Who’s on Third? Negotiating Oral Sex.*

“He tastes of rice with a touch of saffron. He says I taste of seafood. I guess we’d make a good paella.” ― Chloe Thurlow

No matter what body parts you have or which ones you like to lick, nibble, and kiss, this piece is for you! This piece is about using your tongue in skillful new ways, but maybe not in the ways that you think. It is all about the fine art of negotiating amazing oral sex, and it is written with every one of us in mind. Pleasure is a universal language and we are all more alike than we are different. However, because time and space are finite, this is only meant to get you started down your road to oral expertise, so if you’d like more information or additional resources, find my contact information at the end and drop me a line.

Alright, without further ado, let’s get down … to business.

Be a cunning linguist: consent and negotiation.

Oral sex is incredibly intimate. Before you just dive down under, you’ll want to check in with your partner to see how they feel about going to third base. For some folks it’s their absolute favorite thing to give – or receive. For others, it can be a source of great anxiety. Our society sends us so many messages that are filled with shame and stigma. It can be hard to turn off the voices in our head making us question penis or testicle size, labia shape, smell or taste of our bodies, confusion about how much wetness is too much (or not enough), concerns about hygiene and STI’s, our skills at pleasing our partners, the view from down below, how vulnerable and on display we are, and much more. If you’re interested in exploring oral pleasure with your partner, as the giver or the receiver, talking with them first can go a very long way to relieving these anxieties. Talking with them first is also an important part of enthusiastic consent. (You don’t want to just ram your rod down their throat without making sure they’re totally into that!)

Nik MacMillan

I know, I know. Consent and Negotiation sounds like a contracts law class, which (for most of us) is probably kind of a boner-killer. But it doesn’t have to be! Consent is really sexy! Everything you do in the bedroom is sex. Everything outside the bedroom, is foreplay – including your negotiation and consent process. Being good with your mouth isn’t just about licking the right spot, it’s also about using your words in a skillful way to make sure that everyone is having fun and feeling safe. You can establish consent and negotiate what you do (and don’t) like in a number of sexy ways! Here are just a few:

  • A Yes/No/Maybe list

This list is divided into three parts. The Yes section is full of things you like to do – indicate whether you like to give, receive, or both. The Maybe section is full of things you think you might like to, or things you’re willing to do if your partner likes it, but maybe they aren’t your favorite – be careful to indicate which is which. The No section is full of things you do not like to do, would not like to try, or feel triggered or traumatized by. Some folks divide this up into “Soft No” and “Hard No”. A “soft no” is something that you maybe didn’t love in the past, but might be willing to try again under the circumstances, or things you’d like to wait to discuss until you get to know each other better. A “hard no” is something that is off the table completely. Write your lists separately and then compare! Use this as the starting point for a conversation about what you think is sexy and what you might like to do together.

Your biggest sex organ is your brain and good oral sex starts with good aural sex. Consider putting language you do and don’t like on this list! Do you just *hate* the word “coochy”? Does the word “cock” make you wet? This is an excellent time to exchange notes about these sorts of things! It will make you even more cunning linguist if you can learn exactly how (and how not) to turn your partner on.

  • Sexy texts:

Send your partner sexy text messages (“Oh baby, I can’t wait to taste you” – refer to the language you added to your Yes/No/Maybe lists as a guide for crafting the perfect porntastic prose) or even longer emails! Practice those linguistic skills and create antici . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . pation by teasing your partner via text.

For extra fun, include fun images and gifs that let them know all the delicious ways you want to bring your mouths and bodies together. (Incognito search “oral sex gif,” “blow job gif,” “cunnilingus gif,” etc. to find fun images to share with them!) Pro-Tip: Sexy images are not everyone’s cup of tea, check in before you bombard their blackberry with porn pics.

  • Lusty love notes:
Álvaro Serrano

A handwritten letter of lust is not only a good way to share your desires, it’s a great way to see if your partner is into it! Start a journal where you take turns writing sexy scenes back and forth, staring you and your lover(s), and then read them to each other and talk about which scenes make the best fantasies and which ones you’d like to turn into reality.

  • Dirty talk:
Tanja Heffner

Ask for what you want. Beg them to let you please them. Describe what you’d like to do with them, to them, for them. Gain consent by cooing, “does that turn you on?” or “would you like that?” and wait for them to reply with a gasp, groan, growl, or suggestion of their own. Remember that consent is an ongoing conversation. It doesn’t end when you hit the sack. Stay intuitive and reassuring throughout the process, to get the most of the experience for everyone.

If you’re the one headed down south, remember to listen for moans, gasps, and other sounds of pleasure, to look for non-verbal signs that your partner is into it! – their head is back, their eyes are closed (or locked on you, raaawwwrrrr), their back is arched, their thrusting toward you or grinding their hips…. These are all signs that your partner is totally into this thing you’re doing to them!! If you’re not sure, ask! “Do you like that, baby?” “Are you comfortable?” “Is this good for you?”

If you’re the one receiving, remember a little encouragement goes a LONG way! Don’t be shy! “Yes, baby, that feels so good, keep doing that.” “Oh, yeah, a little to the left.” “Softer, sweetie, oh yeah, just like that.” “Would you use your fingers, too, baby?” Your partner is NOT a mind reader, even with all this negotiation! Help them read the treasure map of your body and you’ll both be in paradise.

Ian Romie Ona

Think of negotiation like building a theme park. It’s an ongoing process where you get to figure out which rides and toys and games you like (and which ones make your tummy hurt). You don’t have to do every single thing you talk about every time you connect, but now you know what your options are! These conversations are also a valuable time to assuage any insecurity or anxiety your partner may have (or communicate any you may have) about what it’s like “down there” and whether or not you enjoy going down!


In his best-selling book, She Comes First: the thinking man’s guide to pleasuring a woman, Dr. Ian Kerner outlines the Three Assurances of the Cunnilinguist Manifesto. I’m going to tweak them, just a little, to make our language a little more inclusive.

1. Going down on them turns you on; you enjoy it just as much as they do.

2. There’s no rush; they have all the time in the world. You want to savor every moment.

3. Their scent is provocative, their taste powerful: it all emanates from the same amazing essence.

Dr. Kerner reminds his readers to communicate these things to your partners, reassuring them how much you love going down on them, and helping them relax into the joy, pleasure, and ecstasy.

“Cunnilingus is not a three-minute twerking fad, here today junked tomorrow. It is Tchaikovsky. An overture. An operatic experience that makes you high, then takes you higher. Orgasm is the waft of smoke seen at the top of the volcano. As we know, the journey is pure pleasure, the arrival like the Big Bang that created the universe.” ― Chloe Thurlow

A few last minute tips.

Before you embark on your journey twixt their nethers, here are just a few more things to keep in mind.

  • Safety First.

When negotiating, remember to talk about risk. You can totally get STIs from unprotected oral sex. Herpes and human papilloma virus are two very common ones, but did you know you can get gonorrhea in your throat? Talk about when the last time was that you were tested, whether or not you have other partners, and negotiate which kinds of barriers, if any, you’ll be using. For tips on integrating barriers into foreplay – including putting on a condom without using your hands – check out my video on blowjobs over at the SwingTowns.com YouTube channel

  • Patience is a virtue.

Nothing can breed anxiety like the feeling that your partner wants to move it along or hurry things up. Relax and enjoy the journey.

Orgasm isn’t everything.

Let your journey be about pleasure and feeling good. If you orgasm, great! If not, great! In fact, play around with this sensation by sometimes agreeing to simply take orgasm off the table. Instead learn to just enjoy the way it feels to worship (and be worshipped) by your partner in this way.

  • All hands on deck.

A good blow job (or oral sex in general) is also a good hand job. Use your hands and fingers to apply pressure and create sensations that will enhance this experience for both of you. Get creative!

Break out the toy box.

Enhance stimulation by adding a vibrating cock ring, or other small vibrator to the mix. You can also add a butt plug or other anal toy to really explore new sensations!

“A really good blowjob is like making a cake, the gathering of ingredients, the mixing and stirring, the slow baking in the warm oven of your mouth. Timing is everything. So is the variety of flicks, licks, nicks and kisses that culminate with gentle persistent pressure on the frenulum, a membrane on the underside of the penis that connects the head to the shaft.” ― Chloe Thurlow

For additional reading:

She Comes First: a thinking man’s guide to pleasuring a woman by Dr. Ian Kerner

He Comes Next: a thinking woman’s guide to pleasuring a man by Dr. Ian Kerner

Tickle His Pickle: Your Hands-on Guide to Penis Pleasing by Dr. Sadie Allison


*This article first appeared in the November 2017 KinkCrate handbook. For more information or to subscribe to KinkCrate go to KinkCrate.com/ProfessorSex

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