Photo by Coco Capitan, graphic work by Sam Taylor
This is an article about having better sex in 2014. To take you to new erotic heights, I was going to give you some practical sex advice: don’t fuck two participants in a threesome with the same condom on, a guy will almost always love it if you sit on his face, ladies don’t like cum in their hair, etc. But, to be honest, practical tips turn sex into a bizarre shopping list: If you didn't like Tip #2: "Draw a sexy bull's-eye around your nipple with rhinestones and eyelash glue” (an actual Cosmo tip), then try Tip #9: "Gently stick his penis through the hole of a glazed donut" (another REAL TIP). These tips are impractical. There is really only one tip I can give you: use your mouth.
For talking, guys. For talking. I talked to a bunch of normal people I know and asked them what happened with their dicks, pussies, and asses in 2013 and what they're going to do to make it better in 2014.
Pat, 30, is a regular human who had a good sex year: “Sex for me this year was all about learning to have sex consistently with one partner. Previously I was more of a casual sex/fuckbuddy person, but now that I have a girlfriend I had to get used to the idea of having monogamous sex with the same woman, all the time. Partner sex is less about getting drunk enough to do crazy shit and more about looking each other in the eyes and soberly telling each other what you want. In 2014 I think that trust will serve to help us explore even further our desires and sexual proclivities in a way that neither of us have had the opportunity to in the past. And by that I mean butt stuff.”
Pat also agrees with Dan Savage that queer sex is the best sex—that it’s generally more frequent and of a higher quality—because, duh, communication. “Lesbians know things, like how bullshit the concept of virginity is, and the false idea that tightness is something that one values and loses over time with use, that penetration is only necessary for short periods and oral and digital manipulation are way more important.”
LESSON: You don’t need to be gay to queer your sex life.
Amy, 26, works in television production and spent part of 2013 on a weeklong vacation in Jamaica with a professional gambler she met over Tinder. She bought both their tickets and treated her Tinder delight to a sex vacation she described as “safeventurous.” She made him send her a picture of his driver’s license “in case he should murder me,” but otherwise says it was “one of the best things I’ve ever done for myself. Men take women on vacations for sex all the time. Women should do it more often. He made me come like 15 times under the Jamaican moonlight, so fuck you.”
LESSON: There are wealthy women on Tinder who want to take you to a tropical sex paradise. Find them.
Obviously not everyone’s year was a 24/7 fuckstravaganza. For every Tinder sex vacation there were a dozen friends texting me things like: “I think my vagina is going to seal itself closed. June Brown gets more action than I do,” and “RIP my dick, we hardly knew ye.” According to James, a 22-year-old student, “Something’s not been right this year. It’s been terrible. I went months without getting laid and by the time I got a girl back to my apartment I was so nervous it just… didn’t happen.”
LESSON: Sometimes sex just doesn’t happen. Not much of a lesson, but definitely a fact.
Sarah, 24, was peed on by a guy she later discovered had a girlfriend. Michael, 21, attended an actual masked orgy. And I discovered this new kind of porn that is just like, muscular women wrestling each other and they have sex at the end. Which is great.
LESSON: Everyone’s weird. Admit it, you’re weird.
A common trend among people actually getting some was a desire for sexual openness. The communication thing everyone (read: me, right now) is so into continued right into the bedroom, and then out of the bedroom and into someone else’s bedroom. Craig, 27, gave up on a long-term relationship and did a bit of classic field-playing, having a lot of sex with different partners, which he described as “nice.”
“I tried to be honest about my desire to not get serious with anyone, but sometimes stuff like that just emerges and sometimes it ends up painful on both sides of the equation, which was my biggest regret," he explained. "In 2014 I want to give an open relationship a shot, and am kind of already doing it, but it's totally theoretical right now because we're still really into boning each other. God-willing one day this year I'll wake up and be the guy with two dicks. His life sounds perfect.”
LESSON: Grow two dicks, maybe? Just kidding, be honest about your sexpectations up front to save everyone a lot of trouble down the road.
Tom, 28, isn’t looking for two dicks but decided that in the new year, one might be nice. He previously identified as straight and poly, but “in 2014 I’m going to change my OkCupid profile to bisexual. I've always been attracted to women more than men, but keep making out with dudes at parties and should make the serious step. I feel intimidated at being in my late twenties but feeling like a gawky teenager. I also started seeing a trangendered lady who is having surgery mid-summer. We have only had hot makeouts so far. This is exciting territory to explore. (She's not JUST exciting because of that).”
LESSON: A stupid risk is unprotected sex with a guy wearing a bucket hat. A smart one is allowing yourself to be vulnerable and pursuing your sexual interests, however surprised by them you may be.
So, how to have better sex in 2014? Talk more about it. And I don't mean talk more about whether or not Robin Thicke's new single is misogynist because it's literally just the sound of someone throwing some jelly at some tits, or whether or not you can be a feminist and still duet with R. Kelly, but talk more about the kind of sex you want to have, with the people you are having it with. With the internet spewing out word-garbage faster than your mom's friend Deb can share it with her 30 friends on Facebook, we're going to be surrounded by stupid social sex think-pieces (including mine) until we're in our Instagraves. Instead of wasting time wondering whether or not Beyonce's slutshaming you, just figure out what'll make you happy.
Actually, you want to make ONE SINGLE CHANGE for better sex in 2014? Stop feeling ashamed of yourself, and don’t cause shame in others. Think how unselfconscious a boner is. It’s aroused, and there’s nothing wrong with that, and it’s going to let you know it. This year, be a boner.*
(*Don’t do anything dumb like exposing yourself on a bus. Be a metaphorical boner.)
Follow Monica on Twitter: @monicaheisey