Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Tantra with Physical Limitations

One common problem that comes up while learning Tantra is that not all of us are shaped alike or have the same capabilities, and sometimes that requires some adjustments. The couples I talked to faced a variety of challenges and came up with a number of creative solutions that I’d like to share with you.

Accommodating Long Refractory Periods

One of the most common effects of age for most men is a gradual increase in the time it takes to recover after one ejaculatory orgasm before they can get another erection and resume sexual activity. If this so-called “refractory period” is typically more than two or three hours, the couple will normally have to choose when during the Tantric ritual the man will have his one-and-only ejaculatory orgasm.

If the man has learned how to have non-ejaculatory orgasms (NEOs), he can simply exercise that option during lingam massage and save the ejaculatory orgasm for the end. But what about men without that handy talent?

Two of the couples in that situation just skip the conclusion of the lingam massage. The men are not multi-orgasmic and both now have recovery times that are too long to allow for two ejaculatory orgasms in the same Tantra session. As one of them said, “I’m strictly a one-a-day man these days, so I want to have that one when it feels best for both of us!” They enjoy the lingam massage, but their partners are careful to keep the level of arousal somewhat lower than would otherwise be the case, and to taper off gradually toward the end.

As the "one-a-day man" put it, "It still feels great and it still gets that buzz going.  I kinda miss having the big come at the end, but it's much less of a big deal than I expected it to be, and it's a lot better now that we don't have to worry so much about whether I'm going to be able to get it up again for yab-yum or after.  That was really killing the whole mood for us before we switched to this way of doing it."

One couple in the same situation skips the lingam massage completely during their “long” Tantra sessions, usually Sunday evening, and includes it in their “short” Tantra sessions, usually on Friday night, so that he can experience the full massage, ending with an orgasm, without messing up their regular Tantric ritual. A “long” Tantra session for them is bathing, meditation, full-body (but not lingam) massage for him, full-body massage and yoni massage for her, yab-yum, & maithuna. A “short” Tantra session is bathing, meditation, a full-body/lingam massage for him, and a full-body/yoni massage for her.

Accommodating ED

In addition to the three couples above who have issues with the man’s refractory period, I interviewed four couples in which the men were dealing with at least occasional erection problems. Each couple deals with it in a somewhat different way.

Cabot, 70, is the oldest man I interviewed. He and his partner Marla devote a good deal of time to each Tantric ritual, treating Tantra as just part of an 8-hour “meditation day,” so they never feel any time pressure. He can usually count on getting a full erection eventually with enough stimulation, and neither of them minds if he goes most or all the way through a lingam massage before he firms up completely. Also, because of their very leisurely schedule, he has the option of taking a pill and waiting for it to take effect if he needs the assistance before yab-yum. Since he’s able to have multiple orgasms, he usually has one or more NEOs at the end of his lingam massage and reserves his ejaculatory orgasm for the end of maithuna.

Two men always take one of the common ED drugs before sex and don’t have any problems as a result, but one of them actually prefers to take his pill just before the start of his massage so he can be semi-soft through most (or even all) of the lingam massage. He calls this “cheating,” because it makes it easier to slow down the arousal and extend the massage, leading to bigger orgasms. It also makes it much easier to block ejaculation, letting him have several non-ejaculatory orgasms during the massage and still save his ejaculation for the end of the Tantra session.

The fourth man jokingly calls himself “the male lesbian.” He’s in his early 40s and has severe ED from a cycling-related injury. Drugs like Cialis and Viagra don’t work for him. He is, however, perfectly capable of having an orgasm (with or without ejaculation) without an erection. “Normal” sex for this couple is a combination of oral, anal, and manual sex, with some sex toys and vibrators for variety. Their standard Tantric ritual ends with a yab-yum meditation and essentially a second set of lingam and yoni massages, but with the sequence more mixed up (e.g., yab-yum, followed by yoni massage, then lingam massage, then yoni again, and so on until they're both done).

To help make the two halves of the ritual distinct from each other, they prefer to use just their hands and light tongue (i.e., no vibrators and no intense oral activity) during the lingam and yoni massages in the first half, and then they use a lot of oral along with vibrators and other toys during their version of yab-yum and maithuna in the second half of their ritual.  His doctor has encouraged him to consider a penile implant, but both he and his partner are quite happy with their current arrangement and neither of them think the surgery is worth the cost or trouble.

Accommodating Weight

I would guess that, in about a quarter of the couples I talked to, one or both people were heavy enough so it sometimes limited their options. Many of these people said that some positions were uncomfortable or didn’t work for weight-related reasons, but all of them said they had found alternatives that worked well. In most cases, the only difficulty was in figuring out how to have a purely practical discussion about something that can be a touchy subject.

One of the fairly common problems they did face is that if a woman has heavy hips and thighs, her yoni is hidden in certain common positions, making yoni massage harder. Several couples mentioned using a position for yoni massage where the woman is lying on her back with her knees pulled up toward her chest. They also said that using several pillows or a wedge-shaped bolster to raise her hips and support her lower back can make this position much easier to hold for an extended period.

Several of these couples also mentioned that a variant of this position can be used for more than just massage. If the table is the right height and the woman sits on one end of it before lying back and raising her knees, her partner can stand at that end of the table and achieve close genital contact and deep penetration. The pillows or bolster can go under the woman’s head and shoulders, in this case, if she prefers being tilted forward, in which case she can rest her calves or heels on her partner’s shoulders.

An alternative is to place the table so that the end of it is very close to a wall, a tall bureau, or a regular bureau with a suitable box or other prop on top of it.  There should be just barely enough room for the man to stand comfortably in the gap at the end of the table, allowing his partner to spread her feet fairly wide and prop them against the wall or on the bureau or box.  If she also has some pillows for support under her head and shoulders, she will find it easier to maintain eye contact and see a bit more of what he’s doing, and it will be easier for him to kiss her and stroke her face during the massage.

This is also a position many people like for vaginal sex. The geometry is a lot like cowgirl, but rotated so that the man is vertical and the woman is on her back, making the man the more mobile partner instead of the woman. If the woman's weight makes cowgirl uncomfortable for him, this can be a great alternative.

Assuming the table has been adjusted to the right height for the two of them, his penis will enter her vagina angled upward, so the back of the glans rubs very firmly along the G-spot on the roof of the vagina with each stroke. He also has a great deal of mobility in this position. If he moves his hips side to side, the tip of his penis will move side to side inside her vagina, but in the opposite direction, rubbing her G-spot crosswise instead of lengthwise.

In addition, he is completely free to use his hands to rub her labia and clitoris, stroke upward on her abdomen, and massage her breasts and nipples. And if a couple begins yoni massage in this position, but with the man standing a few inches away, he can move up and insert his penis at the very end, adding vaginal thrusting to the yoni massage as she peaks.

Furthermore, if a couple starts in yab-yum with the man standing and the woman sitting upright on the end of the table, so that they are hugging each other, they can achieve deeper penetration and more closeness than in many other positions.  And the transition to maithuna can be as simple as lowering the woman down to a lying position.

All of these variations also work well if the man is the heavier partner.  But yab-yum can be a special problem if both have ample bellies.  There simply isn't any way to get really close at both ends at once, so it's necessary to find an angled position that isn't a physical strain on either partner.  For most, the answer seems to be to start in missionary and then convert to a side-by-side position with the man supported on cushions so that his weight doesn't crush her lower leg.

However, that's not optimal for everyone, and one couple I interviewed had to experiment quite a bit to find something that worked for them. He's an ex-pro-football lineman and she's "the large economy size," as she put it. At 6' and 6'5" and a combined weight that threatens any standard table, they had to be careful.

They use the table-end position described above for yoni massage, but he eventually decided to custom build a table with foot rests and an adjustable tilt section that provided her with back support.  Most important, the table has enough leg room at the end to allow him to sit comfortably between her legs.

For yab-yum, he installed bolts in ceiling joists and used them to suspend a hammock with the ends of the hammock much closer together than normal. This converted the hammock into a V shape with the bottom of the V almost touching the floor. When they straddled the hammock facing each other and sat down in yab-yum, their bodies pushed the V more toward a U shape, lifting the bottom further off the floor, while still allowing them to lean back at an angle and keep their hips close together.

You probably won't have to be that creative, but it's good to know that there are answers if you do!

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