“I am a queer person who tends to be the ‘top’ in sexual situations. I love when my partners voice their sexual needs and am looking for new tips to draw out their assertive side. Outside of the bedroom, my personality is gregarious and warm which tends to make me the assertive person romantically. BUT I love to be wooed and asked out. How can I invite other people’s behavior to be more assertive toward me?” _KA
“Give people the time to assert themselves. If one is assertive, its probably easier for them to say what they want, to make requests...than it is for someone who is not as comfortable in that role. It being easy for you makes you want to do it. Creating time and space for other people to grow comfortable around you that they can reach a place that they are comfortable in that role. As far as the romantic or sexual element, leave that to them. Wait until they bring it up in the first place. It’s easy to do things that are easy…”_Cat, 28, jeweler, interviewed in his studio.
“We have to create that space. If there is someone who we are attracted to, and we can tell that our assertiveness is clearly the more dominating role, leaving a little bit of space, or in other words, just try out what it feels like to have them take a step closer. Being the assertive type myself, that isn’t really the easiest thing to do, especially if you’re like, ‘I know I want that.’ Sometimes the other way to do it is to just use your words and not your actions, like ‘Hey, I like you. If you want more to happen, I would really like for you to make the first move.’ Which again, that’s totally assertive, but it’s authentic. It puts the responsibility on someone else.”_Kellie, 35, LMT and sex educator, interviewed in her apartment.
“I like to take my time and let the other person say what they want, but in the situation I’m in right now, I’m the less assertive one than the person I’m dating right now. I haven’t really noticed it until you asked this question, but I’m enjoying taking the back seat these days.”_Brian, 35, carpenter, interviewed on Congress Street.
“In the person I’m dating right now, I think I’m going to say, ‘I wish you’d be more assertive.’ And just directly assert my desire for the other person to be more assertive. I especially sexually just want to be like, ‘Tell me what you want right now.’ But then is that assertive if you’re asserting, asking the other person to tell you what they want? I don’t know, if it’s just not in their personality, can you [get them to be assertive]? I’m not sure. This is a big debate I’m having right now.”_anonymous, Mobile Museum of American Artifacts collector, interviewed on Anderson Street.