Writing as a self-identified sex-lover and kinky bitch, I can firmly and shamelessly affirm that I love making the beast with two backs. The word “shamelessly” here, however, comes with it’s own caveat of anonymity and to be quite honest, it’s a lot easier being a self-proclaimed hoe when nobody knows who you are and future employers/my mum can’t track this article down.

Regardless, I love all of that sweaty, grasping at each other’s flesh, sweat dripping off your chin and into my eye type of shit. I love making people feel good and feeling good in return, and then afterwards having those moist little chats about absolutely nothing, where you light a cig and slyly feel like you’re really getting that person. In short, sex is good. However, in my relatively short but pretty varied sexual career, I have quickly come to understand that it is a truth universally acknowledged, that men are trash people in bed.

Even as I type this sentence I can feel the collective hackles of men-folk everywhere raising as their mouths form the long howling battle-cry of “NOT ALL MEN”, and of course, not all men are scum. There will be some lucky folk who can’t relate to this article because their men are wonderful, attentive people who take the time to listen and act on their needs, and to those people I offer my sincerest and most heartfelt blessings. However, this article is not about those men. Already, I can sense another faction of men-folk rallying around me to cry “but surely, you have never truly been satisfied by a man (trust me babe I can help you with that lol x)”, and to them I say, that once again, you are wrong.

I have been satisfied by many men, but the experience of having sex with a man is very different to having sex with a femme-identifying woman, for example. I find that it is infinitely easier to communicate with a woman rather than a man in bed, and that is predominantly because men use the bedroom as an arena in which to bolster their fragile sense of masculinity which 1) more often than not that comes at the expense of their sexual partners and 2) consequently makes them trash in bed. Whilst talking to a friend over coffee about our recent antics, she told me a story:

“He was just generically pumping away on top of me in the most uninspiring of ways. I could have forgiven him were it not for the fact that he was just looking at the business end and I just felt like a hole… I remember asking, in a very nice and coquettish way, for him to look at me, I might have even a bit more subtle, like maybe I tilted his chin up or something anyway, his eyes went straight back to the business end again and after I asked again he was like ‘I don’t take notes.’”

We laughed but I wasn’t really that shocked. This faux-bravado isn’t anything except funny at best, and deeply depressing at worst. If anything, he had just uttered aloud what many men make obvious in their actions in the bedroom – that their image of the all-masculine all-powerful pleasure-machine is more important than, actually pleasuring the other person involved. Similarly, I have had the misfortune of engaging with men who have stormed off in a huff when I tried to help things along in the bedroom, apparently offended that I had challenged their mental image of the lone sexual-warrior-hero-who-can-make-a-girl-come-with-his-dick-and-dick-alone!

But what struck me most about this conversation was my friend’s description of how she had asked him. I too have found, that when talking to certain men in certain situations, it is often easier to get your side of conversation across once it has been pre-empted with an obligatory ego stroke. From someone who would probably be described as a nettle rather than a wallflower, I have found myself modifying my language for the sake of the guy, increasingly providing performative validation to my male sexual partners, simply in order for me to slip them my opinion/disagreement/instruction – sugarcoating the apparently bitter pill of a woman’s input.

It becomes a constricting cycle of affirming the man’s masculinity so that he doesn’t feel threatened when you ask him for what you want and feeling like you can’t freely express yourself around them. Especially in vulnerable spaces such as the bedroom, this ego-stroke can become the difference between being attacked and having your say in your own experience of pleasure. Thus, this hypermasculinity often becomes the very barrier that prevents open and honest communication in the bedroom – communication that is vital in order to have a fun, sexy, consensual time between the sheets. Until men collectively begin to unlearn the paralysing constraints of masculinity, start accepting that communication in bed is a thing, and stop getting offended that heartily rubbing my inner thigh isn’t going to get me off, I’m going to stick by my refrain. Men are trash.