Dear Wendy: “My Boyfriend Wants Me To Be More Verbal”

My boyfriend and I have been together for many years and are intimate in every way except one: he wants dirty talk (really, really filthy talk) in the bedroom and I’m not comfortable giving it. I’m not a prude by any means, and am willing to try anything at least once in every other aspect of our relationship, but this is something I can’t, and frankly won’t, do. I tried it once and in addition to feeling totally embarrassed, I felt like it cheapened the experience. My boyfriend recently confessed that my not being able to do this for him means that I don’t trust him and love him enough to open up to him completely, and implied that our relationship was incomplete as a result. Is this really as big of a deal as he thinks it is? And if it is, is there any way I can get past my discomfort? — Verbal Prude

Why are you asking me if it’s a big deal that you don’t want to talk dirty to your boyfriend? The person you should be asking is your boyfriend. He’s the one whose opinion on the matter means something, not mine or anyone else’s. And if he says it’s a big deal to him — which it seems he has — if he says he feels like your relationship is incomplete as a result, you have a choice. You can either try to appease him or, if you decide you’re simply on two different pages when it comes to this issue and it’s an issue he feels is a dealbreaker, you can choose to end the relationship. I suppose the final choice is to ignore him or hope it’s not as big of a deal as he says it is, but I’d think that would only foster frustration and bad communication.

So, in the interest of trying to save your relationship, let’s discuss option one: trying to appease him. Basically, your boyfriend wants to feel like you trust him enough to feel vulnerable with him. He wants to know you’re willing to step outside your comfort zone in the interest of his pleasure and sexual satisfaction. Before you rule out dirty talk completely — and risk losing your boyfriend altogether — it might be worth giving it another shot. If you’re too uncomfortable to go for the “really, really filthy talk” he says he likes, try just sorta filthy. Pick a word you can say with a semi-straight face; if it’s not the p-word, or the d-word, or the f-word, or either of the c-words, try saying a word you probably utter in everyday conversation, like, “wet” or “hot.” If you can’t stand the way your voice sounds saying those words in a sexual setting, whisper them in your boyfriend’s ear. Whisper them so softly you can’t hear yourself say them. If you whisper them directly into his ear, he’ll hear them. If you’re comfortable saying those words, see if you can work up to some of the less safe-for-work words. It’s probably going to feel uncomfortable at first. That’s the point. Your boyfriend wants you to show him you’re willing to be a little uncomfortable for him. And if you’re not? Well, you’re not. It’s not the end of the world. But it may be the end of your relationship. Only your boyfriend can make that call.

I’ve been seeing a guy for two months and I really like him. We met each other at a time when each of us found something we needed in the other and we fit together very well. I want it to work, but he has three kids — 7, 5 and 3 — who are making things challenging. I actually thought him having kids was a plus as I’m 40 now and don’t have any kids of my own. He gets every second weekend and every Thursday night with them, and wants to take the ex to court to get three weekends out of four with them.

The problem is that I’m really beginning to dislike them! Initially, it was great and I was having a ball with them, but now that they are spending more time at my place (he moved in) I’m finding he has no control over them, they don’t do what he asks and they ignore me! The 7-year-old has been pooing in his pants and if he has to go to his room, he works himself up so much he makes himself sick. The 5 year-old may have slight Autism as it takes a lot to get and keep his attention or to get him to look at you, and EVERY meal time is such a big issue because he won’t eat anything but cheese. And the 3-year-old girl … well, my boyfriend treats her like a baby and she has so much control over him it makes me crazy and I have to walk away.

So, I’m wondering if he’s worth it. I snapped over the weekend when they discovered they can say ‘no’ to me. I don’t feel I have the right to punish or discipline them, so I’m really starting to resent them and his interaction with them. I don’t want to be around any of them when the kids are there. Please help. — No Kidding

Whoa, talk about burying the lede! Your boyfriend of two months, whose three young children stay with him on a weekly basis, already lives with you? No wonder his poor kids are acting out! Meeting a parent’s new partner is a huge deal for small children. They need time to adjust to the new person, to test boundaries, and finally, accept (or reject) the new person as an authority figure. If you’ve been dating your boyfriend less than two months, that means these kids have known you mere weeks and already they live with you part-time? Yeah, no kidding you have issues with them!

I’d seriously suggest backing up and slowing way, way down. Tell your boyfriend things moved too quickly and you think he should move back to wherever he was before he moved in with you. Then, slowly, get to know his children — a dinner here, a trip to the park there. They need to be assured that their relationship with their father is top priority and that whatever lifestyle changes he makes in the future, their well-being will remain his biggest concern.

If you’re serious about pursuing a long-term relationship with this man, you have to accept that his children are a packaged deal with him. And since you seem to lack even the most basic common sense when it comes to child psychology, you might look into taking a child development course at a local community college or counseling center. I’d even recommend brushing up on CPR and first aid training if there’s any chance you’d ever be left alone with the children. Kids are a big deal. No one would fault you if you don’t feel ready for the commitment of suddenly caring for three of them. And no one with any compassion or sense of right and wrong would fault those poor kids for reacting the way they have to their home life being completely disrupted with absolutely no warning. I hope those children have at least one parent who puts them first.

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