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9 Amazing Tips on How to Use Sex Toys for Couples

Whether you are familiar with using sex toys while masturbating or want to try them for the first time, using them with a partner is an entirely different experience. While there isn’t any exact science involved, it is good to have some basic knowledge of the subject before getting started on this exciting venture. If you’ve ever wondered how to use sex toys for couples, continue reading.

How to Use Sex Toys for Couples

Introducing sex toys in the bedroom can be exciting, but understanding your partner’s desires and boundaries is essential. Coming to the bedroom with techniques already in mind will allow for a seamless experience. And remember: communication with your partner is crucial throughout this intimate process.

1. Ensure That Your Partner Is on Board

The first step is to ensure that your partner is on board with the idea of using sex toys in the first place. They might be pretty excited or might need a little convincing. Regardless, it all begins with a conversation. An excellent way to start the conversation is to let your partner know that they are enough and that you are merely introducing the idea of sex toys to have a different kind of experience for both of you.

If you both are pro-toys, it is essential to employ safe sex practices when sharing toys. Sometimes, it involves putting on a new condom or washing the toy before switching. Try to have a clear conversation before diving into the action.

2. Purchase the Toy Together

If you two are complete beginners, it could be a good idea to purchase sex toys together. This practice will allow you to follow your curiosities. Familiarize yourself with all the different options available on the internet. Take this opportunity to talk with your partner about your fantasies and interests. You can begin by telling them your choice of toys and asking them about their preferences. It all depends on how comfortable you two are.

You can purchase sex toys online or even go to shops in person. Online purchases are more discreet, while an actual shop will give you a chance to get a recommendation from a salesperson and then make an informed decision.

3. Try Using Toys All Over Your Body

Try to use toys on places other than your genitals. We recommend using the toy on your body and then on your genitals. Think out of the box and explore your body and your partner’s body with a toy’s help. The sense of vibration on the nipples and the smooth silicone vibrator against the skin will feel amazing. It will give you a general idea about the feel before you jump on to the actual thing.

4. Use It to Stimulate Yourself or Your Partner Upon Penetration

Many women have trouble orgasming during penetration due to a lack of clitoral stimulation. If you are a woman, you can use a sex toy to stimulate yourself while your partner penetrates you. Your partner can also do it for you. It is vital to select an unobtrusive clit vibrator and figure out what settings suit you best. Trying different positions also offers excellent help. Try the toy on your hands or knees first and then use it on the clit (if it is your first time).

5. Try Edging

Toys work wonders when you want to try edging. If you aren’t familiar with the concept, edging is the act of bringing yourself or your partner close to having an orgasm but stopping before it happens. It is equally teasing and sexy. As a bonus, you’ll get to the tune of what it takes to make your partner orgasm.

6. Go Remote

Many toys come with a remote, which can be very handy. First, it awkwardly saves the hassle of fiddling with the toy and gives you more control over your and your partner’s pleasure. You, with your partner, can choose the intensity and the speed to truly up your experience. It is super fun to give control of your pleasure to your partner sometimes.

We live in the 21st century; gone are the days when long distances are boring. Certain toys work long distances with the help of phone apps. This can work wonders if you and your significant other have different homes and are having some long-distance fun.

7. Play With All Your Senses

There are many creative ways to revive your senses while having sex with the help of your toys. We briefly mentioned using the toy on other body parts, but the subject is worth expanding. Consider purchasing a toy suitable for temperature play, such as the Bougie Bullet. Try putting it in the fridge before use or run it under hot water and see how these feel against your skin. You can try the same practices with blindfolds on. Incorporating all five senses into play will genuinely enhance your experience.

8. Reverse Roles When You Can

Toys allow you to play in many ways that you usually wouldn’t. They can serve as an aid for role reversals while having sex. It sometimes means gender roles or genital roles. Consider strapping on to penetrate your partner if they usually penetrate you. Similarly, your partner can perform oral sex on a strap-on or vice versa. You can also go ahead and have fun wearing specific outfits for each other. Role reversal can mean anything you want it to. You can reverse the dominant and submissive roles. A partner typically gentle can try to be more aggressive or work the other way around. Whatever floats your boat is perfect.

9. Masturbate Together

Using a sex toy with your partner doesn’t always mean using it on each other. It sometimes means masturbating together. It can be equally fun and spicy. Moreover, it will allow you and your partner to see what you are into. Maybe one of you can watch the other masturbate and then have sex.

We hope you have some ideas on using sex toys with your partner. This can be incredibly fun and a sure-shot way to spice up your sex life. If you or your significant other are new to the subject, it is important to begin with a conversation and move ahead with mutual understanding and the desire to have fun.

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Is It Possible to Overcome Sexual Incompatibility?

Just about anyone’s familiar with “that feeling.” It’s the one you get when you’ve been seeing someone for a while, and everything was going perfectly… until you took things into the bedroom. Now instead of being effortlessly in sync with one another sexually the way you thought you’d be, things aren’t going so hot, and you’re left wondering what to do next.

Don’t worry. You don’t need to call it quits just yet, no matter how crucial great sex is to you. Sexual incompatibility is more common than you may realize, and it doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with your partner (or with you). Here’s a closer look at some of the more common issues, as well as a few tips for handling them like champs.

One (or both) of you has trouble reaching orgasm.

Everyone’s different when it comes to their ability to have an orgasm with a partner. Some people can do so easily, while others (especially women) might struggle more. Everyone has their own pet way to be touched or stimulated which does it for them, as well. There are even people out there who never have orgasms, even by themselves. None of these things indicate a problem with the person or their partner. Ultimately, all that matters is that you’re both happy with things in this arena.

If you’re unhappy with your relationship’s orgasm situation, fixing the issue starts with honest communication. Put your heads together and come up with some ways to shake things up. For instance, toys make it much easier to have orgasms consistently, and they make incredible additions to your partnered sex life. Try using one together and seeing what happens.

One of you values sex more than the other.

No two people are alike when it comes to how important sex might be to them, either. Some people consider it vitally important, while someone else might be able to take it or leave it. Still, more people are closer to the asexual end of the spectrum and don’t much like sex at all, even if they do very much want to be in a relationship.

Again, there’s no right or wrong way to be when it comes to sex drive, so don’t jump to the conclusion that something’s wrong with one of you. Differing libidos call for compromises that work for both people, so it’s time to put your heads together and talk. Most couples deal with permanent or temporary libido differences and can settle on a mutually agreeable middle ground.

You feel compelled to do things in bed you don’t enjoy.

Everyone has things that do it for them in the bedroom and things that are total turn-offs. So, what happens when your partner’s absolute favorite sex acts are the exact same things you can’t stand doing? If you’re like a lot of people, you might feel compelled to simply go along to get along, hoping things will work themselves out, but what if that never happens?

No one should ever feel like they have to do things they’re not comfortable with just to please a partner, so it’s time to ask yourself why this is the case for you. Are you concerned that your partner will be angry if you don’t? If so, it’s time to ask yourself why you’re with them in the first place. But if you’re just eager to please them, it’s time to talk things through with your partner. They likely have no idea you feel the way you do and would be happy to change things up.

One (or both) of you are bashful about sex.

Although it might seem as if everyone is super-comfortable talking about sex almost non-stop, this is far from the case. Plenty of people are more reserved about it for any number of reasons. Some are old-fashioned and see it as a private matter not to be discussed openly. Others are merely shy and find it hard to open up on the topic, even with their partner.

Whether you have it or not, sex is an important topic when you’re in a relationship, so it’s essential to be able to discuss it comfortably with each other. Open up the lines of communication a little at a time with baby steps. In time, even the most bashful people can reach a healthy level of comfort with their sexuality. It’s their partners’ job to be patient and understanding throughout the process.

At the end of the day, compatibility issues in the bedroom are not a death sentence for a relationship. Many couples experience them at one point or another, so a solid understanding of how to work through them is a must. Communication, understanding, compromise, and compassion are the keys to getting the two of you where you’d like to be.

How to Spot and Avoid Sexual Red Flags

Ask anyone who’s survived a bad relationship or two, and they’ll tell you the same thing. They’ll say they should have seen it coming because all the red flags were there right from day one. With any luck, they go into their next relationship a little better prepared.

Not all relationship red flags have to do with the other person not supporting your goals or not wanting you to see your friends, though. Some of them make themselves apparent in the bedroom, so it pays to be aware. Here’s a look at some of the most common sexual red flags and what you should do if you spot them.

They have an unhealthy attitude toward your orgasm.

A good relationship partner understands that sex is about both people involved. They want to please you, and they care whether you’re having an orgasm as often as you wish. Avoid people who don’t care whether you get off and can’t be bothered to try to help you get there.

You’ll also want to be careful of people who seem obsessed with getting you there no matter what. A partner should be able to listen when you tell them it’s just not happening tonight without taking it personally. And no one should ever shame you or imply something’s wrong with you if you can’t orgasm through penetration alone, need a sex toy to get there consistently, and so forth.

They insult your body (or you worry they will.)

Even supermodels aren’t as perfect in real life as their flawlessly airbrushed photos might make them appear. Real people usually have flaws. They have cellulite, stretch marks, and armpit fat. Anyone lucky enough to be in bed with you should be mature enough to accept that, especially since it’s unlikely they’re perfect themselves.

It’s just as big a red flag if their actions outside of the bedroom make you feel like you can’t trust them to love your body as it is. Do they often make weird or unsettling comments about other women’s bodies? Do they practically break their neck staring at every stone goddess that walks by when you’re out together? If so, you’re probably right to wonder about their priorities.

They shame you for what you do or don’t like in bed.

While there’s nothing wrong with keeping things on the vanilla side if that’s what you prefer, there’s an entire world of sexual flavors out there to try. A particular partner may or may not be into exploring everything on your list, but they should never make you feel ashamed of what turns you on or laugh at any of your fantasies.

On the flip side, they shouldn’t pressure you to do things you’re not comfortable with, either. If your partner ever makes you feel like you can’t say “no” to something they want in the bedroom, that’s a big sexual red flag, run the other way. Their respect for you as a person should outweigh their desire to do whatever it is they have in mind.

The chemistry isn’t there on your end.

Sometimes a particular partner looks good on paper, but things never really come together when it’s time to get closer physically. Are you sometimes put off by kissing or making out with them for reasons you don’t totally understand? Maybe you don’t feel as excited as you usually would about the idea of being intimate with them or can’t get into things without pretending they’re someone else.

If not exactly a huge red flag, it’s still a subtle signal from your body that you’re not that into someone. Sex isn’t everything in a relationship, but it’s still significant. Life’s too short to spend it with someone in your bed who makes you feel lukewarm at best about the idea of having sex with them.

You can’t seem to agree when it counts.

No two people will be exactly alike when it comes to their sex drives and bedroom preferences, but you should at least feel like compromise is possible. If you’re just so darned different that the two of you are basically taking turns feeling unsatisfied, that’s a sexual red flag and it might be time to rethink some things.

Are you in the mood to get down and dirty multiple times a week (or even per day) while they’re happy with only a couple of times a month? Is their absolute favorite bedroom activity something you find barely tolerable at best? Are they good at listening when you try to open specific topics up for conversation? If not, it might be a sign you’re not that compatible after all.

Relationships may not be all about sex, but the state of your sex life and the health of the rest of your relationship often go hand in hand. If things aren’t right in the bedroom, and you can’t seem to find any common ground with your partner, it might be time to reconsider.

How to Bring Your Sex Toy and Your Partner Together

There are lots of ways to make sex with your partner even hotter than it already is, but adding a sex toy to the mix is definitely one of the most powerful. A toy brings a variety of unique sensations to the table for both of you. It also takes a lot of the guesswork out of having as many orgasms as you want, so you can focus on what really counts – each other.

However, knowing you’d like to get your partner and your favorite vibrator in the same room, making beautiful music together, is one thing. Figuring out how to do that without things getting awkward is another matter entirely. Here are a few practical things to keep in mind to make sure things go as smoothly as possible.

Overcoming Potential Fears or Reservations

For most people, the big fear when bringing up the possibility of using a sex toy in the bedroom is that their partner will feel replaced or upstaged somehow. In most cases, there’s nothing to worry about. Your partner might be more knowledgeable and open-minded than you think when it comes to sex toys and the reasons why someone might want to bring one into the bedroom.

However, if you’re still concerned, simply assure your partner that there’s no such thing as a replacement for a loving experience with a living, breathing partner. Even the fanciest vibrator can’t kiss you, touch, you, or connect with you the way another person can. A toy is merely a tool that can help enhance that connection.

Bringing Up the Subject

When you and your partner talk about sex, what’s the specific context? Ideally, sex isn’t just something you talk about when there’s a problem that needs addressing. It should be something you talk about freely, often, and in as positive a context as possible. Getting into the habit of letting your partner know when they’ve really pleased you is always worthwhile.

When it comes to making sexual requests, it helps to lead with a positive. Tell your partner how much you loved something they did the last time you were intimate. Then bring up the topic of the toy and mention how much you’d love using it with them. And simply be honest about whatever it is you’re feeling. If the topic makes you feel shy, excited, curious, or something else entirely, share that.

Choosing the Right Sex Toy for the Job

If both of you like the idea of starting with a go-to toy you already have, that’s perfectly okay. However, sex toys are far from one-size-fits-all. Take some time to discuss the types of sensations you each like best and would most enjoy exploring together via a toy. Are you guys all about oral or mutual masturbation? Is penetrative sex an absolute must when you’re intimate together?

If you, your partner, or both of you are brand new to using sex toys as a couple, you may find it most comfortable to integrate a toy into whatever you already enjoy doing together. If you’re into penetrative sex, a small, wearable toy like a cock ring might be a good choice. If you like the idea of using a toy for external stimulation, try something small and versatile that lets you thoroughly explore the possibilities – like a bullet vibrator or a vibrating egg.

Picking out a new toy together can be a great way to bond with a partner, as well as help them feel involved in what’s going on if they’re nervous about the idea. Log onto your favorite online sex shop and look through the offerings. Take turns pointing out items you think would be fun to try, pick out one or two favorites, and enjoy the anticipation that comes with waiting for your order to arrive.

Communicate, communicate, communicate.

Talking about what you’re doing together before you get started is undoubtedly essential. However, the lines of communication should stay open while you play, as well. If something feels good, let your partner know and encourage them to do the same. Spelling things out with words is fine, but sometimes moans, gasps, and other sounds of pleasure do just as well.

When you’re done, keep talking. Did you both enjoy what happened, and are you down for trying it again sometime? Go over what you each liked most about the experience. Ask each other what you’d like to try differently the next time you play with a sex toy. As you add to your collective experience, try different positions on for size. Add to your toy collection, always keep touching base with one another, and talk about what you’ve been doing.

The more you talk about sex and the more new things you try, the better and deeper your sexual relationship with your partner will become. Explore the possibilities, and enjoy the journey!

6 Powerful Ways to Deepen Your Relationship With a Partner

If you’re wired for relationships, then the chances are excellent that you’re always looking for ways to love your partners better and more deeply. No two people are the same or have the same needs, so getting things just right is an intuitive process you perfect over time. The following tips and suggestions are excellent places to start to deepen your relationship.

1.      Learn their love language (and teach them yours).

People are usually most comfortable expressing love the same way they like to receive it, so consider how your partner goes about doing this. If they tend to show love by giving gifts or showing physical affection, the chances are pretty good that’s how they like to be loved in return.

Don’t merely assume, though. Sit down and talk about your love languages and discuss the ways you might differ from one another. Then go out of your way to do more of the things you’ve been told make your partner feel most loved.

2.      Stay engaged and involved in their life.

Most couples have things they enjoy doing together, but completely different pastimes they enjoy as individuals. This is a normal, healthy way to be in a relationship. However, it’s also essential to take an active interest in your partner’s life beyond the interests and hobbies the two of you share.

Show your support for the things you know your partner loves to do. If your partner loves oil painting, ask about their latest piece, and listen attentively when they talk about colors or techniques. If they invite you to do so, consider painting with them sometime to get to know them better.

3.      Give them space when they need it.

Even the closest, most loving partners don’t necessarily want to be around one another 24/7. Love comes alongside healthy boundaries and should never feel suffocating. No one should ever feel as if they can’t have their own friends or social connections either.

Don’t stand in the way of your partner’s relationships with other people. You should each feel completely free to spend time with your respective friends and family independently of one another. Respect your partner’s need for occasional alone time, as well. Your relationship will be stronger for it.

4.      Hold yourself accountable for your actions.

Nobody’s perfect. Sooner or later, you’re going to make a mistake or do something to hurt your partner’s feelings. When that happens, own up to it and apologize. When you’re wrong, admit as much and do what you can to make things right between you. A little accountability goes a long way.

When it’s your partner’s turn to do the same, show the same love and forgiveness you’d want them to show you. Be honest about how your partner’s actions made you feel, but don’t try to make them feel even worse than they already do. People who love one another treat each other the way they would want to be treated themselves.

5.      Communicate regarding intimate matters.

Everyone knows communication is the key to making a great relationship outside of the bedroom, but it’s an integral part of maintaining a satisfying intimate life, as well. If something isn’t working for you as far as your sex life goes, let your partner know in a kind, loving way. Encourage them to do the same. You should also both feel comfortable introducing new ideas into the mix.

Spending some high-quality solo time with yourself is another great way to become the best lover you can be. Invest in a good sex toy or two and get into the habit of exploring your body regularly. When you truly understand how your body does and doesn’t like to be stimulated, you can convey that information to your partner and reap the benefits.

6.      Always be appreciative of your partner.

You don’t need to break the bank buying your partner expensive gifts to show them how appreciated they are. Just cultivate a habit of letting your partner know how grateful you are for all they do daily. If they cook you a fantastic meal, let them know how delicious it was and thank them. Verbal thanks are great, but thankful actions – like doing the dishes or being the one to handle the cooking next time – often go even further.

Praise your partner often for the things you like about them, as well. Are they an incredible parent, a hard worker, or a world-class lover? Tell them so instead of assuming they already know. Hearing that sort of thing never gets old, and it definitely helps deepen relationships.

Loving someone truly, deeply, and entirely isn’t always easy, but it’s simpler than people think. How do you and your partner like to keep things between you strong and loving?

Lying in Relationships: Why Do People Do It and How Concerned Should You Be?

Even though most people would say they believe you should never tell a lie when you can tell the truth instead, lying is a lot more common than you might think. Lying is a pretty deeply ingrained human behavior, with roughly 60 percent of people spouting untruths regularly. A dizzying number of people even tell a lie every few minutes, some without necessarily realizing it.

Of course, most of the lies people tell are trivial and relatively harmless. A few little white lies in relationships may even be preferable, as not everyone likes brutal honesty when it comes to hearing what their partner truly thinks of them. However, more significant deceptions are common enough to make understanding the reasons for lying important too.

Why Do People Lie?

There are as many different reasons someone might decide to lie to their partner as there are types of people in the world in the first place. Some of those reasons are innocent or even non-existent, as people do sometimes lie “just because.” Others are a lot more serious. Here are a few of the most common.


With around 15-18 percent of married couples choosing to step outside their relationships sexually or romantically at one point or another, cheating isn’t necessarily the norm. However, it remains most people’s top concern as far as possible reasons a partner might be lying or sneaking around. The way modern technology tracks your every move makes it pretty hard to get away with cheating for very long these days, but there will always be those who try anyway.

Desire to Avoid Consequences

Even honest people don’t necessarily like to be held accountable for their actions and choices. People spend money they shouldn’t have, watch porn on the down-low, or perpetuate friendships with people they know their partner doesn’t like. Most think they have good reasons for not being honest about such things, but it’s more likely to be about not wanting to wind up in hot water if they can avoid it instead.


People care what their partners or potential love interests might think of them. It’s why over 90 percent of people lie on their dating profiles to at least some extent. Most of these lies are insecurity-based, though, and relatively harmless. For instance, men may fudge the facts when it comes to what they earn or how tall they are. Women more commonly lie about their age or weight. Just about everyone bends the truth when it comes to topics like education, family background, and professional goals.

Family Ties

Family members can be sensitive topics when it comes to other people, but with spouses and partners, especially. Many families include people who are addicts, who are abusive, or who have cut ties with others in the family unit for various reasons. Someone in a relationship may lie out of embarrassment or out of a desire to protect their families from judgment.

To Avoid (or Cause) Hurt

Relationships can be complicated when it comes to concepts like hurt. Almost everyone can point to a time they told a little white lie (or maybe even a full-size falsehood) because they wanted to avoid needlessly hurting their partner’s feelings. However, it’s just as common for people who are hurt to want to hurt their partner in return. Lying serves both purposes equally well.

How Worried Should You Be About a Lying Partner?

No one likes to catch their partner in a lie, but it’s essential to realize that lying is part of human nature. Nobody’s perfect, your partner included. Everyone occasionally fibs, dances around the truth, or gives in to the temptation to lie by omission. However, there’s a massive difference between a little white lie told to spare someone’s feelings or avoid admitting to something embarrassing and a huge betrayal.

Relationships require openness and honesty if they’re going to stay healthy and happy, so no one should make a habit of lying or sneaking around when it comes to their partner. If you’ve caught your partner in a lie recently or suspect they might be lying to you about something significant, you’ll have to confront them – preferably with proof. If you’re trying to move forward after a past lie, there’s no shame in seeking out help via therapy or counseling.

Ultimately, lying crosses a line in a relationship when it’s so constant or so severe that it makes trust impossible, and no one should put up with being hurt or disrespected in their relationship. How serious a role does falsehoods play in your partnership? If something’s bothering you, don’t sit on it. Bring it up for discussion with your partner so the two of you can find a solution that’s fair, loving, and honest.

What to Do If Quarantine Has Changed Your Relationship

The pandemic has been hard on everyone in a variety of different ways. On many levels, it’s showing people what they’re truly made of and often for the better, but the opposite has been true as well. Quarantine was especially hard on relationships for one simple reason. Voluntarily spending a lot of time with your partner because you choose to is one thing, but being compelled to be together 24 hours a day is another.

Circumstances like those are bound to put a strain on even the best relationships, so if you feel like things just aren’t the same between you and your partner now that things are a little more relaxed, you’re not alone. Here are some tips for getting things back on track as you continue to adjust to current circumstances together.

Restore Balance to Your Lives

For some couples, quarantine wasn’t just challenging. It made them question whether they should even be together at all, so it’s understandable if you and your partner are currently going through something similar. Don’t be too hasty when it comes to throwing in the towel though. Sit down together and talk things out first. If you think a moderator would help, there’s no shame in considering counseling as an option.

Don’t feel obligated to spend more time together than feels comfortable at first though. Give yourselves and each other space to get back to doing things on your own again as well. Reflect on the things that have happened and consider where you’d like things to go next with your relationship. Then bring those insights up for discussion with your partner, as well as invite them to do the same.

Acknowledge What Occurred

A global pandemic and multi-month quarantine period aren’t normal occurrences by any stretch of the imagination. They’re certainly far from the typical stresses placed on a relationship, especially if one or both of you also lost your job as so many people did. Step back for a moment and acknowledge the magnitude of what’s happened before doing anything drastic.

It’s also important to understand that change comes with the territory when you’re in a relationship. Most people’s relationships underwent a few changes and adjustments. It’s how you and your partner respond to those changes (both as a couple and as individuals) that matters in the end.

Focus on Reconnecting

Once you’ve both had a chance to let the dust settle a bit, it’s time to look for ways to reconnect and rebuild the bond you once had. Set aside some time to get back to doing the things you used to love doing together. Recreate your first date or plan an activity that you haven’t had a chance to enjoy together in a while. Alternatively, this may be a wonderful time to come up with something new to get excited about doing together. It’s up to you!

Rekindling things in the bedroom is important as well, so take advantage of opportunities to bond in that department when they present themselves. Now is the time to allow yourself those extra-indulgent Sunday mornings in bed or the naked Saturdays you used to love. This is a good time to add some new things to your sexual routine as well. Think role-playing, erotic massage, or sex toys!

See Where You Stand

Eventually, the two of you will reach a place where you’re over the shock of how quarantine affected your relationship. Hopefully, you’ve also let go of the hope that your relationship will ever be the same way it was. That’s when it’s time to take a look at what you’re working with going forward and ask yourself some questions.

How do you feel about the ways your relationship has changed? Are these changes you can accept and move forward with into the future? If not, are there additional changes that could be made that would fix the issue? Are there any changes that could be viewed as blessings in disguise? Remember, it’s all about how you handle change that makes the difference.

Check in With Your Partner

Once you’ve figured out how you feel, talk to your partner about how they feel as well. Don’t simply assume they feel the same way you do about everything that’s happened. Ask them and do your best to accept what they tell you without judgment. Then move forward from there.

Relationships are always a two-way street with two people involved. Communication is important anyway, but it’s especially so when a couple’s just been through something challenging and stressful. Such occurrences are a part of life, so quarantine likely won’t be the last one you face together. However, now that you know how you deal with outside stressors as a couple, you know what you’re working with moving forward. Use what you’ve learned to grow stronger together, as well as separately.

Attraction and Other People: When Is It Cheating vs Good Clean Fun?

Every couple is different as far as what counts as cheating. For some, a partner simply being good friends with someone of their preferred gender is too close for comfort. For others, having casual sex with multiple other people is no big deal. All couples have defined boundaries they know not to violate, but there are always situations in life that can leave you wondering whether what you’re doing is cheating vs good clean fun.

So how exactly is anyone supposed to know when they’re crossing a dangerous line with someone they’re attracted to? When does it stop being harmless flirting and start being something to worry about? Here are a few tips for figuring it out.

When Are Harmless Fantasies Not So Harmless?

You’re in a relationship, not a convent. It’s the most human thing in the world to notice other people and to like what you see. It’s healthy to feel attraction to other people, as well as to entertain the occasion fantasy about someone else. You can rest easy in the knowledge that your partner does it as well and there’s nothing wrong with it on either end.

Fantasizing about something and doing it are two different things entirely. However, it’s possible for someone’s fantasy life to become obsessive and to perhaps be an indicator that things aren’t as they should be in their relationship. Occasionally fantasizing about Ryan Gosling while you enjoy a private romp with your vibrator is innocent enough. If you have trouble enjoying sex with your partner without imagining you’re with your hot coworker instead though, you might want to ask yourself why.

That said, fantasizing isn’t cheating. It’s healthy, clean fun, and can even be something couples learn to enjoy sharing. However, it shouldn’t consume you to the point where it’s getting in the way of your relationship or any other aspect of your life. If it does, ask yourself what the people in your fantasies have that your partner doesn’t. If you can identify what’s missing, you can open a discussion with your partner that might lead to a healthy solution.

What Is Micro-Cheating and Are You Doing It?

Even if certain things haven’t been expressly defined as cheating in words between you and your partner, you’re aware that doing them would cause trouble. Micro-cheating is not about those big things or even the grey-area things that make you wonder whether you should be doing whatever it is. Micro-cheating is the subtle stuff that seems harmless on paper, but that you know would probably upset your partner if they knew about it. The following are a few common examples:

  • Telling someone else you’re single when you’re not, especially if it’s so you can experience a bit of the single life again instead of simply fantasizing about it.
  • Going out of your way to text or instant message someone you find attractive, especially someone you could see yourself dating if you were single. Double especially if you hide it from your partner or know they would be upset but it if they found out.
  • Establishing or maintaining a deep emotional bond with someone else – a bond similar to the type you would have with a romantic partner.
  • Letting flirty moments that might otherwise be innocent go way too far. Sometimes people have zero intention of cheating but enjoy pushing interactions up to that point before backing off.
  • Making passes at strangers or otherwise making the first move in a flirty exchange with someone you don’t know. Being a bestie’s wing-woman is fine, but not if you’re using it as an excuse to get up close and personal with other people.
  • Being on a dating app for any reason, even if you’re just there to chat or are simply curious about who else might be out there. People in healthy relationships don’t generally feel the need to maintain accounts on Tinder or OKCupid.

Many actions like the above aren’t necessarily cheating in and of themselves, but they could be a sign that something’s lacking in your relationship. They could also eventually lead to the temptation to cheat if you’re not careful. Generally speaking, if you wouldn’t want your partner to find out about it, it’s probably micro-cheating. If you’re left actively questioning your motives for doing whatever it was, it’s a sign you shouldn’t have been doing it in the first place.

At the end of the day, cheating vs good clean fun isn’t about what your friends or the rest of society would say crosses a line. It’s something that either crosses the boundaries you’ve set within your relationship or otherwise breaks the trust you know your partner has in you. It’s not about having fantasies, noticing someone on the street, or having sexy dreams about someone else. How do you and your partner define it?

The Modern Woman’s Guide to Dating Multiple People at a Time

These days, sex and dating don’t have to be about traditional relationships or monogamy unless you want them to be. The world is filled with fun, interesting people who are well worth loving, so it’s understandable that you wouldn’t want to limit yourself to just one. There’s a fine art to successfully dating multiple people at once though. Here’s how you can do it without stepping on any toes along the way.

Figuring Out What You Want

First thing’s first. You need to be clear on what you are and aren’t looking for from a connection with another person before you get involved with anyone. Are you strictly interested in casual dating and no-strings-attached sex right now? Would you be open to a committed relationship if the right person came along? What do you need and expect from any partners you do get involved with.

It’s a good idea to think long and hard about why you want to date multiple people in the first place as well. If you’re doing it solely to prove you’re over someone else or because you want to boost your ego, it’s probably not a good idea. If you’re doing it to explore whether monogamy is even for you or simply because it feels like a good fit right now though, carry on.

Honesty Is Always the Best Policy

The days when there was only one “proper” approach to dating are over. Today, there are as many ways to enjoy love and sex as there are types of people in the world, so you’re free to make your own rules. Just make sure you’re honest with other people about where you stand and what you’re looking for.

If you’re already seeing other people at the time you start seeing someone new, tell them that. If you’re not looking for anything more than the occasional Friday night hook-up, tell them that too. If someone doesn’t care for being one of several people on your radar, they’re not the right choice for you anyway. Keep looking until you find someone who’s looking for the same things you are.

Safety Is Key

It should go without saying that unprotected sex is a no-no in this day and age. Responsible adults are not only conscientious about safety but insistent that anyone they sleep with is too. Have as much sex as you want with as many people as you like, but always use proper protection. No sex is so good that it’s worth risking a nasty STD.

And don’t ever count on the other person having protection. Always be prepared with some of your own. Don’t forget that options like condoms are good for more than just private parts either. You can slip them onto your favorite sex toy, like the FemmeFunn Cadenza, if you’re in the mood to share some good vibrations. This keeps things extra safe, hygienic, and responsible. It makes clean-up a little easier too.

In Case of Feelings

Be aware that sometimes things happen. You could be uninterested in anything serious one day only to see something extremely special in one of the people you’re dating the next – something that makes you completely rethink your stance on commitment. Alternatively, someone you’re seeing could develop deeper feelings for you. It’s a good idea to know what you’d do in both those situations.

Feelings on either end are a sign that it’s time to reevaluate things. Is the person in question someone you could see yourself with? If so, do you like them enough to drop the other people you’re seeing or does a polyamorous set-up sound better to you? Whatever you’re thinking, be sure to communicate it clearly with the other person so they know where you stand. Also, be aware that unreciprocated feelings for either person can complicate things, meaning it may be best to just end things.

Don’t Overextend Yourself

When you’re dating more than one person at a time and everything’s going better than you could have hoped, it might be tempting to say yes to every opportunity that comes your way. Be careful not to overextend yourself though. Even if you’re keeping things casual with everyone you’re seeing, for now, it’s important to treat people with respect.

No one likes feeling like they’re being canceled on in favor of someone else. Plus, while leaving your options open is freeing, juggling way too many people can be stressful and defeat the purpose.

If you’re an open, honest type who genuinely loves connecting with lots of different people, you may find you like adopting an open policy to your dating life to stick with it a while. Just stay communicative with everyone involved, as well as respectful of their feelings, and all will be well.

When Should a Decision Be Strictly Your Call (and Not Your Partner’s)?

When you’re in a relationship, the simple act of making life decisions becomes more complicated and that’s as it should be. Your choices no longer affect just you, so it makes sense to bring your partner in on the conversation more often than not. Some decisions should still be considered yours to make on your own though (and vice versa for your partner).

It’s important to keep your partner in the loop and include them, so even personal decisions should probably at least be discussed. Large decisions about where you’ll live or whether to buy a house together should always be considered joint decisions. However, you should always get the final say in more personal decisions. The following are some great examples.

What You Do for a Living

If you’re like most people, you want your partner’s input when it comes to your future career, but at the end of the day, it’s ultimately your call. It’s not just a money issue either, although income is important. Only you can say for sure whether you’re passionate enough about something to do it for the rest of your life.

You’re also the only one who can determine whether a particular job field is compatible with everything else you want for your life. Are the hours you’ll be expected to work really for you? What about the other job requirements? A partner can be a great help when it comes to figuring those things out, but the final call should be yours to make.

When You Have Sex

When you decide to be in a sexual relationship with another person, it makes sense that they’ll want sex fairly regularly. It’s also fine to indulge your partner occasionally if they’re really in the mood, but you’re less enthused. What isn’t fine is for your partner to ever make you feel like you don’t have the right to say no.

You’re the one who gets the final call when it comes to your body. If you don’t want to have sex or engage in something specific, it’s your call and your partner should respect that. If you and your partner find you disagree on the ideal frequency for your sex life, it may be time to initiate a more in-depth decision.

Whether You’re on Birth Control

Whether or not the two of you have children right now (or ever) is a mutual decision you and your partner make together. However, whether you’re on oral birth control is a personal decision about your body that you deserve the final call on.

Oral birth control doesn’t agree with every woman or every system, so there are lots of reasons why someone might not want to be on it. The opposite is also true. Many women far prefer the freedom and peace of mind taking oral contraceptives brings to the table as compared to the alternatives. Your partner does not have the right to decide for you either way.

Who Your Friends Are

While it’s great when your friends and your partner get along famously and like one another, that might not always be the case. Unless a particular friendship is somehow affecting your relationship, it’s up to you and you alone who you hang out with and include in your social circle. Your partner doesn’t get to decide otherwise because they don’t like them or approve of something specific about them.

Yes, you should listen to your partner if they express concern about a friend who’s maybe hurting you or taking advantage of you. Yes, you should value their opinion and be respectful of your partner’s feelings when being firm about boundaries. No, you shouldn’t give them the final call on your friendships just because it’s easier. Friendships are important and personal, so decisions about them should be personal too.

How You Look

Looks may be only skin deep, but that doesn’t make them unimportant. How you choose to dress, and look is part of how you express your identity to the rest of the world, so it makes sense that it’s personal to you on many levels.

That said, your looks are your own. It’s fine to take your partner’s likes and dislikes into consideration when styling yourself or making decisions about body modifications like tattoos or piercings. It’s not fine for them to make demands or try to decide for you how you’re allowed to look, how you’ll wear your hair, and so forth. Again, it’s your body, so it’s your call.

Being in a relationship frequently means putting your heads together and coming up with a compromise. Healthy relationships are between two individuals who are comfortable making their own decisions though. What decisions do you share with your partner versus make on your own?

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