, my hopeful friend, but you might wish to tell your health teacher that the penis is not a muscle. If it were . . . Oh great! Now I can’t erase the mental picture of guys in my gym, hands on their hips, grunting through 15 reps.
MSNBC.com columnist and Glamour magazine contributing editor Brian Alexander’s book, “America Unzipped: In Search of Sex and Satisfaction,” will be published Jan. 15 by Crown/Harmony Books.