You’d think that after years of (sometimes intermittent) practice, sex would stop being awkward. Tragically, that’s not at all the case. According to Hollywood, sex is a magical, relationship-affirming union, but in reality it’s about as pretty as you when you first wake up on a Sunday morning. Like, it’s hard to ascend to a higher spiritual plane with your lover when you’re half-choking on a stray pubic hair and/or focused on holding in a queef. I’m not saying it can’t be done—just that approximately a bajillion awkward things can happen during sex, usually at the exact moment you wish they wouldn’t. You know, because you didn’t already have enough embarrassing moments in your life to agonize over when you’re trying to fall asleep.
But sex is awesome, so we soldier on anyway in the pursuit of orgasms. At least it gives us something to talk about at Sunday morning (er, afternoon) brunch?
Ah yes, the queef. The genital fart, or as I like to call it, the sexual showstopper (because you pause out of sheer embarrassment every time). Queefing can happen anywhere—yoga class, that time you drunkenly tried to do a split and your BFF had to help you get back up without tearing a muscle, etc.—but it’s pretty much guaranteed to happen during sex, especially the athletic variety. Which, considering you never work out, is basically every variety.
When this happens, there’s not much you can do, so like most embarrassing things, your best bet is to summon what you learned in that acting class you took in 8th grade and laugh it off. Queefing isn’t the end of the world—I mean, what else do you expect when an object is repeatedly crammed into your vagina? If the guy your banging has ever had sex before, which I sincerely hope he has, he should know it’s just a result of a pocket of air getting trapped in your vag and not actual gas. In other words, it’s not a big deal and neither of you should be fazed by a queef at all. If it keeps happening, switch positions. If he laughs at you, he’s a fuckboy, and you have my permission to kick him out of your bed mid-thrust.
Sex is 1) an athletic activity and 2) involves a considerable amount of jostling your insides. Whether you’re having anal sex or ate way too much Chipotle before he came over, farts can easily sneak up on you or your partner, but unlike queefs, they aren’t easily ignored.
If you were farted on, you have two options: call it quits, depending on how good the sex was/how desperately horny you are at that moment; or pretend you didn’t hear or smell it if you want good sex karma (because sooner or later the tables are going to turn). If you were the farter, all you can do is hope he’s turned on enough to ignore it. Otherwise, apologize and delete his number immediately after he leaves, because that shit is impossible to recover from and you don’t want to embarrass yourself further by texting him when you’re blackout. Actually, maybe you should change your name and move across the country just in case.
3. Choosing To Spit Or Swallow
To prevent that awkward moment when you’re making eye contact with the dude who just came in your mouth and he can clearly see the gears turning in your head as you considering whether to spit or swallow, make that decision before you give a blow job. Fucking duh. That way, you can run straight for the bathroom before he has time to be offended.
(Side note: Any dude who’s legitimately hurt by people who don’t swallow should give a BJ and see how quickly they change their mind.)
4. Getting A Cramp
If you get a little too ambitious with your positioning, you can wind up getting a cramp in the middle of getting down to business. (Does anyone else feel like sex takes way more athleticism than any reasonable human possesses?) The simplest solution is to change positions, but I’d say you should turn it into an excuse for a free massage.
5. Getting Your Period
Dudes can handle all kinds of blood in movies, but as soon as the blood in question comes from a vagina, they turn into terrified babies. It’s baffling. Anyway, getting your period during sex can be hellaciously awkward depending on how chill your man is. One minute, everything is fine. The next, you’re riding the Crimson Wave, among other things, and the bed looks like a crime scene from Law and Order: SVU.
If he’s not cool with period sex, that’s his decision, but while you’re watching Netflix and washing your sheets five minutes later, remind him that he could totally be having sex instead. If he is down to go with Aunt Flo, put down a towel and congratulate yourself on hooking up with someone who’s adult enough to handle the sight of blood.
6. Losing A Hard-On
Finally, something that’s embarrassing for the dude—a win for feminism, y’all. There’s nothing quite as awkward as your partner whipping off his pants only to reveal a limp penis dangling in the wind, but it doesn’t mean you’re secretly terrible at sex or so hideous you cause hard-ons to wilt wherever you go. (As if.) Luckily for you, we have an entire guide to dealing with a Putty Penis. Enjoy.
7. Running Out Of Dirty Talk
Dirty talk is way easier said than, well, said. The key to doing it correctly is conviction; you can make pretty much anything sound hot if you say it like it’s your wildest fantasy. But that makes it even more awkward when you start to run out of things to talk about—you don’t want to repeat yourself, but what are you supposed to say once you’ve covered sluttiness, the size of his penis, and everything else you can think of?
The solution is simple: Shut up while you’re ahead. Above all, do NOT start rambling, or the sex will get weird very quickly. Just start moaning really loud and repeating how much you’re enjoying it. That usually does the trick.
8. Accidental Facials
I’m told some people are into facials, and more power to them. I, on the other hand, prefer not to be unexpectedly sprayed in the face (usually the eye, because the world is unjust) with any kind of bodily fluid. It stings, it smells weird, and worst of all, it ruins the cat-eye makeup I spent literal hours learning how to do from Instagram videos just to impress the guy who ruined it with his ejaculation.
IMO, this is grounds for immediately running to the bathroom, washing my face, and making him wait until I’ve fixed my makeup before going for round two. The punishment fits the crime.