Does your Favourite Position Hurt? Let's Fix That!

By Jodie Dunne, from Bliss for Women

What to do if a sexual position you love hurts? 5 tips that may help.

Whether it is doggy style or you on top, each to their own. I think we can all agree it sucks when something you and your partner enjoyed is disrupted by pain. 3 out of 4 women will have pain with sex at some point in their life, so it is actually very common for women to experience discomfort or pain during sexual intercourse. It is also very common that we try to ignore it, by just having sex without complaining or we go to the other extreme and avoid sex altogether. Neither are really productive ways to address the situation.

The first thing to know is you are not alone. You are not broken and it is not solely your problem to fix. There are options to try and professionals that can help both you and your partner address the issue together. Yes, together. 

So, if working out ways to get into your favourite positions and getting back into having sex with your partner appeals to you then here are a few suggestions to get you started;  

  1. If you have pain in a position, then doing the same position as you always have is not a smartest of moves. 

    1. So, let’s keep it simple and start with the missionary position for example. You might automatically wrap your legs around your partners waist to bring them closer. That can cause pain due to the depth of penetration which for some can mean pressure on adhesions caused by conditions such as endometriosis. 

    2. In the case of traditional doggy, on your hands and knees with your partner behind you, can cause pain due to the fact that it may for some squish the vaginal canal, cause the penis/toy to penetrate at an angle that may cause pain. During deeper penetration pain can be caused by the penis or toy touching and bruising the cervix. 

    3. This doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the closeness of missionary position, the sexy moments that doggy style or the feeling deeper penetration can bring to the penetrating partner, it just means being smart about it and make adjustments. 

  2. Try the following variations on the two previous examples.

    1. Try doggy style lying flat on your stomach rather than on your knees. It makes the depth of penetration shallower. Lie down on the bed, resting your hands under your chin or in a baby cobra position. You can have a pillow under your hips to take the pressure off your lower back if that is an issue for you. Keep your legs closed (you can squeeze your legs together once you have the position worked out) and have your partner lie on top of you, entering you from behind. This means a lot of the friction and tightness around your partners penis has it passes between your thighs and shallow entry into the vagina. Don’t forget the quality lubricant in this position. 

    2. For Missionary it may sound too simple to be much of a fix, but feet down not wrapped around your partners waist. This still allows you to be close to your partner and enjoy that connection, but feet stay on the bed and hips stay down. 

    3. A quick note on lubrication. Using a quality lubricant is a great way to help decrease friction with penetration which can be a big contributor to pain with intercourse. If you think about it, it can be a great help to get you in the mood too. It is your best friend no matter your age. 

  3. Communicate, communicate – Sex should never hurt and if it does it is important that you communicate with your partner. Communication is important in a relationship and vital for consent. Also, research has shown that partners who effectively communicate have more satisfying sex lives. If you don’t communicate and choose to suffer through the pain, you may end up enlisting coping mechanisms such as avoiding intimacy or being resentful of your partner and hugging a heat pack. 

  4. Look for help – A pelvic floor physiotherapist or your GP are a great place to start. Speak to your GP if you don’t know where a pelvic floor physiotherapist is. If you have pain with sex a pelvic floor assessment conducted by a pelvic floor physiotherapist is an important tool in your tool box and they can be a great way to get a referral to a sex therapist or counsellor. You can also look at other options like the Ohnut. The Ohnut a wearable device that controls the depth of penetration and can be worn on the penis or a penetrative toy. It was designed for people that have pain during penetrative sex and for couples looking for way to be able to continue to explore pleasure. These little super stretching and stackable rings give you the option to adjust the size of the Ohnut and therefore the depth of penetration. This is great because everybody is different and you can personalise it to you, your symptoms and the position you want to explore. Oh, and don’t forget to use a quality lubricant. 

  5. Take the focus off penetration – Slow things down and focus on exploring each other’s bodies and a deeper connection through pleasure. Take the focus of penetration and fast pounding activities and focus more on foreplay. Foreplay is an important part of sex and starts long before you get to the bedroom and is well worth the effort. The added lubrication and arousal created through indulging in pleasure can also help reduce pain with sex. Add in any work you have done with the pelvic physio or your medical professional, adjusting positions and something like The Ohnut and you may just find that your favourite position is not so painful anymore. 

Pain with sex is common but it is not something that you have to put up with. Sometimes your favourite position just isn’t working for you, even if your partner loves that positions, you do not have to do it – that goes double if it hurts. Talk to your partner and explore your options – you may find a new position or activity that you like. You do not have to put up with pain.

Bliss for Women

Bliss is a pioneering brand dedicated to closing the pleasure gap. Our mission is to help women, and those that love them, to tap into pleasure, explore their sexual selves, whatever their age, sexuality, health or relationship status without taboo or shame.

We want to empower an understanding that a satisfying, safe and pleasurable sexual experience is a human right. That sexual health and ability to express one’s sexuality is key to self-esteem, well-being and happiness. We passionately believe that women deserve a place where they can explore their own unique relationship to sex, desire and their bodies, with no shame, pressure, taboos or stereotypes. A place that is designed by women for women and where they are the customers and not the merchandise.

Bliss will donate $10 from the sale of every Ohnut purchased using the code ‘QENDO’ at the checkout. 

The materials available on or through the website [‘QENDO’] are an information source only. Information provided by QENDO does not constitute medical advice and should not be relied upon to diagnose or treat any medical condition.To the maximum extent permitted by law, all contributors of QENDO make no statement, representation, or warranty about the quality, accuracy, context, completeness, availability or suitability for any purpose of, and you should not rely on, any materials available on or through the website QENDO disclaims, to the maximum extent permitted by law, all responsibility and all liability (including without limitation, liability in negligence) for all expenses, losses, damages and costs you or any other person might incur for any reason including as a result of the materials available on or through this website being in any way inaccurate, out of context, incomplete, unavailable, not up to date or unsuitable for any purpose.