Talking about sex with your partner can feel scary. Whether you’ve known them for a day or 20 years, you probably have some hang-ups around sharing sexual desires, feedback, and fantasies.

We all need reminders that it’s more than okay to talk about sex; it’s good to talk about sex. It’s good to feel vulnerable and to speak your truth anyway.

Next time you’re getting ready to broach the subject, skim through this list and read whatever you need to hear.

1. There’s no such thing as weird

Your fantasies, your desires, and your needs are absolutely perfect as they are. Whether you’re into face sitting, role play, toe sucking, gang bangs, or super niche erotic fan fiction, own it. If someone thinks it’s “weird,” so be it. Pleasure is weird. Sex is weird. Being a person is weird. Weird is hot. Embrace the weird and have fun.

2. There’s no such thing as normal

There’s no “normal” amount of time it takes to have an orgasm and no normal way to look or sound having an orgasm. Arousal, orgasm, and desire all look and feel different for different people. There’s also no normal body type, and no normal way to have a penis or vagina. No amount of sex or number of partners is normal. There’s no normal or abnormal way to have sex.

Sexual differences should be celebrated, not shamed. Throw out the worries about being “normal,” and instead, have the types of sex you want to have. Your body, your relationships, and your decisions are yours.

3. It’s okay if something hasn’t been working for a long time (and it’s okay if you haven’t brought it up until right now)

If something about your sexual dynamic or sex hasn’t been working for you, that’s totally okay. It doesn’t mean you’re broken and it doesn’t mean your partner is broken or bad in bed. This is true even if it hasn’t been working for you for years.

It’s never too late to try something new, to share what you want, or to break a habit. This is exactly where talking about sex with your partner comes into play.

Also though, talking about sex is hard. If it were easy, there wouldn’t be a need for articles like this one. In fact, at least 60% of women have faked orgasms. Giving sexual feedback to someone you care about is really hard, and you’re not alone if it makes you feel anxious.

Even if it takes a long time to work up the courage, it’s wonderful whenever you do feel empowered and comfortable enough to share feedback with your partner. You can do this.

4. Nothing is wrong with you

Often, when something isn’t quite doing it for us in bed, we blame ourselves. So, let’s be loud and clear: nothing is wrong with you.

Whether you’ve never had an orgasm or you’re having six orgasms a day; whether you’re hard or soft or wet or dry; and whether you crave sex or don’t usually feel in the mood, you are not broken. Orgasm isn’t everything. Penetration isn’t everything. Arousal isn’t everything. Sex isn’t everything.

People have sex for lots of different reasons: to feel closer to one another, to experience pleasure, to try something new, and the list goes on. As long as you’re treating each other with mutual respect and care, you’re having sex the right way, regardless of what your body is doing.

5. It’s okay to change your mind

Maybe you were really into something (or someone) 10 years ago, and now it just doesn’t do it for you. Maybe there’s something new you’d like to explore that felt totally off the table a few months ago. You might find you enjoy having sex more or less often than you used to. Or maybe you thought you told your partner the exact right spot for them to put their tongue, and 30 seconds later, that spot isn’t quite doing it for you. No matter the scenario or time span, having your preferences and desires change is totally okay.

Communicate your new preferences and desires. They are valid!

6. Your pleasure matters

No, really. It does. It is good to ask for things that bring you pleasure, and to practice things that bring you pleasure. There are even health benefits that come with pleasure and orgasm. Whether experiencing more pleasure means you need to be more vocal with a partner, ask a partner to change up what they’re doing, or do something for or to yourself in bed, you deserve it.

If your partner isn’t on the same page about this, know that it’s totally possible to find someone who is.

Ariana Grande points a finger gun, winks, and captions says,

7. Your wants and needs are sexy AF

Nothing is hotter than you knowing what you want and need. More communication? You got it. A longer buildup? Yum. Rougher touch? Absolutely. Less pressure on your clit during orgasm? Done. Wanting to just cuddle up and watch a movie tonight? Sounds hot.

Seriously though, whatever it is that you desire is valid and sexy. You deserve to have your needs met.

8. It’s okay to ask for help

It’s worth repeating one more time: talking about sex is hard. It can bring up feelings of shame, inadequacy, embarrassment, and guilt for lots of people. This isn’t because sex (or talking about sex) itself is bad; it’s because the culture we live in teaches us that sex is bad. Talking about sex in a positive and honest way is a radical act.

If you want or need extra support in navigating thoughts or conversations around sex, it is perfectly okay to lean on people. You can find support through a sex therapist, general therapist, trusted friend, or online resource like this one.

We also have a pleasure journey focused on learning and communicating what you want in bed. Try it with a partner for guided audio exercises, articles, and erotic films to help you and partner communicate.

9. It’s exciting to want something new or different

If you’re ready or excited to explore something new (or something that feels new because it’s been a long time), it can be hard to broach the subject with a partner. But wanting to explore something new doesn’t mean either of you have been doing something wrong. If anything, it’s an opportunity to grow closer to one another. This is exciting!

Whether there’s a specific sex act you want to try, a new approach to communication in bed, a different type of sex you’d like to have, or even a new person you want to have sex with, your wants can be a way for you and your partner to connect. Start the conversation by saying, “I’d love to talk about our sex life.” Your partner’s response might surprise you.

10. You’ve got this

You’re so capable of talking about sex with your partner. You deserve the sex life you want. Remember: this conversation isn’t the end-all, be-all. It’s the beginning. If you get tongue tied or if it doesn’t go well the first time, you can (and should) try again. And you can and should revisit desires and preferences as they change over time, anyway.

If you can, take the pressure off and be kind to yourself. You are a sexual badass, and your partner is lucky to have someone who wants to communicate with them.

Kirsten Dunst says,

60% of women are dissatisfied with their sex lives. We’re on a mission to change that.

What if you didn’t have to search to find a body that looks like yours, a sex act that turns you on, or a guided exercise that helps you tell your partner exactly what you’ve been craving?

What if YOUR pleasure came first?

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