Hello hello, I have a sex problem and I feel like you could possibly point me in the right direction.

I’ve had a lot of sex trauma in my life, starting when I was young and when I starting doing things consensually I noticed that when guys penetrate me I don’t feel any pleasure. I can feel the motion of them going in and out but nothing else. I’m still scared to tell the guy I feel nothing so I just pretend until he finishes and then helps me to finish. I’m twenty now and this still happens and now I’m really frustrated with it and tired of pretending it’s okay. My doctor said talking to a therapist would help but is there anything else you can suggest?

1 Like

Hi Strawberry! I can suggest a few things.

So, a few questions off the bat: do you orgasm from clitoral stimulation? (I’m assuming you have a vagina and clitoris, apologies if not). A lot of folks don’t orgasm from penetration alone, and many folks don’t really enjoy penetrative sex. Also are you aroused before and/or during penetrative sex? If you aren’t and you are dry, then it can be really uncomfortable! Totally a normal occurrence, but totally not a fun experience. Also do you have the same experience masturbating (if you masturbate with penetration, that is)?

Not feeling pleasure in the moment, that can be really frustrating, totally get that. I know it sucks, but advocating and communicating what you need is probably the first step. Your partner likely doesn’t know you are feeling this way during sex. And I totally get the feeling of not wanting to say anything, it’s really hard to advocate, especially as a trauma survivor, I understand that too.

Would you feel more comfortable discussing before sex with your partner about this? I’ve def. told a partner before “hey, you’re going to have to go down on me first or use or toy or lube before we get going.” Also when I don’t feel comfortable or have time to discuss before, in the moment showing a partner what you want or need vs. asking for it can not only usually get me what I want sexually, but can actually be a turn-on for a partner. Saying “rub my clit” or “go down on me for a bit” or even just directing their hand or body can be a way to tell someone what you want without verbalizing it, if that feels more comfortable to do.

If you do freeze up in the moment, and the idea of telling a partner before or during what you want doesn’t seem feasible, then maybe talking to a therapist is a good idea. I’ve def. used therapy to do work sexually to work through being in my own head and holding back when it comes to sex due to trauma. There are also a ton of books for survivors as well that would be a great resource to check out too. Here are a few of my favorites:

The Body Keeps the Score is essential reading on trauma and healing.

This is another really great book that focuses more on healing sex after trauma.

If you are a visual learner, I love this book explaining trauma and trauma responses. We’re sold out now, but def. an interesting format to check out.

If nothing else, it’s a process. I know it’s frustrating, but learning what your body needs and advocating for that is a journey, which can be frustrating at time, so give yourself some extra love and grace.


So to answer the questions you asked. When I masturbate I have never done any penetration…ever. it has always been clit stimulation and has been like this my entire life. I think some times I have been dry and my boyfriend would just put it inside of me and that’s one of the reasons why it doesn’t feel good.

Do you think if I added a dildo or something when I’m doing it that it may help? I would like to be more comfortable with sex and actually feel pleasure while being penetrated.

Best Regards,

I think adding in a penetrative toy while masturbating is a great way to get more comfortable with penetrative sex and see if it’s something that you do actually like. In general, before trying things with a partner I like to test it out with myself (if that is doable) to see what works for me. Also this is a great way to see if there is maybe different aspects about penetration that you do enjoy. Do you want something thicker or longer, do you want more fast or slow in and out motions, do you just want to feel full and just grind? A dildo is a great way to test all of this out on your own and get more comfortable seeing what works for your body.

I really like the Blush dildos, the price points are good, I love a lot of the designs, and they have a wide range of sizes and shapes. I personally don’t buy vibrating dildos, I just use vibes against my clit in tandem or against a toy if I’m using a dildo vaginally, but they have some of those too. There are penetrative duel vibes, but personally I don’t find them worth the cost since I’m not the biggest fan of penetration, and a dildo is more versatile overall (and generally cheaper too).

If you are a dry and a partner is penetrating you, that for sure won’t feel good. I’d also maybe get some lube! It’s fun for everyone, and it will help take away any friction. Also great for solo play too. I’m a big fan of Sliquid, and they even have a variety pack if you want to try out a few formulas.

Trying penetrative sex solo is a great way to see if it’s your jam, but if it isn’t, totally do not feel bad about that. A lot of folks with vaginas and clits don’t orgasm from penetrative sex alone, and need clitoral stimulation to orgasm (raises hand!), it’s a very normal and common thing.

I’d also suggest clitoral stimulation during penetrative sex. Have your partner use a vibrator (or you use it) on your clit while they are having sex with you. There are wearable toys for your partner, but personally just using a vibe against my clit is the most effective option. It might be too much or not your jam, but I find as a person who is mostly strictly clit focused, if someone is is stimulating my clit at the same time as they are penetrating me, it makes it a lot more of an enjoyable experience.

I also found in therapy solo sex and focusing on my self was a huge part of working through trauma, so trying out new toys or different/new ways of masturbating was very beneficial in getting more comfortable with my body.

1 Like

Hi, Strawberry! I definitely agree with Lisa about experimenting with dildos for penetration as well as using lube during sex, as those are both very helpful ways to create a more pleasurable experience! As someone that has struggled with penetration due to sexual trauma, I can empathize with you…I still struggle with enjoying penetration and at times it has made me feel like I will never have a “real” sexual experience, which is total bullshit! Sex does not come down to whether or not a penis or even a dildo is inside you. There are so many avenues to explore in sexual acts that don’t involve penetration, but believe me I am in no way shaming you or belittling you for wanting to try it! I just wish I hadn’t felt like I was broken or shameful for not enjoying penetration, and I would never wish that feeling upon someone else. I admire you for being so open about your struggles and trusting the Forum Community :heart: For me, penetration becomes more fun and enjoyable when it’s not completely centered as the main sex act and other forms of play are incorporated more (i.e. nipple play, oral, fingering, role play, etc). Some may see those things as “merely foreplay” but I find those acts essential in becoming aroused enough to enjoy penetration. I hope this helps! :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

1 Like

Yes to all of what lucid said!

Also while @MakeUpAndSin was answering Q&As on Spectrum’s Instagram this week, she posted something in relation to penetration that I think is a great reminder to repeat here: “Know that penetration isn’t required and if it is causing you that much anxiety you can completely omit it from your solo or partner play.”

Sex is so much more than penetration, and it’s all valid! Another great tip that Carly mentioned that I forgot to mention here in relation to helping your body relax and prep if you do want to try and work on penetration, is taking a warm bath or shower before playtime. Or anything that physically helps you relax your bodies and muscles, just something to relax your body will help sometimes. We truly don’t realize how much tension we just carry in our bodies in general until we fully focus on relaxing them.

1 Like