How to Be a BETTER SL Lover

We already did How to Be a Terrible SL Lover in a previous post. This is the companion anti-piece: How to Be a Better SL Lover.  Not How to be a Great SL Lover. No one can tell you that. We’ll just settle for Better. Better than a lot of the other people in SL, and better than you probably are now.

And who am I t presume to write such an article? After all, who elected me King Stud, Commissioner of the Better Sex Committee for SL? What makes me such a hotshot expert? Who am I to criticize? Where do I get off anyhow?

Okay. Well, you people sit down and stop shouting, and put down those chairs. Violence will avail you nothing. Maybe I don’t know what I’m talking about, but I do know a few basic and obvious things. Some I’ve learned from common sense and experience and actually talking to women, and some I’ve learned from the frequent orgies we hold with hot willing women in our secret underground sex laboratories, the ones you’re always searching for before you end up at Bukkake Bliss once again.

This time we’re going to include women in this discussion too, because there’s just as many lousy women lovers in SL as men, and maybe even more. But we’ll address the women in a later post. This one’s for men, though women should read it too. See how many of your men fit into these categories.


I. The Difference

The first thing men should know is that women don’t make love like men do[i]. They don’t approach it the same, they don’t do it the same, and they’re not looking for the same things as men. With men, sex is visual, tactile, genital, and physical. Men can be roused to masturbation by the sight of a bra ad in a Penny’s catalog. They get excited watching a piston go up and down, or seeing a woman’s bare foot, for God’s sake. Men are so physically and genitally oriented that they can stick their dicks into just about anything that moves. It’s a truism in the publishing industry that men like descriptions of what lovers are doing, while women are aroused by what the characters are feeling.

While no man is truly the unfeeling brute he appears, men tend to be more indifferent to a sex partner’s inner needs and emotions than women, who are all about inner needs and emotions. Men prefer to focus on the visuals and the sensations. That’s why a prostitute’s client s are predominantly male. Women aren’t going to pop in for a quickie fuck over their lunch hour[ii]. That’s not what they want from sex. And while most women don’t believe it for a second, a man’s libidinous promiscuity really isn’t a mental defect or character failing. It’s the way we’re made.

Women, on the other hand, experience sex emotionally. Where men like the visuals and superficialities, women like the exchange of feelings and emotional intimacy. They’re turned on by a man’s character and qualities, not by his pecs and pecker size. They pick up on the emotional vibe he gives off; the way he makes them feel. They care about things like trust and honesty and empathy. Men couldn’t care less.

So this explains a lot right off the bat. It explains why men are so taken in and so often done in by the charms of Second Life, where all the women are devastatingly sexy and stacked and mostly half-dressed, showing a lot of leg and boob. It’s more than kid in a candy store. It’s more like waving a red flag in front of a bull.

It also explains why she’s not impressed with your huge muscles and ginormous dick, and even thinks they’re kind of silly. (Well, look at them yourself? Who would you impress besides a gay man?). Women enjoy a toned body, but they aren’t slaves to jiggle like men are. Not even close. They want what’s in your heart, not what’s on your bones.

Now this doesn’t mean that women like sweet and sappy lovemaking, all hearts and flowers and violins. Women like it hard and dirty just as much as men do, and maybe more. But what they like is the emotions of it, the tension and tenderness and passion and turmoil.

Look at it another way: computers are tools for handling and transferring information. When information is transferred between people, it’s called communication. Log in to Second Life and IM your main squeeze, tp him or her or whatever where you are and start making love. And as you watch these avatars (or whatever) do what they’re doing, ask yourself just what kind of information is being transferred?

A good part of the relevant information is visual and graphic: the nudity, the penetration, the body physics and all that. But an even larger portion is emotional: the roughness, the tenderness, the love, the passion and desire. These little avatars express their owners’ feelings with every move, every emote, every facial expression (if you’ve got it turned on.) Just as in RL sex, everything they do has emotional meaning, and it’s the intensely intimate and affecting exchange of this information that leads to feelings of sexual love and fulfillment.

Men are sensitive to the visual and graphic band of this information stream. Women are more attuned to the emotional band. (Again, the imprecision of generalities raises its ugly head.) When the genders come together in SL sex, they ignore one or the other of these bands at their peril.

Emotion, Communication, Narrative

So now that we know about visualization and emotion, we can look at the three areas men usually neglect in their bad-loverness. They’re all about giving her what she wants, which isn’t an eighteen-inch cock or your 600-pose sex bed, but emotional connection: emotion, communication, and narrative.

Emotion here means both emotion, those things you (hopefully) feel inside, and emotion, the process of emoting or expressing that emotion. That’s what emote originally meant before the role-play community changed it to walking into a room and grabbing people and fainting. To emote was to express emotion, usually in an obvious and dramatic way. Emotion and emoting are the key to being a good male lover.

Communication is simply the process of expressing those emotions. It’s not as hard as it sounds. You’re probably already doing it. You just have to do it right and do it more.

Narrative is like the story you’re telling with your lovemaking. It’s like the unspoken social context for the sex. It sets the mood, the tone. It can be elaborate, like a  role play (“You’re my prisoner and I’ll do as I like with you!”) or simple (“I love you so much!” or “I’ll show you who’s boss!”) It doesn’t have to be artificial or overtly stated, but it’s there. Narrative is why you don’t just hope from pose to pose. Because fucking and then dancing and then anal doesn’t make for a clear narrative.

We’ll look at these through the examples of three classically bad lovers.

Bad Lover #1: The Clinician — A Failure of Emotion

What she’s looking for is that emotional connection. Feeling what you’re feeling about her. The pleasure of feeling your love for her and your excitement, or even your contempt or disgust as the case may be[iii]. She’s looking for emotional communication. She wants to know how she makes you feel, or at least that she makes you feel something.

Let’s face it: SL sex almost always involves masturbation, Men can get excited to climax just from watching the little avatars humping away. Not so much women. They want to know the emotional context for what’s happening. They want to be surrounded by that cloud of feeling that lifts them up and wafts them away to where they want to go, feelings that express your pleasure or regard or desire or even anger or contempt. It depends on the person and how she feels about you.

Given all that, maybe you can see why she’s not exactly aroused by the Clinician’s minutely detailed and anatomically exact descriptions of how he’s making love. She’s not aroused by the fact that he starts at her labia majora and then kisses her perineum before moving his lips to the distil end of her vaginal cleft and then move incrementally upward till he’s adjacent to but not touching the clitoral hood where he’ll spend another twenty minutes fussing and noodling just to show her what a truly sensitive and excellent lover you really are.

Well, ain’t no one got time for that.

No. The Clinician’s descriptions are the kind of thing men get off on imagining but leave women cold. Not only do they have no emotional content, but they make the Clinician sound distant and removed. If this is good sex, then she gets better sex at the gynecologist. He’d might as well be doing his taxes down there for all the impact it has on her.

She’s bored. Her eyes glaze over. And, because the Clinician knows that women enjoy oral sex and that if 5 minutes is good then 10-20 minutes must be four or five times better, her arousal evaporates  like sweat in the desert. She’s suppressing yawns and wondering how she can get this babbling doofus out of here so she can go out and shop for shoes.

She’d much rather hear the big picture, the one that tells her what you’re feeling as you go down on her.. She wants to know if you’re barely touching her and teasing, or if you’re worshipfully kissing her, or whether you’ve just gone animal and are snuffling around down there like a pig at a trough. These are the kinds of descriptions and imagery that communicate emotion. This is what we’re talking about.

And she’s probably appreciate it if she could get a word in edgewise during your lecture.

(The female version of the Clinician is the Technician, the one who spends half an hour describing what her tongue’s doing during the blow job you fall asleep in the middle of. We’ll get to her later.)

Bad Lover #2: The Lox — Communication Failure

Lox is smoked salmon, expensive and delicious, but if you’ve ever seen it sliced and arranged on a platter, no matter how it’s garnished, nothing looks quite as lifeless and dead.

For our purposes, The Lox is the lover who doesn’t say anything during sex, doesn’t emote, doesn’t give you any indication of what he’s feeling, doesn’t really respond to what you’re doing. He’s bad because of his failure to communicate. This is the guy who’ll get you on a pose ball and start humping away in complete silence, or maybe occasionally announce something bland like, “u feel so good” or “I fuck u so hard!”

The Lox is one of the worst types of bad lover. The worst possible thing you can do as a lover, man or woman, is to keep quiet and not do anything. Sex is communication, the most intensely personal and intimate form of communication we have, and that means it’s a two-way street. Ideally, it’s action and reaction: you do something to me, and I react with a moan, a shudder, a growl, something. Action and reaction is what the sex real, the connection real.

Most communication is done through text (assuming voice isn’t used), and it’s surprising how many people are more sensitive to the written word than they are to the animations. But it shouldn’t be a surprise by now that most of these people are women.

The reason is that animations are images out there that someone else has made and that can’t be changed, while texting is written by your actual lover in real time and the words have to go into your brain and be deciphered, the images imagined. So suddenly the lovemaking is inside your head. Imagining what’s happening is a lot more powerful than watching those repetitious little cartoons. Any book lover knows what I mean.

So how do you emote in a and how to emote in a way that tells your lover you feel them, that they affect you, that they affect your feelings? You do things that have emotional meaning. “I pull your hair,” “I kiss you tenderly” “I lift your knees over my arms.” If all you have is,  “I moan softly,” or “You feel fantastic!” then you’ve got work to do.

So my advice is: read more dirty books and see what the characters say in there. And don’t be a lox. Emote!

Bad Lover #2b: The Smotherer — More Communication Gaffes

Another type of communication failure happens when the guy ignores or talks right over what his partner’s trying to tell him. That’s not just simply rude, but it removes the possibility of the woman contributing meaningfully to the sex. It’s a serious enough problem to deserve its own type of bad lover.

Men tend to want to do everything themselves during a sexual encounter and end up hogging the whole thing. They also tend to want to do things for their partners, thinking they’re making the woman feel good and demonstrating how sensitive and caring they are. But that just relegates her to the role of  passive spectator to the very sex she’s involved in, not a participant. She probably wants to do somethings for you too, so give her the opportunity.

Bad Lover #3: The Acrobat — A Failure in Narrative

The Acrobat is the guy at some sleazy sex site who just jumps on a pose ball and starts wailing away. If he’s on a bed he just hops from pose to pose, as if He’s not interested in emotion and he’s not interested in communication and he certainly isn’t interested in narrative or in providing any kind of context for what he’s doing. He’s the guy who likes to hop randomly from one pose to another until he’s done them all, and then pops off, knowing that he’s giving some girl the best sexual experience possible.

Narrative is the mood and the context for the sex, and it’s important to women. It’s the atmosphere, the attitudes, the kind of sexual tension you’re starting with. It might be nothing more than a quick roll in the hay. It might be a seduction by either partner. It might be make-up sex, or revenge, or just showing of some new lingerie. Every sexual encounter is a little story or drama. It has a beginning, an opening  mood, action rising and rising till it hits a moment of crisis, and then climax, and resolution. That little drama is the narrative.

If you don’t have context, the sex isn’t going to mean anything. That’s not always bad. Plenty of women enjoy an occasional, meaningless fuck just for the physical joy of it just as much as men do. But then again, they’re not really interested in becoming a better lover.

It’s strange that sex bed manufacturers are only now starting to catch on as to how their beds are being used. A couple years ago the positions were only organized by broad category, like foreplay, cuddles, oral, etc. Within any group the position’s informational content wasn’t really considered. The fast were thrown in with the slow, the hard with the tender, the rough with the gentle. It was like they figured one kind of oral was pretty much the same as any other, and they assumed that anyone who used their product was an Acrobat.

Things started changing around the time they started making Sequences and had to give their animations some sort of narrative order. They suddenly seemed to realize that it didn’t make a lot of sense to mix hard and soft and and rough and acrobatic all together randomly. Now you have manufacturer like Warm who don’t even bother giving their animations word names anymore, just numbers. The user soon realizes that Missionary #7 is going to be more enthusiastic than Missionary #4, and that’s all her really wants to know. He’s no longer an Acrobat.

There you are: the wisdom of the ages: emotion, communication, narrative. Go out and practice.

Next time women get dragged over the coals.

[i] Well of course some of them do sometimes. But those are hardly the kind of people who are going to reading an article on how to be a better lover.

[ii] At least, not in RL. In SL, things are a little different. But the idea’s still valid.

[iii] People always assume love and sex only deal with positive and happy feelings. But you can love through anger. You can love through contempt. You can even love through cruelty, as anyone in the BDSM community can attest. Love seems to be more like a filter we look through or a context we create than it does a separate thing of itself.

About Aiden Swain

Editor/Publisher, Humm Magazine: Journal of Cybersexuality

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