" Just like any other aspect of intimacy, the key is presenceand authenticity."
I’ll admit it. I have turned down a follow up date solely based on not enjoying the kissing. Kissing is a powerful, intimate thing which can either cause my insides to recoil or to blossom and vibrate. I’m sure (I hope!) all sexually active adults have had the experience of a kiss launching us down the slope from a “Maybe…” to a “Hell yes!”
But a less than enjoyable kissing style is a really hard thing to talk about with a new partner. Possibly even more difficult that sex. Why is this? Is it because people get identified with their kissing style and tricks almost like a signature? Anyway, it's tough ego ground to traverse.
Rather than break down how to broach the subject of unsatisfactory kissing with another person, (I feel another post coming!) here's some tips so that you can relax and offer your own full partnership.
Taking responsibility for your own kissing Just like any other aspect of intimacy, the key is presence and authenticity. Guess what- If you have any preconceived ideas of what a kiss should be, you are not present with your partner. Every kiss in the world, has never happened before and will never happen again. It’s an in the moment improvised dance. It’s an opportunity to learn about your partner and the unique chemistry the two of you alchemize in that particular moment.
The balance between following and taking the lead Are you holding to the concept that the man should lead and the woman should follow? Again, this is not presence. This is a social norm or expectation that you’re inviting into a completely personal space. No leader is required in a conversation. How does one talk and listen at the same time? Think of it like singing. It’s totally possible to hold your own note and harmonize with another voice. Think of the wholeness of yin and yang and the paired polarity of masculine and feminine, the engagement of a dominant and submissive. The beauty is in the wholeness, not the celebration of one side over the other.
So what works? Slow down. Yes, always. At first. Kissing is always a partnered activity where there is more than one experience to blend together. I know desire can be strong and passion has romanticism, but if you leap in and devour your partner in one voracious slurp, are you really tasting them? Do you really know this is resonant with them? Or, again, is it your own agenda or beliefs running the show?
I have been confounded by partners who are all about trapping and biting or sucking on my lip. What's with using the tongue like an overbearing tool of flicking snakedom or in big circles that force my jaw or tongue down into a particular position or explore my gum lines? Where are these drives coming from?! Based on how overwhelmingly I've experienced these behaviors from men (or male identifying individuals) I would correlate this to a masculine drive to dominate, control, impress, etc. So, please men especially,...No. Do not greet me with an oppressive wall of saliva.
I don't mean to discourage play! Exploration and impulses are a wonderful and integral part of authenticity. It't just that sometimes it doesn't feel like there's a damn thing I can do to make a kiss an interactive experience. Sometimes it seems clear something is being done "to me" rather than "with me". This is not pleasant.
No really? Shouldn't *someone* take the lead? I mean, I like to. Sure. Sometimes a touch of force or dominance is truly appreciated. But the key to this is attunement, which is pretty hard to teach in a blog post (and then some). Can you feel your partner? Are they breathing? Are they tense? Are they pulling away? Are they making good feeling sounds? Are you at the same pace and intensity, or is she possibly feeling like you're about to swallow her whole? Firm, steady, confident dominance that can be clearly felt and met: useful. The sudden alluring sensation that you could squish your partner into the seat with your bigness (or awareness that you don't care either way): not useful.
I can not stress this enough:
If you think you know "what works" or "what they like" or continually do "this thing I like to do", then you are full of shit. You are not present and interacting with your partner. You are regurgitating old news that has nothing to do with them or this moment, and you are missing out. If you find yourself wanting to say to me right now, "But I know what I like and that's how I like it! Who are you to tell me that what I like isn't right?" Then carry on. But you might as well stay home and make out with your mirror.
So, to sum up...
Release notions of what works or what a kiss should be.
Even the approach is ripe for ample interaction and tension and arousal. Take advantage. Don't rush it.
Listen with your tongue. One of the most memorable kisses of my life was nothing more than the smallest moment of contact between the tips of those oracious muscles (yes, I just made up that word).
Allow your entire body to get involved. Allow all the presence and sensitivity you're putting in your mouth to slosh waves of reaction throughout your being.
This is a great time to remember the tantric cornerstones of breath, sound, and movement. In short, they are all good. Let it flow.
And in an overarching final suggestion:
Surrender and enjoy the ride.
Here's a super charming video by filmmaker Tatia Pllieva, called First Kiss. A glimpse into 20 strangers feeling out their chemistry for the first time in full blown visible vulnerability. I think there's a special beauty in this awkward circumstance with zero expectations.