If there's one book that I think every married couple on the planet should have, it'sLove & Respect by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs. From a biblical standpoint, it supports the Scripture, "Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband." (Ephesians 5:33—NKJV) Did you peep how the Bible says that men should love their wives and women should respect their husbands? That's the entire premise of the book in a nutshell—wives feel honored by being loved by their husbands while husbands feel honored by being respected by their wives. Much like love languages, the problem with a lot of relationships is women are giving men what they want to receive and vice versa. But I promise you ladies, ask any man if he would prefer love vs. respect, an overwhelming majority would go with what's behind Door #2. In fact, if I were to list the top five complaints that my clients have ever had concerning their relationship, one of them would definitely be that wives don't feel loved enough and husbands don't feel respected (esteemed) enough.
And what does that have to do with the title of today's message? I'm sure many of you remember Sanaa Lathan's character Andrea in the movie The Family That Preys. While that chick was off the chain on so many levels, the one issue that most applies here is she was making most of the money and totally disrespecting her husband because of it. Meanwhile, Chris (played by Rockmond Dunbar) wasn't a bum or anything. He was actually a contractor for the same company where his wife was an accountant. Plus, he had dreams. Big dreams. Ones that eventually ended up paying off…BIG TIME. In the meantime, though, Andrea was makin' bank, he wasn't and it was taking all kinds of tolls on their relationship (yes, I know her affair didn't help but let's stay on topic, shall we?).
Black men are NOT properly loved until we make money.— Blade Pinderhughes 🎭🇭🇹 (@Blade Pinderhughes 🎭🇭🇹) 1588427573
Hmph. I can name five couples off the top of my head that I personally know who are in this same boat in real life. And since it's that many, I know there must be at least a few readers who can relate to this situation too. It can be frustrating. It can be draining. Sometimes, it can make divorce seem like a much more appealing option (check out "What Some People Regret About Their Divorce").
But before you make a drastic life change, I hope that the following five questions can help you to figure out if there is possibly another route to take; especially if one of your dreams was to remain married to your husband for the rest of your life.
Did You Know What You Were Getting Yourself into from the Jump?
There is someone I know who's basically been the sole breadwinner of her marriage since she said, "I do". When you grow up in the entertainment industry (which I did), it's pretty common to know of husbands who are "in the arts" and not pulling a paycheck (or at least a steady one) while the wives are the ones who are holding the bills down. How does someone find themselves in such a predicament? Good question. I'm not exactly sure what it is, but there is something very…alluring about artists. I don't know if it's their talent, the spotlight they stand in as they perform or what, but it has a way of seducing you to the point of sometimes losing all common sense. Anyway, years and years later, this woman's husband continues to not have stable employment while she works a couple of gigs to make ends meet. Also, for years and years, he's made the promise that once he "hits it big", she can quit. At this rate, it looks like she will retire well before that happens.
You know, another woman I know once told me something that is oh so very wise. She said, "Be careful about telling God rather than asking God who your husband is. You could end up regretting it." (Check out "What Should You Do If You Feel Like You Married The Wrong Person?") The wife I just spoke of? I remember her falling for her now-husband. She was so enamored with him that, while she was well aware of the fact that he was almost obsessed with being an artist while his work ethic was shady, at best, because she wanted him so bad, she overlooked that. You know what that means, right? He didn't hoodwink or bamboozle her. She simply married a man who has never really made provision a priority.
I oftentimes say, marriage doesn't "fix" matters; if anything, it magnifies them. So yeah, if you're with someone and you're the financial supporter of the house, their dreams or both, the first thing you should ask yourself is, "Did I go into this relationship fully aware that it was going to be that way?" because sometimes, our spouse is merely being what we accepted from day one. And, if we want that to change, we first have to take responsibility for not requiring more in the relationship from the very beginning.
Is Your Husband a Dreamer or a Dream Implementer?
Whether you know what you were getting yourself into or not, I'm certainly not saying that you should surrender to things remaining this way. After all, it's one thing to be with a dreamer. It's another matter entirely to be with a dream implementer. What's the difference? I once worked with a couple who, quite frankly, the husband was a spoiled brat. Because he was such a mama's boy while growing up, he basically acted like it was his wife's job to fund his dreams and ambitions. First of all, that's a wack way of thinking, whether it's on the husband's or wife's part.
It's not another grown person's responsibility to make sure that you live your best life. Your spouse is there to support you, not enable you.
Anyway, because ole' boy didn't get this memo, if he lost a job…whatever. If he misspent money…whatever. If his dream changed half a dozen times in one year…whatever. He felt that she should keep "having his back" until he figured it out. This guy is a dreamer. A lazy and entitled one, at that.
A dream implementer is different. His dream comes with a mission statement. His dream comes with a plan. His dream comes with short- and long-term goals. And, if he needs the financial support of his wife in order to make those dreams happen, he presents his idea in such a way where it's an investment into him and the marriage overall. His dream also has a clear timeframe. What I mean by that is, if he wants to quit a good paying job in order to start his own business, he will make sure his wife knows how long he is planning to rely on her financial support—and you can best believe that it won't be indefinitely. Matter of fact, a lot of dream implementers will even work a part-time gig, just so that some sort of income can be coming in on their behalf. Why? Because as an adult, they are not comfortable with someone else solely providing for them for a long period of time, even if that individual happens to be their wife.
Is Your Marriage a True Partnership?
A healthy marriage consists of two people who see their union as a partnership. One of my favorite definitions of partnership is "joint interest". JOINT. INTEREST. It's one thing for a husband or wife to come home and tell their partner what they are going to do next with their life, all the while assuming that since their spouse vowed "for better, for worse" and "for richer, for poorer" that they should automatically be on board. It's another matter entirely for that same husband or wife to come home, share their dreams and then ask their spouse how they feel about the idea and if they think it is something that is doable at the time. The latter couple are the kind who respect that their marriage is a partnership.
There's a couple I know who's been married, shoot, for at least three decades now. They are both anesthesiologists. When they were in medical school, they were brokety-broke-broke. And so, the husband worked and paid to get his wife through school. Then, when she graduated, she worked so that he could earn his degree. This means that there was a season when both of them were sole breadwinners. This was able to happen because they mutually agreed that it was the best idea for them.
No good husband is going to be "cool" with his wife funding his dreams if she isn't fully on board. Mind you, I didn't say always happy or thrilled, but she will be down for the cause. If you are currently the financier of your husband's ideas and goals and there's some real bitterness and resentment going on, could it be that you don't feel like there is a "joint interest" in what he's trying to accomplish?
If that is the case, I recommend you bringing that up to him. And, if need be, that the two of you get into some counseling so that you can figure out how to get on the same page.
Are Your Wants and Needs Met in Other Ways?
For better or for worse (pun intended and not intended at the same time), it's becoming more common for wives to make more money than their husbands do. I recently read a study that said 38 percent of women make more money than men. Some of my clients fall into this demographic. But you know what? Most of the wives don't complain to me that their pay stub is higher than their husbands. No, their bigger issue is, if they are going to be making more income, they would like their husband to "make up for it" in other ways. Cook more. Help with the kids more. Plan dates. They especially would like this to be the case if their husband is working less hours or, the difference in pay is because he is working to get his dream off of the ground.
Personally, I think if there was one word that could be used to describe what a lot of wives would like to feel if they are financially supporting their husband's dreams, it's "appreciation". And a great way for husbands to show their appreciation is for them to know what their wife's wants and needs are and then be proactive about meeting them.
After all, it's only more work to come home and then feel like you have to nag or even beg your spouse to help out (or help out more). But if you feel like you're being taken care of in other ways than monetarily, the financial sacrifice won't seem quite as…strenuous.
Do You See “Light” at the End of the Tunnel?
I know some husbands who, basically since I've known them, they've been at home, "building their dreams" while their wives have been making sure the family doesn't get evicted in the process. I don't know how any man can feel good about himself with his household running this way. If we're going to bring the Bible back into this, I say that based on the King James Version of I Timothy 5:8 which says, "But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel" (which connects to Genesis 3:17-19).
Yet, even outside of the Word, a part of what comes with being an adult is being self-sufficient; if a man is relying on his wife for food and shelter for years on end, he is not living like an adult should. Adults are who should be married. Right?
If you're a wife reading this, a year of your man getting a vision or enterprise off of the ground is one thing. Ten years is something else. If you've just begun the journey of financially supporting your husband's dream(s), remember that love is patient (I Corinthians 13:4) and nothing happens in a day. If it's been years, whether your husband realizes (or acknowledges) it or not, you are being taken advantage of. If he were single, he'd have a job, right? Being married doesn't mean he should throw caution to the wind and just do…whatever. When he married you, he signed up to have your back as you have his. He also signed up for you being a top priority; his dreams shouldn't have you pressed and stressed all of the time. That's not loving you. Not. At. All.
I started this article off with something that I heard R&B singer Monica say on T.I. & Tiny: Friends & Family Hustle not too long ago. She was speaking in the context of marriage, in general. I thought it was fitting because, to have a man who is a dreamer—more specifically, a dream implementer—can be a beautiful thing. A respectable thing. Just make sure that your man loves you enough to where he's not taking your support, your understanding and/or your resources for granted. If he's got timeframes, if he's meeting your needs, and if he's holding you down in the process, he isn't. You'll look up and realize that it was all worth it in the long run. On the flip side, if he's not doing any of this, again, call a therapist because it's costing you more than you should ever have to pay—for his dreams or otherwise. Simple as that. And you can, pun intended, totally take that to the bank.
Want more stories like this? Sign up for our newsletter here and check out the related reads below:
10 Communication Mistakes Many Married Couples Make
If Your Husband's The One With The Lower Libido, Do This.
10 Hacks To Get Your Marriage Back On Track
Featured image by Shutterstock
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 (email@example.com) 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.
Amber Riley Is In Her Element
Amber Riley has the type of laugh that sticks with you long after the raspy, rhythmic sounds have ceased. It punctuates her sentences sometimes, whether she’s giving a chuckle to denote the serious nature of something she just said or throwing her head back in rip-roarious laughter after a joke. She laughs as if she understands the fragility of each minute. She chooses laughter often with the understanding that future joy is not guaranteed.
Credit: Ally Green
The sound of her laughter is rivaled only by her singing voice, an emblem of the past and the future resilience of Black women stretched over a few octaves. On Fox’s Glee, her character Mercedes Jones was portrayed, perhaps unfairly, as the vocal duel to Rachel Berry (Lea Michele), offering rough, full-throated belts behind her co-star’s smooth, pristine vocals. Riley’s always been more than the singer who could deliver a finishing note, though.
Portraying Effie White, she displayed the dynamic emotions of a song such as “And I'm Telling You I'm Not Going” in Dreamgirls on London’s West End without buckling under the historic weight of her predecessors. With her instrument, John Mayer’s “Gravity” became a religious experience, a belted hymnal full of growls and churchy riffs. In her voice, Nicole Scherzinger once said she heard “the power of God.”
Credit: Ally Green
Riley’s voice has been a staple throughout pop culture for nearly 15 years now. Her tone has become so distinguishable that most viewers of Fox’s The Masked Singer recognized the multihyphenate even before it was revealed that she was Harp, the competition-winning, gold-masked figure with an actual harp strapped to her back.
Still, it wasn’t until recently that Riley began to feel like she’d found her voice. This sounds unbelievable. But she’s not referring to the one she uses on stage. She’s referencing the voice that speaks to who she is at her core. “Therapy kind of gave me the training to speak my mind,” the 37-year-old says. “It’s not something we’re taught, especially as Black women. I got so comfortable in [doing so], and I really want other people, especially Black women, to get more comfortable in that space.”
“Therapy kind of gave me the training to speak my mind. It’s not something we’re taught, especially as Black women."
If you ask Riley’s manager, Myisha Brooks, she’ll tell you the foundation of who the multihyphenate is hasn’t changed much since she was a kid growing up in Compton. “She is who she is from when I met her back when she was singing in the front of the church to back when she landed major roles in film and TV,” Brooks says. Time has allowed Riley to grow more comfortable, giving fans a more intimate glimpse into her life, including her mental health journey and the ins and outs of show business.
The actress/singer has been in therapy since 2019, although she suffered from depression and anxiety way before that. In a recent interview with Jason Lee, she recalls having suicidal ideation as a kid. By the time she started seeing a psychologist and taking antidepressants in her thirties, her body had become jittery, a physical reminder of the trauma stacked high inside her. “I was shaking in [my therapist’s] office,” she tells xoNecole. “My fight or flight was on such a high level. I was constantly in survival mode. My heart was beating fast all the time. All I did was sweat.”
There wasn’t just childhood trauma to account for. After auditioning for American Idol and being turned away by producers, Riley began working for Ikea and nearly missed her Glee audition because her car broke down on the highway while en route. Thankfully, Riley had been cast to play Mercedes Jones. American Idol had temporarily convinced her she wasn’t cut out for the entertainment industry, but this was validation that she was right where she belonged. Glee launched in 2009 with the promise of becoming Riley’s big break.
In some ways, it was. The show introduced Riley to millions of fans and catapulted her into major Hollywood circles. But in other ways, it became a reminder of the types of roles Black women, especially those who are plus-sized, are relegated to. Behind the scenes, Riley says she fought for her character "to have a voice" but eventually realized her efforts were useless. "It finally got to a point where I was like, this is not my moment. I'm not who they're choosing, and this is just going to have to be a job for me for now," she says. "And, that's okay because it pays my bills, I still get to be on television, I'm doing more than any other Black plus-sized women that I'm seeing right now on screen."
The actress can recognize now that she was navigating issues associated with trauma and low self-esteem at the time. She now knows that she's long had anxiety and depression and can recognize the ways in which she was triggered by how the cult-like following of the show conflicted with her individual, isolated experiences behind the scenes. But she was in her early '20s back then. She didn't yet have the language or the tools to process how she was feeling.
Riley says she eventually sought out medical intervention. "When you're in Hollywood, and you go to a doctor, they give you pills," she says, sharing a part of her story that she'd never revealed publicly before now. "[I was] on medication and developing a habit of medicating to numb, not understanding I was developing an addiction to something that's not fixing my problem. If anything, it's making it worse."
“[I was] on medication and developing a habit of medicating to numb, not understanding I was developing an addiction to something that’s not fixing my problem. If anything it’s making it worse.”
Credit: Ally Green
At one point, while in her dressing room on set, she rested her arm on a curling iron without realizing it. It wasn't until her makeup artist alerted her that she even realized her skin was burning. Once she noticed, she says she was "so zonked out on pills" that she barely reacted. Speaking today, she holds up her arm and motions towards a scar that remains from the incident. She sought help for her reliance on the pills, but it would still be years before she finally attended therapy.
This stress was only compounded by the trauma of growing up in poverty and the realities of being a "contract worker." "Imagine going from literally one week having to borrow a car to get to set to the next week being on a private jet to New York City," she says. After Glee ended, so did the rides on private planes. The fury of opportunities she expected to follow her appearance on the show failed to materialize. She wasn't even 30 yet, and she was already forced to consider if she'd hit her career peak.
. . .
We’re only four minutes into our Zoom call before Riley delivers her new adage to me. “My new mantra is ‘humility does not serve me.’ Humility does not serve Black women. The world works so hard to humble us anyway,” she says.
On this Thursday afternoon in April, the LA-based entertainer is seated inside her closet/dressing room wearing a cerulean blue tank top with matching shorts and eating hot wings. This current phase of healing hinges on balance. It’s about having discipline and consistency, but not at the risk of inflexibility. She was planning to head to the gym, for instance, but she’s still tired from the “exhausting” day before. Instead, she’s spent her day receiving a massage, eating some chicken wings, and planning to spend quality time with friends. “I’m not going to beat myself up for it. I’m not going to talk down to myself. I’m going to eat my chicken wings, and then tomorrow I’m [back] in the gym,” she says.
“My new mantra is ‘humility does not serve me.’ Humility does not serve Black women. The world works so hard to humble us anyway."
This is the balance with which she's been approaching much of her life these days. It's why she's worried less about whether or not people see her as someone who is humble. She'd rather be respected. "I think you should be a person that's easy to work with, but in the moments where I have to ruffle feathers and make waves, I'm not shying away from that anymore. You can do it in love, you don't have to be nasty about it, but I had to finally be comfortable with the fact that setting boundaries around my life – in whatever aspect, whether that's personal or business – people are not going to like it. Some people are not going to have nice things to say about you, and you gotta be okay with it," she says.
When Amber talks about the constant humbling of Black women in Hollywood, I think of the entertainers before her who have suffered from this. The brilliant, consistent, overqualified Black women who have spoken of having to fight for opportunities and fair pay. Aretha Franklin. Viola Davis. Tracee Ellis Ross. There's a long list of stars whose success hasn't mirrored their experiences behind the scenes.
Credit: Ally Green
If Black women outside of Hollywood are struggling to decrease the pay gap, so, too, are their wealthier, more famous peers.
Riley says there’s been progress in recent years, but only in small ways and for a limited group of people. “This business is exhausting. The goalpost is constantly moving, and sometimes it’s unfair,” she says. But, I have to say it’s the love that keeps you going.”
“There’s no way you can continue to be in this business and not love it, especially being a plus-sized Black woman,” she continues. “We’re still niche. We’re still not main characters.”
"There’s no way you can continue to be in this business and not love it, especially being a plus-sized Black woman. We’re still niche. We’re still not main characters.”
Last year, Riley starred alongside Raven Goodwin in the Lifetime thriller Single Black Female (a modern, diversified take on 1992’s Single White Female). It was more than a leading role for the actress, it also served as proof that someone who looks like her can front a successful project without it hinging on her identity. It showcased that the characters she portrays don’t “have to be about being a big girl. It can just be a regular story.”
Riley sees her work in music as an extension of her efforts to push past the rigid stereotypes in entertainment. Take her appearance on The Masked Singer, for instance. Riley said she decided to perform Mayer’s “Gravity” after being told she couldn’t sing it years earlier. “I wanted to do ‘Gravity’ on Glee. [I] was told no, because that’s not a song that Mercedes would do,” she says. “That was a full circle moment for me, doing that on that show and to hear what it is they had to say.”
As Scherzinger praised the “anointed” performance, a masked Riley began to cry, her chest heaving as she stood on stage, her eyes shielded from view. “You have to understand, I have really big names – casting directors, producers, show creators – that constantly tell me ‘I’m such a big fan. Your talent is unmatched.’ Hire me, then,” she says, reflecting on the moment.
Recently, she’s been in the studio working on original music, the follow-up to her independently-released debut EP, 2020’s Riley. The sequel to songs such as the anthemic “Big Girl Energy” and the reflective ballad “A Moment” on Riley, this new project hones in on the singer’s R&B roots with sensual grooves such as the tentatively titled “All Night.” “You said I wasn’t shit, turns out that I’m the shit. Then you called me a bitch, turns out that I’m that bitch. You said no one would want me, well you should call your homies,” she sings on the tentatively titled “Lately,” a cut about reflecting on a past relationship. From the forthcoming project, xoNecole received five potential tracks. Fans likely already know the strengths and contours of Riley’s vocals, but these new songs are her strongest, most confident offerings as an artist.
“I am so much more comfortable as a writer, and I know who I am as an artist now. I’m evolving as a human being, in general, so I’m way more vulnerable in my music. I’m way more willing to talk about whatever is on my mind. I don’t stop myself from saying what it is I want to say,” she says.
Credit: Ally Green
“Every era and alliteration of Amber, the baseline is ‘Big Girl Energy.’ That’s the name of her company,” her manager Brooks says, referencing the imprint through which Riley releases her music after getting out of a label deal several years ago. “It’s just what she stands for. She’s not just talking about size, it’s in all things. Whether it’s putting your big girl pants on and having to face a boardroom full of executives or sell yourself in front of a casting agent. It’s her trying to achieve the things she wants to do in life.”
Riley says she has big dreams beyond releasing this new music, too. She’d love to star in a rom-com with Winston Duke. She hasn't starred in a biopic yet, but she’d revel in the opportunity to portray Rosetta Tharpe on screen. She’s determined that her previous setbacks won’t stop her from dreaming big.
“I think one of my superpowers is resilience because, at the end of the day, I’m going to kick, scream, cry, cuss, be mad and disappointed, but I’m going to get up and risk having to deal with it all again. It’s worth it for the happy moments,” she says.
If Riley seems more comfortable and confident professionally, it’s because of the work she’s been doing in her personal life.
She’d previously spoken to xoNecole about becoming engaged to a man she discovered in a post on the site, but she called things off last year. For Valentine’s Day, she revealed her new boyfriend publicly. “I decided to post him on Valentine’s Day, partially because I was in the dog house. I got in trouble with him,” she says, half-joking before turning serious. “The breakup was never going to stop me from finding love. Or at least trying. I don’t owe anybody a happily ever after. People break up. It happens. When it was good, it was good. When it was bad, it was terrible, hunny. I had to get the fuck up out of there. You find happiness, and you enjoy it and work through it.”
Credit: Ally Green
"I don’t owe anybody a happily ever after. People break up. It happens. When it was good, it was good. When it was bad, it was terrible, hunny. I had to get the fuck up out of there. You find happiness and you enjoy it and work through it.”
With her ex, Riley was pretty outspoken about her relationship, even appearing in content for Netflix with him. This time around is different. She’s not hiding her boyfriend of eight months, but she’s more protective of him, especially because he’s a father and isn’t interested in becoming a public figure.
She’s traveling more, too. It’s a deliberate effort on her part to enjoy her money and reject the trauma she’s developed after experiencing poverty in her childhood. “I live in constant fear of being broke. I don’t think you ever don’t remember that trauma or move past that. Now I travel and I’m like, listen, if it goes, it goes. I’m not saying [to] be reckless, but I deserve to enjoy my hard work.”
After everything she’s been through, she certainly deserves to finally let loose a bit. “I have to have a life to live,” she says. “I’ve got to have a life worth fighting for.”
Director of Content: Jasmine Grant
Campaign Manager: Chantal Gainous
Managing Editor: Sheriden Garrett
Creative Director/Executive Producer: Tracey Woods
Cover Designer: Tierra Taylor
Photographer: Ally Green
Photo Assistant: Avery Mulally
Digital Tech: Kim Tran
Video by Third and Sunset
DP & Editor: Sam Akinyele
2nd Camera: Skylar Smith
Camera Assistant: Charles Belcher
Stylist: Casey Billingsley
Hairstylist: DaVonte Blanton
Makeup Artist: Drini Marie
Production Assistants: Gade De Santana, Apu Gomes
Powered by: European Wax Center
15 Women Share Their Personal Hacks For Better Orgasms (And Sex Overall)
I’m pretty sure that I’m basically being redundant when I say that I write about sex quite a bit which means that I spend quite a bit of time doing research when it comes to sex-related intel, tips, and hacks. Yet I have to say that when it comes to getting some much-needed information in the realm of coitus, it’s been my clients (along with random interviews that I do with people because I don’t mind talking to complete strangers about intimate ish) who have garnered me some of the best takeaways.
Take orgasms, for example. Since I’m well aware of the fact that vaginal orgasms (especially) can be a real challenge for a lot of women, I’m constantly on the hunt for what can help to “bridge the gap” in that arena.
And that’s why I decided, this time, to forego science articles, vlogs, and online data and instead ask some women for myself about some of the things that they do to make having an orgasm, improving their orgasms, and their sexual experience overall something that is so much better for themselves.
So, grab yourself a light aphrodisiac snack (check out “Eat Your Way To Better Sex With Aphrodisiacs”) and dig into what 15 Black women told me gets them off, in a mighty big way, just about every time.
*As always, middle names have been used so that everyone can feel comfortable giving up the goods…umm, so to speak*
1. Rochelle. 37. Married for 11 Years.Giphy
“While y’all be out here talking about some kegels, what I’m into is my man giving me a hip massage. The key is to make sure you use some sort of massage oil that has menthol in it. Between the tingling of the menthol and him rubbing on your hips, not only is it really relaxing, but the ‘minty feel’ opens your body up so that once intercourse begins, you’re less tense, and that makes having an orgasm so much easier to do.”
2. Karmyn. 27. Single.
“Kiss him the way you want him to penetrate you. Literally, use your tongue as if it were a penis and move it in his mouth like you want him to move inside of you. The kissing will turn you both on, and if he follows your instructions, you should be able to orgasm with no problem."
"I learned this trick when I asked an ex of mine to explain what p — sy feels like, and he said the best way to explain it is what a tongue feels like inside of [the] mouth. He should’ve never told me that, boy! It’s been hell in these streets ever since!”
3. LaChelle. 43. In a Serious Relationship for Two Years.
“If you’re self-conscious about your body, get some lingerie that has cutouts in them. There is a lot of sexy stuff out here that can have you covering up the parts you’re not comfortable with while still giving him access to the ‘main events.’ My man loves one of my lace one-piece teddies that has no crotch, and it’s easier for me to orgasm because I’m not overthinking the entire time.”
4. Trinitee. 27. Married for One Year.Giphy
“We’ve only been married a year, but we weren’t exactly abstinent when we were just dating. So, we like to find ways to keep it fresh. One thing that we do is go ‘hotel hopping’ once a month. We find a new hotel and meet each other there. We try and do different hours of the day and come with a surprise in hand. Like he might bring a new sex toy, and I might have on some lingerie that he’s never seen before. Then we text each other beforehand to talk about the best part of the sex we had from the last hotel we visited. The anticipation is foreplay.”
5. Wren. 33. In a Serious Relationship for Six Years.
“What works for me is doing afterplay as foreplay. What I mean by that is, taking a nap naked with my boo before any sexual activity is one of my favorite things. Being up under him, especially if he’s spooning me, feels really good, sleeping together is very intimate, and — there’s something about being awakened outta my sleep with kisses on my neck and back that almost makes me want to cum right then and there.”
6. Bevalyn. 40. Living with Her Partner for Four Years.
“Get on your back and have him kneel in front of you."
"Put your legs over his, and when he penetrates you, ask him to use one of his hands to apply pressure on your pubic bone — the area right above your clitoris."
"As he’s gently pushing down while he’s inside of you…if you don’t cum from that, I don’t know what else to tell you, sis.”
7. Sophia. 38. In a Serious Relationship for Two Years.Giphy
“Shower sex can be a bit much, and I don’t trust a used jacuzzi. What we do is fill up our own inflatable pool and get it on inside of it. It’s perfect during the summer, late at night, because we have a tall fence. Just make sure that you bring some silicone lube to keep things slippery down there. An inflatable pool has been one of the best sex investments that we have ever made!”
8. Averie. 35. Single.
“Wanna know if your man is as into giving you head as he claims? Right after he goes down on you, ask him to immediately penetrate you. If he’s hard, he’s totally into it, and if he catches you soon enough, you’ll be in the perfect position to have a multiple orgasm. Don’t say I didn’t give you the ultimate cheat code.”
9. Victoria. 40. Married for 11 Years.
“Shellie, you actually got me on the cinnamon kick when I read one of your articles that talked about applying cinnamon oil to my clit before oral sex. Since [then], I’ve been doing some research, and it says that cinnamon is also an aphrodisiac because it stimulates blood flow. So, I’ll also drink cinnamon tea throughout the day or share a cinnamon cocktail with my husband. Works like a charm.”
Shellie here: She’s right. I did say that. LOL. You can read for yourself: “Here's How To Have Some Really Great Fall-Themed Sex.”
10. Daniela. 28. Engaged for Six Months.Giphy
“Ever been fingered backward? What I mean is, get on all fours and have him insert a finger or two from behind with his palm being flat. That way, the space in between your anus and your vagina will get a massage while your vagina gets penetrated. There’s nothing quite like it.”
11. Saven. 32. Single.
“Ice. Have him rub a little bit of ice on your clitoris and then immediately warm it up with his tongue. There is something about the drastic changes in temperature that gets me every time. And I mean, EVERY time.”
12. Ferynn. 30. Living with Her Partner for Five Years.
“I don’t know about you, but my man loves to put my legs up in the air. It was never really my favorite move until I read that behind the knees are an unsung erogenous zone. Whoever found that out was onto something because if he rubs back there while talking real crazy to me in a deep voice? Here I come…HERE I COME!”
13. Vivienne. 30. Engaged for One Year.Giphy
“Never underestimate the power of a foot massage. Just make sure that he applies pressure in the middle of your foot where your arch is. It instantly makes me wet. I asked my doctor why and he said that it’s probably because foot massages tend to increase blood flow, including where the vagina is. Either way, it’s always a good night if I get a foot massage first.”
14. Michelle. 24. Single.
“I’m a doula who owns my own exercise ball…for sex. When I first started showing couples the positions that women can get into to make labor easier, it got me to thinking that some of those positions could work for sex too — and they do."
"Something about the movement of the ball takes the pressure off of the back for both men and women. It also makes getting into certain positions a lot easier so that you can enjoy sex for a lot longer.”
15. Carol. 31. Married for Five Years.
“My husband and I have bets. If he wants me to make some of his favorite meals five days in a row, he’s gotta make me cum five times in a row. If I want him to get me something that’s not in our budget, I’ve gotta attempt one of his sex fantasies. We’re both competitive as hell, so it works for us because honestly, even when we ‘lose’…we win!”
Listen, I don’t know about y’all, but this was definitely worth my while. After all, ain’t nothin’ like some Black women who can speak from very-personal-and-up-close experience about what makes them happy — especially if it can increase the odds of bringing some sexual satisfaction your way too.
Speaking of, if you want to share the wealth, drop some of your own orgasm-related tips in the comment section. The more of us who can woosah on the regular, the better, chile. Straight up. #havefun #lotsofit
Let’s make things inbox official! Sign up for the xoNecole newsletter for daily love, wellness, career, and exclusive content delivered straight to your inbox.
Featured image by Giphy