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To all the men wanting to talk their wives into sex toys

You can’t simply come home one night with a sack of vibrators and a glint in your eye.

A headless man holding a Magic Wand and a realistic dildo toward the camera.
Don't you want them? Vixen Johnny and Magic Wand Original, coming at you.

I can see through you, and I don’t like what I see.

You email me under the guise of caring. Of wanting your wife to experience something new in the bedroom. You love her, your wife — you make sure to state that outright. You tell me her age, and yours, for some inexplicable reason. She’s gorgeous, and you’ve been married for many years. You’ve tried to convince her to try sex toys before, but there’s just one nagging detail: she’s not interested.

You’re a modern, enlightened man. That’s why you read sex toy blogs, and research squirting techniques, and email bloggers for advice. Sometimes you not-so-slyly brag about your “amazing” sex life, estimating that your wife has an orgasm 97% of the time. She’s content, obviously. It’s just you have ideas for making sex better. There’s this dildo all the bloggers are raving about, and surely your wife must experience it too. Never mind if it makes sense with her body or her desires, never mind if you know what any of those desires even are.

You’ve come to me for reassurance. Because I am a sex toy fiend you assume I’ll be on your side, ready to leap to your defense and proclaim the transformative power of sex toys. You expect me to coddle you, to nod in virtual agreement and eagerly dish out advice on how best to frame the conversation with your wife.

Men. It is not about framing.

I read through your email, my eyes catching on the part where you refer to your partner as “the wife,” wincing when you divulge how hot it would be to use toys on her, frowning as you describe the reasons she is wary. Her objections to sex toys are multiple, layered, painfully unexplored — and judging from your email, you’re not willing to do much work to explore them. You’d rather blast on with your own plan. You’re confident she’s missing out, and you’ve cast yourself as savior.

There is no simple answer for you, sir, because women are not a puzzle to be pried open with just the right tool.

I know what you actually want from me: ammo. You want stats and conversation strategies, and you want my gender, as it holds more weight. You’d like me to ignore the fact that your wife is a complex human being I’ve never met — one with her own fears and needs — to participate in this coercion. Inadvertently or not, you’re prioritizing your satisfaction over hers.

Sex is collaborative, and I think somewhere along the line we forgot that.

There is no simple answer for you, sir, because women are not a puzzle to be pried open with just the right tool. They’re varied, and nuanced, and talking to one woman is not like talking to all of them. Yes, I spout certain truths — vibrators won’t numb you permanently; nobody’s broken for wanting one; they won’t make anyone obsolete — but I’m not your wife. It takes actual effort to undo these misguided beliefs, because spoiler alert: mainstream society totally enforces them! You cannot simply come home one night with a sack of sex toys and a glint in your eye.

In a perfect world — which we do not live in — sex toys wouldn’t detract from intimacy at all. But in situations where communication is poor, they can do just as much harm as good. And I can tell communication is not at the forefront of your mind; you’d prefer a quick answer and validation, so you can buy the damn thing already and expedite the process. This is glaringly obvious in sex toy retail: men don’t like waiting.

There’s, as they say, a lot to unpack in your email. So I keep it brief. I type out a response, disguising my distress with a jolly tone. I recommend talking to your wife directly. I point out that you wouldn’t want to waste money on a sex toy your wife won’t use — maybe that’s how I’ll get to you, the money angle. I carefully express the importance of respecting your wife’s boundaries, but I say it in a veiled way, because I want you to listen. My restraint is truly commendable. I never get a reply.

Maybe next time I should ask for your wife’s email address.

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Comments

  1. So I just wanted to share a positive flip side to this story. I know for a fact that I am one of the men that asked heyepiphora for this exact guidance. Me and my wife have been together 18 years. I am a very sexual person and of course the way life works she is not. We connect on so many other levels that it is fully worth our life time commitment. That being said our sex life can be very vanilla. I had been asking her for years to start taking the time she needs to open her self up sexually. I asked he to try toys anything. She was not receptive. Finally I asked her if she were going to be into toys what she would gravitate towards. I took that information to heye and she was able to give me a few rounds of guidance. I bought a toy for my wife despite her disintrest. She begrudgingly tried it one night and guess what her whole sex life changed. She instantly loved it. She started masterbating and now I come home and she is sometimes asleep with the vibrator in her hand LOL. It has completely changed our sex life for the better. It has allowed her to find self confidence in her sexuality. Not everything is perfect but we are actually on a path of evolution instead of stagnation. I am glad I did not listen to her and kept pushing to open our relationship even further.

  2. My current boyfriend has been asking me a lot lately to get a toy. He has brought it up a few times suggesting that it will add to our sexual pleasure.
    I am struggling with the idea because I have NEVER had any type of sex toy. In the past I had considered getting one only because after a day without sex I tend to get emotionally, physically, mentally backed-up.
    I am seriously considering his request but am nervous it will change how I feel about sex and how I orgasm. I have always been multi-orgasmic but then when he (for the first time in my life) made me orgasm from oral I have started to struggle with orgasms from sex.
    I am really enjoying this blog thank you!

  3. Wow all this coming from someone who says getting her significant other to try toys is like pulling teeth…

    I do agree what you said in this post but seriously… if your partner doesn’t want to try a toy or review a product they don’t have to. It shouldn’t be comparable to an invasive dental procedure.

    You need to look at yourself before casting the first stone if you know what I mean

  4. Wow all this coming from someone who says getting her significant other to try toys is like pulling teeth…

    I do agree what you said in this post but seriously… if your partner doesn’t want to try a toy or review a product they don’t have to. It shouldn’t be comparable to an invasive dental procedure.

    You need to look at yourself before casting the first stone if you know what I mean

  5. Had a conversation with my wife about toys the other night.
    We hadn’t had sex for a while after recovering from a car accident… so we’d been thinking about sex, but not been having any.

    Next thing I know I stumble upon this post.
    I’m glad I did.

    We’ll be talking some more before buying anything 🙂
    Thanks for the perspective!

  6. Had a conversation with my wife about toys the other night.
    We hadn’t had sex for a while after recovering from a car accident… so we’d been thinking about sex, but not been having any.

    Next thing I know I stumble upon this post.
    I’m glad I did.

    We’ll be talking some more before buying anything 🙂
    Thanks for the perspective!

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