Sexplorers: The journey to distant fucklands

Image by the brilliant Stuart F Taylor

Some kinks my partner and I do because they come naturally to us – all we need is to hear about them, see them in porn, or get flashes of them in our minds when we’re wanking ourselves to sleep at night, and our guts lurch with a desire that screams “Yes! This one’s for us!” But there are others that take time to consider, or to practise, or to fully understand. To shamelessly paraphrase Kennedy: some kinks we choose to do not because they are easy, but because they are hard.

When I write about my journey towards compersion, and how I’m trying to become more comfortable with the idea of my partner fucking other people, some readers worry. They say that they’re concerned I might be forcing myself into situations that I’m not happy with, either to please him or to please some nebulous group of sex-positive people, who are peer-pressuring me into swinging or non-monogamy.

My initial reaction to this is the somewhat spiky ‘don’t tell me what to do! I know my own mind!’ But this isn’t fair of me. People who care deserve better, because their worries are natural and kind.

What’s more, it turns out my partner worries too.

“Not sure I liked that blog post, to be honest.”

“Shit. Sorry. I thought you’d enjoy it.”

“It made me sad, like are you doing things you don’t want to do just because of me?”

“No, not at all. Let’s talk about it. Did… did you like anything about the post?”

“Well. It made me feel sad, but it also made me feel … what’s the word? … oh yeah – erect.”

“Phew. Right, let’s talk this through…”

Why do people worry about compersion blogs?

Luckily, my partner doesn’t have to rely solely on what I write in blog posts, where I’m limited by word count and people’s attention spans. So I get the chance to talk to him about these things in a lot more depth, and we can explore together both the hotness of whatever we’re doing, and the complex emotions that arise from doing it.

When I write my thoughts about him fucking other people, trying on compersion or even erotic fiction where I get horny at the thought of it, I never just say ‘this is hot’, I always include detail about the jealousy or worry or angst that is thrown up by my brain in these situations. So it’s understandable that people would ask questions like:

1. Is my partner putting pressure on me to do this? Is he nudging me in a direction I’m not comfortable with just so he can get his end away?

2. Am I bowing to peer pressure from others in the sex-positive community, who are more comfortable than I am with the idea of swinging or non-monogamy?

The answer to both is ‘no.’ But that ‘no’ alone wasn’t enough for my partner, and I don’t expect it to be enough for any of you. If I want you to enjoy these posts, rather than worry about them, I owe you more than that. So here goes.

Sex is my hobby, and I want to try a lot of it

When people ask me “why force yourself to share your partner?” I bristle at the word ‘force’, because I’m not forcing myself to do anything. No more than I am ‘forcing’ myself to use specific sex toys because I want to keep my sponsors happy, or ‘forcing’ myself to try new kinks because, even though they don’t press my specific buttons, I think they are things that my partner will like.

The obvious reason I do this is that I like trying new things. Sex is my hobby, and I want to try as much of it as possible, even if the initial idea of it isn’t one that directly appeals to me. Often I want to try things precisely because they feel uncomfortable and transgressive. Not everyone’s going to like this idea – for some people the thought of trying something that doesn’t immediately turn them on will feel weird and awkward at best, and coercive and painful at worst. We’re all different.

There are some kinks that I absolutely wouldn’t try: ones which outright leave me cold or make me shudder. The ‘yuck’ ones, as opposed to the ‘yum.’ But between ‘yuck’ and ‘yum’ there’s a whole spectrum of flavours that I’m quite keen to wrap my tongue around. The ‘oohs’ and the ‘hmms’ and the ‘maybes’ that add richness and zest to my life.

Getting fucked by a new guy, while my partner looks on? Yum as fuck. Watching my partner get fucked while I look on? Hmm. OK. Interesting. There’s a spice here – a delicious, rich and complex one. But there’s also a tang of bitterness. One I may need to try a few times before I know whether or not I like it. Maybe it’s something that I’d like to eat occasionally, but would never turn into an everyday dish. Perhaps it needs tempering with something else (his love, reassurance, kindness, lust for me) in thick, rich servings to balance out the meal.

If the food analogy isn’t good enough, here’s a better one: have you ever put work and effort into something that was difficult, because you knew the rewards at the end would be worth it? Learning a new language, playing an instrument, doing the couch to 5K? Starting on a journey that was in turns frustrating, fun, difficult, interesting, arduous, and rewarding? I think it’s a lot like that.

It is not ‘I’, it is ‘we’

The second fairly obvious response to people’s worries is this one: exploring kinks that provoke these complex emotions is not something that I do alone, it is something ‘we’ do. We help each other, we love each other, and we fancy the fuck out of each other.

Throughout our relationship, we have had a lot of ups and downs, but the times when we have been closest and happiest is when we do stuff together. When it’s not ‘I’, but ‘we’.

This goes for everything. From the tediously mundane, like working out the design for our new living room to create a place that speaks equally to both of us, to the soaringly complex, like negotiating the details of our joint living costs, taking into account our vastly differing incomes and individual feelings about financial responsibility.

These are not things I can decide alone, and I wouldn’t want to. We make better decisions – have greater adventures – when we set out to do them together.

I am not the only person in this couple who has tried on new kinks or experimented with ideas that didn’t initially strike me as hot. He has done so much at my invitation – from testing out new sex toys to playing specific scenes, sharing his secrets and fantasies and allowing me into the private parts of his head. He has – and ironically I find it hard to conjure the right words to express how much love I feel for him about this – allowed me to write publicly about the intimate details of our lives together. On these pages, for other websites, and in an entire book. He is not only the co-star in the movie of my life, he’s also the star around which my career orbits, and the one I look to for guidance when I’m lost.

I say this not to imply there’s a ‘tit for tat’ going on: I don’t want to experience compersion so he gets a reward for all he’s done for me. I say it because I genuinely believe that we are better together, and that in sharing our kinks and desires and lives we open new doors for each other, which are fun to peep through – or walk through – side by side.


When I explained it to my other half, he came up with his own analogy. Forgive me for paraphrasing, and for overloading this post with analogies, but I liked it so here goes:

“We are sexplorers. We live in an archipelago of islands, and on each one there are interesting things to discover. We’ve been to most of the islands nearby, and had some amazing adventures. There are others near us that we’re not interested in, but a couple we know of beyond the horizon that we’ve never properly visited – just sailed past and looked longingly at the shore. We know that the journey might be tricky or disappointing – we’ll sail through storms or reach the islands and realise we want to turn back. But those islands look so good, and other people we know tell us they’re incredibly fun to visit. And fuck it, we really enjoy the journey. So we can have a go at reaching these islands if we want to, and it will definitely be hard but it may be really rewarding, and on the way we can guarantee that the two of us will have a lot of fun.”

I don’t expect everyone to see sex in this way. For many people, sex is one of the areas of their lives where they don’t want to push themselves to experiment or introspect or tediously over-analyse. But – *gestures vaguely at blog* – I am not one of those people. Long before sex was my job, it was my hobby. And I have always wanted to do things that seemed hard or unusual or funny or weird to me at first glance, if the end goal of hotness was lurking somewhere on the horizon.

Sometimes I’ll fail, and that’s OK. But I have never been with someone I am as comfortable with as him, so having him beside me makes me feel safe to explore even the roughest seas, so I want to allow myself the space to try. And on the journey, I want to be honest with you about how I feel, offering up the challenges as well as the rewards, because to do so feels more honest than simply giving you the horny details.

The truth, the whole truth

Perhaps one of the reasons people worry about this is that there’s a key element missing. I explained all the above to my partner, and he got it. Smiling and nodding and offering up the sexplorers analogy of his own. But he has pieces of the puzzle that the rest of you don’t: he has insider knowledge, and first-hand experience, of stories I haven’t yet told you. Adventures we went on together that left both of us breathless with happiness. That brought the two of us joy.

I’m working on a way to tell you these stories, but for now I’m going to leave it fairly vague. But rest assured that the posts I write about this stuff which involve me retreating inside my head and my imagination are not wholly reflective of the intensely hot, and deeply satisfying tales that I hope I can tell you all one day.

The sexy journeys that I go on with my partner make our lives more complex, rich and interesting. They bring me joy, they turn me on, and they do the same for him. Not because they are easy, but because they are hard.

And without the challenge, it wouldn’t feel like an adventure.


  • fuzzy says:

    I feel like Henry Stanley stumbling on Lewis & Clark… I never had the word “sexplorer” until now, thank you.

  • Golden Hare says:

    This is an amazing post. I love your bravery and sense of joy in trying new things and learning more about yourselves.

  • Reader says:

    I think a lot of the issue people took with the compersion blog (I’ll include myself too, because it felt a bit upsetting to read as an outsider) is that to a sex-blogger, sex is something different. I can’t speak for everyone, but for many people Sex is something fun and light. You have sex with a partner or friend or stranger because you both enjoy it. I’m paraphrasing but the line “I’m trying not to cry thinking about it” seems almost the antithesis of what many people would expect from a sexual encounter. I think that’s where people spoke up, it was for me at least. Not to tell you your own business of course, but perspective can change how things appear.

    • Girl on the net says:

      Thanks. And yeah I totally see what you mean. That’s why I wrote this post tbh – I want to be able to link to it from other ones in the future, so if I do talk about these intense/sad/hot/unusual emotions I can point people to this at the same time. Thank you for commenting, and to others who’ve made me a bit more aware of this than I was when I first started writing these kinds of posts! <3

  • Hubert says:

    Somehow, this blog post brought lots of good thoughts and feelings in me.
    The “sex” parts are always great, sure.
    But the “us” parts touched my heart like I was not expecting it would.
    Touched strong enough to make me write to you. So that you would know the good you do.
    To know that a relationship like your’s is happening right now somewhere in this world…
    You bring me hope.
    Please don’t stop !
    Thank you.

    • Girl on the net says:

      Ah thank you! That is really kind of you to say! I should probably say here what I say to lots of my friends/family who make similar comments – a lot of this was possible only through relationship counselling. Like, my partner and I have always been close and very much in love, but I think we’ve been able to get a lot closer and more understanding (and loving) of each other thanks to a few months of counselling to help us get through tricky times.

  • Phillip says:

    I really like this post. It makes me want to express in words what may not be possible to express in language. My wife really is ‘my better half’, but that is just an expression that is used in the US where we live. I wish it could be more literal. Maybe for some it can be. I really would like to be able to really feel what it feels like to be ‘my better half’. I’ll have to reread the compersion post. Somehow I have avoided envy. The close relationship with your significant other is not just luck, but the result of feeling the other person. You ARE lucky.

  • This is cute. It is. Am I the only one that thinks this is cute? This is very cute.

    I love the relationship you have with your boyfriend.

  • Phoenix Rose says:

    Sheer Curiosity and ‘Sexploration’ (a term I will now use as often as possible when suggesting something new to my significant other) is the reason I try half the crazy stuff I do so I can totally relate to this! Why wouldn’t you want to discover all the different crazy ways a body can give and receive pleasure? And with new innovations coming out all the time there’s even more fun things every day!
    I think the only thing which worries me (and comes up often when we talk about the idea of sharing our sex life with others) is risk. Sure, I’d love to share my partner with others and see how much more pleasure she could receive with another guy or girl worshipping her body and giving her climax after climax long after I’ve came (or do a ‘round robin’ style thing during refractory periods to keep her in a constant state of ecstasy) but what if it affected our wonderful relationship?
    I understand the challenge aspect fully, it was really hard admitting I wanted to try various things but, unlike learning a instrument or another language (where the only sacrifice would be time if you don’t make a go of it) what happens if you try sharing and it goes wrong? The results could be more damaging and unexpected than I could predict. I genuinely believe the whole experience would bring us closer and give us wank material for decades to come but I can’t be completely sure there wouldn’t be repercussions.
    I’m not saying this to judge at all, as me and my partner continue to toss around the idea of sharing too. We even have a code word to imply we’d ‘enjoy’ someone we’ve met joining in with us. But the risk versus reward factor is too far in the risk camp for now. Looking forward to reading how you guys come to any decision in the future and any and all advice welcomed!

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