Why does everyone hate on the good old missionary position? I feel like it gets such a bad rap. The problem is I love it but often my partners don’t. Call me lazy—I always feel really comfortable being on the bottom in this position—but my partners often seem reluctant or don’t want to stay in that position very long. What gives?! This old style is such a goodie, and I wish more of my partners were on board with it.
—On a Mission
Many believe missionary was originally the only position in which Christian missionaries believed people could engage in sex. This is actually a myth, but its popularity as an origin story reveals just how little most think of the position.
But I’m with you all the way, OM: Just because there are a million and one ways to position yourself for pleasure, it doesn’t mean missionary should be ignored. It’s still the most commonly used position today, despite its reputation as vanilla. The beauty of this position lies in its accessibility to both hetero and homosexual partners. It also has lots of options for depth of penetration and stimulation, as well as participation for both partners.
Let’s not forget, missionary is a pretty intimate position. There’s a lot of skin-to-skin and eye contact involved. Depending on your level of intimacy, this may explain why your partners are shifting into other positions if they’re feeling the heat a little too strong. It may also just come down to the fact that your partner wants to try a little adventure and experimentation rather than the tried and true missionary.
Use a little body language—let your partner know that you want to take a turn controlling the speed and rhythm in missionary. If you’re committed to pleasing yourself and your partner in this position, I doubt your partner will object. You can also add in a few little twists to missionary like different elevations of your partner’s body or the use of sex toys for some stimulation on the side. As Rebecca Archer put it in her article “In Praise of the Missionary Position,” it’s kind of like tofu: You have to add your own flavour. So, get cookin’!
I have a really bad allergy to condoms. And I mean all condoms—I’ve been around the block trying different fits, materials, styles, you name it. What else can I use? I’m running the risk of being lonely in love unless I can come up with a way to keep my partners—and myself—safe in sex.
—Claritin for Condoms
Condoms are definitely a university student’s best friend. Being allergic to them can seriously hinder your ability to get safely laid, so I would like to loudly and proudly commend you on taking the responsibility and initiative to have safe sex. There’s nothing sexier than caring for yourself and your partners. So, let’s talk rubber.
Luckily for you there are both non-latex and non-polyurethane options, and some new condom technology that has recently appeared in the market that should enable you to tango sans-allergy.
One option—and it may not sound as pleasurable as it will feel—is to try condoms made from lambskin. These have a natural look, feel, and sleekness, but unfortunately do not protect against STIs. It could be beneficial to you if you find yourself in a committed relationship with another partner and you’ve both gotten the coital clearance. These condoms have a really low allergy rate.
Another choice is the polyisoprene condom, fairly new to the scene but still a solid option. These condoms are made from a material like latex but that should prevent the irritation you’ve been feeling from latex. Another bonus is their stretchy and snug fit. Lifestyles SKYN condoms are your best bet here, and are comparable in price to your average condom.
Take a visit to some local sex shops. Some stores let customers do a touch test to check out different condoms. You will also be able to speak to experts who are in the know and may have encountered your sexual dilemma before. They’ll do their best to help you—no one likes a cock block!
Finally, watch for any condoms containing spermicide. This agent, often added to your rubber, is used to kill sperm but also can irritate your genitalia. Best of luck in your search for the perfect condom option, and here’s to an allergy-free sex life!