Ask She Bop! A Sex Advice Column for Every Body

Your sex questions answered by She Bop Education Coordinator & Sex Educator, Gretchen Leigh.


I'm curious about playing in public – I've been considering app-operated toys and other ideas for how to make my exhibitionism fantasies a reality – but I don't want to cross boundaries or disrespect the people around me. How do I get frisky in public consensually?

– Playing In Public

Bless you and your consideration of others, PIP.

Last year, I attended an event that was beautifully curated and impeccably performed. During one act, it became obnoxiously clear that a couple sitting in front of me was playing with a remote-operated vibrator. I could hear a faint buzzing, chuckling from one partner, and increasingly loud gasps from the other. Everyone around them sat back, shifting around in their seats, distracted and uncomfortable. Insert side-eye emoji here.

This couple had relatable intentions – they, like you, wanted to play publicly and feel the excitement of doing something naughty in a room full of strangers. The good news is, there are so many ways to do it right! Here are some tips for exhibitionistic play: 1) While a theater packed with strangers may sound like an exciting place to get down, you'll want to pick a spot where you won't be noticed – how about a loud concert or nightclub, or the back corner of a venue (rather than the front row)? Better yet – check out one of Portland's lifestyle clubs specifically designed for you to get down in public. 2) If your toy is buzzy or your orgasm is a head-banger, you're asking folks to witness your sex just by being near you. Try non-motorized options, like a butt plug worn to run an errand, or a rope body harness tied under your clothes. Or practice edging – lower level stimulation that never pushes over an orgasmic edge – to keep the noises in check until you get home. 3) Get creative! There's no reason why play needs to be tech-heavy, orgasm-focused, or even physical. Make a game with your partner where every time a bus goes by they remember that perfect sound you make while you're fucking. Send a dirty selfie every time you "get something from the car" [read: sneak somewhere private]. Swap some banal phrases like "nice shirt" for x-rated ones you discuss ahead of time, so that every time you comment on your babe's date night duds you're dirty talking in code.

The name of the game here is sexy subtlety, PIP, – finding that perfect balance where no one suspects a thing so you get the true thrill of "getting away" with it. All that's left to do is plan your next date night!