Ask Jay: cock rings, swimsuits, long distance relationships, and rejoining the dating pool

Hello and welcome to another session of Ask Jay. I'm Jay, a sex-positive and kink-positive fellow from Nova Scotia. Lots of people who read our blog have questions they share with us through e-mail and social media and it is my pleasure to answer them. Let's dive right into your Qs.

It has a nice ring to it asks: I want to try a cock ring but am not sure what I'm looking for. Should I get a vibrating one or a plain one? How do you know what to buy?

Jay answers: Welcome to the wonderful work of cock rings (also known as penis rings). I've tried a few cock rings and I can offer you four tips to get you started.

The first is to consider what you're hoping to accomplish with the cock ring. If you're hoping to last longer or stay harder, then I'd suggest getting a plain ring without any fancy features or vibration options. (Or get one with a vibrator built in and just don't turn it on when you first start using it.) Basically, for your first one, if you're interested in maintaining stamina, then I'd stick with something simple. However, if you're hoping to pleasure and tease your partner more while wearing the ring, then having a vibrating toy certainly helps. In short, consider what you want the ring to bring to the experience and that will help you pick out something.


I like the red, shiny ones.

My second tip is that cock rings are a lot like shoes and sports cars: virtually all of them are functional, but which one really appeals to you is a personal choice. When you picture a cock ring in your mind, do you like the idea of something tight, something that's easy to slip off, something colourful, something that vibrates around the base of your penis? Try visualizing the ideal experience in your mind and that will probably help you narrow down the options.

 


I still like the red, shiny ones.

If you're planning on getting this ring to share with a partner (rather than as a toy to be used during masturbation) then be sure to ask your lover for their input. Maybe they like the idea of something buzzy, or maybe they just want to see your penis dressed up in something colourful. Either way, bring them in on the decision making process.

Finally, cock rings come in all sorts of shapes, sizes, colours, and price tags. You can get a nice, simple one for about $6 or a top end, vibrating one for around $60. I'd suggest starting out at the lower end. Keep it simple at first, just so you can try one on and see what it feels like. Once you've tried one or two inexpensive ones, they will give you an idea of what you like (or dislike) about them - the fit, the style, the width. Then it'll be easier to shop for a higher-end ring that suits your tastes. Best of luck!

 

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What did you say asks: I sometimes lose hearing for a few moments after an orgasm. Not a complete loss, but really muffled with a ringing sound. Is this normal or something I should be concerned about?

Jay answers: Before I answer this question I want to state that I'm not a doctor and this is not medical advice.

With that disclaimer out of the way, our bodies go through all sorts of interesting and intense experiences when we orgasm. Lots of chemicals get released into the blood stream which can have both physical and emotional impacts on us. We tend to suddenly be very sensitive to touch on and around our genitals, some people experience sharp mood swings or suddenly become tired. It's not uncommon for people, particularly men (according to one paramedic I talked with), to experience a sudden lowering of blood pressure which can lead to dizziness. I've also head of some people experiencing blindness for a few seconds following an orgasm.

While I have not heard (pardon the term) of someone experiencing hearing loss following an orgasm, I suspect your temporary deafness falls under the same category as the above experiences I mentioned. In other words, as long as your hearing always comes back within a minute it's probably not dangerous. I'd guess it's a sign that you're experiencing a normal shift in blood pressure that's just manifesting itself in an odd way. Some people mention having minor hearing loss or a ringing in their ears when they exercise and their heart is pumping harder than normal. I suspect you are experiencing something similar - the after effects of a good workout.

This couple finds multiple ways to get their blood pumping.

With that being said, I'd like to make two suggestions. One is to mention it to your doctor next time you have a check-up. The temporary deafness probably isn't cause for concern on its own, but it could indicate something else like a strong swing in blood pressure which could be monitored and possibly corrected. My second suggestion is to make note of any changes to the experience. You said you sometimes experience hearing loss, which tells me it's not happening all the time. If you find it happening more often or for longer periods of time then something is changing and you should get checked out by a doctor.

 

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Bigger and better asks: I just started dating a very well endowed man and I'm having a hard time accommodating him - both orally and vaginally. Do you have tips to help with BJ discomfort and how to feel more comfortable with penetration?

Jay answers: Congratulations on your new relationship!

Lots of men worry about having a penis which is too small, but few worry about being too big. Though, as you're discovering, the latter can be the (ahem) larger problem.
This is what comes up when I search for "giant cock problems". 

When it comes to vaginal sex, you can make things more comfortable by taking your time and using lots of lubrication. Before sex, encourage your new partner to slide his fingers inside you (or put your fingers inside yourself if you prefer) and just get your vagina used to the feeling of having something inside you. Also, perhaps consider using some classic, penetrative vibrators during foreplay. In other words, start small (with a finger), move up to something a little larger (like a vibrator) and then move up to your partner.

Don't be afraid to ask him to take things slowly and use lube (and pause to reapply more lube) during sex. Your vaginal walls can adjust to take a lot, but they need time to relax and stretch, so go gradually. And, again, use lots of lube.

As for giving your new beau a blowjob, my advice there is to focus less on trying to continuously fit him inside your mouth and varying your technique a bit. Chances are he'll enjoy you doing other things to his penis apart from sucking it. Trying licking more, especially just under and around the head. Try using your hands more. Mix things up by taking dirty to him while using your hand to stroke his penis. Consider making more eye contact while licking areas where he's pleasantly sensitive.
This is a good start. 

It doesn't hurt to be honest either. Let your new partner know he's a lot to swallow and that you want to enjoy sex (and blowjobs) with him, but are having trouble playing with him and being comfortable. Ask him if there are things you can do, particularly during oral, which he'd enjoy. Some guys like having their testicles licked (others don't), some like incorporating a vibrator or a finger in their bottom to enhance the experience. The bottom line is, be open with him about how you're feeling and ask him for suggestions. He probably knows what feels good to him and may be able to give you suggestions that don't involve making you feel like you're taking up sword swallowing.

Finally, there are sprays you can use which will relax or numb your throat during oral sex. And, for that matter, lubrications which can a cause a numbing or tingling sensation during vaginal sex. These can help you feel better in the moment. However, I recommend using them with caution. Making your throat (or vagina) slightly numb can help in the moment, but you may find you push yourself further as a result and end up more sore afterwards. So keep these in mind as an option, but still try to take things slow and take breaks whenever you feel uncomfortable.

This can take give a soothing, tingling sensation.

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Heading to the pool asks: A friend of mine told me you shouldn't leave a wet swimsuit on because it causes yeast infections - is this true?

Jay answers: As I mentioned before, I'm not a doctor and this is not medical advice. (It's not often I get to say that twice in one day.)

A yeast infection is a fungal infection which takes place in the vagina. It usually causes irritation and itching and can be easily treated. Most women will experience at least a handful of yeast infections in their lives.

Yeast infections can be caused by a large number of things, but the causes usually boil down to one of two factors. Yeast infections usually set in when something either changes the pH balance of the vagina (the acidity, in other words), or the amount of healthy bacteria which naturally live in the vagina. Using vaginal washes might change the pH level, for example, leading to an infection. In many cases antibiotics can reduce the population of healthy bacteria which results in a yeast infection.

Wearing either wet clothes or tight clothes can lead to yeast infections. Tight clothes (which many swimsuits are) raise the body temperature a little and can affect the delicate ecosystem of the vagina. Damp clothing can also affect your body temperature and the levels of bacteria in the areas it touches. The water you are swimming in may also contain chemicals or microscopic organisms which will further throw off your vagina's natural levels of healthy bacteria and possibly lead to a yeast infection.
She looks good, but is taking a risk.


In short, your friend is correct. A wet swimsuit can affect the carefully balanced ecosystem of your vagina and make it more susceptible to yeast infections.

 

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Going the distance asks: I'm in a long distance overseas relationship - we've never met face to face because of COVID restrictions, but we have a pretty steamy thing going. What do you recommend we can use to keep things super hot?

Jay answers: A steamy, long-distance relationship can be quite a challenge. Luckily, every challenge is also an opportunity for creativity. Off the top of my head, I'd certainly recommend checking out some remotely controlled toys that can be managed through your phone. The We-Vibe models are especially well suited to long distance situations.


When your partner can't be there, grab this wand.

I imagine you're already exchanging hot texts, e-mails, and photos of each other. If not, that's a fun thing to try. You might also consider sending each other physical mail. Try sending a hand-written steamy letter, sending your distant lover a pair of your underwear, or mailing them a toy you want them to use. Ask them to mail you a package back.

Set up challenges or games for your lover to try. Ask them to go lingerie shopping and take pictures in the changing room. Assuming they can do it somewhere safe and legal, have them send you naughty pictures or masturbate in a new location. Send each other links to your favourite porn videos or erotic stories.

Ask your lover to pick out what underwear you will be wearing tomorrow and send them a list of options. Challenge them to send you a picture of them being naughty at home in an unusual way - perhaps with food or in the bath tub or spanking themselves with something from their kitchen.

Here we have food, warm water for a tub, and a spanking toy.


Have one of you not orgasm until the other person says it is okay. Giving the other person that control can be hot, especially if you need to ask for permission to get off.

Finally, a word of caution. You said you haven't met this person face to face. So while you are having a super hot, sexual connection on-line, please keep in mind you may not know much about who they are, as a person. What you are doing is fun and hot and a great way to pass the time during the pandemic. Just remember you haven't met this person and consider that before you give them your phone number, address, or tell them where you work and live. People can be whomever they wish to be on-line, so be sure to stay safe and be careful.

 

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Getting back in the dating pool asks: I'm recently divorced and looking to get back into the dating scene but I'm afraid I'm totally out of touch. Can you help this old dog learn a few new tricks and recommend where/how to meet people, what would be a good date to take a lady, and how do I brush up on my skills?

Jay answers: Welcome back to the dating scene! Congratulations on getting back out there and meeting new people.

You didn't say how long you've been out of the dating scene, so I'm not sure if we're talking about a five year, ten year, or twenty year gap. So maybe very little has changed since you were last courting, or maybe you were married before apps and Internet dating became a thing. Either way, there is likely to be a period of adjustment.

In my mind there are two main difficult points to meeting and getting to know people in the dating world at the moment. The first is that you need to find a way to meet people. That could involve setting up a dating profile on a website like Plenty of Fish, OK Cupid, or eHarmony, or any one of many dating websites. It could mean visiting local speed dating events, a dance, a sex club, or joining local neighbourhood groups on Facebook. Maybe even all of the above. These approaches will put you in touch with people, which leads to the second hurdle.

The second issue is there are a lot of people out there looking and the vast number of ways to connect with people means almost everyone is overwhelmed by a sea of options and their attention is constantly pulled in a dozen directions. Chances are you'll reach out to a lot of people and not hear back from them. Chances are you'll make arrangements to meet people and some won't show up. It's unfortunate, but it's the state of the dating world at the moment, especially if you are trying to meet people on-line. There is just a lot of competition (from our phones, social media, dating apps, other dating prospects, and news outlets) vying for attention.

My point is, wherever you go looking to connect with people - whether it's a bar, or your phone's Tinder app - try to keep in mind that you're likely to struggle to make a firm connection with someone and have them show up for one or more dates. Try not to take that personally.

Try not to overreact either.

As for where to take a person on a date... Dinner is almost always a good option. Beyond that, I try to either arrange dates which show off my interests or speak to an interest she has. If she's a huge theatre fan, take her to a stage show. If she mentioned liking the outdoors, plan a trip to a beach. Does she love a man that can cook? Then fire up the BBQ and show her what you can do! Do you have a special interest or skill? If you do, then maybe you can incorporate that into a date. For instance, if you're good at billiards, take her to a pool hall; if you're a sailor show her your boat; if you know a magic trick, that's a good ice breaker.

As for brushing up on your skills, the best advice I can offer is to listen, take things slowly, and be honest. You don't need to be a conversational wizard, the world's best kisser, or a sex god. Just pay attention to your date and how she is responding to you. Really pay attention to what she is saying. Ask her follow-up questions when she's sharing something. When it comes time to be intimate, let her know it's been a while since you were with someone new and that you want to proceed gradually. Maybe she's newly back in the dating pool too and is just as unsure as you are, so take it slowly and you'll figure things out together.

Best of luck and welcome back to the dating pool!