The start of a new relationship is both the best and worst time sexually for most couples.
It’s when lust is at its strongest because everything is fresh and new. But it’s also stressful, especially if you really like them, because you’re both trying hard to impress but have no experience of your partner’s body, sexual likes or dislikes.
Most of us simply take a (literal) stab in the dark, do whatever our previous partners seemed to like, and cross our fingers.
With varied success.
The truth is, most couples have their best sex between one or two months after they start doing it because it takes time to figure out what works and doesn’t for the two of you.
Which is why most of the things that worry us when we start having sex with someone new, really shouldn’t.
There are some obvious and definite sexual red flags you MUST pay attention to – but this certainly isn’t one of them…
Tracey Cox has revealed the sex issues you don’t need to worry about with a new man (stock photo)
He hasn’t had sex in ages
‘My new man confessed recently that he hasn’t had sex in two years. He’s in his mid 20s and attractive. He says it ‘just turned out that way’. Is this something to worry about?’
The amount of men under 30 not having sex has nearly tripled in the past decade.
We think the ‘hook up generation’ are having casual sex all the time but it’s simply not true.
One-night-stands are the norm rather than anything to be ashamed of, young people are encouraged to explore their sexuality rather than cram themselves into the ‘straight’ box and information about sex is readily available.
But young people generally are less sexually active than they ever have been.
This is also the generation least likely to get on the property ladder, so privacy is an issue. If you’re still living with Mum and Dad, where are you going to have hot sex with the person you just met?
The three things you DO need to worry about
He’s not that interested in sex. If you’re not that into it either, there’s nothing to worry about at all. But if your libido is strong, this is a sign his isn’t.
Even the lowest sex drive gets a temporary boost at the start of a relationship when everything is new. If he’s not that fussed about sex now, it’s only downhill from here.
He’s selfish. Again, we’re usually at our most sexually generous at the beginning of a relationship when we’re out to impress.
If he’s only interested in one orgasm – his – and doesn’t ask what you need or want to have one, alarm bells should ring.
If he’s selfish in bed, he’s likely to be selfish out of it as well.
Be particularly suspicious of men who expect you to perform oral sex on them but refuse to reciprocate.
He’s forcing you into doing something you don’t want to.
There’s an alarming number of men who watch porn and think it reflects what’s actually happening in the average couple’s bedroom.
They see women being choked and slapped and think that’s what women want them to do in real life.
Some people do enjoy rough sex but lots don’t. It also requires a high level of trust which takes time to develop.
‘Enthusiastic consent’ means unless you agree wholeheartedly with doing something with your new partner, they absolutely shouldn’t go there.
Unemployment is high, leaving lots of twentysomethings feeling stressed – another libido killer. Social media puts crippling pressure on finding, not just a mate, but a photogenic one.
Then there’s porn.
For lots of men, masturbating to porn is zero effort -a far easier way to satisfy themselves than having to negotiate all of these issues.
Him not having had sex for a long period of time is no longer a red flag for all these reasons.
It might well be a clue that his desire for sex isn’t extremely high (if it was, his motivation would also be high to find a solution to the obstacles). But it’s just as likely sex simply hasn’t been a priority for him.
What’s more telling is how interested he is in having sex now, with you.
Not being able to get an erection
‘I’m used to dealing with premature ejaculation the first time you have sex with someone. But my new man is having problems getting an erection. I find it a little insulting. Surely at the start, he should be massively turned on?’
Here’s the thing: he probably IS massively turned on.
Just because he can’t get an erection doesn’t mean he isn’t desperate to have sex with you.
It just means he’s also desperate for everything to be perfect – which is the perfect recipe for a good old-fashioned case of performance anxiety.
The British sex and relationship expert (pictured) also reveals the red flags to look out for
The more anxious he is that everything has to be just so, the less likely it’s going to be.
The first time is a big deal for lots of men: they want to impress. For most men that means having an ‘acceptable’ size penis, getting a strong, hard erection easily, not climaxing too quickly and having the sexual skills to bring you to orgasm.
That’s a lot to worry about.
Penises don’t like stress – stress narrows blood vessels. An erection happens when blood pumps into the chambers of the penis, filling them with blood to make the penis hard.
Sexual performance anxiety stops that happening efficiently.
It’s also a lose-lose scenario: he’s worried he can’t perform, which leads to him not being able to perform, which means he’s even more anxious the next time, which means he’s even less likely to get an erection. And the cycle continues.
The more relaxed you are about him not getting an erection on demand, the quicker the problem is solved.
Let him know it’s normal, that you aren’t judging him for it, keep the focus on him pleasuring you (through oral sex, using his fingers) and his confidence will grow.
Take the focus off penetrative sex and let him know he doesn’t need an erect penis to satisfy you.
A watched pot never boils and it’s the same with erections: the less attention you pay to his penis, the more likely he is to get an erection.
His technique is awful and/or he’s inexperienced.
‘I’ve met a guy I really like but our first time in bed was just awful. He doesn’t seem to have a clue how to give oral sex and he rushed straight into intercourse way before I was ready. I get the feeling he’s both inexperience and clueless. What do I do?’
Panic not! Technique can be taught and inexperience is solved by him having sexual experiences with you.
Practise makes perfect.
So long as he’s open to being given direction, there really isn’t a problem.
First, try using body language to get the message across.
When he does something you like, exaggerate your response: moan loudly, move closer, kiss him harder so he can’t help but get the message you like what he’s doing.
If you don’t like something, lift your body away from his touch or (better) redirect his hand/mouth or penis.
Technique can be taught and inexperience is solved by him having sexual experiences with you, says Tracey Cox (stock photo)
Better still, say, ‘Can you do it like this? That feels great like that’.
Most men are thrilled to be given constructive, tactful feedback in bed, especially at the start when they’re getting to know what you like and don’t like.
He bristles at being ‘told what to do’ and gets horribly insulted that you dared to suggest he’s anything but perfect in bed?
This IS a problem.
Not being able to talk about sex together is the strongest indicator of all that your sex life won’t work.
On any level.
If your partner’s not willing to discuss sex, you haven’t a hope in hell of solving any sex issues you have now or in the future.
Let him know why it’s a big deal to have honest, open communication – and that it’s a deal breaker if he can’t see that happening.
Tracey’s new book Great Sex Starts at 50 is available from wherever you buy your books. You’ll find her supersex and Edge product ranges at lovehoney and traceycox.com