What do we even mean when we say “vanilla sex?” “Vanilla” got its name from the kink community, referring to sex acts that might fall under the umbrella term of “normal” or “typical.” Kinky behaviors, however, fall outside of this category. BDSM falls into the kink category, whereas missionary position would likely be vanilla. The dichotomy and negative connotation make sense. After all, those in the kink community has been on the outside for a very long time. It was only with the advent of Fifty Shades of Grey that bondage and sadomasochism suddenly became mainstream and acceptable. To stand out and insulate themselves gave them protection to explore these “non-traditional” sexual desires.
The thing is, it’s OK to have vanilla sex, and it’s OK to have kinky sex. It’s OK to have a mixture of kinky and vanilla sex. It’s OK to have no sex at all, if that is what you and your partner would prefer.
You don’t need to be into whips, chains, hot wax, choking to have a fulfilling, hot, amazing sex life. It’s perfectly wonderful to like vanilla sex. Let’s all cut it out with the judging and nonsense so we can all have more orgasms.
It feels like no one can win anymore when it comes to sex
Anywhere you turn there is someone or some article judging your sexual preferences. If you’re into BDSM, you’re "too kinky." If you’re into fetish play, you’re "gross and deviant." If you enjoy regular sex in a few key positions, you’re "boring and lame." Meanwhile, we all feel so incredibly weird for liking what we like, no matter what it is that we like.
It is really beginning to feel like there is no one who would be called “normal” when it comes to sexuality. So, let’s all agree to get over it and move on. If you prefer sex in the missionary position and your partner is in full agreement, your sex life is fine. If you want to do a little doggy style, but choking just isn’t your thing, live it.
The pressure comes from this obsession with the “new”
We see many studies that suggest that novelty is what keeps feelings of sexuality and the spark in our relationships alive. And while this is true, it doesn’t mean you need to break out of your boundaries to have sexual adventures.
Novelty can mean anything. It simply means “different than usual” or “new.” It can be having sex in the kitchen instead of the bedroom, tying someone to a St. Sebastian's cross and whipping them, eating whipped cream off of your partner’s abdomen, and so on and so forth.
Whatever feels exciting and fresh to you is novel. You can try a sexual act that could feel normal and boring to someone else with a different set of sexual preferences. No one can win so let’s play our own game.
Vanilla does not mean boring
Vanilla is a completely subjective term. Vanilla sex has been grouped together with vanilla ice cream as boring, bland, and basic. Who the heck cares if you love vanilla ice cream? You do you and live your life. What is basic is caring about someone who is over here trying to tell you not to like your favorite frozen treat. Hard pass on that one, bud.
Vanilla does not mean “boring” and it does not mean “lame,” nor does it even mean “traditional.” What is vanilla to one person could be incredibly kinky to another and visa versa. You might find that one person thinks biting their partner’s lip is very dirty and naughty. Another couple might consider using e-stim toys a little too basic for their taste, preferring instead to wear each other’s clothes and gender bend.
The point is, what is yum to one person is another person’s yuck. And we shouldn’t yuck anyone’s yum. You might be in to sex that involves nothing but your partner’s body and your body. That doesn’t make you boring. It just means you know what you like and how you like it.
Pleasure is the game
When it comes to sexuality, it’s about pleasure, not outdoing someone in whatever way, with more extreme stuff. If you meet someone who is into bondage, you don’t automatically have to be into bondage too. You shouldn’t judge them, but you don’t need to try it if you don’t want to.
Sex isn’t a competition. Sex is about pleasure. It’s about the intimate bond you have with your partner. It’s about exploring pleasure in ways that feel good and sexy to you. If you and your partner are experiencing pleasure together and love everything you do during sex, you’re doing it correctly.
There is nothing to worry about when it comes to your sex life. You are in the clear. Orgasms are fantastic and if you are having plenty of them, go forth and prosper.
See more: 30 Best Sex Positions of All Time
When it comes down to it, who cares? Your sex life is your business and what you like is no one else’s business. If you or your partner are not satisfied with your sex life or want to be doing more intense things in the bedroom, well, that is another conversation.
If you’re both happy, you’re good.