Tips for subversive sex

In this political and historical climate, great sex can be a subversive, expansive, and radical mode of dismantling socializations and creating alternatives to mainstream drone culture. More and more, the Christian right’s morals are seeping into the larger culture. This nauseating wave of puritanism and conservative values hangs in the air, like the stale salty grease cloud you smell when passing a McDonald’s. Subtle, toxic, bland, unhealthy, normative. 

Comfort in one’s skin and sexuality, consent, and self-care are an essential backdrop. There is no way to have freeing sex without actively checking in with all partners about emotional and physical comfort and openness. If folks are shutting down, disassociating, or not that into it, then how the fuck can it be any good? Knowing what one wants is not easy, as we are taught very boring and limited sexualities in this culture. Part of what can make sex so revolutionary is discovering what we like and pushing ourselves (consensually of course) to and beyond our limits. 

Role Switching

Many of us get stuck in sex roles or sex acts — butch or femme or active or passive or daddy or slave. Switching up roles is exactly as it sounds; allowing oneself the opportunity to receive when previously being the provider; taking turns sucking and being sucked, biting and being bitten, slapping and being slapped, holding and being held, fucking and being fucked. 


Sex can be a stage to play with the fluidity of gender and go beyond binary-gender or sex determined by gendered bodies. This may mean re-learning how to have sex and switching your focus away from genitals and genital contact. There is so much to play with and destroy, pervert, let go of, re-name. It is respectful and sexy as hell to ask people what they call their body parts and how they want them touched. When opening-up what we consider erogenous zones, more conversations about re-imagining bodies, gender, society may become possible. This can mean less focus on genitals and orgasms and more focus on nerve endings and what turns them on, and what works on an emotional level for a person. Expansion, re-defining and being aware of people’s boundaries are key in this realm and essential to sex.

Laughter and sounds

Try laughing during sex. It can be diverse; from a coy giggle, to a belly laugh, to laughing at oneself at an awkward moment or just as a way to communicate joy. Laughter is contagious and can put folks more at ease. One may laugh solo or in unison sex partners. Laughing can help relieve tension – so you don’t get get so caught up in your “performance”. Doing sex is goofy and silly and in fact hilarious. There is a myth that we should act a certain way during sex: virile, coquettish, animalistic, blasé, submissive, dominant, alluring etc. Laughing helps hush those “you should be ____” voices. Noise in general during sex is a fabulous added layer to events. Sounds can act as a reflection of what is going on and also act as a release for the sensations we are feeling; crying, screaming, moaning, gasping are all marvelous additions to this sex symphony. Laughing enhances the intimacy and the experience in general.

Role Play

Adding some drama to the scenario can provide many things: lessen other social/psycho/dramas that folks tend to drum up when the issue of sex arises, keep things interesting and creative, help explore different identities, help approach taboo subject matter, and healing from past traumas. Role-play can be a great way to challenge one’s rigidities and discover hidden kinks in a safe context. 

This can include working up characters in a setting with a plot. It can get intricate with scripts or songs, drag, props or outfits, even a dance routine. Here is where many taboos can be explored. The more the merrier, sillier, nastier. These games could challenge political and social norms in positive and smarty-pantsed ways. Role-play scenarios set up safe consensual spaces for folks to go there consciously, critically, humbly and with an open mind. The important thing here is that everyone is okay with where the story goes. Why should remarkable people have boring sex?