New York City Sex Therapy Diary: Fifty Shades for Men

OK, guys — By now you’ve probably noticed your wife or girlfriend has become more interested in sex since reading Fifty Shades of Grey.

Have you thought of reading it yourself — to find out what all the fuss is about?

I’m going to tell you a secret:  I read the whole thing.   All 3 volumes.

It really isn’t so bad.  True, there are large sections devoted to clothes and shopping.  And the beginning of Volume 3 especially might make you feel like a prisoner at a crafts fair.  But there’s a lot a man can learn from Fifty Shades.

Here are three lessons I think every man should absorb from this book.


1.   Be interested in sex. That doesn’t sound too hard, right?   Aren’t all guys interested in sex?

Actually, no.   Not from a woman’s point of view.   You really have no idea what women go through to make themselves sexually appealing.    Women pay attention to every detail.   You take a woman out on a date, you can be sure that her hair, her skin, her outfit, even her shoes have all been studied very carefully.

Christian Grey sweats the details in just that way.   He selects his clothes as a woman might — to highlight his best features.  And he makes sure he has great-smelling lotions and stuff in his (very clean) bathroom.   He’s interested in the whole sensory experience — the colors, the music — everything.

Christian Grey is really interested in sex.   He has a whole room devoted to it.   OK, it’s full of implements of pain — whips and floggers and stuff.   But he keeps it all very organized and in good repair.  He doesn’t forget to dust the whips, even during the Stanley Cup finals.   Sex is his biggest priority.

How many men can honestly say that?


2.   Pay her some attention. Christian Grey always wants Ana.   All she has to do is walk into the room, and he’s dying to take her clothes off.

Now most women are realists.   Your average women knows that this is just fantasy, and that no man is going to desire her 24/7 like that.   It might even get on her nerves after awhile. But still she finds the idea rather captivating.

Why?   Because it means she always has your attention.   Your average heterosexual female partner spends much more time thinking about you than you spend thinking about her.   That’s ordinarily a bit frustrating to her.

She would love it if, like Christian Grey, even though you’re about to pitch the most important business deal of your life, you just couldn’t stop thinking about the way her hips move when she walks.   As sexual fantasy, that just hits the spot for her.  If you’re in doubt about this, read my article “The Woman in the Mirror.”

The next time she walks that way that gets your attention . . . tell her.  Tell her everything about her that turns you on.  Do this often.

Just trust me on this one.


3.  Be a leader. This is something ordinary men can learn from BDSM sexual dominants.    You can’t be a sexual dominant like Christian Grey without thinking ahead.   You have to have done considerable research about your partner’s needs and limitations.   And you have to take charge.  That’s the whole point.

Most ordinary women are exhausted from thinking so much all the time.  When she’s with you, let her give it a rest.   You lead for a while.  She’ll appreciate it.

In order to lead, you’ll have to have done your research well.    Especially about her.  Pay attention to the things she’s told you about herself.   She’ll appreciate your interest.

It’s attractive to women that Christian Grey always has a plan.   Every time he takes her into his secret sex room, he has some creative idea of what he wants to do there.

He has a secret chest of drawers there, too, with all sorts of sex toys.  It’s very organized.   He doesn’t have to ask her whether she’s seen his mid-sized anal beads lying around.

She can just relax, listen to the sensuous music on  his Fifty Shades seduction playlist . . .  and simply surrender.

With just an ipod and some investment of time, you can help the woman in your life achieve that state of surrender as well.

Tying her up is optional.  It’s the attitude that counts.


Most women are practical creatures.    They won’t mind that you’re not a billionaire.   Just be interested in sex.  Pay her some attention.  And don’t be afraid to take charge sometimes.

Even if you’re not a billionaire,  you might get treated like one.


stephen snyder md author photo Stephen Snyder, MD

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