by Madeline Iva
There is a great German film called MEN. In this film at one point wifey is unhappy because her husband is snoring. He explains that men snore because long ago it kept the beasts away at night. What a wonderful, economical explanation!
I think that you could expand this basic theory to add that it’s a women’s job to be really loud while having sex. Obviously her screams keep the beasts away while the couple is otherwise occupied.
That is–if the sex is good. If it’s not good and she’s quiet, the bear comes charging out of the woods and eats them. ;>
We know what really good sex usually sounds like. It’s often very loud, often predominantly female. In END OF THE AFFAIR Julianne Moore and Ralph Fiennes are upstairs at her house and she’s making some moany-moans of extreme pleasure while they have sex. Suddenly her husband walks through the front door downstairs. He’s home early. The noise she’s making are cut off immediately, but Fiennes thinks they’re cover is blown. Wait, she says. They can still get out of this. But he must have heard you, Fiennes points out. But he’s not familiar with THAT sounds she replies. And we know therefore without anything further said that she and her husband have never had good sex, ever.
Really? WHEN HARRY MET SALLY would question that a woman had never faked it — given Meg Ryan’s character’s belief that all women fake it — and they fake it believably. How? By the noises they make, an enthusiastic uninhibited display of totally faked bliss. Yet I think that sex is the one realm where the slogan “fake it til you make it,” just doesn’t work.
I say that if you’re not getting off with a stranger or husband or wife or whatever–then the onus is on him/her/the both of you. But it’s not your job to stamp a seal of approval on the four minutes of meh you just got. Maybe if the guy got the tiny silent pat on the back instead of approval he’d try better the next time–even if it’s not with you.
Not that all women are noisy. Not that all women should be. But other than a slapping headboard sound, the only other stereotypical sound of folks knocking boots is the Oh-oh-oh! of a woman heading for home base. Or the Oh God, Oh God, Oh God! Or Yes YES YES YEEEEESSSSSS! Or any variant of the three, with the guy’s (woman’s) name thrown in for good measure.
Okay, so Hollywood has told us a lot over time about noisy sex but what do we really know about it in real life? I have three stories to share:
YOU CAN NEVER EVER GET AWAY WITH HAVING SEX & MAKING ABSOLUTELY NO NOISE AT ALL. If you are near other people when you start having sex and you think that they aren’t going to notice –you are so wrong.
Twice I’ve had people try this — One time I was in a hotel room with several friends when I was traveling. We were all sharing one room to save money. During the night I kept hearing these noises. I thought the guy (just a friend) in bed next to me was masturbating. The shifting of the sheet would make noise. Then stop. Then make noise. Then stop. It went on and on, and I was freaking out silently. Suddenly he grabbed my pillow and threw it hard at the other bed and told them to stop it. It was the other folks in the other bed who were trying to get it on as if we wouldn’t notice. Oy. While I didn’t get my pillow back, the mystery was solved and I was able to sleep finally.
Aside from noisy sheets another way that people fool themselves in thinking that they’re getting away with sex while other people are in the room is that they whisper to each other. “Don’t make any noise okay?” That kind of stuff. It’s a total give away, folks. I fell asleep outside once watching meteor showers with friends. I woke because someone suddenly said “You think she’s asleep?” in a loud whisper. That was about five seconds before they started having sex, then rolled down the hill and right over me. (!) People. Sheesh. If you think you’re getting away with it–you’re not. The other people in the room totally know.
WHY IT’S BETTER TO OWN THAN RENT: At one point we rented an apartment that faced the back of the building, so we didn’t use the same entrance as the guy above us. I thought of him as Mr. Happy Feet because every time this guy had sex, we’d hear him give a few heartfelt groans at the end and then — THEN — we’d hear feet go pounding across the floor to the opposite end of the apartment. Bum bum bum bum bum bu-bu-bum-bum! Then silence. Then a few minutes later we’d hear the sound of running water. Every time. What was he doing up there? We couldn’t figure it out.
Turned out it wasn’t even a guy–DH finally looked at the mailboxes. It was a woman. DH suggested that maybe her signature sex move was to run across the floor and vault onto the guy for a big finish. The next time we were in our bed and heard the wind up groans we both looked up. Then we heard the feet and DH said into his pretend microphone, “And she sticks the landing!” I laughed hysterically.
Alas, I think the woman upstairs heard us. It was the last time we ever heard the happy feet.
It’s interesting to think about sex noise boundaries when you live in close proximity to others. I mean, giving voice to your pleasure is an excellent way to engage your senses during sex. On the other hand, it’s one of the least private ways to have sex.
Should others be more tolerant of sex noise? Or is that crossing the line?
And is it something you should encourage in others (your partner say) or yourself? Or should it just come naturally?
We had another neighbor (different apartment) who lived below us. We heard them having sex and she sounded horribly robotic to me. Unh. Unh. Unh.
It actually wound up making me feel self-conscious about what kind of noises I made during sex. Until then, I’d never actually listened to myself. But then I got all twisted around because once I started listening to myself while I was having sex, any noises I made seemed, well, performative. I caught myself modulating up and down. Arg. Then I stopped making any noise at all except for this kind of involuntary sneezy super sigh. I finally managed to relax, just stop listening to myself and go back to whatever I was doing before.
Anyway, it made me realize I must be loud, but I just really don’t care. It feels good to roar. And what about you readers–Does louder sex tend to equal better sex for you? Do you think people sort of ‘perform’ when they make noise while having sex? Is it okay to fake it with a little gratuitous moaning–ever?