How to be good in bed

We hear people talk about being good in bed – but what does that mean? Does it mean acting sexy, doing sexual things for the other person, or what?

Fireworks exploding

Being good in bed is more than how you act, what you look like or how many people you’ve slept with. It’s about communication and respect.

Girls vs guys

For girls particularly, there’s pressure about what to do and what not to do.

For example, on the one hand you’re not supposed to be ‘frigid’ or a virgin – but on the other hand, you’re not supposed to act like a ‘slut’, ask for what you want or enjoy sex too much!

Guys are also confused about what to expect and feel worried about their performance.

We know it’s not easy to deal with all these pressures. They can make sex feel confusing, and can stop you from feeling like you can speak up or be yourself.

It should be okay to ask for what you want and to say what you like sexually, without being teased or shamed for it.


  • find out what the other person likes and doesn’t like so they enjoy themselves too
  • give AND take. If the other person is only into their own pleasure, it’s time to talk.
  • let them know what you do and don’t like
  • be yourself
  • say how you’re feeling during sex. And it’s ok to get emotional out of the blue – like cry, laugh, feel anxious or sad. It happens to everyone, and hopefully your partner can handle it.
  • share the responsibility for making sure that you have safe sex (like organising condoms)
  • keep what happened between you private and don’t go around telling everyone else.

I'm going to tell the guys she's cool to be with. Poster from Choose Respect campaign by CDC.


  • don’t pressure the other person if they don’t want to do something or if they want to stop
  • don’t make the other person feel embarrassed about saying what they want or expressing their sexual desires or fantasies
  • don’t think only men should enjoy sex – know that women have a right to enjoy it just as much as men
  • don’t make them feel embarrassed about their body
  • taking photos of each other naked or during sex isn’t a great idea – it’s something that you might regret later on
  • don’t just get up and leave afterwards – check in to make sure you’re both feeling ok

Watch out for friends and people round you

If you see someone forcing another person to be sexual or have sex when they don’t want to, or are too drunk or out of it, speak up.

Go over in a small group (if possible) and say something like,

Hey, I think she/he needs to go home. Can you stop?

If that doesn’t feel safe, still go over and make up something like

Hey, I really need to speak with her/him right now, her boyfriend/friend/parent just called.

STIs – after it’s all over

If you get tested for an STI and you have one – you must tell the person you’re with immediately.

If you’re not together anymore or it was just casual, you must still tell them.

An STI like clamydia can be in your body for years without any symptoms, and it can make men and w0men infertile if it’s not treated.

That phone call or message telling your ex-lover or GF/BF to get tested might be embarrassing or weird, but they’ll thank you in the long run.

Related links

Photo from Flickr by Don Sullivan

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