When my colleague looked over at me one dark October afternoon and said, "I've found a month-long sex challenge, I think you should do it," my instant reply was, "Absolutely not, pal." Considering having sex is literally my job (well, no... that's not entirely true. Writing about sex is, but actually doing it obviously comes with the territory), I really didn't think I could do it EVERY DAY for a month. Why? Honestly, I can't be arsed.
Then, I made the mistake of asking my editor if she thought I should do it - a question that was prefaced with "I'll fail, FYI". Her reply was, "It's totally ok if you miss the odd day, it's more about the experience" which I thought was pretty generous of her. Little did she know, I'd fail way harder than either of us could have anticipated...
The challenge originally went viral after being posted on Reddit.
The concept? Have sex every day for 30 days, but there's a set activity for each day. We were each allowed to change these before starting if there was something we weren't comfortable with. There wasn't. We both got two 'veto' days where we could skip the challenge and just have plain old sex (there was no definition of what this was).
The point of it all? To "push your comfort zone and try something new". Not gonna lie, I didn't feel my comfort zone needed 'pushing,' but I kinda hoped making time to have sex every day would make us a little less lazy and ultimately, that we'd have a laugh.
Obviously I got Joe's consent (didn't take much persuading - I just handed him a print out of the Reddit post which was met with a, "fine then.") It's important to note that to me, 'sex' does not mean penis-in-vagina penetration. Sex is just whatever genital-based stuff I want to do on that given day.
Day 1: Have sex at a time other than before bed
Determined not to screw up on the first day, I make sure we wake up at 7am (20 minutes earlier than usual - TWENTY precious minutes) to squeeze 'the sex' in before work. "Let's get it out of the way early," I say. I know, irresistible. Since I'd just learned the answer to one of life's great mysteries, what the hell you're supposed to do with balls during sex, I go for a trust handy shandy avec ball play. He comes (to my surprise!) and we shower. I'm thinking, "Fuck yeah, I am so going to ace this challenge!"
Day 2: Try a new sex position
It's kind of inconvenient that the day two challenge, one which required SO much admin (a quick Google search in truth) falls on my weekly hair wash day. I have every intention of getting home from work, immediately eating dinner, doing my hair (it takes an hour) and then getting on with the lovely, 'experimental' sex. The reality: I fall asleep on the sofa at 10pm with wet hair and my hand stuffed inside a bag of chocolate buttons.
Day 3: Have sex twice in a day
We make up for yesterday's absolute shitshow with 7am oral and a position we call 'Old Trusty' because it works like a charm, every damn time. It's Friday and we spend the night at home banging again, making veggie cheeseburgers and watching Parks and Rec. I'm so full I roll downstairs to read in bed and fall asleep almost immediately.
Day 4: Read erotica together before sex
It's Saturday and I'm working this morning. Afterwards, we make a giant breakfast and get back into bed. While we don't exactly read erotica together (I left my laptop upstairs ok!), we compromise by talking about the sex stuff we want to try before, y'know, doin' it. I'm counting that one as a PASS!
Day 5: Shower sex
I sleep in late and when I wake up, Joe's just about to leave for an epic Dungeons and Dragons session. THIS MY LIFE PEOPLE. I know he'll be gone for like, eight hours so I make do and log into my Frolic Me account - it's this awesome ethical porn site I'm obsessed with - and masturbate in the shower using my go-to clitoral stimulation toy. Also a PASS! in my book.
Day 6: Full body massage before sex
What human being has time for a damn massage AND sex before work? Plus, I can't do this tonight as my best pal's visiting from Switzerland. I go boozing with him after work and come home late, drunk and knackered. FAIL!
Day 7: Quickie. 10 minutes or less
Joe's up at 4am (selfish and rude) to fly to Amsterdam. He's away for the next week and tomorrow I'm using up the last of my holiday days to visit my family, so let's just call the next six days a FAIL!
Days 8 - 13: Road trip and car sex, sex while seated on chair or sofa, sensual oil massage before sex, oral sex only, one partner dominates, bring your partner to orgasm (no intercourse).
FAIL x 6!
Day 14: Find a new place in the house for sex
I wake up with a desire to get back on the horse today, even though my period's raging with the fire of one thousand suns. It's such a shame I'm feeling utterly gross and the last thing I want is to be touched. As a compromise we go for ye olde hand job in the shower before work. Clean up's easy AF... I love me a life hack.
Day 15: Masturbate in front of each other
I'm still peak flow and really not up for masturbating. Lovely, generous, selfless Joe takes one for the Cosmo team and lets me watch him. I'm a big fan.
Day 16: Advanced level Kama Sutra
It's my first night in alone in yonks, so I get a chippy tea and hate-watch Made In Chelsea (can Harry Baron just NOT). Joe isn't home until 11.30pm, by which time I'm asleep with my book in my hand.
Day 17: Use sex toys
I laugh in the face of this challenge. We have a huge box of toys under our bed so decide to use ones we don't often bring out. We go for the Rocks Off Union Vibrating Cock Ring - you just slip it down to the base of a guy's penis and switch on the two vibrators (one at the base near his balls and one at the top, that targets vibrations to ya clit). We always find this works best with me on top, and it feels realllly good. Reminds me to use it more often.
Day 18: Watch porn together
I introduce Joe to the FrolicMe site to see how he likes it compared to 'regular' porn. He's a fan and we chose a female masturbation video to watch together. Spoiler alert: we don't make it to the end (because we're banging, dummy).
Day 19: Sex without intercourse
This challenge is stupid. We often have sex without penetration because - shock twist - it's not the be all and end all (or definition) of sex. But, it just so happens we're both super horny and up for a spot of P in V. We overrule the challenge and regardless, I'm calling that a PASS!
Day 20: Share fantasies today by email
I email Joe's business address (he's freelance and funemployed at the mo, so it's fine) and tell him what I'm after. It involves oral and glass toys. He replies being all like, "Yeahh, so hot, I also want to use the bunny butt plug on you". With that, my boner is well and truly dead. We've had this steel butt plug with a white fur 'rabbit's tail' in the sex drawer for ages and so far I've successfully managed to avoid it. I know I'll look ridiculous and CBA with the insecurity. I spend the day hoping he'll forget about it. He totally does! I get mine and don't have to make a prat of myself looking like a naked human rabbit.
Day 21: Visit a sex store together
I ignore this one. We have so many toys, lubes and accessories, and I'm broke. Instead We choose an implement from the sex box (spanking paddle) and we have a lil spank before sex.
Day 22: He brings her to orgasm, no intercourse. Hands, mouth, toys only
This is my kinda challenge. I don't even have to feel guilty when afterwards I just get up and make a sandwich.
Day 23: Take a breather… enjoy a night of just sex
Been in a foul mood all day and hate everyone. I fall asleep on the sofa. Sue me.
Day 24: Sex game… dice, spinner, or app
I'm off work to visit pals in Bristol this afternoon. We have a lazy wake up and pre-brekkie sex (doggy followed by what we call the 'Lazy Boy' which is basically missionary but on your side, followed by 'Old Trusty'). No one wants to play a sex game at 9am, not even sorry. Putting that one down as a PASS! because at least we did it.
Day 25: Slow it down sex
I should be having slow sex with Joe but I'm in Bristol, on the gins and chatting with two of my best pals about true crime.
Day 26: Let him dominate
I get back to London in the evening, by which time I've developed a cold, haven't showered, and feel disgusting after four hours on a MegaBus. He's also sick, so he makes us veggie okonomiyaki and we watch Top of the Lake.
Day 27: Dinner out with under the table touching
Despite it being pay day all of... five days ago, I'm already running out of money. Dinner out is very much off the cards. Instead, he picks up ingredients for me to cook. Touching under our kitchen table isn't quite as exciting. But considering we're both snotty AF, it still leads to sofa sex and post-bang ice cream to 'soothe the throat'.
Day 28: Multiple orgasm day
I go for drinks and then to the theatre with a friend and don't get home until after 11. By that time Joe's already half asleep in bed, still sick. As much as I love the guy I don't want to be doused in his snot.
Day 29: Flip a coin, pick a dominant
Still sick, still sexless.
Day 30: Stay up all night having sex
When I get home from work, I'm all, "It's the last day of our sex challenge and we've totally failed! You HAVE to stay up all night having sex with me!" He's still unwell, and sneezing, and coughing, and looking at me with begging eyes, like "please, please no." It's our last chance to redeem ourselves but nonetheless it's a FAIL!
Did I learn anything?
Maybe I'm ashamed that I only passed 14 out of 30, but honestly, I think this challenge is absolute rubbish. I don't understand how it could make you feel anything other than like a failure, because unless you happen to have a perfect 30 days where you don't bleed, feel stressed/anxious/low, go on holidays, hang out with ANY friends, or go to work, it's impossible to pass.
Having what you have to do each day prescribed to you may work for some people, but I very much buy into Peep Show's Jeremy Usbourne philosophy of 'it feels good, do it' and some days, it just doesn't feel good to read erotica, twist yourself into some mad position like a human pretzel or wear a damn bunny butt plug.
Mostly, I realised not passing is fine, because it's ultimately about being invested in your sex life and doing what you both actually enjoy whether that's once a week or every day.
Via: Cosmopolitan UK