Shyness/awkwardness with trying to be more adventurous

Hi everyone,

so my and my bf have been together about 9 months and things have never really been that exciting, it was mostly just fine but fairly frequent at the beginning. Then I decided to try the contraceptive implant as I have tried pretty much every other kind of birth control with no luck and I wanted something long term (Pill, mini pill, injection and coil do not work for me). Basically the implant destroyed my libido and I rarely wanted to have sex and didn’t really enjoy it when we did. I have since had it removed and thankfully my libido seems to have returned but it feels like the emotional impact has taken it’s toll.

My bf has always had a fairly low libido and neither of us has had much experience being more adventurous although we have discussed it and we are both interested in trying new things. Problem is we seem to be too shy and awkward to do much about it.

We have talked about it and he said that because we spent so long not really having much sex he now feels a bit withdrawn and hesitant so he never instigates or tries to do anything other than the basics because he spent so long feeling like I wasn’t into it. I asked how we could improve that and he doesn’t know. I have explained that I also feel a bit unwanted and hesitant because when I do try to instigate he goes along with it but still seems awkward which is really offputting.

for example they last time we had a few drinks and started kissing and I suggested moving things to the bedroom and even though he agreed it still felt hesitant. I asked if he could go down on me and he did but things just didn’t seem to be working. I feel like I often have to ask for little things during foreplay that I almost always ask for yet he still wont do them without being asked and I feel like I can’t ask for more cos I would just be constantly asking for everything rather than just enjoying ourselves.

We have tried to talk about how to get into things a bit more without it being awkward but apart from going slow we don’t know what to do. It’s like I want to but I feel like I am gonna freak him out since even asking for oral seems to be a big deal. I have opened up about other things I wanna try and he said he would like to do the same but getting round to it seems like a far off fantasy.

I don’t know what else to do so if anyone has any advice it would be appreciated. Has anyone else been in a similar position and managed to turn things around?

Thank you


I think you need to slow down and almost start again with your sexual relationship. It can be really hard to feel like your partner is just having sex with you for your sake and they aren’t enjoying it, so I can understand why your partner is hesitant and not wanting to initiate but at the same time I can fully empathise with you in that hesitancy making your feel unwanted. It’s a little bit of a lose/lose for both of you.

However, trying to jump from the position you’ve been in to being more adventurous is a huge leap. You need to dial it back and get the foundations right. How much time do you spend being intimate? How much time do you spend kissing or caressing each other, without any pressure of it turning into more? Spend time naked together, spend time kissing, spend time caressing or massaging each other. It doesn’t have to go anywhere beyond that and maybe even say “let’s not have any kind of penetration but let’s enjoy each other” or whatever to take the pressure off. That way, when you do both want sex, you’ll both feel that it is what you both want.

If you want to add things in, ice cubes and food you can lick off each other aren’t too intimidating. Otherwise, feathers or massage oils could be good. Or Lovehoney do have a reasonably good games section. Something like some dice (there is an oral sex set) can be an easy way for your partner to try different things without having to make the decision of what to do himself and without you have to instruct him.

Navigating this stuff isn’t always easy, and you can have a few false starts and wrong turns but I’m sure you will get there.


Thank you for this, I think you are right and starting from the beginning is a good idea. I think maybe just getting my libido back has kind made me a bit stir crazy haha

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I think @Calie has covered most of what I would have suggested, and probably more :slight_smile:

My main points would be if sexual discussions are awkward take the pressure away from sex, like mentioned focus on the intimacy and see where that takes you. Candle lit meals and massages, naked cuddling, bathing or showering washing each other, games nights with cheeky forfeits, a little teasing with some sexy undies, see where things take you. Sensual massages for each other are great with oils, finding out what kind of touches each other like.

Let things happen spontaneously, follow instincts and his reactions. In that scenario, maybe lead him to the bedroom if talking is difficult, or stay where you are and up the heat a little.

Take your time, enjoy each other and the journey


You could try and make some fun out it with a game like monogamy or some sex dice etc, so that neither of you are “asking” for anything, you are doing what the dice / cards tell you. You could also try a yes/no/maybe list and compare your answers.

Are your sexual discussions away from the bedroom, somewhere neutral and not at a time when they are driven by hormones? Kitchen or living room are often good places and tone is important (a loving / understanding / inquisitive tone rather than confrontational / judgemental).

Have you told him what turns you on, has he told you the same?

Lots of good advice so far, but keeping the lines of communication open and not shutting down ideas both ways is key


I think everyone has had their ups and downs. I am the first one who doesn’t take his own advice about this stuff so it can get frustrating and can also ebb and flow with life, stress, kids, no kids, health, family, work… your situation is not unique.

Before you start putting a ton of effort and monetary expense into buying and trying things. Plan an evening together in a relaxed setting (as discussed previously on other channels and topics NOT IN A CAR…people feel trapped when they can’t escape and will shut down), maybe making dinner together or a place where you are alone but have confidentiality and freedom to be open.

Openly talk about it and communicate how you feel. Are you scared to lose him? Does he want to be in the relationship? If so, he will listen. The feelings are real and no one can argue with how you feel…because they aren’t you. Let him know where you are at both emotionally and sexually and be honest and open.

I struggled with this and I had to email my wife of 22 years how I felt because I couldn’t talk about it. She was floored and was apologetic that she was unapproachable. The things I wrote in the email of what I like sexually and what specifically I would like to do to and with her can’t be written on this forum. However, my point is that she couldn’t help but read it and likely reread it as it was extremely erotic. BUt I told her how I felt and just left it there. She did not see everything the same as me however, it did help us find some common sexual ground which was more than we have had in 5 years.

You know your OH. Let him know how you feel and that you are ready to be adventurous. Task him with coming up with 10 things he likes or fantasizes about and you do the same. Match notes and start slowly as @Calie mentioned. Enjoy the discovery and be honest.


I think so far you’ve done very well with keeping this open communication with him on this as so many find it hard to talk about wants and needs with their other half.
Moving onto the next step you could both try out doing a goal challenge each week in setting a task of what you’d both like to try and then it’ll be down to you both to surprise each other at some point in the week :slightly_smiling_face:
Of course it’ll feel awkward at first but if both are wanting more and willing to push yourselves then it’ll begin to start getting exciting!

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