Facts & Info

5 Reasons She Doesn’t Want Sexual Penetration

Woman Wrapped in Purple Satin

Dear Jamie,

I started dating a woman named Nicole who I met on a kink dating site. We hit it off in person after quite a few long conversations online. It looked like we had a few fetishes in common and were heading towards a great sex life. But before things got there, she told me she is “not into” penetrative sex.

I really didn’t know what to say. I haven’t followed up about a date we had planned and feel like a jerk, but I don’t have a clue why someone who seemed so into having crazy sex suddenly wasn’t.

Am I missing something? – Neil

Full disclosure: I personally love penetration. Penis in my vagina variety, dildos everywhere, yours, mine, hers. I get creative and love all kinds of sex and all kinds of kinks, but personally find penetrative sex to be the most fulfilling. But that’s just me.

There are a million reasons why a women, including a kinky woman, may not want to participate in sexual penetration at the moment, or ever.

In fact, for women who don’t want or can’t have penetrative sex, kink is a playground for their bodies and imagination.

In order to foster understanding between lovers and potential lovers, it’s a good idea to be familiar with diverse expressions of sexuality, and different reasons why someone might feel a certain way or have the preferences they do.

For Neil, I would say the best way to figure out what is going on with Nicole is to ask Nicole. I’m glad you decided to ask me, but in these circumstances, the best possible answer will come from the person with the stated preference. Don’t be afraid to communicate with a new partner. I understand that you may feel uncertain, or may feel put off, but the best resolution is open heart communication.

I can’t answer for Nicole, but there are many reasons someone may prefer to have non-penetrative sex. Here are some of the most common ones.

5 Reasons She Doesn’t Want Penetration

1. She’s Saving Herself for Someone Else

You probably won’t meet a lot of virgins or born-again virgins on kinky dating sites who are saving themselves for religious reasons, but you may meet some.

Even Catholics these days aren’t terribly likely to wait until marriage, but some do, and in a multicultural world, there are other customs and traditions that value waiting.

While it may seem like a silly technicality, to be hooking up and practicing fetish life, but not “go all the way,” it’s something you should respect even so.

Like I said, it’s not going to be that often that you meet this person. However, it is VERY common in polyamorous circles or kinks that involve multiple partners that someone has a penetrative-sex boundary. A couple may be open to her sleeping with whoever she wants, but keep the penis in vagina for themselves.

Read: 4 Kinky Play Ideas without Penetration

2. She Wants the Safest Sex

Some people feel more comfortable meeting and dating, but leaving the full monty off the table. This is a means of harm reduction, because the most risky sexual activities are penis-in-vagina sex or penis-in-anus sex. Even with condoms, the human papilloma virus, AIDS, gonorreah, chlamydia and other STDS are spread more easily through penetrative sex than, say, a handjob or dominating a partner sexually. Everyone chooses the level of risk they are comfortable with.

It’s not like you can’t enjoy kink without penetration either. It’s all about creativity and exploration.

Read: Why Kinky Sex Is Safe Sex

3. She Has Experienced Past Trauma

Some women are triggered psychologically or physically by penetrative sex. They may have PTSD or other problems due to rape or child molestation. Some women with this kind of trauma don’t have sex at all. Others are able to explore their sexuality if they leave certain activities off the menu.

This is how many of these women feel safest experiencing sex.

4. She May Have Pain or Discomfort

Some women have a chronic pain condition called vulvodynia. This is a poorly understood medical illness that causes extreme vaginal and vulvar pain, and it is ongoing.

Women who suffered from vulvodynia were long thought to be, not surprisingly, hysterical. The pain was considered to be “all in their head” or made up because they were frigid or not comfortable with their genitals or sexuality.

This is a terrible abuse of women who are suffering a great deal of pain.

There are women who have experienced sexual trauma and feel psychological or physical pain. It was assumed for some time that vulvodynia was a manifestation of this trauma, or of negative sexual attitudes. This is wrong. They are two different issues.

Women with vulvodynia often want to have sex but it hurts too much. Their vagina and vulva may hurt even without sex, but just from urinating or sitting at a desk or walking. They are still sexual beings and may find non-penetrative sex to be the most comfortable way forward.

Other women have experienced female genital mutilation, a cultural practice that involves cutting and sewing young girl’s genitalia. Some have been damaged sexually to the extent that penetration is unbearably painful. They may still want to experience sex on their own terms.

5. She Sees Non-Penetrative Play as a Kink

Withholding or avoiding penetration is, like orgasm denial, a preference for some that builds excitement physically or psychologically.

Not allowing a partner IN can be something found in some female-led relationships (FLR) and ongoing or seen as a reward to work towards—a treat for obedience.

Some women (and men) simply prefer the vast realm of the body and imagination in kink and fetish life that involves such a range of activities, rather than focusing on one classic.

How do you feel about non-penetrative sex? Is it something you experience in your kinky life?

Tell us what you think!

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