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I can’t believe I’m actually going to write this instead of asking one of my female friends, but it seems too awkward with someone I actually know. . So…last week after what I considered to be some pretty hot sex with my s/o, I noticed her to be not anywhere near as content as I was, so after some prodding she finally told me.
She said she didn’t feel like I was actually “making love” to her, and it hasn’t felt like that for awhile. I was stunned, since in my mind nothing had changed in the whole time we’ve been together (6 months). I’m not into ‘rough’ stuff, so I have no idea how she could feel this way. We haven’t talked about it since, but my question to you & any female readers is… What is the difference between just having sex and truly “making love”? How do you have sex as opposed to “make love”?
23 & confused (Richmond)
For me, the difference between having sex and “truly making love”, is that the first option sounds like fun, whereas the latter makes me inclined to gag over the toilet. It’s possible that someone has tried to ‘make love’ to me before, but I think I’ve wisely blocked it from my memory. Hollywood-style, hushed breathing, kissing-each-other’s-eyelids type sex is something girls might want when they are 16, but most women grow out of it once they start appreciating sex as fun. So her hang-up is probably just due to lack of experience.
There’s no way to know what’s going on in her head from what you’ve told me (and what she’s told you), but if I had to speculate, I’d say she has a need to feel more special, desired, and appreciated. We always want to feel like our significant other’s favourite, so figure out what that looks like to her. Sex is supposed to be fun, and yes, is also important for establishing a meaningful bond, so you’ll have to find the balance between having fun sex for sex’s sake, and making sure the other person knows how awesome/special/desirable you think they are.
Also remember, it’s only been six months. It may have nothing to do with anything you’re doing -instead it might just be the fact that the infatuation period that comes with a new partner is wearing off. That intensity doesn’t last, but you can keep those things going in simple ways: take each other out, have sex in different places- car, beach, public places, be creative… Just don’t get comfortable yet. It’s too early to start behaving like married people. If you want to keep the relationship sexy, you’ll need to stay on your best behaviour, the way everyone is when they’re getting to know someone.
If I were only going to say one thing (and I am), it would be this: Get her to be fucking specific. Saying you don’t feel like someone is “making love” to you is about as helpful as saying “something isn’t working”. Communication is the key to any successful relationship, and until your lady can articulate, you won’t have any idea how to address her needs. Simple as that. So, sit her down, and ask her point-blank, in as respectful a way as you can, just exactly what the hell she’s on about. Until you do that, anything we say is just going to be conjecture. Her distinction is silly anyway, borne of the ridiculous expectations placed upon sex and romance by novels, theatre, and movies since the first of forever, and since there’s no universal standard for “making love” vs having sex (other than, apparently, the lady’s gag-o-meter), you’re stuck with whatever your “s/o’s” characterization of that is.
So, rather than getting our opinion, go and fucking ask her. Sex is (and should be) an important part of every relationship – as important as an spiritual, emotional, or intellectual connection, and there are too many people that let it ride. Don’t be one of them.