During sex, my beautiful and brilliant new girlfriend often initiates the reverse cowgirl position – in other words, she is on top and facing away from me. She enjoys it, but I never cared much for this practice. It doesn’t allow for the intimacy and kissing of face-to-face positions or the full skin contact of spooning. As a result I pretty much zone out and fail to climax. Should I discourage her from doing this – and if so, how?

You need to discuss this, but try to be generous. Your girlfriend may have (cleverly) found a position that gives her the most pleasure given her specific anatomy and physiology – and yours. In that case it would be unwise and unfair to discourage her from doing it altogether. Instead, ask for what you need as well. The negotiation could go something like this: “It’s good to see you taking charge of your own pleasure and I want you to continue enjoying that position, but I’d like to switch it some of the time to enjoy face-to-face styles. Would that be OK?”

On the other hand, during that conversation you may learn that it’s not, in fact, something that truly gives her pleasure but that she was erroneously taught that all men like it. At least she is taking responsibility for her own orgasm – you need to do the same.

Pamela Stephenson Connolly is a US-based psychotherapist who specialises in treating sexual disorders.

If you would like advice from Pamela on sexual matters, send us a brief description of your concerns to [email protected] (please don’t send attachments). Each week, Pamela chooses one problem to answer, which will be published online. She regrets that she cannot enter into personal correspondence. Submissions are subject to our terms and conditions.

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