Reproductive Rights, Love + Sex, Love, Advice

6 signs your partner is selfish in bed – and how to tell them to step it up

Meeting a person you like is exciting, but wondering whether they'll be able to get you off can be... less exciting.

Have you ever had that feeling in your heart and mind when a partner took during sex, and all you did was give?

Did it make you wonder if you even deserved any pleasure in sex, or whether that was even possible for you? Did you ever feel implicitly pressured or emotionally blackmailed into doing something that you may not have wanted to do just to please your partner? When you asked for something, did your partner ever flat out refuse you, saying that it was “gross”?

If you ever said yes to these questions or are currently saying yes to them, you have experienced the wrath of a sexually selfish partner. You have experienced that knot in your stomach which makes you realize what you have never felt – the beauty of a mutually pleasurable sexual experience. Here are some signs of such a partner.

1.  They expect to receive oral pleasure but are unwilling to return the favor

Season 2 Flirting GIF by Blunt Talk
[Image Description: A gif of a character from Blunt Talk talking about going down on her partner] via Giphy
I get it. A person’s relationship with oral sex is a love-hate one.

This can be the case with both giving and receiving, or could even apply to one or the other. Nevertheless, too many times I have been shocked when I hear some heterosexual women tell me that their husbands/partners will not go down on them because they think it’s icky, smelly, or “gross”. Yet, when I ask if they do so for their partner, they say yes. On the flipside though, I do not dismiss the fact that men may experience this too.

Basically, just stop only being a receiver unless your partner does not enjoy you giving. Enough said.

2. They are only concerned with their own orgasm and climax

orgasm masturbation GIF
[Image Description: A man with earphones doing a facial expression of masturbation.] via Giphy
Man or woman, gay or straight, the golden rule of mutually pleasurable sex is to try to ensure both partners finish. The keyword here is to try. In the real world, this may not always be possible, but nobody likes to time and time again have to pull out the vibrator or some other contraption to help do the job. In heterosexual relationships, this is an especially important accomplishment for the sexually aware man.

Given that it can take longer for ciswomen to reach orgasm or climax, a sexually aware man takes the time to make sure she gets there. A pervy, selfish one forgets that she has a clitoris.

3. They constantly beg for a sexual position that their partner does not enjoy

bloodhound gang monkey GIF
[Image Description: A gif of the Bloodhound Gang singing “Bad Touch”. This gif focuses on the line “let’s do it like they do on the discovery channel.] via Giphy
Sometimes part of giving means doing something for a partner that you may not particularly enjoy. However, this situation is made worse when it becomes one of pressure. Sex is an act of expression and enjoyment of that expression. Continuously making requests from a partner about something they may feel hesitant about is not only selfish but also dangerous. It can open the floodgates for shame, feeling incompetent, or even coercive behavior.

Recent case-in-point: regardless of how you feel about Aziz Ansari, for example, everyone can agree that his behavior to push so hard for certain sexual acts with his date not only pushed the boundaries of consent, but was also pathetic – and selfish.

4. They become impatient with the time it takes for their partner to feel sexual pleasure

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[Image Description: A gif of a man with his fist up, saying “Slowly. Intimately.] via Giphy
“Mainstream” porn is problematic as the only guidance for how to have sex. What is even more problematic however is the tendency of pornography to show that women take little to no time to orgasm. It is unrealistic, and I can only imagine how many women suffer from never reaching an orgasm because their partner either gets frustrated when it takes them time or refuses to try. A self-aware partner is not concerned about how quickly he or she is going to be done. In fact, they are not concerned about any real finish line.

If there was a quote that went “Sex has a finish line,” the author would be, “said no one ever.”

5. They become frustrated when their partner may not be in the mood to engage in sex

years GIF
[Image Description: A gif of a man from a CW show crying with the phrase, “Let me have sex with you.”] via Giphy
People have something called lives. Those lives can have different impacts on their levels of desire for sex. Different people also have different libidos at different times. I know, humans are complicated animals. Hence, if you or your partner is not in the mood while the other one is, it is okay to back off.

I can guarantee that getting angry or frustrated will not suddenly put anyone in the mood to have sex. However, of course, it may become an issue in a relationship when one person is constantly not in the mood.

For that, it is time to determine some root causes.

6. They make excuses for not being intimate after sex

bridesmaids GIF
[Image Description: A gif from “Bridesmaids” with Kristin Wigg’s temporary boyfriend telling her to leave his place in the morning.] via Giphy
This one would be a major hell no for me in a hot second.

Sex and intimacy are fluid, but they also work very well together and create a great experience for two people (I cannot speak for beyond that). The popularized notion that men simply do not like to cuddle is simply an excuse for being emotionally lazy. Nobody is saying to have a two-hour long cuddle session, but sexual pleasure is not achieved solely in an experience of penetration.

Everything that surrounds it – the anticipation, the build-up, the climax, and the dopamine rush afterward – is what makes it so healthy and amazing. Sex is never solely about “finishing” because if that was the case then masturbation can fulfill that need.

For the record, being selfish does not have to be bad, but in sex, some selflessness is required because there is, in one way or another, some feelings. Nobody wants to become horrible and selfish in bed, but it can happen and that’s where these signs can help you see that. The important thing about sex is mutual satisfaction, regardless if one is receiving more than the other.  What works for one couple may not work for the other, but the important thing is always consent, verbal and non-verbal!