I remember a time when meeting someone who was just as damaged was a bit of a relief. Everyone walking…
So I started a podcast over four years ago to answer the questions people had been asking me about sex and relationships. Not that I think I’m some kind of authority, but a handful of people seem to believe that I know something they don’t. And I guess I make it a bit entertaining along the way. Well, there are a few continually recurring questions. One of the questions I still hear fairly often is, “How do I make the move from just hanging out to making out?”
For some of you, you’re sitting there thinking, what kind of question is that? Come on, it’s so easy. Just go for it. And hey, if that’s how confident or oblivious you are – well hey, good for you. Unfortunately for so many of us over-thinkers, it has never been an easy or smooth transition.
When I think back on the make outs I have had over the years, probably like you, the first ones were the roughest. Most of us are not born with some innate sexual talent and the ones that are, intimidate the shit out of us because then we realize what we’re up against. Some of us even get left behind. We turn into young adults and watch our friends go out and find boyfriends or girlfriends seamlessly. And you think to yourself, how is this so damn easy for everyone else and will anyone ever look at me like I know what I’m doing? As an adult, it sounds ridiculous but the truth is, we all have to begin somewhere. And some of us never begin – we just wait for someone else to make the transition because we are terrified of coming off as clumsy or naive. People always spend so much time talking about the right sexual position or the laws of attraction but rarely does that awkward transition get much attention despite being one of the biggest sticking points most of us will encounter.
My first kiss story was anything but romantic. It was outright traumatic and damn near a horror story. I actually wrote the full story in a book I released a while ago but the short version is, I had no idea what I was doing. The girl I was about to make out with was experienced and my friends had forced us into a bathroom and refused to let us out until we finished. I was trembling in fear and it was as far from a natural and “organic” process as possible. Afterward, I ran screaming out of the bathroom with the most intense raging erection I had ever had in my young life. All in front of my friends and the girl I liked. To say it was an awful experience would be putting it lightly and all subsequent “from hangs to bangs” transitions in my life were reminiscent of that afternoon. That was, until I learned a bit of confidence and began to pay attention to my partner.
What I didn’t realize was that while I was busy freaking out and worrying about how I was supposed to go from watching a movie to making out, they were thinking the same thing. Only the girls had the comfort of the social expectations that men are always supposed to make the first move – even if the women wanted it just as badly. And again, so many guys just don’t care. It seems like they were those toddlers that just ran up to their baby crush and kissed them on the lips. I was not that child. And what I have found from the increasing questions over the years, that some of you are not as well. So if you know that you both want it, why is it so damn difficult to make that transition? Well, because so many of us don’t know how to go from a casual and light atmosphere to a serious down and dirty make out sesh.
The difference between then and now is that once I understand there is a mutual attraction, I like to have fun with it. As with so many other aspects of life, playing it cool or being too timid robs you of the fun of a situation. When people ask if it is difficult for me to give public speakings at colleges or coffeehouses, I always say no. I look forward to public speaking. The longer and more often, the better. And that is the way you have to look at that transition. Read their body language and the situation. If it is clear that you are both equally into each others, then have fun with it. Be playful with it. Think of something that might make the transition memorable.
I had just started seeing someone and the sexual tension was overwhelming. I knew I wanted to make the transition but I was ridiculously nervous. As we sat on the couch and pretended to watch a movie, I remembered how I felt about public speaking and said to myself, no, go have fun with this. And I waited for a long pause in the conversation and looked at her, smiled, and said, “So is this the part where you hope that I kiss you?”
She was stunned. Maybe because I was being playfully cocky or maybe because I called out the obvious. Either way, she responded with a laugh and a light-hearted punch to the arm. But the air had cleared. It was obvious and I made it real. So I went in painfully slow, both of us smiling and holding back giddy laughter. And right when I was about to kiss her, I pulled away and said, “Hmm, maybe not right now.” She hit me again and we laughed. But it was fun. It wasn’t about “moves” but it was about understanding the situation and reading our personalities. If she would have been stuffy and uptight about it, well, it probably would have been a good indicator of how incompatible our personalities were. But she liked the teasing. And eventually, she liked me enough to fall in love with me. Because I learned how to inject more of my personality into our intimacy. Sexuality isn’t just about tongues and penis into vagina action. It is about a style of comfort. About the way you can set your partner at ease and allow them to enjoy themselves enough to let their guard down. And when we achieve that kind of confidence is when people fall in love with us. Our character. And our style.