During the past ten years, I have collected more than 10,000 sex surveys from people who have visited my website. My sex survey is different than surveys that are designed to yield statistics. The questions are open ended, so people give real answers instead of numbers on a scale of 1 to 10.
As you'll see from this woman's response, an open-ended survey provides a better sense of who we are as sexual beings than the usual “45% of women prefer the missionary position...” or “32% of couples have sex 3 times a week...
FEMALE AGE 32 (in her words, taken from her responses to a 40-question survey):
I am totally straight, though I sometimes consider that to be limiting. I’ve had crushes on lesbian women in the past (oddly never straight women) but have never acted on it, and never fantasized about anything beyond kissing. I’m just not interested in vaginas. I had a friend in college who I was always drawn to. I would have dreams of kissing her but never did. She had a boyfriend at the time, and only years later came out. I tend to have crushes on lesbians rather than straight girls, especially the more boyish ones.
I am a self-employed skilled craftswoman who works from home. I’ve been studying biology and would like to be a teacher someday. I have had 3 serious partners and no casual /hook up relationships. No one-night stands. I’ve currently been in a relationship with a man for six months. Despite being sexually active for half of my life, this is the best sex I’ve ever had. We see each other three or four times a week and have sex each time.
Cuddling and intimate conversation is very important. We sometimes kiss for hours, stopping only to ask each other random questions while cuddling, then kissing again. We kiss all the time. We are still in the first six months, mind you!
My partner and I have kissed for hours until we are aroused out of our minds. I like everything about kissing my partner--the way his mouth tastes, the warmth of his tongue, the softness of his face and lips on mine, the sounds our mouths make, the way he breathes in sharply when I do something unexpected like run my tongue across the inside of his top teeth. I especially like looking into his eyes and seeing an intensity of feelings. I dislike that sometimes his mustache goes up my nose.
Friendship in a relationship is very important to me. So is everyday romance. Things like letting your partner know you’re thinking of them, preparing a meal together, sharing intimate feelings, a look loaded with emotion, planning a future together, even little things like touching my face/neck when kissing, or just making the bed! Grand gestures are not necessary.
We used condoms for the first three months, then we both got tested for STDs and stopped using condoms. I have had an IUD (Mirena) for two years. Though I know it’s not right for every woman, it is perfect for me.
What goes through my mind when I first see a new partner’s penis? I usually have some idea in my head of what I expect his penis to look like based on his stature and what I’ve felt through his pants, so my first thoughts are often comparisons between what I expected and what I see. I generally marvel at how different every penis is, and then I inevitably think about what it would feel like in my mouth.
I really like my current partner’s penis. It’s that magical size/shape where it fits just right everywhere. Just hits my G-spot, makes a perfect mouthful, and I think it’s going to be just the right size for anal sex when we start to have it.
My labia minora are on the larger side and slightly uneven. I certainly wouldn’t mind if they were even! However, they aren’t large enough to cause an unsightly bulge in a bikini or to get in the way while I’m exercising, and my boyfriend insists that I am physically perfect, so I would never get labiaplasty.
We do masturbate in front of each other. The look on his face when I touch myself is like a catalyst. It’s like a feedback loop of arousal. I can tell that he’s excited to be let in to this intimate moment and I enjoy it very much. It’s just plain sexy that he is comfortable sharing such an intimate thing with me. It’s really informative to watch how someone you would like to pleasure pleasures themselves.
If I had to choose between oral sex and intercourse, I would choose intercourse. Unlike most women, I am not too fond of direct clitoral stimulation. I prefer penetration and g-spot stimulation. And anal sex feels incredibly intense and can be mindblowing, although I haven’t had it yet with my current partner. Anal sex has to be just right, I have had my share of unpleasant experiences. Without enough foreplay and lubricant it can be terribly painful. But with a generous amount of foreplay, proper relaxation and breathing, it can bring full-body tingling and shuddering orgasms.
As for giving me oral sex, oh my god, he is so good at oral sex! And he loves it. I think that’s what makes it so good. I didn’t even find it entertaining until I met him. My best advice would be that oral sex will be far more intense for me if I’m already aroused before it starts, and please please penetrate me with something at the same time.
During intercourse, I like being on the bottom with my legs wrapped around his hips. It’s my favorite position because we can look into each others eyes, he can deeply penetrate me, and we can both control the timing. I can pull him close and gyrate my hips. We can see how our actions are pleasuring one other. We change positions at least a couple of times. It’s nice to hit different spots from different angles, and shifting around makes it less obvious if someone is taking an unusually long time to get off. Sometimes it feels like we’re chasing the g-spot around--as I get more aroused it’s harder to hit!
I have found that when I’m very attracted to someone, things that I normally wouldn’t consider doing sexually seem far more palatable. For instance, spitting in someone’s mouth sounds kind of gross to me, but if my boyfriend thinks it’s hot, I get excited by the idea that it excites him, and suddenly I’m game to try almost anything.
I don’t know quite where the vanilla line is! I like some light bondage scenarios--being pinned down, bitten, rough sex, spanking, or being tied up. I also like biting my partner and squeezing his nipples, because it gives him the good kind of pain.
I wish I’d known earlier in life how broad the range of experience is for orgasm in women. Mine were so subtle I didn’t know I was even having them for years. When I finally decided that the tiny yawn feeling might be an orgasm, I realized that I could easily achieve multiples during sex, and often of increasing intensity.
Observations from Paul: This woman's relationship is only six month old. I can't help but wonder what her responses would be like if she'd been in this relationship for six or sixteen years. Would she be as excited about having sex? Would she want to kiss her partner for hours on end?
It's unusual to see a survey from someone who has been in long-term relationship that expresses this kind of excitement about sex. That's why I was so impressed with two sex surveys I recently receved--one from a 52-year old woman who's been in a relationship with the same man for 31 years, the other from a 58-year old woman who's been in a monogamous relationship with her husband for 38+ years. I'll tell you what they had to say next week.
Please click here If you’d like to take the survey or look at the current survey questions.
Paul Joannides is the author of the Guide To Getting It On, now in its 7th edition.
The illustration is by Daerick Gross Sr. from the Guide To Getting It On.