When my other girlfriend, Kristen, moved in with me in the fall, we loaded up her trusty Subaru, I cleared out half of the closet, and after trekking her few pieces of furniture to my place, we christened the bed. Not that we hadn’t christened the bed dozens—hundreds?—of times before, but it was different when it was officially hers and mine.
When we started sharing that same bed, pretty much every night, it became obvious that it was a little bit too small for the both of us (and my two cats). It was a full-sized mattress, and though I did love my bed frame, I knew it was time to upgrade.
We talked about it. “When you move in,” I said in the months before it was official, “I want to upgrade the bed.”
It took a few months after her stuff was actually here for us to actually start looking. And to be honest, I didn’t really need to look that hard. I knew what I wanted: a Tempur-Pedic® mattress. I had one back in college, when a friend of mine had a job clearing out her neighbor’s apartment and doing whatever she wanted with the furniture (don’t ask, long story), but I sold it in order to move to New York City. I told myself at the time that I didn’t have a choice, it would cost almost as much to ship it as it would to buy a new one (though I think that is an exaggeration I used to justify it), and I needed the cash to help finance the (sudden, immediate) move.
But that mattress ... I clearly romanticize it in my memory. I slept more soundly than I ever have before or since; it cradled my bones and muscles and let me relax just perfectly, it was always cool and soft.
And the sex ... oh, the sex. See, even though I the relationship I was in while I had that mattress was of the famous Lesbian Bed Death variety, I knew that bed made a difference in the fucking. Spring mattresses have so much bounce to them, and the tops are so slippery, but on a memory foam mattress, you can really dig your knees in, or elbows, or toes even, and get a firm grip on the support underneath you. It makes everything just a little easier.
I couldn’t wait. That was definitely the mattress for me.
Because aside from sleeping on a mattress, what else does one do, really? What use is it? Fucking, of course. And while when you walk into the big corporate mattress store, they all talk about whether you’re a side sleeper or a stomach sleeper or a back sleeper, what kind of pillows you like to use, how often you wake up, all of those things, what they never mention is the fucking part. How do you like to fuck? Are you hot and heavy or quiet and ease-full? Do you put your bed up on risers so it can be at hip height? What kind of headboard do you have? How does it connect the bed frame?
There are a lot of factors to the perfect bed. Size, height, depth, bed frame—not to mention the linens, sheets, pillowcases, blankets. Too many queers I know, too many girls I’ve gone home with and too many friends of mine, ignore the details of their beds and bedrooms. But since I got out of that fated Lesbian Bed Death relationship and re-entered the single world with a new self-confidence, gender, and kinky aim in mind, I started taking the construction of my bed—and bedroom—much more seriously.
I’ve found over and over that my bed and the feel of my bedroom affects how often—and how well—I get laid. When the room is ready, I am ready, and everything else falls into place. So, here are a few things I’ve learned.
Risers are awesome. If there’s one thing I’d suggest in upgrading one’s bed for better fucking, it’s to put it on risers. Sometimes this is easy: Just purchase a $19.95 set of four risers from any local (or online) department store. But depending on your bed, you might have to change your bed frame in order for risers to work. Risers bring the bed to hip height, which makes it much easier to bend someone over the mattress and fuck them from behind. Other positions are made easier too, especially those that use the side of the bed while standing.
Check out your feng shui. I read somewhere once that if you want to invite lovers into your bed, either short- or long-term, you have to set up your bedroom so that they have their own space. If your bed is pushed up against a wall, for example, pull it out and make it so you and your lover can enter the bed on either side. If you don’t have two nightstands, figure out if you can use some boxes or crates or that short spare bookshelf as a space next to the bed.
Upgrade your linens. Add the softest throw blanket to your bed that you can find, and more pillows. You want sheets and pillows and comforters and throws to be the most enticing, lovely, decadent textures that you can find (and afford), since you want someone to come to your bed eagerly, and come back for more. At least, I assume you do.
Check out your headboard and footboard. Do you like to tie people down, or to be tied down? If playing with bondage during sex is part of your repertoire, your headboard and footboard are perfect for that! If you don’t have them, and don’t want them, of course you can always invest in a set of under-bed restraints.
Get a bigger bed. It’s a pretty serious investment, but if you’re serious about having someone in your life, or having a serious playscape for sexual adventures, you might want to think about saving up for at least a queen-sized mattress. If you can’t afford it now, it can be down the road. Besides, full-sized mattresses are better for cuddling, right?
Take a critical eye to your bedroom. Is it warm and welcoming? Is it free of distractions of work and unfinished projects? Is it tidy? Strip away everything in your bedroom that isn’t for sex, sleeping, waking up, or your morning routine of getting dressed and ready for the day. Take down those old posters and put up some sensual art. This is a place for getting down and dirty. Make it so.
When you go out on a date, always prepare your place such that you could possibly bring them back to your apartment after. You might not think there’s even the most remote of a chance, but if you don’t, you won’t even have the option. And like I always say, it’s better to have a cock and not need it than to need a cock and not have it … Same applies to the bedroom.
We did buy a new bed, my other girlfriend and me. We ended up with a ComforPedic®, a slightly different brand, but still a memory foam mattress, and it is wonderful. Just what I wanted. We’ve been slowly decking it out, buying mattress covers and satin sheet sets. The next investment will be a new bed frame, since sadly, the old one, my favorite, doesn’t fit the new size. But that’s okay. This is our bed, our new playground, just for us.