Breast and Nipple Stimulation

Breasts and nipples are under-utilized erogenous zones. Although breasts are often seen as a symbol of “sexy”, we don’t tend to include them in our sexual encounters. There seems to be a lack of education on the topic and myths surrounding boobs. This article is here to educate and set the record straight. 

Breast size is not a factor in the enjoyment of both the receiver and giver of breast stimulation. Not all women like breast stimulation. Men can also feel aroused when their nipples are stimulated. Too many couples want to try breast stimulation, but aren’t sure they are “doing it right”. Let’s talk about the what, why, and how of breast stimulation. 

What’s the Big Deal?

In the right setting, breast stimulation can feel really good for both the giver and the receiver. A lot of women really enjoy having their breasts touched before and during sex. In fact, a study was done in which scientists recorded a woman’s brain activity while she was stimulating different areas of her body. They found that nipple stimulation activates the same areas in the brain as gentile stimulation. This is not the same thing as arousal (as arousal is also determined by our mental state) but the study shows that there is a connection between sexual pleasure and nipple stimulation. In fact, some women can even orgasm from nipple stimulation alone!

As you get more aroused during sex, your nipples tend to get larger. Nipples also have erectile tissue and get harder and firmer during sexual arousal, opening up to receiving pleasurable stimulation.

Nipple stimulation isn’t just for women. A lot of men really like to touch their wife’s breasts. In addition, men can also enjoy nipple stimulation when sexually aroused. In fact, as men don’t have breasts their nipple nerves tend to be more densely packed than females’. This leads to a more direct sensation when their nipples are stimulated. Although this is not the “norm” in the media, men can enjoy receiving nipple stimulation as much as they like to give it. 

All this being said, there is a large population of people who don’t like nipple stimulation. Some people feel ambivalent toward it, and others really don’t like it. If this is you, and you are completely fine with that, don’t worry about it! Every person’s sexual preferences are unique, and there is nothing wrong with not liking breat stimulation. However, if you want to like it or it is distressing to you, let’s explore a few of the reasons people don’t like nipple stimulation and potential solutions. 

Why Don’t I Like Breast Play?

Physiology

There are a number of possible reasons why a person (man or woman) might not like nipple stimulation. One reason could be physiology. A person could simply have been born with fewer nerve endings in their nipples, meaning they would have less of a physical reaction to breast stimulation. Some women (and men) find breast stimulation not physically appealing, but still associate it psychologically with being sexy. Conversely, a person could have more than the average number of nerve endings, meaning their nipples are too sensitive to be heavily touched. If you do feel really sensitive in that area, you may want to try lessening the stimulus by having your partner touch your breasts with your shirt on. 

Hormones also play a role in how sensitive your breasts are. Therefore, your breast sensitivity may change with the different phases of your cycle. If you want to learn more about these phases, check out our post on Hormonal Cycles and Sex. Changes in your sensitivity that last cycle after cycle may be related to a hormone imbalance. If you suspect changes in your life (pregnancy, new birth control, etc) may have unbalanced your hormones, consult a professional.

If physiology is the reason you don’t like nipple stimulation, then that’s fine! Other than the suggestions above, there is not a whole lot you can do to change your physical reactions. However, there are a lot of other possible reasons that breast play doesn’t appeal to you that have more to do with psychology than physiology. 

Psychology 

A lot of women who did not enjoy breast stimulation have discovered that they actually had psychological barriers that stopped their enjoyment. Here are just a few of these barriers that can block sexual pleasure; and especially pleasure from breast stimulation. 

  1. “Good Girl” Syndrome

Good girl syndrome refers to feelings of guilt or anxiety that result from seeing sex in a negative context. In other words, those of us who grew up associating anything sexual as sinful or seing sex as being forbidden will potentially bring that attitude into our married sex lives. This can especially affect our feeling toward breast stimulation as breasts are so tied to what it means to be “sexy” in our society. A woman may feel dirty or like she’s doing something wrong when her husband is touching her boobs. 

  1. Attached to Motherhood

We often associated breasts with motherhood. Breastfeeding can be an important factor in mother/child bonding. Although motherhood is wonderful, it is usually not associated with feeling sexy. Therefore, a woman who associates her breasts with her duties as a mother or sees her breasts as belonging to her children will have a hard time letting herself feel the sensual pleasures her breasts have to offer. 

In addition to the connection between breasts and motherhood, other new mothers simply feel touched out. Mothers with babies experience a lot of touch, especially when breastfeeding, and will sometimes feel like they don’t want to be touched any more. Young mothers may feel like they just want their breasts to themselves, and that’s okay!

  1. Body Image

How we view our bodies has a huge impact on the pleasures we allow ourselves to feel. Unfortunately, a lot of women struggle with negative body-image and see their bodies as the enemy. This can be especially true when it comes to breast size. A woman with relatively small breasts may worry she isn’t “sexy” enough or that her spouse will be disappointed in her breast size. Another woman with relatively large breasts may feel fat and associate her larger boobs with the issues she has with her body. If we don’t learn to love and team up with our bodies, we will put up subconscious barriers that block sensual pleasure.

What to Do About It

If you don’t enjoy nipple stimulation, it may be worthwhile to take a quiet moment and explore why. If after exploring you feel like the problem is purely physical (you just don’t like the sensation) that is absolutely fine! No need to do anything about the situation! Know you are normal and in good company.

However, if you discover you don’t enjoy breast stimulation due to a deeper issue, I encourage you to face the issue. Take charge of how you view yourself. Tell yourself you are allowed to be sexual. You can be a mother and still keep your personhood. Your body does a fantastic job housing you. You may want to try an exercise like saying outloud, “I am an erotic being”. If the issue feels too big to take on, reach out for help! Our coaching team would love to help you, or seek out a therapist. You deserve to feel pleasure! Take the time and effort to lower your mental barriers. 

Ideas for Breast and Nipple Stimulation

Now for the fun part, here are a few tips and tricks for making nipple/breast stimulation great!

Whether you are a couple eager to try something new, or shyly trying to challenge your mental barriers, here are some ideas to get you started. I have included breast play, but note that all “nipple play” tips work just as well on a man. You may want to try stimulating your husband’s nipples (or if you are the husband, asking your wife to do it). It could be amazing!

  1. Don’t jump in too quick

As the breasts are a very sensitive area, a little sexual arousal is usually necessary first. Start very slow, maybe with caresses over the shirt first. Alternatively, start with touching other body parts and slowly moving toward the breasts. Moves such as caressing checks, kissing the face and the neck, and even simply brushing your hand over their naked skin can prepare the body for more sensual pleasures.

  1. Listen to your partner, their sensitivity will change!

Every body will have its own level and type of sensitivity. In addition, breast sensitivity can change with a woman’s hormonal cycle. Therefore, it is crucial to be aware of your spouse’s reaction to your touch. Start small and build intensity and pleasure at their encouragement (either verbally or with their reactions to you). Discuss beforehand if your spouse would like to verbally direct you, or if they would like you to take the lead. 

  1. Breast Stimulation

Once you get to the breasts, don’t jump straight to the nipple. Appreciate the feeling of the breast itself. Both the giver and the receiver can get immense pleasure from feeling boobs. Try caressing them, massaging them, sucking on them, and even grabbing them (if your spouse is comfortable with that). Revel in these sensations before moving to the nipple. 

  1. Nipple Stimulation 

Once again, start light with the nipple (or start with two fingers making swirls around the areola or the pigmented skin around the nipple). Even the feeling of something (a hand or clothes) brushing against your nipple can feel great! You can start with a gentle touch, and move to a rubbing motion. If your spouse isn’t too sensitive, you can pinch their nipples or lightly nibble on it.

  1. Products

There are also a few products that can make nipple stimulation more comfortable and fun. For example, using lube or even lotion to moisturize the breasts and nipple can help make stimulation more comfortable. Dry skin on dry nipples won’t feel very good. Some couples also enjoy using products like nipple clamps or even a small vibrator. Check out these nipple products on MarriedDance (a Christian friendly sex-toy website).

Conclusion

Breast and nipple stimulation takes communication and patience. When done right, it can feel sensual and sexy, and can even lead to orgasm! If breast stimulation is something you want to try, start with these tips! If you don’t enjoy it, but really want to, consider what might be stopping you from enjoying the experience. Sex is for you! Let yourself enjoy the experiences that appeal to you. 

Written by Amanda Severson with Get Your Marriage On!

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<h3>Amanda Severson</h3>

Amanda Severson

Hi, I'm Amanda! I'm a grad student on her way to becoming a Marriage and Family Therapist. I'm a wife and a sex enthusiast. I am a psychology nerd whose life goal is to help every couple find the absolute joy of sharing your life with someone else.

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