How to Last Longer in Bed

Here’s a question that someone sent me:

I’m sure you’ve covered this at some point already but I was curious if you had any suggestions for lasting longer? I’ve tried numbing lubes, trying to distract myself with thinking about something else (which doesn’t work well and takes away from the experience 🙁 ) and I’ve even tried stopping when I’m close and going down on my girl while I calm down and a few times doing this I’ve ended up Cumming on the bed… my girl says she doesn’t care that I’m usually quick and about 80% of the time I can get her to achieve at least once before I climax.. but I know we would enjoy it much more if I could last longer. On average, not counting foreplay, from time of penetration to climax I generally average about 5 to 10 min. Sometimes waaay less, other times (usually intoxicated) longer. Please any advice would be appreciated. I’ve always been like this with every girl too

This is probably one of the most common questions I get as a sex coach. A lot of guys worry that they ejaculate too quickly and want to know what to do about it.

First off, I have to ask how you know that lasting longer would mean you both would enjoy sex more. Granted, some folks will tell a partner that it’s not an issue because they don’t want to hurt his feelings. But other folks really are fine with 5 or 10 minutes of intercourse. I understand that you want to last longer, and that’s also totally cool. But I think it’s worth checking- what makes you expect that your girlfriend wants it?

A lot of women say that while they enjoy intercourse, oral sex or erotic massage are more likely to rock their worlds. So it’s worth asking her about it. You might find (for example) that she’d really enjoy a long oral sex session followed by intercourse for as long as you lasted more than 30 minutes of intercourse. In fact, she might even say that she doesn’t want it to go any longer. Some women simply don’t enjoy a really long session of intercourse. Quality is often more important than quantity.

Whatever she says about that, let’s get back to the question of your experience. You’ve tried numbing creams, distracting yourself, and changing things up. Those are all ways of reducing your stimulation to try to back off from the edge. But like you say, that can take you out of your experience. Rather than trying to limit how much stimulation you get, it can be a lot more effective to learn how to contain states of high arousal without going over the top.

One good way to start is to practice calming breathwork. Taking deep breaths with a longer exhalation can slow your nervous system down and bring you back from the “point of no return.” I find that a lot of people hold their breath during sex. It can feel like a good way to increase your stimulation, but what it’s actually doing is decreasing your body’s ability to contain your energy. With a little practice, this method can go a long way towards increasing your pleasure and making sex even more fun.

You don’t need to do it the entire time you’re having sex. But if you use this technique when you’re getting close, you might find it helps a lot. Since it can take some practice, it’s often helpful to have some other ways of lowering the amount of stimulation until you have more skill at riding high states of arousal.

One approach some guys find useful is to try different positions. I had a client who said pretty much the same thing you did. When I asked him about how he and his partner had sex, it turned out that they were mostly in missionary or rear-entry positions, which meant that he was doing a lot of thrusting and moving. When you’re using the big muscles of your thighs and back, it can be difficult to tune into the more subtle sensations of your arousal curve. In fact, you might not notice that you’re getting close to an orgasm because it it.

When my client tried having his partner on top, he could lie back, enjoy the show, and really notice all of the different parts of his excitement. He was surprised at how much longer he could last because he had more attention for his experience. They soon found that it worked well to switch from one position to another, ramping the energy up and then back down.

You might find that different positions can also affect how sensation you get. For example, for a lot of men, missionary position can be more stimulating because of the angle of the penis. Try different positions to see if any of them change how things feel. Even small shifts in the angle of your body or having a pillow under her hips might make a big difference.

And lastly, don’t forget that sex doesn’t have to end if you ejaculate. Going down on her, using your hands, or kissing and stroking her body while she uses a vibrator are all great ways for her to have an orgasm after you’ve had one. So even if you don’t last as long as you might like, you can still make sure that she has as much pleasure as she wants. Just saying.

I know that it can sometimes feel challenging to talk with a partner about these things, especially if you’re having difficult feelings come up. As a sex & relationship coach, I work with people to get everything onto the table so we can figure out how to make sure everyone is getting what they want. If you’d like some assistance in navigating those conversations, get in touch with me. I’d be happy to meet you in my Seattle, WA office or over video.