Infiltration Systems 

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I’m a straight girl dating a bi guy. I consider myself sexually adventurous; I’m always willing to try something at least once. Recently, we’ve come across a style difference that’s really messing with our sex life. I, for the most part, like to finish with some kind of penetrative sex, vaginal or anal. He thinks that’s weird and heteronormative. Maybe it is heteronormative, but I am heterosexual, so am I allowed to just like what I like? When we’re doing what in my mind is foreplay, and he just comes and then is done, it feels so abrupt. It’s not that he finishes before I orgasm or anything. I just see sex in a progression that ends with some kind of penetration, and he starts and stops wherever. It’s not that I think my way is “right,” it’s just what I like. I’m trying to be flexible, but I find myself annoyed with him more often than not, then feeling guilty for being mad. Help?

Ugh, straight people. THE WORST. Always with their heteronormative penis-in-vagina sex. No, look, the oppression of queer people is a deadly serious problem, but it’s not going to be addressed by whether your boyfriend comes inside or outside your body.

If you want to talk about normativity, maybe he could take a second to consider how women—and let’s be real, girls—are absolutely bashed over the head basically from birth with messages about how and when it is appropriate to allow men access to their most precious of gifts: their vaginas. Female sexuality is kept on such a tight leash, culturally, that it’s amazing that anybody has satisfying sex ever. But that’s also not the point!

Obviously, cultural conditioning does not magically evaporate when consenting adults get nude together, but I think that in terms of finding common sex ground, you’ll be most productive if you can approach it as two people with two sets of preferences. All people have different preferences. Certainly he wouldn’t assume all guys like exactly what his last boyfriend liked, nor do all straight chicks prefer what you like.

You’ve both come to your sexual preferences though a lifetime of experience plus whatever came preinstalled in your brain wiring. Those preferences are to be honored equally. Surely a compromise can be worked out. Or even more than a compromise: you both can maybe find ways to enjoy what the other likes, and find some middle path that you both like more than you thought possible.

This is achieved through conversation and experimentation. I hear you saying you feel he ends things too abruptly. So maybe it’s not p-in-v sex you require so much as a dramatic build, with some warning about when the end is coming. Also, hey, just because a man comes doesn’t mean sex is over. If you don’t feel done, decide you’re not done.

It sounds like he just likes variety and surprise. That’s a nice thing; variety is fun. Maybe he can just learn to communicate a little better about what he’s envisioning, so you can create the buildup you’re looking for. Like almost all sex problems, this is one of communicating. But you’re not going to solve it if you’re feeling defensive, or if he’s feeling boxed-in and frustrated, so I think you need to have a non-sexual conversation first about you both coming at this with open minds and best intentions.


Illustration by Sarah Lutkenhaus


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