If you've been following this site (or reading our newsletter) for even a couple of months now, you know that we happily and unapologetically talk about sex quite a bit. If we're not breaking down things about the male and female orgasm or exploring sex positions, we're sharing insights we've gotten on oral sex or providing tips on how to have a blended, simultaneous or—our personal favorite—intensified climax. They say that she who learns, teaches. Sexually, that is a motto that we thrive by!
But if there's one thing about sex that couples tell me that they struggle with the most, it's finding the time to basically do what they do. If they've got kids, sometimes they are too exhausted, even for a quickie, by the time they make it to their own bedroom. And while morning sex sounds good in theory, between having mix-matched wake-up schedules, morning breath and, for women, a man's erection sometimes digging in their back in the most awkward kind of way—this kind of sex is not always the most sensual or seductive option to go with. (I hear you!)
Still, it's irrefutable that morning sex (even if it is a quickie) can reduce stress, give you an energy boost, improve your levels of concentration and productivity, burn a few calories and make you feel closer to your partner all throughout the day.
So, if your only real issue with morning sex is it doesn't feel all that sexy, maybe these tips will turn it into something that you're more open to trying (or trying more often)—maybe even tomorrow at sunrise.
Keep Water by the Bed
Did you know that one sign of dehydration is bad breath? If during your waking hours, you can't seem to get the "tartness" from your mouth under control, drinking more agua just might get that under control. Something else that water is able to do is wash away odor-causing bacteria; that's why it's also a good idea to keep a couple of recyclable bottles of it (because surely you're not still drinking out of plastic bottles, right?) by each bed stand. That way, if you don't want to hop out of bed to brush your teeth first, you can still get some of that stank breath handled.
And Some Altoids
Speaking of not-the-best breath, if water isn't enough, you can never go wrong with Altoids (so long as they are the minty and not sour variety). Matter of fact, if you wake up with a headache, rumor on the street is since Altoids are a mint, they might even be able to help you out with that as well. (Welp, there goes the "I've got a headache" excuse, huh?)
Also, Some Organic Baby Wipes
If this is TMI, I apologize in advance. I'm bringing it up because it's relevant to the point. There's a male friend of mine who says that he likes nothing more than going down on his lady when he picks her up from work. I don't mean once they get home; I mean right there in the car. I'll admit that there is something sexy about that, but the realist in me wonders if it's the cleanest thing on the planet to do. When I brought that up, he didn't miss a beat—"Girl, I keep a stash of baby wipes in the glove compartment."
Come to find out, he's not the only one. I read quite a few articles stating that many folks will keep some organic ones by their bedside in case they don't want to wash up before gettin' it on. So, if you want to engage your partner but you're feeling a little self-conscious, apparently baby wipes are a popular go-to solution.
Oh, and Some Lube Too
From what I've researched, a healthy virile man will have anywhere between 3-5 erections throughout the night that will last between 25-35 minutes each. As far as what causes a man to have nocturnal penile tumescence (NPT)—the technical term for "morning wood"—a man being super relaxed, him experiencing a shift in his hormones or him having an erotic dream (or rubbing against your fine self) may be the cause.
All of this can explain why your man may be up and ready to go at the crack of dawn. If you need a little more time to (no pun intended) open up to the idea, another great bed stand addition is some lube. That way, if neither of you have 20 minutes or more to get you "naturally ready", you've still got something that can help you two to comfortably speed up the process.
Get Some Blackout Curtains
Some women have told me that they aren't big fans of morning sex, not because of the sex itself, but because the light that is piercing through their windows makes them a little self-conscious when it comes to their body image. If you can totally relate, one way to workaround that is to install some blackout curtains. I got introduced to them when I went to Alaska for the first time, arrived late at night, it still looked like 5pm and the people there told me that it doesn't get completely dark during May-July. Anyway, they said what helps them to sleep are blackout curtains. I copped some when I came back home and yep, they work.
So, if it's morning, you're in the mood, but you'd still prefer for it to look like it's nighttime, you can get a pair of your own curtains that keep the light out at stores like Walmart or Target.
Turn on a Little White Noise
I typically don't have any trouble falling asleep. But I must admit that since I've been adding some white noise (noise that contains frequencies to block out "outside noise") into my sleep routine, rest has become a next level experience! What I tend to turn on are rainstorms. I adore all things rain; I really do. Although I'm currently not riding the sex train, back when I was, one of my favorite songs was "Making Love in the Rain" (what y'all know about Herb Alpert featuring Janet Jackson and Lisa Keith?!).
If you love the combination of sex and rain too, white noise can make that happen for you, even on a bright and sunny morning. Just invest in a white noise machine or there are white noise channels on YouTube can provide you rain or many other sounds too. (Just put "white noise" or "white noise for sleeping" in the search field on the site.)
Meditate Together First
If you go to your favorite search engine and look for tips on how to have mind-blowing orgasms, at least 70 percent of them are going to encourage you to breathe deeply. It's what helps you to relax your muscles, remove toxins from your body and open up your pelvic floor as well.
That's why meditation is also on this list. Even if all you do is sit up in the bed, face on another while holding hands, close your eyes and breathe in and out for five minutes, it's a great way to mentally, emotionally and spiritually (re)connect, so that morning sex will be that much more easier and intensified.
Kiss Them—Anywhere or Everywhere
Foreplay should never be totally ignored, even if you've only got 15 minutes or so for morning sex. A kiss on the back of the neck, on the chest or…shoot, anywhere can be a very sweet and sexy way to wake your partner up from their slumber. It can definitely be more enticing and arousing than your standard alarm clock.
Don’t Be “Afraid” of a Little Water Action
Even though I provided a few suggestions on how to make morning sex more pleasant without getting out of bed, please don't underestimate the joy, power and pleasure of having sex in the shower! It gets you clean (and dirty, if you know what I mean), boosts your oxytocin levels and, if you're a little on the antsy side about period sex, having it in your bathtub can help to put your mind more at ease. Shower sex really is the ultimate kind of multi-tasking!
If this is the kind of sex that you have yet to master, no worries; I've got a few tips. First, cover up your hair with a shower cap (who has time to dry and style their hair right before heading off to work?!). Second, make sure you've got a shower mat down (so that y'all aren't slippin'-and-sliddin' everywhere). Third, test the water with your hand before hoppin' in (trust me, this tip is a lifesaver!). Four, go with using some shower gel instead of a bar of soap; it's easier to apply and share (did you know that there is edible shower gel? Click here to get some). And finally, keep certain sex positions in mind—stand up while in the doggy style position; wrap your legs around your partner while your back is up against the wall, or sit on your partner while he's sitting on the edge of the tub.
As far as the shower rod goes, I'll just say that you should try that at your own risk. Some are not as sturdy as others.
Get Up Before the Kids Do
I saved this one for last because probably the most challenging thing about morning sex is deciding what you'd like more of—sex or sleep. But if the vote is sex and you've got kids in your house, the best way to get it in while being totally uninterrupted is if you get up before they do. This means that you need to set your alarm clock to wake you up earlier than your children arise not you (because usually they will beat you to the punch).
Yeah, that might mean waking up before sunrise sometimes, but if it means that you can get an orgasm or two by doing that, at least 1-3 times a month, it makes losing a little sleep worth it. Doesn't it?
Want more stories like this? Sign up for our newsletter here and check out the related reads below:
10 Sex Resolutions Every Married Couple Should Make
Blended Orgasms Need To Be The Next To-Do On Your Sexual Hit List
If You're In A Committed Relationship, Avoid These Sex Mistakes At All Costs
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After being a regular contributor for about four years and being (eh hem) MIA in 2022, Shellie is back penning for the platform (did you miss her? LOL).
In some ways, nothing has changed and in others, everything has. For now, she'll just say that she's working on the 20th anniversary edition of her first book, she's in school to take life coaching to another level and she's putting together a platform that supports and encourages Black men because she loves them from head to toe.
Other than that, she still works with couples, she's still a doula, she's still not on social media and her email contact (firstname.lastname@example.org) still hasn't changed (neither has her request to contact her ONLY for personal reasons; pitch to the platform if you have story ideas).
Life is a funny thing but if you stay calm, moments can come full circle and this is one of them. No doubt about it.
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Here's Why Very Few Relationships Can Actually Be 'Platonic'
Recently, while in an interview, someone asked me if I think that men and women can be just friends. I didn’t even hesitate to answer; my response was immediate, “Absolutely.” What I followed that up with is what intrigued them — “Life has taught me that not a lot of male/female dynamics are ‘platonic,’ though.” When they asked me to expound, the interview ended up taking a whole ‘nother turn.
As a writer who really pays attention to word meanings, something that can be a bit frustrating about our culture is the fact that based on whatever is popular at the time, folks will just up and change the original definitions of words to suit a particular agenda or whim — and the word “platonic” 1000 percent fits into this category. And perhaps that’s why we seem to continue to go in circles about whether or not people of the opposite sex can (and should) be friends and what that even can (and should) look like.
Let’s talk about it for a bit. Because as a word-literal type of individual, while again, I absolutely believe that men and women can be friends, at the same time, I think it’s about as rare as a red diamond to truly find yourself in a friendship that is…platonic.
It’s Time (More) Folks Knew What ‘Platonic’ LITERALLY MeansGiphy
So, let's do first things first — let's define what it literally means for something to be platonic. If you go to your favorite search engine and put something along the lines of "What does platonic mean?", the first thing that you're (probably) going to see is a ton of dictionary definitions that say something along the lines of "of, relating to, or being a relationship marked by the absence of romance or sex" (Merriam-Webster), "designating or of a relationship, or love, between a man and a woman that is purely spiritual or intellectual and without sexual activity" (Your Dictionary) and, my personal favorite, "purely spiritual; free from sensual desire, especially in a relationship between two persons of different sexes" (Dictionary). Yeah, bookmark that last one; I'll be circling back.
Keeping this in mind (and please do), where does the word "platonic" actually come from? From what I've researched, the philosopher Plato once penned something entitled "Symposium." In it, he addressed the topic of two people sharing the kind of love that is free of any type of sensual desire, one that is based on divine love alone. An author from the 1800s broke it down this way: "Platonic love meant ideal sympathy; it now means the love of a sentimental young gentleman for a woman he cannot or will not marry." A write-up on Merriam-Webster's site stated that "The term platonic was initially used to mock non-sexual relationships, as it was considered ridiculous to separate love and sex, but eventually this connotation faded away leaving us with today's notion of close friendships." Yeah, we used to live in a culture where love and sex were not separated. Hmph, that's another article for another time, though (check out "We Should Really Rethink The Term' Casual Sex'").
Anyway, as with many things (especially in our culture), the word "platonic" is kind of used in "broad strokes" these days (bromances, female friendships, etc.). However, because there continues to be this forever discussion — and oftentimes debate — about whether or not men and women can be "just friends," I'm going to tackle this topic strictly from that angle — from the place where platonic actually originated.
Yes, Men and Women Can Be Just Friends. But…Giphy
At this stage in my life, I'm pretty sure that I have more male friends than female ones. There are layers of reasons why, yet I think a huge one is because I like the balance that masculinity brings to my femininity (especially as I'm learning to embrace different aspects of my femininity, intentionally even more). And while every single one of my male friends is respectful and is a super safe space in my world on every single level that I can imagine (and have been for years now), there are probably only a couple who I would say 100 percent qualify as being…trulyplatonic.
Why would I say that? Well, I'll illustrate this point with something that one of my male friends once said to me. He's super cute. He can sing his ass off (and definitely has one of my favorite speaking voices). People see us out together often, and some have told us that they assume that we've had something going on at some point. Anyway, after hearing someone share their theory about us, I told it to him.
Me: "I told him, 'He's my brother. We would never mess around.'"
My Friend: "Correction, you are like a sister. You are not my sister, though. Under the right conditions, you could still get it."
When I shared that exchange with another male friend of mine, he basically cosigned on the sentiment: "Shellie, I have never approached you like that because I really respect you. I want to be good for you for the rest of our lives." (That reminds me: check out "Question: Is The Man In Your Life Good 'TO' You? Good 'FOR' You? Or...Both?" when you get a chance.)
Then I went to one more guy homie and ran both statements by him: "Girl, yeah. If I didn't want to keep you in my life long-term, I would've tried to holla a long time ago!" And he and I have been friends for almost 20 years at this point. When did he get around to telling me this? Eh, maybe two years ago. LOL.
So, my takeaway from all of these "for real?!" exchanges is even though men and women can be just friends, there is a certain level of intention, self-control, and ability to see into the future (on some level) that must go into account — because, just because something more-than-friends-like may not have gone down, that doesn't mean there isn't a "dormant seed" lying around somewhere…whether it's one-sided or on both sides of the friendship dynamic.
As you can see, I just provided you with three instances where the male friends in my life; we've had nothing sexual or even physically intimate beyond a hug when we greet each other in nature — although things aren't exactly platonic if there is some sort of attraction or sexual/romantic curiosity that simply never got explored. Because again, according to Plato, a platonic relationship is free from all of that kind of…tension — or possibilities. Zero. Nada. Zilch.
And now you probably get why I entitled this article in the way that I did…right? I mean, just think about it — out of your male friendships, where is there NO sensual desire or dormant romantic interest…on your side and/or on his? If you're not sure about "his"…have you ever asked him? Or them? Because again, once I really let the definition of platonic sink in, I think maybe two guys in my life totally fit the bill.
This brings me to my next point.
Are You Platonic? Or Are You Friend-Zoning?Giphy
Now that you know that probably 70 percent of the people you know (both online and off) have been using the true meaning of platonic all the way wrong, let’s go about deeper: when it comes to your friendships with men, are they genuinely platonic or…is it more like you’re friend-zoning them?
A few years ago, I penned an article on the topic entitled, “Before You 'Friend Zone' Someone, Read This.” If you’re skimming this on your lunch break, I’ll summarize friend-zoning as knowing that a guy has so-much-more-than-platonic feelings for you, yet because you basically want to keep the benefits of the friendship or even his emotions around, you will string him along on some level.
Personally, I can’t stand friend-zoning. I think it’s selfish, with some sprinkles of manipulation and wasting someone’s time. Don’t agree? How would you feel if a guy was friend-zoning you? (Yeah…exactly.)
This all needs to go on record because, knowing that a guy wants to “take it there” with you (whether sexually or romantically), you not full-on addressing it and/or giving him just enough hope to take you out, listen to all of your stories about other men and give you the attention that you need knowing that he doesn’t have a shot in hell — that is NOT a platonic friendship and honestly, you’re not being a good friend at all. Friends protect each other’s hearts, not abuse them.
A platonic friendship means that you both have no interest in each other, and, as Plato put it, while you may have a strong and solid bond, it’s spiritual love that connects you. And what exactly does that mean? Spiritual love also deserves its own article, yet the gist would be that you recognize there is a purpose in your friendship, yet it’s about wanting what’s best for one another and even helping each other to get there.
For instance, a platonic friend of yours may know that you desire to be married one day, so he has no problem setting you up with a good guy in his life. And if things go well, he would have no problem standing up as your own best man (without feeling like he’s dying inside) because he never saw you beyond anything but a friend. A guy in the friend zone doesn’t move like this; he likes you too much to help you move on with someone else. See the difference?
Why Relationships Should Start Off As NON-PLATONIC FriendshipsGiphy
Before I end this with some tips on how to properly care for the few platonic friendships you may actually have, since the use of the word may require a bit of mental reprogramming, I do think we should also address that if you've got a good guy in your life, who right now is a friend and either you've never thought of him in that way or the topic has never come up — he's someone that you may not want to brush off.
What I mean by that is, it's one thing for there to be absolutely no interest in someone vs. never considering it before — and the reason why you might want to give it some thought is because, ask any healthy married couple who's been together for more than five years and I'll bet you my next rent check that they will say that the best relationships are birthed out of friendship (check out "Are You Sure You're Actually FRIENDS With Your Spouse?").
Yeah, just because you've filed someone in the "I see him as a good guy" category, that doesn't automatically mean that y'all's friendship is platonic. For instance, I have a male friend who is fine and I adore on many levels, yet the reason why it would never work on my end is because there are certain relational standards that I have that he does not meet. However, don't get it twisted — I've considered him because, on so many levels, we "fit." So, the mere fact that I ever seriously thought about him on that level means that we are "good friends," yet it's not exactly platonic.
I'm not free of potential sensual desire…I just choose not to act on it. Yet because I get the value of having friendship as the foundation for my own future marriage (should life play out that way), I am wise enough to know that I would've been a fool to not at least…ponder him and the possibilities.
So yeah, if there is a male friend in your life that the thought of dating or having sex with him doesn't make you want to throw up in your mouth, there's a pretty good chance that it's not a classic platonic dynamic — and you might want to consider if it could/should go to the next level — if not immediately, eventually. Because there's a pretty good chance that if you are thinking that way, he probably is as well.
Protect Your Genuine Platonic Friendship(s) At All CostsGiphy
Let me end this with how one of my platonic friendships rolls. We both think that the other is attractive, yet neither of us is attracted. We both give each other opposite-sex insights. We both have said that the mere thought of dating each other makes our noses turn up like there’s an odor in the air. And even when I try to imagine us together, my mind goes blank. I love, love, LOVE this man — oh, but it is absolutely nothing more than platonic — and he feels the same way. It’s as close to familial love without being blood relationships. It’s a rare dynamic, and that is what makes it so special. There is definitely a spiritual type of love there; no more, no less.
If you’ve got someone in your life who you feel the same way about (again, it’s got to be mutual; he must feel that way, too), you’ve got a gem of a situation going on because there is nothing like having the kind of friendship where you and a guy can hang out, exchange perspectives and thoroughly enjoy each other’s company, knowing that’s all it is and will ever be. Things will never get weird. No one’s feelings are gonna get hurt (from the whole friend-zoning thing). You don’t have to walk on eggshells. You can just be.
And that’s why I’m all for platonic friendships. And listen, if you’re blessed enough to have even one in your lifetime, be fiercely protective of it. Don’t take it for granted. Nurture it in a way that your male friend needs (because it probably won’t be the exact same as your female friendships). Y’all, platonic friendships are so bomb because, if it’s honored and protected correctly, it’s the one male friend that you can probably keep for life because even your romantic partner will not find it to be a (true) threat — hell, they honestly could probably end up becoming (some level of) friends with your platonic homie as well.
I hope that I broke this all down enough to where, when you decide to use a word to describe your opposite-sex friendships, perhaps you will pause and ask yourself, “Wait, is this a platonic friend or a good or close friend?” Because the clearer you are on the differences, the easier it will be to know how to maintain your friendship — and feel about your friend. Feel me? Cool.
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