Women need to communicate with their partner about their issues of concern. Let him know that you are aware of the problem and want to solve it collaboratively. Demonstrating that you want to work together can lessen anxiety; the reassurance a partner gives can be invaluable. Brainstorm together possible reasons for any anxiety or fears about sex. It’s hard to counsel someone out of insecurity because even addressing it is uncomfortable and usually causes a defensive reaction. Overcoming insecurity is a difficult task, and usually has established itself in many and far-reaching areas of an individual. While talking about performance anxiety is an especially difficult issue to discuss, it may perhaps be a prime, or core, place to start deepening the relationship. To open up to another individual and genuinely talk about and express feelings and insecurities can be healing-security building, more so to have this witnessed by an intimate and accepting partner who won’t abandon them to their own emotional or psychological devices.
For some men with newer partners, there can be a haunting feeling of there being many more people in the room when he’s having sex with his partner: the shadows of every person his partner has slept with (or the people he imagines his partner has slept with) before him, the ghosts of all of the men he imagines his former girlfriends left him for, the caricature people and acts he’s seen in porn or heard about in the locker room. He’s competing for his partner’s attention with people who aren’t actually in the room, don’t actually exist, or are statistical outliers. He may feel outnumbered, overwhelmed, or not being up to snuff.
Whatever you do, don’t appear like you are trying to convince him to feel more secure… this will only prove to him that his worrying is justified. Try instead to enjoy the relationship with him, enjoy sex with him, tell him about how much you enjoy your physical relationship with him. Encourage him, by letting him know what you enjoy, and ask him to do whatever that is. Show him what you like, let him share a space with you where you are receiving pleasure but his performance isn’t on the line. Ask him to join you in doing something you enjoy but that he doesn’t ordinarily do, and thank him afterward. Take time out to relax and be intimate with him, without engaging in activities that will trigger his performance anxiety. If he brings the issue up, tell him that you’re the one receiving his affections and that you enjoy them the way they are. Let him know, through your actions and words that it is the intimacy that makes everything else so satisfying, and that you enjoy being intimate with him.