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6 Signs You're a Bad Lover

By Paula Spencer Scott
WebMD Feature

Even good lovers can fall into bad habits sometimes. These six habits may signal that you're missing out, when you could be blissing out, during sex. Changing them can get your sex life humming again.

You Don't Like Your Lover to Offer Tips

It's key to tell your lover what you like or want sexually. But people often ignore an "elephant in the room" -- an unspoken problem, preference, or dislike. The longer you avoid it, the bigger impact it will have.

Why do lovers avoid honesty? "They worry the other person will think they're a freak or will start to cry or feel criticized," says Madeleine M. Castellanos, MD. She is a psychiatrist at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine who specializes in sex therapy.

Fix: "Be open to your lover's suggestions," she says. Listen and respect their ideas instead of getting mad or upset. 

Castellanos suggests checking in every 6 months or so, because sexuality evolves over time. Ask yourselves: Are we happy with our sex life? What should we add to it? Is there a big deal out there we haven't talked about?

You're a Distracted Lover

That's not you, reaching across the sheets to check your smartphone, is it? A sign of good sex is being totally in the moment -- mind and body.

"It's important to set a scene that's non-interruptive," says Pepper Schwartz, PhD, professor of sociology at the University of Washington.

Fix: "Don't leave your phone on. Don't check email. Don’t send texts. Don't be a mommy who won't lock the door," Schwartz says. If your mind wanders, zero in on how you're being touched or refocus on your breathing.

You Don't Give and Take

Is your orgasm your only goal? Do you like to receive oral sex but not give it? (Or vice-versa?)

It's one thing if you and your partner don't need everything in bed to be equal. "Not everyone likes oral sex, for example," Castellanos says. "But if you're not doing something because you can't be bothered or are selfish, that's more problematic."

Fix: It's best to give and to receive. "Sexual pleasure requires balancing selfishness with unselfish giving," she says.

You Make Love on Automatic Pilot

Ready, set: kiss, touch here, stroke there, get in position... 

If your lover can predict your every move, you may both be missing out.

"Couples fall into a script pretty quick. They know what works," says certified sexuality counselor and author Ian Kerner. "Comfort sex," as he calls it, can be great. But a too-steady menu can spell boredom, which makes it hard to get aroused.

Fix: Freshen up your sex menu. Your brain loves new things. "You can get to your usual script eventually, but for the first third of sex play, start with something more exciting," Kerner says. He suggests using sex toys, role playing, talking dirty to each other, or trying new positions.

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