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My boyfriend is, ahem, bigger than me, does that mean I always have to bottom?

Hi Jake,

I just started dating this guy and, well, let’s just say he’s packing a pistol down there! I’ve never been much of a size queen, but even I go kind of goo-goo eyed when we’re getting it on. So, here’s my dilemma: I’m not as, ahem, large as him. I’d say I’m more average. But because of this, it almost feels silly for me to be the aggressor and top him. So far, we’ve only done other things in bed, but I know the time will come to take it all the way. How do I accept that my size automatically puts me in the receptive role? I consider myself vers, so I guess I’m fine with that. I just don’t want to seem ridiculous trying to top when he’s clearly so much more manly than me.

Please help,
Dwarfed and Dumbfounded

Dear Dwarfed & Dumfounded,

Despite the Toderick Hall song, the size of your BDE isn’t everything, and certainly doesn’t have to define what you do in the bedroom. The position or role one takes during sex should be about personal preference and that alone. Playing “top” or “bottom” is a dance that partners engage in relating to fantasies and desires, power and control, and pleasing one another. Sometimes there is an element of dominance or passiveness, control or powerlessness, but even those can flip back and forth. It really comes down to what feels erotic, exciting, and pleasurable for each partner.

People often confuse traits like being bulky, tall, or in this case, having a large penis with somehow being more aggressive, dominant, or “masculine”, when it couldn’t be further from the truth. A large penis does not make someone more “manly” by any means. In fact, in today’s world of gender identity exploration, we know that a sex organ isn’t what defines one’s gender identity.

Taking it a step further, even if one partner is clearly more “masc” than the other, we should separate this from any assigned roles in the bedroom. The idea that the top is “masculine” and the bottom is “feminine” comes from outdated misogynistic views that have trickled down in society for centuries. Pleasure and preferences don’t have to correspond with how much you swish your hips or how “gay” you talk, just as they don’t have to relate to physical body traits.

As you move into the next phase of your relationship with your new boyfriend, I encourage you to explore. You can do that by talking to him about what your curiosities and speaking up if something is pleasurable or not. You get to decide what’s right for you. Give yourself that freedom.

If you’re more shy, it can also help to talk about these more intimate subjects with an understanding therapist. The goal is to decide what feels right for you, while releasing all expectations, ideas of “masculinity” or “femininity”, or assessing by your physical appearance. There are bottoms with giant members, just as there are tops with smaller ones, and that doesn’t make them any more or less equipped for the task at hand.

Some people may want to fetishize a large member, and that’s perfectly fine, if it’s a turn on for both partners. But for others, it’s irrelevant. You get to decide what you want to do sexually by deciding what feels good or right for you, and seeing if that aligns with your partner. The gay community has often been infatuated with size, and while it’s one aspect of a person that can be a turn on, make sure not to give away all your power to the penis.

Jake Myers the Founder of LGBTQ Therapy Space , the first LGBTQ owned and operated national platform for teletherapy. He has a Masters in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University Los Angeles, with a specialization in LGBT Affirmative Psychotherapy, and is a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in both California and Florida.

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