Q: I am a 24-year-old woman, and I've been with my boyfriend for three years. Our sex used to be great, but it has been feeling a little dull lately. I was wondering if you know of any toys for both of us, or just for me to get aroused while he is on business trips. I'm kind of new to the whole idea of using toys. And if you could think of some places, positions or role-plays, that would be much appreciated!
A: The No. 1 sex toy is your brain. I'm not against sex toys of the type you buy in stores, but it's impossible for me, or anyone else, to know what turns you on. Only you know that. Let's say that you get turned on by sailors. In that case, taking a toy boat into the bath might be an extreme turn-on as you imagine what the sailors on board that boat might be doing to you; but to someone else, that toy boat would be silly.
And the same goes for the two of you as a couple. Talk to each other about what you each find sexy, and when you find something that turns both of you on, go for it. Or else experiment, and if it turns out that only one of you gets very turned on, that's OK, and maybe you do it again and maybe you don't.
So, exercise your imagination, both alone and together, and that way you'll find how to make sex as good as it was in the beginning of the relationship.
Q: I was married for 14 years, and we were together for 17 years and then got divorced. She hated sex. Now I want to have sex every day, sometimes twice a day. The girl I'm seeing wants it only once a week, if I'm lucky. What's going on? I need more sex.
A: Have you ever heard of romance? Women don't become aroused as quickly as men. It's not a question of just turning to her and saying, "Let's go to bed." You need to provide her with romance throughout the day so that her arousal can build, and then she'll be much more likely to want to have sex with you.
So, try to accommodate her needs, and you'll have more success with her accommodating yours.
Q: Years ago, I had a hysterectomy that went bad. My bladder was damaged, and I had to wait 10 months to have it repaired. They hurt my vagina so much that even oral sex was extremely painful. My husband and I have gone without sex since then.
My doctors said I would have to live with the pain. I am trying again, but I have several problems. My vagina is very tight and does not stretch. It is very dry, even when we use a lubricant. There still is a lot of pain and burning, urgency and sometimes incontinence even if we don't try full penetration.
I heard you recommend a urogynecologist. How do I find one and get help? We are about to give up again.
A: I'm one who doesn't believe in giving up, but from the sounds of it, you've got a serious medical issue. Therefore, if there is a solution, you're going to need a top-notch specialist.
I don't know where you live, but if you don't live in a big city, then you need to find a specialist in the nearest big city and make an appointment. No doctor is going to tell you over the phone whether he or she can help you, but after a thorough examination, you will be told whether there is hope, or even whether you need to see another specialist.
There are medical miracles being performed every day, but it may take a lot of research to find the one doctor who can help you. Good luck, and let me know what happens.
Q: When my husband and I first got together, he could make me orgasm all the time. He bought a vibrator for me on Valentine's Day because I had never had one.
We started using it while we had sex, and now I can't orgasm without it. Is there any way I can have an orgasm without it now?
A: My advice is to use the vibrator to come as close to orgasm as possible and then have your husband use his fingers or tongue. See if you can get close enough that he is successful without the vibrator. If that happens, you can then begin to wean yourself more and more.
But if you can't, don't worry about it. The important thing is that you have orgasms, and if the only way is with the powerful stimulation of a vibrator, then so be it. It's not the worst thing in the world.
Dr. Ruth's Sex After 50" (Quill Driver Books) is Dr. Ruth Westheimer's latest book. Have a question for Dr. Ruth? Write to her at drruth.com.
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