When sitting poolside amid a dozen women, equal parts married and single, I grabbed the Post-It notes and asked my girlfriend to repeat the question. We sat like ladies on classically styled outdoor love seats fit for a beach front hotel, sipping pre-dinner Prosecco from clear plastic cups, speaking with the candor of men around a card table. There’d be no bluffing when it came to this deck of bachelorette cards, where we’d answer intimate questions among friends. I’d be damned if–in my mildly soused state–I was going to forget any of it, hence the pad of reporting Post-It notes.
In complete harmony, when asked for the top three qualities that make a phenomenal lover, we all sang out, “Aggressiveness.” Even the latecomers, who’d been inside making last-gasp efforts at casual high-style (razored white Egyptian cotton shirts with splatter paint) chimed in without forethought, “Confident enough to take total control.” Surrounded by mostly hetero lawyers, doctors, real-estate agents, artists, corporate directors, and one stay-at-home mom, I wasn’t at all surprised that we each wanted the exact same thing, first and foremost, from a lover: a man who’d tell us what to do.
And no, for those men reading, that doesn’t mean: “Lick my balls.” It’s so much more about the build. About the smaller specifics. The tease. The making us wait. Bossing us around a little bit, telling us when to breath, when to relax, when to clench, where to sit. Punish us a little. Role play. “We all lead these powerful everyday lives,” one of my friends allowed, “so of course we want to let that guard down in the bedroom. I want a man man who takes what he wants without apology.” And we all nod our heads.
Is it true for every woman? Hell if I know, but I do know it’s true for many of us. Surprisingly, though, the number two quality women looked for in a lover —to which it was actually hard to commit—was passion and selflessness. The latter might seem to contradict the selfish forcefulness we seem to crave, but really, no one wants a selfish lover. We want someone who’s take-charge in pleasing, teasing, and pleasuring us. Lastly, the consensus landed on perseverance. We all wanted a lover who could take his time, someone purposeful and patient, who had some staying power. All this, and there wasn’t even an afterthought to penis-size. Besides, we’d answered that in an earlier question involving “hot uniforms.” I’ll just say James Taylor was onto something with “Handy Man.”