How to Boost a Woman’s Sexual Self-Esteem

photo by jamiesrabbits

Men’s Health asked us to contribute some ideas to a piece they did recently on boosting women’s sexual self-esteem. Since the majority of the advice we slave over for this kind of thing often ends up on the cutting room floor, we like to offer it up here for you in all it’s unabridged glory. So straight guys (and maybe a few clueless lesbians out there), enjoy!

  1. It’s all about positive reinforcement. Pay her compliments…about her beauty, her body, a certain sexual technique of hers you love.  The key is to not sound crass (“nice tits”) but rather awed (“God, you’re so beautiful”). And give them in the moment, as well as after the fact, even outside the bedroom when there’s no chance or expectation of sex. You want to avoid using compliments as a mere ploy to get in her pants right then and there — she’ll see right through that, and then all future compliments will lose their positive reinforcement power.When speaking about sex specifically, keep it simple: “Last night was so amazing” or “I can’t believe how amazing our sex life is” or “Did you know how good in bed you are?” Don’t worry about seeming blunt or pervy — she’ll be way more concerned about whether your exes were better in bed than she is, so the more clear you can be about the fact that she’s the best, the better.
  2. Never, ever criticize her body size. Odds are she’s a million times harder on herself in her mind than you could ever be, so it’ll only make things worse: she’ll be more self-conscious and less inclined to get naked with you. The only thing you can do is make staying active a couples activity: go for long walks on the beach, ride bikes, take yoga or dance or martial arts classes together, etc. And don’t even think about criticizing body parts she can’t do anything about, at least not safely, like the shape and size of her boobs.
  3. If she’s a new mom: The best thing you can do is to make sure she knows you still see her as a sexy, beautiful partner (not just the mother of your children now) while simultaneously not pressuring her to have sex. Childbirth and infant rearing can wreak havoc on a woman — physically, mentally, hormonally. Accept that the amount of sex you two have is going to drop dramatically, at least for a while, and you’ll both be happier. And do make sure you set aside quality alone time away from the kids — and we’re not just talking about behind closed bedroom doors: get yourself a reliable, trusted sitter who can stay with the kid(s) while you two spend a night in a nice hotel.
  4. To combat nether region paranoia, again, keep it simple. Just tell her “You taste amazing/I love the way you taste” or “I love going down on you” or “I could spend all day down here.” No need to get any more specific or long-winded than that — it’s all she needs to hear to feel good about her vulva and to know that you love it as is.
  5. How to raise trust. Speak often and openly about stuff in the future. Obviously how *far* into the future depends on how serious the relationship — if it’s early days, it could be as simple as talking about a movie that opens up next month that he really wants to see with her… later on it could be about planning a vacation or meeting his parents or whatever… just throwing out little reminders that he doesn’t have any intention of going anywhere. Also, one of the biggest trust builders for a woman is you simply not being a dick: Don’t cheat, don’t lie, and don’t play dirty during fights (i.e. bringing up her insecurities to cut her down and gain the upper hand).


  1. Great article! #1 ought to be required reading coz it’s so rare! I’ve only ever met one man who ever read it, but I do have a loooonng list of things guys can say to shoot down a woman’s self-esteem. My current fave is “you’re a psycho, it’s not normal for anyone to want sex as much as you” – and now he’s stalking me coz he doesn’t understand why I will NEVER have sex with him again. Go figger. Other perceived put downs include “let’s just talk” (from someone I met on a porn dating site), the infamous “not calling the morning after to say he enjoyed it”, etc. etc. I love men, love their bodies and I know I’ve had lots of good experiences but like most women I tend to focus on the few negative experiences. Mine mostly stem from the fact that I have a much higher sex drive than most, and many (>65%) men have a real problem with that. So guys, if you’re in a situation where she wants more and you don’t, please don’t shoot her down, you can always respond with a “I’ll give it my best shot, babe, but you know you’ve wrung me dry”.

  2. I believe a good esteem booster for women is take a night out of the week and give her the keys (metaphor you Benz owners flipping me off right now) No but honestly take one your usual sex nights and completely make it to where she is in complete control of you.. The best for this situation “watch this one” tell her you will not say no to ANY command if you truly care for the lady which apparently you do, it doesnt matter if your wearing a maids outfit for peeps sake it give’s her control for a night boosting respect confidence and sexual self esteem..: P trust me I’ve done it.. It has worked everytime..:)

  3. All of this seems quite silly…But then on the other hand…some men are totally lost for words when it comes to having sex…But if you have that one partner that you have kept around for years (LOL)… Then it seems to me the fact he is still around would be enough to say he is happy with what he has…

  4. WOMEN: You are all wonderful and beautiful and ALL of you have something special to offer no matter what kind of imperfection or flaw you may have.The majority of us <3 you as you are.Please never forget this!

  5. To reply to Da Devil,yes you are so right about that.And I can say it again what one man won’t do the next will. But yes if you do love that indivisual it’s always good to find out other tips or advise to help you make sure their satisfied.But men it does’nt take much to please us women it’s just some are alittle harder than others.

  6. Everyone have very nice comments and I really respect the men with all their responses and comments. You have some who can be down right rude and not care but their are still good men in this world. And trust ladies I would know because my husband is my king and he shows me in all ways that im his Queen. It’s always nice to be loved,and I truely am a believer so just keep looking and you will run into that one .

  7. #2 is quite amusing especially considering the modern woman has no problem beating the living hell out of a man over the size of his p!nis,his income,what kind of car he drives,whether he has dark hair,is tall and heinz 57 varities of so called preferences,checklists and critques etc..etc…..yeah ladies these things destroy a man as well.

    Back on topic as this is about women though i do wholeheartedly agree.I love,respect and cherish the female species and have never and would never say a hurtful,derogatory thing about her body: weight,bust etc.honestly no bull why can’t both parties respect each other? End of story.

  8. In remarks to Bash don’t feed trolls..really immature…now to find a way to sli this to my partner

  9. This article made me lol, hard. Especially point 4. Point 3 is a kicker though, I’d opt more for refering to an overweight partner as bones, and an underweight partner as fatty, but hey, I’m not whipped (yet) and can still joke around. But point 4, seriously? You taste amazing? How about “Mmm, yeasty!” or “I love how coarse your pubes feel stuck between my teeth!” as follow ups? Honestly, stupidest article ever. 😛

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