When does sex start and stop for you?

Hello, dearest readers. I'm Jay, a sex-positive gentleman and resident of Nova Scotia. I have been given the opportunity to share some thoughts with you about sex, a common misconception, and discuss an exciting alternative.

There is a conversation I have had a handful of times with sexual partners. Originally it happened immediately following a session of horizontal mattress tango, though these days I open up the conversation prior to any bed-top activities. The core of the conversation revolves around the idea that I enjoy having sex with my partner; it's a lot of fun, it's connected, energetic, enthusiastic, and maybe even experimental. I am most certainly going to have a good time and, for that matter, I hope she does too. And, despite all the enjoyment we are experiencing with each other, I am unlikely to come.


Now that may seem like an unusual statement for a man to make - assuming he isn't going to climax during sex. It has certainly caught some of my past partners by surprise and it can lead to all sorts of questions and, in some cases, insecurities. They begin to wonder... Are they not attractive enough? Do we lack chemistry? Am I gay? Are they bad at sex? In truth, it isn't any of these things. What is happening is that my focus during most sexual liaisons is on something other than having an orgasm.

Wait, what did he just say?


What else might be on my mind during those intimate moments if not firing love-filled ivory bullets? It could be any number of things. Maybe we are trying out a new position or a new toy. Perhaps we tried role playing and things took a turn toward silliness. Maybe I'm just more focused on her orgasm that day than mine, or maybe I'm really enjoying myself but haven't quite hit that groove that gets me off. Whatever the reason, the point is that most days I'm not concerned with whether my white pony of happiness canters over the hill, because I'm still having fun. And, really, isn't that what matters, that sex is fun?


Oh, sex can be fulfilling and naughty, it can be sweaty and spiritual, it can be connected and life affirming. Sex can be, and often is, all of these things. But when we get right down to it, my focus is on everyone involved having a good time. Something I find that helps to insure everyone is having a good time, in whatever form that takes, is to set aside a common misconception about sex: that sex begins with a man's arousal and ends with a man's orgasm.

What a neat idea!


With that said, I understand that for many people sex does kick off when a man gets aroused and often ends when he reaches orgasm. For many people this is an accurate view of their sexual encounters. However, it doesn't need to be this way. Sex can take on many forms, start for many reasons, and conclude for any reason. It doesn't need to be about one person addressing their arousal, and intimate moments don't need to rush toward one specific goal. Sex doesn't need to be about one person coming. In fact, taking away that goal can really take the pressure off both parties.


Granted my objective is not to not have an orgasm either. I'm not actively avoiding coming, it's just that my focus is elsewhere. I'm busy kissing or biting or squeezing, tasting, trying out a different angle, smacking her ass. Most likely I'm just lost in the moment, enjoying the amazing sensations sex brings. For me, sex has always been about the experience, and the journey is more important than the destination. To me, an orgasm during sex is a nice side effect of what my partner and I are doing, rather than the goal. It's a bonus to the fun we are having.

My partners tend to have trouble adjusting to my approach and view on sex and orgasms. Women, it seems, tend to be fed the idea that all they need to do is show up and the man will have an orgasm. Men (we are all told) are sex crazed, come-filled machines just waiting for a woman to saunter up and give them a squeeze so they can release over everything. I don't speak for all men, but that's not the way I'm geared; it's not how I want to approach intimate moments. Sadly, as a result, my partners have tended to get the idea in their heads that either there is something wrong with me or there is something wrong with them. Some have even become concerned there may be something medically wrong with me.

Thank you, nurse, but I'm already feeling fine.

In truth, it is none of the above, it's just that three times out of five, my focus is elsewhere and the orgasm can wait. In the moment there are toys to try, boobs to squeeze, body parts to nibble! I want to focus on those things now and maybe have an orgasm later.

It can be difficult to unlearn our society's views on sex, and the male orgasm, have taught all of us. Attempting to reassure my lovers that they are indeed sexy, beautiful, highly skilled, majestic ménagers is an uphill battle when my love cannon is not exploding all over the place. My partners, past and present, are beautiful, giving and skilled lovers and I'm grateful for them. Sadly, I sometimes get the impression they don't believe me when I tell them this unless I'm deploying semen all over the place like it's D-Day.

[Editor's note: Thank goodness!]

If there is a point to all of this it is that sex should be fun and interesting and fulfilling. We, men and women, should probably be less hung up on the orgasm part and focus more on enjoying all aspects of our sweaty encounters. Otherwise we perpetrate the notion that women just need to be present and men need to conclude each sexual session with a creamy rocket launch. I have varied tastes; I am interested in doing more things with my partner than achieving an orgasm.

It may sound at this point that I'm opposed to people striving to have orgasms and that is not my intention. I like orgasms, both mine and hers. I love the sensations of building ecstasy and release. My intention here isn't to downplay the thrill of climax, but rather to suggest sex doesn't need to have a fixed start point or finish line. The process of sex, in my opinion, is more enjoyable when it flows like waves rolling onto a beach. There are swells and lows, maybe the occasional tsunami, but the waves keep coming.


My preferred way of looking at sex is that it, or at least the hint of it, is woven throughout the fabric of my day. I place my hand on the small of my lover's back when we pass each other in the kitchen. We exchange flirty messages while we're at work. I rest my hand on her leg while we're in the car. Sometimes we might leave little love notes hidden around the home for each other to find or I may e-mail her an exciting fantasy I want to try. When we're getting ready for work in the morning I might pause to bite the back of her neck. The idea being that we're regularly sparking little fires of desire in each other, sharing little moments of sexual tension that make us crave each other.


When the act of love making happens, it is a larger wave that feeds off the energy of all the smaller waves that have come before it. We're already both aroused and wanting each other before we even set foot in the same room. After the physical act of sex is over, we continue our little gestures of affection and desire. We continue to stoke the coals of our lust through flirting and touches so they don't grow cold, but continue to smoulder and spark until the next time we come together. We continue to share fantasies and discuss things we'd like to try together.


Our sexual activities and desires take on less of a linear path, with a clear start and end, and become more of a cycle. We tantalize, we anticipate, we desire, we make love, we resume tantalizing each other. The effect, we find, is a regular sense of that new-relationship buzz people get when they're thinking about each other all the time, always wanting to rush off and rip each others' clothes. We aren't passively waiting until one or the other of us feels the urge to make love before expressing desire for each other and, as a result, we're both more often in the mood.

Come on baby, light my fire!


My suggestion for all you lovely lovers out there is to let your partner know throughout the day that you desire them. Text her at work and tell her you can't wait to push her up against the wall and kiss her. If you're driving past a lingerie store on the way home, stop in and send him some pictures of the available outfits. On the way out the door in the morning kiss her like you mean it. Slip your panties into his pocket so he finds them later. Little gestures like this, little reminders of how sexy you find each other, will keep you both in anticipation for the next time you find yourselves alone together. In short, don't let sex stop just because one (or both) of you orgasmed, keep the flame burning so you'll always be hot for each other.