This post is for my spicy romance authors, so take note. This topic is NSFW.
I often blog about how writers and authors influence the world with their work. Your works, even fiction, can give people perspective, introduce new ways of thinking, and even set expectations for certain situations. So, spicy authors, why are we not making men moan in bed?
Are we all having this experience in real life or something? Is every partner you have ever been with completely mute during sex? If so, why do you think that is? Why are they not showing their pleasure audibly?
I have also noticed that a running joke in media is that if a man moans, that is “bottom energy”. Says who? Why do only bottoms show their pleasure? Why can’t tops? I have definitely noticed in gay media like books, comics, and movies that the “top” is basically silent during sex or only gives naughty words of encouragement. Why is this also true in almost every straight romance I read where the guy is an “alpha male”? (That terminology is cringe, by the way. Please stop.)
So, are men, or even anyone who tops, not enjoying sex? I’m reminded of an episode in the first season of Santa Clarita Diet where the neighbor is describing sex with her current husband. She says he didn’t blink the entire time, that she literally clapped in his face and no reaction. If that doesn’t give you serial killer vibes I don’t know what will.
Personally, I think a man moaning during sex, whether he is the top or bottom, is hot as hell. Yes, show that you are actually here, in the moment, enjoying this! That you aren’t imagining your partner is someone else or thinking about work or any other random thing. That you aren’t some machine or just going through the motions.
Can we, as writers, please start adding this to sex scenes in romance books? Can we show our characters deriving pleasure from an act that is supposed to like, I don’t know, give pleasure? Can we tell men that this is okay? Tops. Can. Moan.
An actual moan isn’t necessary. Show us hitched breaths. Give us stuttering words about how much he loves the feel of his partner. Maybe he is struggling to hold back and bites his lip with a groan. Please, give us some kind of audible clue that the man is there in the moment with his partner, enjoying himself. Otherwise, why is he there at all? If the sex doesn’t feel good to him, why?
Let’s create new expectations for “top energy” by showing men, and not men, enjoying sex with their partner. Silence and dead eyes is not sexy to a lot of us. If it is, I guess romance books are doing it for you these days. The rest of us, not so much.