“I thought it just didn’t work for me”

Until three years ago, Astrid had never been able to come. And then she met Joost.

Astrid (35) coach and trainer, mother of Sarah (11), relationship with Jurgen (40):

“Three years ago, I called my then-boyfriend Joost and cheered: ‘It worked! I now know what it means to come!’ On his advice I had retired to bed with a sex toy. He thought that since I was 32, it was time for me to experience what it was like to have an orgasm. It was a highlight of my life for several reasons.

Sex fun

Until then I had not known a spectacular sex life. Sex had been very straightforward, nothing experimental and limited to two positions. I had never experienced an orgasm. No idea what everyone was talking about in the magazines or on TV. Having fun with sex was already complicated for me because I was pretty blue.

I lost my virginity when I was seventeen and not much later got into a relationship with Edwin, the father of my daughter Sarah, who I would eventually be with for sixteen years. It wasn’t a great marriage. Edwin was a thoughtful man, very careful. An ideal son-in-law, but communication was not his forte. It wasn’t an animal in the bed at all.

Edwin always came during sex, I never. He found it difficult, but he said he couldn’t do anything about it. I accepted that it just didn’t ‘work’ for me. I sometimes got a burning sensation when we made love, like I had to pee. Maybe I was close then? But there was still too little passion and it didn’t feel like a real release, let alone a blissful moment.

Activity between the sheets

We had sex once every few months. Sometimes there was even half a year or longer. After a bad pregnancy, I got postnatal pressure. Back then there was very little activity between the sheets at all, but I didn’t miss it either. After this, we picked up our weak rhythm again with difficulty. I had read that the longer you don’t do it, the less you want it. That was right. I just had no idea how to activate the sex drive.

“I just had no idea how to activate the sex drive”

After a good conversation, sometimes I felt a connection and I wanted to make love, but it didn’t happen often. Edwin was not a talker. I took a personal development course again to learn how to communicate better with him, but that didn’t help either.

In couples therapy, Edwin once said that he hated the idea that if I went out to a bar, I would get male attention because I was such a beautiful woman. I was just shocked by that statement. It was one of the five compliments he gave me throughout our relationship.

At the end of our marriage, we stopped trying to have sex at all. Although Edwin claims that sometimes he tried something, but that I always turned him down. However, I did not feel seen by him. I once tried to kiss him deeply at a party when I had a glass of wine. But then he complained that he couldn’t breathe. Well, I immediately went back into my shell.

Also read – ‘After my divorce I felt wanted by another man for the first time in my life’ >

Unconditional Love

When we finally divorced, I decided to find a man with whom I could have the deep conversations I so desperately needed. Him being a good lover wasn’t even on my priority list. Rather, it had to be someone I could feel unconditional love for.

The first period alone was quite difficult for me. My surroundings did not understand the separation. My sister reacted angrily. My mother thought I should have done better for our daughter, who was seven at the time. It really felt like a slap in the face. People had no idea how difficult our marriage had been for me.

“After the papers were signed, a kind of deferred student life started for me”

I also really had to break free from Edwin because our lives were so intertwined. But after the papers were signed, I experienced a kind of postponed college life. On the weekends when Sarah was with Edwin, I went out. I was well placed in the market and I loved to take advantage of it.

On my cousin’s birthday, I met his best friend Joost. A handsome man, really a bonk of a guy who is 2.02 meters tall. But also very sensitive. We chatted for three hours that night and afterwards I took him to my house to continue talking and listening to music.

Complicated affair

There was great sexual chemistry between us, but nothing happened that night. Joost was married and had two children. I didn’t really want anything to do with a bound man. Still, we started a complex affair that lasted two years. He even left his wife for me. But in the end we weren’t a suitable match emotionally and mentally.

“Even during sex, I was constantly thinking about what it would be like for my bed partner”

I learned to enjoy sex through him. Joost was always very focused on my pleasure. Especially when he heard that I had never had an orgasm, it became his mission. But no matter what he did when we made love, it didn’t work. In retrospect, it could be explained. I was one all my life pleaser been I take care of others first and then myself. I had such a great capacity for empathy that I constantly thought about what it would be like for my bed partner during sex.

gender survey l2


But unlike my ex, who was resigned to my inability, Joost kept encouraging me to explore: ‘Experiment with toys, challenge yourself, look for it and don’t resign yourself to it.’ Supported by his encouragement, I bought a purple soft mini vibrator from Etos, with points on both sides that you could vibrate harder and softer.

“I was so proud that I immediately called Joost. ‘I’m not broken, it works!’”

I started working on it that night. Alone. I really didn’t dare play with myself in front of Joost. I had put on a movie and after a while I got a throbbing, astringent feeling that I had never experienced before. Very special. I was so proud that I immediately called Joost. ‘I’m not broken, it works!’

between the sheets

Since that one time, a world has opened up to me and I can come easily. Both alone and during penetration. I now have a very sweet and lovely friend with whom I click in all areas, both in and out of the bedroom. I feel very free and have no problem being naked anymore. Sex for me is now playful, delicious and loving. I enjoy it and we close it with a highlight. During, after or not if I don’t feel like it, but I know I can do it.

“Sex for me is now playful, delicious and loving”

There are many more women who struggle with this, but if there is no medical or traumatic experience behind it, the solution can be simple. For me, it has been all about practice and pushing myself over the threshold of shame. I had to learn how and what I liked and to focus on myself. A better sex life starts with you.”

This article can be found in Kek Mama 07-2022.

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