Tag Archives | seduction

Knicker Glories

I’ve featured Strumpet & Pink’s divine knickers on this site before, but when they sent me some of their latest photos, I couldn’t resist sharing them with you all over again.

I adore the playful, sexy details like buttoned-up gussets and bow-fastenings that invite your lover to unwrap and explore. Not so much underwear as a seduction in itself.

Click on the images to enlarge. 

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The Game of Lurve

I have video-reviewed one of my birthday presents – the quite simply breathtaking 80s board game from Ann Summers: Fantasy for Lovers.

 

If you’d like to receive a personalised fantasy, courtesy of the board game, leave me a comment. Be warned: all of them take 45 seconds to perform. Some women may not think this is a good thing.

 

If you enjoyed this post, please vote for me! Thank you.
Vote BettyHerbert.com in the Cosmo Blog Awards!

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Whisper #21 – Hello, stranger

Author: Gabriela

I was drunk. Thank the gods for alcohol, that bottle of rum my (two) friends and I emptied chatting about those very significant nonsenses that make life worth living. I was wearing my very high white heels, black eyeliner and a cheeky attitude to go with it. It was too early to be late, way too late to be early. I had heard about him only a few hours before.

My friend introduced him to me, and we started with smalltalk. I’d lie if I say I remember a decent amount of the things we said. All I knew is that he comes from London and he’s backpacking his way through South America. He has an eyebrow piercing and a piercingly deep voice. Not necessarily an Adonis, as I am not a sylph either. There was something that drew me in, maybe it was his gaze, maybe his tone. I actually like not to remember exactly. All I know is that after that I got sick.

Yes, I got sick. My stomach simply rejected the industrial amounts of rum I had so needlessly poured in. I locked myself in the bathroom and washed my mouth obsessively. Ever noticed that alcohol lowers one self inhibitions? I got out of that bathroom with one purpose, and one purpose only. I was going to get a goodnight kiss no matter what. I only had to rehydrate first. My pierced recent acquaintance sat next to me, as I looked into his eyes. “Can you give me a goodnight kiss?”, I said. “I’ll go wash my teeth and come down to give you a goodnight kiss”

When he came back he sat back on his seat and looked at me in the eyes. I just remember he said something about my goodnight kiss, and we went upstairs. He closed the door, I laid down on the couch. We started kissing, the absence of light making everything easier. I didn’t have to pretend I’m a good girl, he didn’t have to ask what he could do. My weeps were shameless and accurate, as a deep seeded part of my brain had been released. He mastered the way to make me feel excruciating pleasure, squeezing and caressing, touching and kissing around. I couldn’t stop my hips from moving against him, his fingers inside me, my hands around him. There was nothing else but the moment, the undeniable truth of enjoying myself. I was, for the first time in months, having fun.

I asked him if he had a condom, he said he had one. He also said he was not going to have sex with me being so drunk. Had I stumbled with one of the legendary English gentlemen? He walked me home, I kissed him goodnight. Went (that day) alone to bed.

We agreed on meeting again, but I was too late and he was nowhere to be found. I walked all the way to his hostel to find him writing me an inbox about how long had he waited for me. Our talk resumed, me telling him about my day, he telling me about his life. He’s trouble, that I know. We’re not talking misdemeanors here; he’s a self-acknowledged bad boy. And boy, do I fancy him. He’s almost everything that I’m not, and he lives the life I only dare to dream off. He stirred some really deep things inside me, regarding my own wishes, my own freedom, the responsibility I hold for my own happiness. The responsibility I hold for my own pleasure.

Facebook inbox comes, Facebook inbox goes, a date was set to finally set the score. I was jumpy all day, thinking about what would, could or might happen. It took a while for us to meet at the pizza parlor; SMS goes, SMS comes, an hour later than the one we had previously agreed we were sitting down, ordering a pizza and some wine. It was a nice talk, a really honest one. We walked back home… we knew what we wanted to do. My mom was upstairs, but (eventually) he didn’t care.

We scratched and bit and squeezed and thrust. We kissed and whispered, trying to stay undercover, trying not to be so loud. He went deep, I went mad. His fingers caressed me while he moved inside. I came, he came, we both came around. He drank some lemonade and we kissed goodbye.

Tomorrow we’ll go out. Next Tuesday he’ll be gone. Today, I lived my life.

*

If you’d like to write your own Whisper, we’d love to read it! The submission guidelines are here.

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The Fifteen-Minute Meh

Before I embark on this post, I must first warn you that I have long been fermenting a bizarre love-hate crush on Tim Ferris, the author of The 4-Hour Work Week.

In case you haven’t encountered his oevre, he’s a dot com millionaire turned self-help author, who writes about how to work in the most efficient way possible, so that you have more time to do man stuff, like becoming a kickboxing champion or taking tango dancing insanely seriously. Tim Ferris can squeeze a competition out of the most gentle situation. He is the walking embodiment of testosterone. I find him enchantingly obnoxious – so hyperactively masculine that I can’t help but slyly adore him.

After reading his first book two years ago, I distinctly remember saying to Herbert, ‘Can you imagine having sex with that man? Terrifying.’

I will confess, therefore, that I let out a yelp of delight when I discovered that his new book, The 4-Hour Body, would feature – amongst other shortcuts to a super-human body – a chapter on how to ‘hack’ the female orgasm. Oh. My. God. I was finally going to get an insight into sex with Tim Ferris.

Well, never shag your heroes, as they say. (Actually, they don’t say that, but I’m hoping to institute a proverb here). Poor Tim seems to exist in a world in which women can’t have orgasms, and his advice isn’t really aimed at those of us who can. He devotes a whole chapter to pointing out that, hey, really the ladies have to take responsibility for their own orgasms. It turns out that the inorgasmic woman who was his case study hadn’t even tried. Once Tim told her to go home and masturbate, everything was fine. Thanks, Tim.

The next chapter focuses on providing a reliable, no-nonsense way for a man to give a woman an orgasm. Oh goody, I think. That sounds fun.

Well, no. Not really. ‘The clitoris looks something like an Imperial Guard from Star Wars,’ begins Ferris (you see? He has this knack of making you wonder whether he’s really witty or just a dick. So hard to tell). And then he outlines a technique that ‘decouples orgasm from sex’.

I struggle to imagine the point of that. Worse, he then adopts a truly odd definition of orgasm:

‘Orgasm is when there is no resistance – no physical or emotional blocking – to a single point of contact between one finger and the clitoris.

The state naturally leads to the involuntary contractions and flushing that most associate with the word orgasm.’

No mention of pleasure, then? This becomes particularly relevant when we try it out.

‘Right,’ says Herbert, ‘Tim Ferris says that you should only be naked from the waist down, and I’m going to blindfold you. I’m fully clothed.’ This feels a bit like a visit to the gynaecologist. Not the blindfold bit, I should point out. I lie on the bed, and Herbert positions himself according to the helpful diagram.

Talk about decoupling orgasm from sex; it’s hard to relate this to sex in any way whatsoever. Had Herbert voluntarily chosen to position himself like this, with his back to me and his knee across my chest, I would have been downright insulted. Instead, I giggle.

‘Wow,’ I say, ‘this is erotic, isn’t it?’

‘Tim says that I have to remind you that it’s a goalless practice. You are not looking to have an orgasm. You’re just having an experience. It will last exactly fifteen minutes.’

‘I’d find it easier to see it as a goalless practice if it wasn’t called ‘The 15-minute Orgasm’,’ I say.

Herbert ignores me, and sets a timer on his phone. Then, he proceeds to stroke a tiny spot at the top left-hand corner of my clitoris.

‘Ow!’ I say.

‘Okay, I’ll go lighter.’

‘OW!’

He strokes lighter still, until I can barely feel his touch. That’s about as much as I can handle. I really hate any sex tip that begins with the instruction, ‘pull back the hood of the clitoris.’ It has a hood for a reason.

After about a minute of this, I feel an odd little twitch in my vagina, but then nothing more. ‘Do you think we’ve got the right spot?’ I say to Herbert, and he moves around for a while. Each new place he comes to feels interesting for a while, but the regularity of the touch deadens it. After a few more minutes, I venture, ‘Maybe this would be nicer with some lube?’

‘Tim doesn’t mention lube,’ says H.

‘I’m bored,’ I say.

‘And you’re not allowed to make small talk. Just go with it.’

I try, I really do. I lie there for fifteen minutes, trying to concentrate. When the alarm finally goes off, I take off my blindfold and say, ‘Well, that was pointless.’

‘Technically,’ says Herbert, ‘You had an involuntarily muscle contraction. Tim would say that counts as an orgasm.’

No, Tim, it really does not. Orgasms may be objectively measurable, but that’s not the point of them at all. The orgasms we want – the ones that some women crave for many years before they finally find a way to access them – are subjective experiences, melding pleasure with abandon. We are seeking little moments of ecstasy in our lives, not involuntary contractions of the vagina.

I fear that my Tim Ferris crush may now be on the wane.

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Finding Words

‘But Herbert, that’s three nights in a row!’

Not that I’m complaining or anything. In fact, I’m quite delighted. There’s me worrying that our sex life would nose-dive when the seductions finished, but the reverse seems to be true. Never once did we spontaneously do it three times in a weekend.

‘Well,’ H grins, ‘I’ve been reading a book with quite a lot of sex in it.’

Herbert has just finished reading my draft of The 52 Seductions. The only bit he really objects to is where I speculate that I would have made less fuss about the hot candle wax (Herbert: ‘Would you buffalo!’). Apart from that, he declares himself, ‘quite chuffed really.’

Even so, I thought he’d be the last person to be turned on by it. Surely reading about your own sexual performance has erection-shrivelling potential? But then, that’s not where H’s interest seems to lie.

What he’s really enjoying is reading my point of view. I hadn’t realised I was so mysterious to him. Having spent the last year discussing the intricacies of my sexual response with anyone who happens across this page, it didn’t occur to me that Herbert would be the last to know.

But, suddenly, he’s relieved. ‘I wasn’t sure if you enjoyed certain things, or not,’ he says. ‘It’s sometimes hard to tell.’

The odd thing is, I often assume that he knows more than I do. Only last night, he told me that he can feel the echoes of my orgasm long before I do, a sequence of twitches and spasms that ‘let me know you’re on the home straight.’

‘Your clitoris,’ he says, ‘dances.’

‘Really?’ I’m genuinely astonished. I just don’t get to see it from that angle. ‘In what way?’

He holds a finger in the air, and mimes a jerky tremble. ‘Wow,’ I say.

‘Do I do anything like that?’

I think for a while. ‘No. Sorry.’

‘I didn’t think so.’ He looks disappointed. I consider telling him about an ex-boyfriend whose penis let off a high-pitched squeak in the moments before ejaculation, but I think better of it.

It is somewhat shamefacedly that I admit that we’re finally developing a language for sex after the seductions are finished. Reading my words has loosened Herbert’s tongue. He’s full of new-minted questions about what sex feels like to me from the inside. And he’s also full of newly-articulated ideas about what he’d like to do next.

On Saturday night, for example, he presses a finger to his lips. ‘I think I’d like you to start by crouching over my face,’ he says.

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Keeping On

We are in bed, naked. Herbert is looking reasonably enthusiastic; me, I’m hoping I’ll gather momentum along the way.

He leans in and kisses me.

‘It’s no good, you’ll have to brush your teeth,’ I say.

He huffs.

‘I can’t help it; I’ve brushed mine, which means that you now taste of coleslaw.’

Herbert goes into the bathroom, and I hear the electric toothbrush buzz on and off. Back in bed, he breathes minty breath on my face.

‘Better,’ I say.

He reaches a hand between my legs.

‘Before we get started,’ I say, ‘I’ve got two sex questions.’

‘Right,’ says H.

‘One: how do we make sure we remember to have sex without having the seductions to jolly us along?’

This is pertinent, because we’ve not exactly kept up the pace over Christmas. I’m trying to be open-minded about this; after all, there have been few moments in the last three weeks that we haven’t been in the company of other people, or hideously bloated, or both. I think we can be forgiven for failing to swing from the paper chains on a regular basis. But now it’s January, the tree is down, and I’m beginning to feel like I’m at risk of retreating into celibacy again.

‘Two: how do we keep up with the more interesting stuff? The stuff that requires planning? How do we learn to say, Let’s crack out the rubber nurse’s outfit tonight?’

I expect Herbert to be irritated by this, seeing as I’ve pretty much put pay to his optimistic half-erection, but he rolls onto his back and thinks.

‘I mean,’ I say, beginning to feel a bit guilty, ‘maybe they’re the same question. Maybe I’m asking how we still make space to explore new things. I’m just a bit worried we’ll go back to how it was before.’

‘I dunno,’ says H. ‘I’ve had a few ideas. I think I’ve still got a seductions hangover.’

‘Oh dear. You mean you can never face them again?’

‘No, I mean I’m still in the mindset of thinking of new things to do. Like, I’d really like to try anal sex again, but this time face-to-face. And I was thinking back to the power exchange stuff we did in the Barbara Carrellas workshop, and actually I think we could take that a bit further. I’d like to take charge a bit more. Not,’ he says hurriedly, ‘in a rape-y way. But I’d like to be able to be more urgent, more passionate.’

‘Right,’ I say, and I must look as surprised and delighted as I feel, because he says, ‘Now that I’m reading through your blog, I see it all in a different way. Like, I didn’t realise that you can’t come from doggy style. Well I suppose I did realise it, but I hadn’t really thought much about it.’

‘I still enjoy it. I don’t feel like everything needs to lead to an orgasm. I still enjoy the sensations. And I enjoy giving you pleasure.’

‘Well I never realised that before. It’s so fascinating seeing it from your side.’

‘Well, I think that’s what’s changed for me this year. I used to think that the whole thing was about giving me an orgasm. Now I feel like I can have an orgasm any time I want; when we’re together, it’s a different thing.’

‘It’s less linear.’

‘Yes,’ I say, ‘That’s why I object to 69-ing. It’s not that it isn’t pleasant, but I’d rather focus on giving you pleasure than half-enjoying you going down on me while I give an indifferent blow job. I’ve learned to enjoy getting you off.’

‘In some ways, it’s harder to receive pleasure than give it. I always feel like I’ve got my make myself useful.’

‘It can feel a bit humiliating, can’t it? To just take pleasure, nothing else? It can feel incredibly exposing.’

Herbert thinks for a while. ‘Alright then,’ he says, ‘I think I’m up to the challenge. I’d like a blow job please, and I promise I’ll concentrate.’

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Married Love – Where it all started

I realise how prudish I am about to sound, but that’s not the case at all. At least I don’t think so. No, I am not prudish, I have just been married for ten years. There is a difference, although I suspect that, if I drew a venn diagram in which one circle represented ‘prudishness’ and one represented ‘having been married for ten years’, there would be considerable overlap. I mention this to Herbert, and he says, ‘a vulva-shaped overlap.’ This is how bad things have got. It’s way past Freudian.

Look, see, I am not prudish. There, in the paragraph above, I freely used the word ‘vulva’ without a care in the world. Oh, I can talk good sex, me. Just watch me down the pub on a Saturday night. I’ll be the one cracking bawdy jokes in the corner of the room, making the rest of the table roar with embarrassment.

I am, however, all talk. I am expert in sounding like a libertine. In real life, in the bedroom, I am about as sexually enlightened as Mary Whitehouse. Actually, scrub that. I have no right to cast aspersions on Mary’s erotic drive. For all I know, she could be a bit of a goer. It’s the quiet ones you’ve got to watch.

The point is, I am not naturally uptight. I was not brought up in sexually-repressed circumstances (quite the opposite – my Mother’s sheer enthusiasm for sex would put Tracey Cox to shame), and I do not in any way disapprove of sex. It’s just that I’ve come to feel a bit icky about it involving me.

We started off on great form, Herbert & I (you may have guessed that this is not his real name). We could barely put each other down. But that was 14 long years ago now, and I was just eighteen. Now, at 32, sex seems so far away from me that I struggle to remember the point of it. It’s not that we don’t do it at all; it’s just that we usually do so out of a sense of obligation. How long’s it been? A month? I guess we really ought to have a shag then. Fancy it? Hang on, I’ll go and shave my armpits first.

It’s not the diminishing of desire that’s the problem. That’s the effect rather than the cause, I suspect. Our real issue is the limitedness of our sexual palette. The same sex, over and over again, is just pointless, no matter how good it is. I would have hated to admit it when I was 18, but I was inexperienced.  Somehow, by staying with the same partner since then (and both of us have been utterly faithful, I’m sure of that), I have retained the sexuality of an eighteen year old. Less saucy than it sounds, I can assure you, particularly without the benefits of an eighteen year old’s firm midriff. Herbert and I adore each other, get on like a house on fire and are extremely, smugly happy, but the fireworks ceased in the bedroom long ago. In their place, we have developed something resembling embarrassment.

Surely a loving relationship should encourage experimentation? In my experience, it does not. That sense of safety that has built between us is the most valuable thing in the world, and neither of us is willing to compromise it by asking for the wrong thing. More than that, neither of us is willing to express desire much at all any more. It would pain me to admit to Herbert that I found a film, picture, outfit or concept sexy. It would just seem too ridiculous. I think both of us feel the same way.

So why the change? Well, frankly, who knows, but two things have happened in the last few days. Firstly, we managed to have sex after a particularly long break, even for us (the previous time led to a row). Secondly, it was bloody good. So good, in fact, that (after we’d stopped reeling with surprise), we did it again. Three times in one weekend. Quite something for us, I can assure you.

I thought about it all the next day. What a perfect, complete idiot I’d been. What a bloody waste! So many women of my age are out embarking on sexual adventures but craving The One. I’d found The One, years ago, and wasted him. I suddenly saw (don’t ask me how) that my sexuality was my own responsibility. What was the point in sacrificing it to my own, very English, sense of embarrassment? Fourteen years together should lead to some sort of expertise; in our case, it has led to a kind of blind, dumbfounded ignorance. Even if I wanted to, I would have no idea how to turn Herbert on. I have no idea of his erotic tastes and preferences, let alone my own. I have made a habit of saying no, even before the question is asked, and it’s time that stopped.

That night, I nervously made a proposition to Herbert: what if we set ourselves a challenge? ‘We’re never going to be the couple who have sex every day,’ I said (we tried it for a week once and got thoroughly bored),’ so let’s be more realistic. What if we book a date for sex once a week, but with a twist. We take it in turns to arrange a seduction for each other, every week for the next year.’

I was surprised how readily he agreed – in fact, a lovely smile spread over his face. ‘Okay,’ he said.

‘Because, when we were first together, part of the reason the sex was so good was because we’d looked forward to it all day.  We could to with a little more of that anticipation.’

‘Fine,’ he said; ‘good. Great. So long as it doesn’t have to be too elaborate, always.’

‘No, not elaborate. Just interesting. Just intended.’

‘And that doesn’t mean to say that we can’t have sex at other times too.’

‘Don’t push your luck,’ I said.

The next morning, it hit me. I was going to have to go through with it. I had said it out loud. It wasn’t just an idea floating nicely around in my head. I had to imagine, and then own up to, 26 seductions over the next year, and be opened-minded with the 26 that Herbert threw at me. Inside, I was already curling up with embarrassment.

I had raised the idea, though, and so the first seduction, inevitably, was mine. I wondered about lingerie, but then I’ve been matching my bra & knickers for fourteen years now, and it hadn’t exactly worked for me so far.

Slowly, it dawns on me that I have an enormous challenge ahead.

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