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Dinah answers: Your man may have some sexual problem (and the blood in his ejaculate is dangerous for him and for you), but you need to accept that you two have relationship problems too. If he is not prepared to kiss you, you deserve to know whether he had lost his attraction towards you or if he has some other issue with kissing you, such as guilt. You should ask yourself what you are getting out of the relationship. Assuming you have your reasons for staying with him, if sex is important to you, either he should be part of it, or you should look into sex toys as a healthy outlet, and he needs to accept it.

hi i'm 24 Asian male. i have been with a girl who's also of my age for the past six months we have been dating a lot. in fact we have spent many nights together...the problem is that she will do everything with me except entering my penis into her vagina. she thinks it'll dilate her vagina and her husband will notice this after her marriage. she's not getting married for the next 4 years or more. she loves me but won't let me inside her. please help me that how can i convince her and her hymen is not intact,still she claims she's a virgin. i can put my finger easily in her...though i trust her,how can i convince her. having sex once will not make her vagina wide enough to notice, plz help me out

Dinah answers: I can understand that you want to have vaginal sex with her. But don’t you get that if she doesn’t want to do any particular act with you, conspiring with the help of someone else to do it just defeats the purpose of sharing and consensual sex. You need to enjoy the acts that she chooses to partake in with you, because there is no reason that they should be any less pleasurable that vaginal sex. The latter is complicated for so many reasons and if she is pushed into it while worried about how it will effect her in the future, she won’t be able to enjoy and that is something you should respect.

I am a faithful married woman and my husband has never had any problem really before being able to feel my vaginal walls. but my last menstrual period we did not have sex for almost a week and a half and second day after my cycle ended we did and my vagina felt almost three times larger than it did before my period! why would it be larger when i had not been penetrated for that long wouldnt it tighten down and what would cause this my husband thinks i cheated on him and i have not. please help me!

Dinah answers: Your vagina would certainly not have stretched over a week or over any period of time, without a good deal of stretching. One possibility is that you were more lubricated so you felt looser. Another possibility is that your man was not as erect as usual, perhaps he was distracted or had some thoughts of mistrust in advance so he felt less aroused that normal and then blamed it on the stimulation he was getting from you. In any case, the solution lies in a good heart to heart between you two, and not in accusations based on comparing subjective sexual experiences. I’d start by trying to figure how and why he came to suspect you. Its unlikely that a fully trusting man would come up with such an accusation after a single sexual episode unless he had some external input. Perhaps a friend was recently treated on or something like that. Its worth having a good conversation and bringing your thoughts and fears into the open.

I have a friend that I have known for about 7 yrs. Although there is attraction, we have never had sex. We have had heavy petting and recently I gave him hand relief... I was shocked that his cum was sooo foamy, that when I washed it off, it actually rolled off like styrofoam pebbles... i had to dilute with fingers so it would drain... What does that mean? It's a first for me.

Dinah answers: Never try to diagnose anything from the texture or look of semen. The range of normal textures is very wide, depending on many factors. Some STDs will add smell or a darker colour to the semen but this is by no means a good test, because many STDs or conditions can live in his body without clear signs. Sure, this can raise your curiosity and possibly some concern, but if you are more concerned about this than pleased with the new sexual closeness, I’d say you may want to consider going back to being friends, if its still possible. There are many strange things about each other’s sexuality that we can readily except when our feelings are in place, but if the attraction is not complete or the will to get romantically or sexually involved (and you should be honest about why nothing brought you two together for 7 years), these things can put you off easily. Its may just be your body or something else inside screaming that he’s not for you. Either that, or you may be being hyper-critical, because there is some awkwardness in making the shift when you get sexual after so long.

my boyfriend and have been living together for almost 2 years now but our sexual life is as good as none. its been so since the beginning of our relationship. we have sex like only once a month and it always happen on the same wk of the month. its always short and routine which makes me feel he is just performing a duty as a bf. i have caught him being obsessed with pornography before which he later threw all away and promise not to see them anymore. but our sex life did not improve at all. i have tried talking to him several times addressing my hurt but his reply is that 1 to 2 times a month is not abnormal. different people behave differently. he says it may be due to a lot of factors like stress but i realize even if we are on a holiday, he is not interested to do it. i am very upset and do not know what else to do. i feel he does not love me truly. please help

Dinah answers: It is important to differentiate between your partner’s sex drive and his feelings for you. Sure, a person’s sex drive can dwindle when their emotions towards another person get dulled or overturned, but as you described this has been this way from the early days of your relationship when the sex is usually at its peak. I cannot understand what is causing his sexual disinterest, but it could possibly be that he has a low sex drive or is even asexual and he is making major efforts to satisfy you in the measure that he can. You should try to understand if his use of pornography was an attempt to arouse his libido, or it was something that he does independent of his feelings. In any case, if it wasn’t what was causing his lack of interest with you sexually, then maybe you should allow him to continue exploring this avenue, at least until he understands what it does for him. I don’t see any signs of bad attitude towards you, at least not from what you say here. So why not try to find some other sexual outlet like masturbation and buy yourself a vibrator? Perhaps he would have interest in watching you or helping you to use such toys, perhaps the whole sex act is not of interest to him. Either way, this can offer you some sexual outlet and a way of getting closer to him and letting him know how you feel. But don’t assume that he doesn’t love you because of this. If you have a strong relationship outside of the bedroom, it is more likely that the disconnect between you is based on his physiological ability and not on his love for you.

I'm 2 months from becoming 19. I'm a virgin and confused about my sexuality. I guess its since I may not know the full understanding of it. I don't know if I'm straight, gay, or even bi. I'm pretty content with that, but then it sucks to not know what I like and over-thinking about it! I did have some sort of attraction (sexual and non-sexual) to both sexes, dreams, and crushes a bit. I came out to my parents months ago and told them that I was bisexual. But I'm still not too sure even now. After having a discussion with a relative of mine, she made some things clear. I'm not the type to put myself out there and show off what guys my age wanna see to get them my way. Nor have I ever been on a date, had my first kiss, and been in a relationship with anyone. I don't even fondle with myself or do any sort of masturbation. My friend gave me some orientation tests to take. Majority said bisexual. But, seriously, come on, these were online tests. Can you please give me some advice on what steps I can take to somewhat overcome this issue? I know I still have years to figure things out. It just hurts to not know and be asked what I prefer- hence not knowing at all, and what answer to give but a confusing lie due to my uncertainty. I want to be sure and prepared before my time comes.

Dinah answers: I think that your answer lies in doing just what you are doing. There is no short cut to figuring out who you really are. Sexual maturity takes years to complete so even once you decide on your preference of gender, you’ll still be learning about many other preferences and tastes. Although bisexuality is often treated as a lack of choice, for many people it is an honest reality and they find themselves in a relationship with a person based on who she or he is, and not what gender. So enjoy having such a massive choice and go ahead and find someone to be with, just follow your heart and your guts.

My boyfriend of 4 years and i have a very sexual relationship and it's always been great. recently after having sex he mentioned my vagina seems loose and he is automatically accusing me of cheating which is NOT the case! i have not been sexually active with ANYONE but him for some time now. is there an answer as to why my vagina is not as tight to him?

Dinah answers: If you are naturally lubricating more than usual, or perhaps using lubricant during sex, it can give the impression of being smoother and even less tight. Otherwise, you will not just stretch or change size suddenly. It is not up to you to defend your shape and size if you know you are keeping no secrets from him. Besides, a “sense” of stretching is a terribly chauvinist accusation and it is physiologically inaccurate. How about you turn the tables on your boyfriend and have him explain why he has such suspicions and why he doesn’t experience your sex life (which you feel is great) in the same way.

I have been with my boyfriend (who is 26 and a few years younger than me ) for 2 years. He has always found it difficult to maintain an erection when we're having sex. He says that it is nothing to do with me, however recently I have discovered that he has been looking at naked pictures of women, and some pornography on the internet and I am wondering if the 2 things are related. I don't know whether to confront him about it or if it will just make things worse. What should I do?

Dinah answers: I don’t think that looking at porn is related to his sexual functioning. Accessing porn online is done because, well, because its there! A large segment of men and and a growing proportion of women are doing it. Apart from it being an exploitative industry, it probably doesn’t lead to any real problems, as long as it is not done excessively and it is not being treated as a person’s main source of information and sex education. I do think that it is important to speak to him about it, to try to understand what he is seeking, feeling and getting out of it. Maybe he is hoping to find information to help with his erectile problems, maybe not. I believe that bringing your thoughts and hopes into the open might be the clue to improving the situation, whether it leads to seeking professional advice, or deciding to concentrate on other sexual behaviours that you can enjoy. You have to be prepared when you ask him about his online sex habit, to hear some tough things about what turns him on and what doesn’t. I think that it is important to find out if he is able to maintain an erection from sexy images of others or if his problem also occurs with porn. This is an important differentiation and can indicate whether you two have to work together on creating the passion he finds elsewhere, or if it is a physiological problem of his.

I fear that I might have a libido issue I can't get aroused enough to initiate sex and my partner is getting sick and tired of him always having to be the one start off sex I tried arousal products and they both have failed (HELP) my sex life is in need of help.

Dinah answers: I find that while male libido problems are usually related to hormone levels or stress, female libido problems tend to be the result of relationship problems. Before you start testosterone creams, Viagra (yes!) or various concoctions which have no effect beyond being placebos, go back to the beginning. You need to pick up the romance levels. Flirt, laugh together, touch, kiss like you did in high school, for hours at a time. This will feed your sex life and your sex life will in turn boost the relationship.

My boyfriend and I have been together for 5yrs now, I'm 32 and he's 45. In the beginning sex was great, but we've had a lot of problems in our relationship. We both lived separately for 4yrs. He has two kids and I have one now by him. The problems we had led to me trying to end the relationship by finding someone else to sleep with. I later told him about it and he asked me to move in with him with my our child. I moved in, but the sex was bad. He called me slut, and curse me after having sex with me and he sometimes drank before having sex with me. As time went by I stopped wanting to have sex with him. Now as I write I don't even want him to touch me because the he would want to have sex. I tried to avoid him in any way I can, but he wants sex every day, even though I told him how I feel. I suggested therapy, he refused. I actually masturbate sometimes, what can I do?

Dinah answers: It sounds like the quality of the sex is a direct reflection of the quality of your relationship. You may have sexual needs, as suggested by your masturbation, but before that you need to consider the quality of life for you and your child. You have to figure out whether the problems are a result of your having slept with someone else, or if they are problems in the fiber of your relationship. Are they the same problems as before that were never solved or are they problems that result from your being incompatible? In any case, it seems that you really need to speak with a relationship therapist, either with him or alone.

My boyfriend & I have been together for almost 2 years now, and never once has he ever cum from sexual intercourse. We do 'it' for a while, but then he wants me to either blow him, or give him a hand job till he comes, which is often anywhere from 15-45 minutes of stimulation after sex! Usually it takes a long time, even when I talk dirty to him, and I am getting very frustrated. He eventually comes, but by then my arm or mouth is in pain! Is is selfish of him to make me stay there that long? Keep in mind, sometimes he finishes himself off, but I have to be the one to do the final stroke.. and when I'm blowing him, he needs me to moan while I do it to get him off. Should I be making a big deal outta this? Or should I keep having sex with him, and be understanding? Is it common? Please help!

Dinah answers: I think that you are absolutely justified in feeling frustrated and overworked. His inability to orgasm during intercourse is a relationship problem, so he should not be putting all the pressure to perform on you. From time to time one partner needs to deal with the other having a tough time, but when it happens consistently, he should be taking responsibility and not only expecting you to deal with it. The fact that he can orgasm after sufficient stimulation suggests that he has a very high excitement threshold or alternatively he is not turned on enough. The latter may be the case if he was able to orgasm with greater ease at different times during the relationship (perhaps in the very beginning?). You should discuss this and get a straight answer from him regarding his attraction, the level of excitement he feels and whether he has felt more excited in previous sexual relationships. Its worthwhile knowing this if you plan to spend your future together. If this is a problem with his excitement threshold, and if this has always been his experience, then you two should try a few things to help make him more sensitive. There are various sensation increasing creams, but the answer is rarely that simple. If your hand and mouth are what really does it for him, try using a vibrator, penis ring, butt plug, anal beads or a penis sleeve to increase his feeling and leave the oral, vaginal or manual sex for the end. It is important to communicate your feelings so that he is aware that you are aching and probably quite bored. You have the right to much more pleasure, fun and reciprocity. Now let’s have him put in some effort, specifically in talking about it and learning what he can do to reciprocate your hard work and help himself.

My boyfriend and i were fooling around but i had my period so i only gave him a handjob. He came and later we started making out again. After a while he redirected his hand towards his penis again and i gave him another handjob from which he came again. This was only about the third or fourth time in which i was successful in making him cum and i thought that after he had cum the first time he'd be done. Is it slutty to have done it twice?

Dinah answers: I really dislike the term “slutty” and how it is used to make females feel bad about their choices, their needs or the way they “should” be, but are not, behaving. If you chose to give him a handjob, or have any other form of sex, you must feel comfortable with your choice. If you aren’t comfortable then think about how to refuse it next time. If you are okay with doing it once, then you should be okay with giving him a second orgasm on the same occasion. After all, you set out to satisfy him and you really did satisfy him. Sex is all about safely enjoying your body and your partner’s body, whether it is by feeling pleasure or giving pleasure. If you are doing it due to pressure or you are left feeling awkward afterwards, you need to rethink your choice. There is no act that is automatically “slutty”. When you are with a partner who you trust and want to share enjoyment with and when you are truly honest about your own needs, you’ll understand this better.

hi i am just wondering why it is that my boyfriend and i constantly bicker and argue about every little thing? its so bad that we have gotten evicted from our place not once but three times because people around us cant stand it, but for some reason we have sort of grown to get used to it and although it does bother us that we argue more than we get along, we just cant seem to be without each other. We love each other so much, and dont want to be apart, and we miss each other when there is absence, but not more than about 20 minutes after reuniting the bickering and arguing begins. We have been together for over a year and he is ten years younger than me but we were friends for like 5 years before we started to date. And we were close friends and had a lot of respect for each other and highly esteemed one another. But now we cant even get along for more than 20 minutes. IT SUCKS. i dont want to break up and neither does he. we believe we are soul mates and the thought of being without each other is unimaginable. PLEASE help what can we do to save this LOVE/HATE relationship before its too late.

Dinah answers: Since this is really a question about the dynamics of a relationship, and not about sex within a relationship, I’m not the authority on this. Nevertheless, it doesn’t take an expert to point out that this doesn’t appear to be a functional relationship. A real solution would require you two to start working on repairing the basis of the relationship or admitting that you have a both have a destructive addiction. Turning your relationship around starts with agreeing to both work really hard. You probably can’t do this alone. What is needed is a couples’ therapist, which is expensive, or working along with a good book. I can recommend starting with “Getting the Love You Want” by Harville Hendrix, “Passionate Marriage” by David Schnarch or “You Just Don’t Understand” by Deborah Tannen.

my girlfriend and i have been going thru some very difficult times in our relationship her cheating and myself, but we have made a mends i think. i caught her on numerous occasions after the mends with different cell phones with guys numbers and still stuck in there after she promises to change. lately we've been doing good but i have doubts about when she goes to work. sometimes when we have sex i would say about once every two weeks when we have sex her vagina feels stretched out and loose she says thats natural i dont think so what is your opinion.

Dinah answers: The vagina is covered by a layer of muscle which can learn to stretch over time from entering increasingly larger objects, but it can also stretch on its own over time, simply because the vaginal muscles become limp, like other muscles do, when they are not properly exercised (which most women don’t know how to do). What I’m trying to say is that you cannot know what the reason for her stretching is. In fact, you may even be wrong about the vagina being stretched– it is difficult to be objective and to measure it just by feel, after all it could be that you are less erect than you used to be, because you are occupied by thoughts on who she may or may not have been sleeping with. It could also be that she has indeed stretched herself by masturbating with a large dildo. The only way to know is to have an honest conversation. I think that you should raise your concerns about her feeling different during sex, and see how the conversation evolves, but try to verify the facts without accusing her, after all, it could have a perfectly innocent explanation. If you find that you cannot talk about this and cannot rebuild the trust, you really have to reconsider why you are fighting to hold onto the relationship.

I am very much in love with my boyfriend. We have an amazing relationship - except when it comes to sex. We very rarely do have sex and when we do, he never comes. Although I have found that oral sex does satisfy him. Recently, I learned that he does look at porn and that he has a pretty healthy relationship with his hand. I said that it explains a lot and he got offended and defensive saying that if i wanted to have sex with him i should just say it. i dont have a problem with him masturbating - but i do have a problem with the fact that he doesnt really want sex from me and that if i want it i need to ask for it...please help. i dont want this to ruin our relationship because i do love him so much, thank you.

Dinah answers: If you know that you love him and your relationship enough to want it to continue despite your sexual dissatisfaction, then focus on your sexual needs without shaking the foundations of the relationship. You are free to satisfy yourself sexually, just as he does. Consider buying yourself a vibrator and offering him to join in with you. Don’t ever consider his masturbating to be competition. For both of you, masturbation can offer a form of relief and pleasure that is different from sex in its sensation and that doesn’t induce any performance anxiety. The question is, is he able to orgasm and ejaculate when he masturbates? If he is, then there is a psychological barricade that is bothering him during intercourse, something that seems to make him want to avoid the whole thing, even though he does have a healthy libido. This is something that could be discussed between you and also looked at with a help of a therapist. If he is unable to orgasm, even when alone, there could be a physiological problem, something that will undoubtedly lead to psychological and relationship tensions if it is not seen to. You have obviously already raised this issue in conversation and discovered that it is in no ways easy to deal with. There is definitely more to talk about, but perhaps you can at the same time rethink the issue of taking initiative. What is wrong with you initiating sex most of the time? It will show him that you are attracted to him, that you enjoy sex with him, and even that you are happy to be having sex, even if it does not end in orgasm. Also, this way you will be able to learn if he really meant it when he said that all you need to do is ask for sex and you’ll get it, or if he was just buying time, trying to avoid dealing with the problem.

My husband and I have been together for 16 years now, and we have a good sexual relationship. I am finally feeling more confident in my sexuality, and would like to incorporate sex toys into our love making. What types of toys would be best for mutual enjoyment, how do we both use them to gain enjoyment, and most importantly, how do I approach this idea with my husband without him thinking I'm kinky or that he is lacking in some way? Thank you so much for tackling these questions you can't just ask your girlfriends.

Dinah answers: There are a lot of toys designed for couples to use together, such penis rings with vibrators attached, but essentially any toy can be enjoyed by a couple, if you consider that either one can access it and even the so-called inactive one has the pleasure of watching his or her partner. If this is virgin territory for you, so to speak, I would start out as simple as possible. A tiny silicone penis ring can be the simplest way to broach the subject. I would also consider buying yourself a simple vibrator, perhaps a clitoral one that doesn’t look like or have the proportions of a penis, and wrap it up for him, as though the gift is his, to enjoy on your body. When you get started, run it over his body, showing him how it feels when it touches sensitive spots. If you express true excitement and comfort with it, or if it makes you laugh together and it entertains you, then it can’t possibly be seen as criticism of him. Let him know that you don’t see him as inadequate but it is your belief that he CAN handle it that has allowed you to try these new things. As for kinkiness, try talking to him about what you consider to be “too kinky” for you, and what you feel falls into each of your comfort zones.

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Dinah answers: Although many couples’ therapists would suggest working on this as a couple, I would propose that you begin tackling your libido problem individually. Later, if and when you manage to reignite your sexual drive, finding expression in your relationship will be a whole different issue. It may be relatively simple or you may find that your partner does not easily accept such change; after all, he too has accepted the current status quo. The pill is probably a confounder of this problem, but it is not the heart of the problem. You may want to reconsider their use in the future, when other things have been worked out. You can learn to work with condoms given enough practice and positive sexual experience. To discover your own sexual desire, isolate yourself as a sexual being that is independent of You as part of a couple. This means returning to masturbation and fantasy. A sex toy, especially a vibrator, can be extremely useful here, because it creates intense stimulation, however it is not necessary if you are able to reach a high enough level of arousal without it. Granted, it is easier to masturbate and reach orgasm when you are already sexually aroused, but even without basic arousal, you can become aroused by purposefully seeking out stimuli. Begin with an erotic film or literature and when you get to a scenario which has sensual meaning for you, try to develop it as a fantasy. Don’t think that your boyfriend has to be present in your fantasies, in fact, usher him out and bring in something hotter and wilder. This is not immoral nor is it a betrayal of him. It is a completely natural and (for most women) intrinsic element of their sexual conduct. Take time to work with your fantasies and rediscover your sexual capabilities on your own. It is worthwhile to read Nancy Friday’s classic, The Secret Garden , or her more recent book Women on Top. It may be complicated to incorporate both this process and its consequences into your relationship. Look at it this way: masturbation, or self love, is not something you do at the expense of your partner nor is it a threat against him. It should not “waste” your sexual energy, certainly not for women, but rather it should rejuvenate it. Ask your partner for the space to be alone for the time you need, and do it with the knowledge that you have an otherwise healthy relationship and it should be able to withstand this change. Your sexual life is obviously something that on some level, you need badly. Good luck.

I have been wondering why my boyfriend of 1 year 1/2 has not been wanting to have sex he used to want it all the time. A male friend of mine said he was probably masturbating so I ask him he said yes, twice a week. I do not understand, I am very attractive and a model, why would he masturbate instead of having sex with me? Do I not do the job right, is he tired of me?

Dinah answers: There are two separate issues here – the sex and the masturbation, and its best if you can try to deal with them independently. After a year and a half, it is natural that you wouldn’t be having as much sex as you did in the beginning. This happens in the best of relationships, because the initial passion changes over time to other things. On the other hand if the sex has all but disappeared, there maybe something bothering him; you can only know by speaking to him. Regarding the masturbation, it’s okay for him to masturbate when he has a sexual partner. This is because masturbation can fulfill needs that partner sex doesn’t necessarily fulfill or it can be something he misses. It is legitimate for both of you to masturbate in addition to the sex you have together, if you have unanswered needs or if you simply want to do it that way sometimes. Asking yourself what you might be doing wrong is one thing, but blaming yourself isn’t constructive. Just talk to him. Read more about masturbation

My husband of 24 years has been more or less impotent for the last 10 years. He has always suffered from anxiety and mild depression and an argument over his flirtatious behaviour has led to sexual guilt of monumental proportions. We have tried testosterone supplements and various counseling but to no avail. He believes I can talk him out of this, but my efforts to do so always lead to him becoming even angrier. I don't know the words to say to help him and this makes him angrier still. Please help.

Dinah answers: From what you spell out, the sexual problems that you experience as a couple run extremely deep and have been entrenched over many years. Even if the impotence began as something physiological (from depression, medication, illness, etc.) they are bound to have taken on psychological and interpersonal dimensions over time. By expecting you to “talk him out of it”, he is now putting much of the responsibility for the success of your sex life onto you, and this is not fair. I don’t think that the negative counseling experiences that you have had mean that therapy, per se, is ineffective, but rather that you haven’t found a therapist, with experience in both sexual therapy and relationship therapy, and who both you and your husband feel sufficiently comfortable working with. Since that is quite a tall order, it’s to be expected that finding the right team can be a long process. I would recommend that before seeking out another therapist, you try some homework. There is a brilliant sex and relationship therapist called David Schnarch who has written prolifically on his method of therapy (Passionate Marriage, Resurrecting Sex, Constructing the Sex Crucible, and more). I believe that most couples cannot simply cure themselves of complex, long-standing relationship issues without external intervention. If this reading material does not instigate some level of change between you, it will certainly motivation you to persevere in seeking change and will give you the fundamentals to kick-start any future therapy. If you like his approach, you can always seek out some of the many counselors, around the world, who work according to his approach. If not, keep reading until you find a therapeutic approach that fits your needs and your tastes. Just don’t surrender because as long as you expect more of your relationship, and agree to work towards change, things can only get better.

Is having sex three times a day healthy? My girlfriend seems to think so, but then she has a vested interest…

Dinah answers: If it feels good and it doesn’t get in the way of work or other essential daily duties, then why not? As long as you are being safe, it will be good for toning and working out some of those muscles, doing some level of aerobic workout, reducing stress levels and improving your relationship. If your relationship is still young, it is logical that your sex life could be hot and heavy, which will most probably slow down dramatically with time. If her libido turns out to be greater than your own, speak about it and find a way to be with her as much as you are willing, and let her supplement her needs with toys or good old masturbation. Read more about this in the article How Much Sex is Normal?

Can porn help my relationship? My husband wants to watch porn as part of our lovemaking, but I'm not really comfortable with it. Am I being too uptight?

Dinah answers: Some women are aroused by porn but many find it humiliating and discomforting, since most of it is made by men, with male fantasies in mind. Most studies that looked into women’s reactions found that women prefer erotica, where there is more of a storyline and the men are good looking, but have normal proportions. If you feel this way you must stick up for yourself. Acting out your partner’s fantasies is all very well, but it cannot happen at your expense.

My boyfriend has a heavy beard, which burns my face and other places. I have asked him to shave more, but if he isn’t clean shaven, it puts me off messing around altogether.

Dinah answers: The facts of life are simply that women`s skin is soft and easily scratched or torn by rough stubble. This is especially true for the face and the “bikini” area. It is definitely your right to enjoy some of the best skin-on-skin action known to women, ie. that which is delivered by the mouth, without feeling that you are being attacked by sandpaper. Send your man to clean shave immediately before, or grow out the beard. For oral sex, the thighs are the place that gets the main strain, and here there actually is a solution: try placing a towel or sheet around the legs, to buffer the prickles and let him work his magic, without making you pay with a pound of your surrounding flesh.

My girlfriend doesn’t like having sex in the morning, which is my favourite time. When we first met we'd have lots of sex in the evenings, but now a few months later, I'm feeling too tired at night, when she is up for it. Basically our sex life is coming to a standstill.

Dinah answers: Your issue is not uncommon in long-term relationships. At the beginning, there was enough passion to overcome tiredness and daily routine problems, but as reality sets in, the relationship issues awaken. This is not only about adapting your sexual patterns – it’s about learning to communicate and negotiate your differences. And also accepting the inevitable fact that most couples settle into a routine that involves a lot less sex than they had in the beginning. Let’s consider the options: Alarm clocks, Afternoons and Adjusting your sleep patterns every now and then. Try each making a few concessions.