Info Post: The Post Cosmo Wishes It Could Be9:37 am - 01/08/2012
Info posts may contain triggering elements, so please be mindful of the topic and read at your own discretion. Specific triggers and warnings are listed below, but if any additional warnings are needed please don't be shy about making the suggestion. Thanks!
SPECIFIC TRIGGER WARNINGS: Sexual content relating to vaginal stimulation.
IMAGE WARNINGS: NSFW.
NOTES: More detailed posts for sexual dysfunction, safe sex and birth control are scheduled for later dates.
These posts are a "safe space" to ask questions you might otherwise be too shy to. Please do not reply to people with "Plz Google" or "educate yourself". Everyone should enter these posts with a learn and teach mindset (in that order). WITH THAT SAID, HOWEVER, please remain mindful of your questions and phrasing, be open-minded, learn, and know when to be quiet. If you are flippant with your ignorance, I will not stop angered members from telling you about yourself.
New documentary showcases attempts to profit off myths about female sexual pleasure
By Miriam | Published: February 9, 2011
Orgasm Inc is a documentary that exposes big pharma’s attempts to profit off of myths about female sexual pleasure.
It’s shocking and incredible the blatant way that pharmaceutical companies are involved in the creation of medical problems that they can then solve with their new drugs and tools.
That’s right: for-profit pharmaceutical companies CREATE medical disorders for the sole purpose of creating a new market for their new drug.
This film focuses on “female sexual dysfunction” and big pharma’s attempts at creating drugs to solve it.
Now I’m not saying that there aren’t women out there who have legitimate medical concerns that affect their sexual functioning. They do.
But what I am saying is that the classification of these kinds of disorders, which are complex in nature, seriously vague, and extremely affected by society’s ideas about female sexual pleasure, is creating a shitstorm for women.
For example, in the documentary, the filmmaker follows one woman who decided to enroll in a clinical trial for a new device called the “Orgasmatron.” (Note: This article about the device tells a very different story than the documentary did.) This clinical trial is pretty invasive–she has to have a mechanism that provides electricity surgically installed into her body, with a wire running up along her spinal cord. She remains light-hearted about the whole thing, including laughing as she shows us what the mechanism did for her after the fact. She turns on the remote (similar the remote one might have on a vibrator like this one) and her leg begins to shake violently, as she laughs.
The Orgasmatron did nothing for her sexual pleasure, and was removed within a few weeks.
After watching her go through all of this, we discover this shocking revelation. Why did she think she suffered from female sexual dysfunction? Because she could not orgasm from just vaginal penetration alone.
Sit with that a minute.
A perfectly healthy woman who was able to orgasm regularly with clitoral stimulation participated in a clinical trial that involved surgically implanting an electric mechanism into her body because she believed not being able to orgasm from simply vaginal penetration was abnormal.
WTF. I can safely say that MOST women need clitoral stimulation to orgasm. Why aren’t we being taught this??
This is only one example of many in the film that illustrates how the medical industrial complex is invested in convincing millions of women that their sexual responses are abnormal so that they will go out and purchase whatever pills, cremes and surgeries these companies can come up with.
What women don’t need is technologies that are motivated by profit rather than science. What we do need is this:
- Comprehensive sex education that teaches us about safety AND pleasure
- Feminist sex shops where people can learn about the tools out there (no prescription required) to help us achieve sexual pleasure
- To debunk all the heteronormative myths about what “normal” sexual functioning and desire look-like.
*OP Note: This documentary is available via Netflix Instant, if you have an account.
Vaginal Sexual Anatomy
A lot of questions about how to have sex, how to masturbate, and worries about all of what's all going on down below can be easily solved by simply getting to know what genitals and other reproductive organs are all about. Many things some people presume are problems with some kinds of sex or genital function or appearance are just realities of anatomy they didn't know.
Here's the scoop for most people whose bodies have a vulva, vagina, labia, clitoris and/or uterus and other structures.
Let's get started! It can help to get yourself a mirror, make sure you have some real privacy (or at least a door that locks) and some quality time to get to know your body and yourself. We'll just look at what you can see and feel, to get you started. Sit with your knickers off and your legs open, and get ready to take a tour.
Vulva, not vagina
The proper name for the outer genitals is the vulva (vuhl-vah). The vagina is only one part of these organs, and not the whole of them, and many people mistakenly call the vulva the vagina.
Where your pubic hair is, below your belly button, is a fatty area of tissue (skin) called the mons (mahns). Your pubic hair will move downward, as will that fatty tissue, around your labia majora (lay-bee-ah) or "lips."
If you pull your outer labia open, you will see your labia minora, or lips, which are not covered with hair, and look a bit like flower petals or two teeny-tiny tongues. The size, length and color of the inner labia and other parts of the vulva will differ from person to person. The labia may be long and thick, or barely visible, and may look purple, red, pink, blackish or brown, depending on your own coloring. All of these variations are absolutely normal, as are the labia being two different sizes or shapes. The purpose of your inner labia is pretty important; they have sensory nerve endings which contribute to sexual pleasure and also keep icky bacteria away from what is called the vestibule.
The Infamous Clitoris
Looking at the vestibule, between those inner labia from the top down (right below your mons), you'll first see the top of the inner labia, which create a little skin fold called the clitoral hood. That hood connects to the glans, which is the tip -- and only the tip -- of the clitoris (klit-or-iss). If you pull up the hood with your fingers, you can get a closer look.
The clitoris -- which in full, internal and external, is nearly of the same size as the penis -- is usually the most sensitive spot on, and involved in the most sensitive areas of, the vulva. It's got twice the number of sensory nerve endings the penis does, and it also interacts with over 15,000 nerve endings throughout the whole pelvic area. It is created of the same sort of erectile tissue that the head of a penis has. Before we all were born, until about the sixth week of our lives as an embryo, our sexual organs were slightly developed, but completely the same no matter our sex or gender.
If you feel the clitoris with your fingers, you'll probably feel a tingle or a tickle. Rubbing it a bit, you can feel a hardish portion that is the shaft of the clitoris. The clitoris (sometimes called the "clit" or the "spot") is the primary source of most genital sensation. When you masturbate, it is what you will most likely (but not always) touch and manipulate to pleasure yourself. The clitoris is, in fact, the only organ on the entire body that is solely for sexual arousal, and is attached to ligaments, muscles and veins that become filled with blood during arousal (when you get sexually excited) and contract during orgasm. The clitoris is what most like to have stimulated in some way during oral or digital (with hands and fingers) sex, during masturbation, and during intercourse, and not just the tip or shaft. The clitoris is internal as well as external -- and the whole thing is a lot bigger than it looks from the outside -- with legs, called crura, that are within the outer labia, as well as the clitoral (or vestibular) bulbs, which surround part of the lower portion of the vaginal canal.
People are different in how and where we like our clitorises touched (or if we do at all). For some, rubbing too fast or hard, or right on the tip or shaft may be uncomfortable, but for others, it's just the thing. Like near anything else in sex, the best way to find out is usually to experiment by masturbating. For more on every body's anatomy from the standpoint of pleasure, check out: With Pleasure: A View of Whole Sexual Anatomy for Every Body.
Looking lower, you may be able to see another hood-like shape. Right below that shape is a teeny, tiny, barely visible little dot or slit, which is your urethra or urinary opening, where you urinate (or pee) from. Below that is the vaginal opening (sometimes people call it a "slit" or "hole"). You might notice how close the urinary opening is to the vaginal opening. Because of this, sometimes sexual activity can bring bacteria which infect the urinary opening, so it's important during sexual activity to both empty your bladder before and after, and to be sure your or your partners hands, mouth or other organs are clean.
Just barely inside the vaginal opening, you may see the vaginal corona, or hymen. Your corona may or may not be easily distinguishable from the rest of your vaginal opening, and that isn't always because of sex. Long ago (and still sometimes today) it was thought that the corona/hymen was "evidence" of whether or not a woman had had sexual intercourse, but that is not the case at all. Not even all people with vulvas are born with intact or easily identifiable vaginal coronas! When someone is talking about "popping a cherry," this is what they are referring to, though it's a misnomer. Your corona is usually membranes that erode somewhat over time, primarily due to hormones and vaginal discharges, but later can also wear away more due to vaginal sex if a person engages in that. When it is more intact, it rarely covers that opening completely, but has little holes and perforations in it. Even after it has been worn away or stretched, small folds of tissue remain.
During the first few times someone has intercourse or other vaginal entry, pain or bleeding can happen (though it more often does not) due to the wearing away of the corona. However, that pain or bleeding is more commonly because you had sex without being aroused enough to be properly lubricated, or did not use extra lubricant if needed. On the other hand, there are some whose vaginal coronas simply are so thick, or have such a small opening, that it is indeed painful to have intercourse or enter the vagina otherwise, and sometimes a medical procedure needs to be done to remedy that. All in all, there are many causes for or sources of sexual pain, and the corona is only one of many.
Now, if you can slide your finger into your vaginal opening, and squeeze your vaginal walls (engaging what are commonly called PC -- pubococcygeus -- or Kegel muscles), just like you were trying to hold it in when you have to urinate, or when you're trying to stop the flow of your urine. You can feel a lot of folds of skin and different textures, and see how the vagina (which is the passage between the vaginal opening and the cervix) can hold your fingers. That is the same way it holds a tampon, a penis or toy, or a child during labor.
Your vagina may be wetter or dryer right now depending on your menstrual cycle. If you're someone who menstruates and ovulates, then right after you've had your period, or when you aren't aroused you'll generally be dryer, and about two weeks into your cycle, or when you are aroused, you'll usually be a bit wetter. The mucus, or "discharge" from your vagina, which you'll sometimes see on your underpants, may vary in texture, scent and color greatly. Some people are freaked out by this, but there is no need to be, and trying to get rid of that mucus with douching or other methods is not healthy, as that mucus keeps your vagina clean of bacteria and maintains a careful acid balance vital to your health. If you're ever in doubt about vaginal discharge, the best thing to do is to call your doctor. In general, however, unless the mucus is spotted with blood and you aren't on your period, makes you itch at all, or is greenish in hue, it's probably healthy, normal discharge.
Life on the Inside
If you can put your finger inside your vagina, towards your belly, not your back, you may or may not feel a spongy length of tissue that is a bit like the roof of your mouth in texture (if you have short fingers, you may not be able to). That is the infamous g-spot, or Grafenburg Spot, another potential source of, or contributor to, sexual pleasure or orgasm and is currently understood to be another part of the internal clitoris. The vagina itself, especially past the first, front 1/3rd of it, has hardly any sensory nerve endings at all. The sensations people feel inside the vagina are often more about the external and internal clitoris, including the G-spot, than the vagina itself.
Understand, however, that not all find the g-spot being touched or stimulated to be pleasurable, and it doesn't lead to orgasm magically in everybody. It isn't a magic button, it is simply another part of your genital anatomy that is responsive to pleasure. In addition, stimulation of the g-spot may also lead to an orgasm in which some people ejaculate, or release fluid from the urethra. This is not urine, even though it may feel that way. As well, people can ejaculate from orgasm with or without g-spot stimulation.
If you poke your finger deeply into your vagina, you may feel something deep inside that feels like a nose or a dimpled chin. This is your cervix, which is the base of the uterus, where, if you were pregnant, a baby would grow. The cervix is the passage through which sperm travel to meet an egg in the fallopian tubes, but don't worry -- nothing but sperm can usually fit in there. In other words, you can't "lose" a tampon or a toy or anything else in your vagina, because it ends with your cervix.
Once you take your fingers out of your vagina, follow the trail of your genitals a bit lower. Right under your vaginal opening is a flat length of skin called the perineum (pair-ee-nay-uhm). Below the perineum is your anus.
The anus is the opening to your rectum, through which your bowel movements pass through from your bowel. Some people enjoy touching or rubbing their anus, as well as having it licked, or for having anal intercourse. Some people do not. Again, people vary in what we do and don't like when it comes to sex. The important thing to recognize is that, first, if you shower or bathe regularly, your anus is not dirty, because feces (bowel movements) are not stored there or in your rectum. Only trace amounts of feces may remain there. However, anal sex of any sort is no more safe than vaginal sex for several reasons and can also present some additional risks vaginal sex does not. First, the anus does not have any natural lubrication of its own, and the anal tissues are far more delicate and susceptible to tearing than the vaginal tissues. That makes anal sex potentially more painful if not done with care, as well as more risky as far as the spread of STIs.
Planned Parenthood: Vulva, Vagina, and Breasts
Scarleteen: Labia That Clearly Ain't Minor
Quiz: The Truth About the Vagina
I Am Orgasm-0
An orgasm is the peak of sexual pleasure. It typically consists of a series of involuntary muscle contractions in the sexual organs, lower pelvic muscles, and the anus. An orgasm is accompanied by the release of endorphins - opioid-like chemicals produced in the brain that give a feeling of euphoria.
Female orgasm - beforehand the vaginal walls moisten and the clitoris enlarges. Then the clitoris goes inward under the clitoral hood and the vagina gets about one-third smaller. There are rhythmic contractions of the pelvic muscle, vagina and uterus. Females do not have a refractory period.
In females, the most common way of achieving orgasm is by stimulation of the clitoris.
Orgasm can be achieved by masturbation, penetrative sexual intercourse, outercourse (non-penetrative sex), and other erotic sexual activities. Masturbation may occur alone or with a partner.
During an orgasm the person experiences a change in heart rate, blood pressure, and respiratory rate and depth. There is an intense and explosive feeling of pleasure. According to the journal Clinical Psychology Review, there are 26 known definitions of orgasm.
Discussions of the female orgasm are complicated by orgasms in women being divided into two categories: clitoral orgasm and vaginal (or G-Spot) orgasm. The concept of "vaginal orgasm" as a separate phenomenon was first postulated by Sigmund Freud. In 1905, Freud stated that clitoral orgasms were purely an adolescent phenomenon and that upon reaching puberty, the proper response of mature women was a change-over to vaginal orgasms, meaning orgasms without any clitoral stimulation. While Freud provided no evidence for this basic assumption, the consequences of this theory were considerable. Many women felt inadequate when they could not achieve orgasm via vaginal intercourse alone, involving little or no clitoral stimulation, as Freud's theory made penile-vaginal intercourse the central component to women's sexual satisfaction.
The first major national surveys of sexual behavior were the Kinsey reports. Alfred Kinsey was the first to harshly criticize Freud's ideas about female sexuality and orgasm when, through his interviews with thousands of women, Kinsey found that most women could not have vaginal orgasms. He criticized Freud and other theorists for projecting male constructs of sexuality onto women and viewed the clitoris as the main center of sexual response and the vagina as relatively unimportant for sexual satisfaction, noting that few women inserted fingers or objects into their vaginas when they masturbated. He concluded that satisfaction from penile penetration is mainly psychological or perhaps the result of referred sensation. Masters and Johnson's research into the female sexual response cycle supported Kinsey's findings about the female orgasm, which inspired feminists such as Anne Koedt to speak about the "false distinction" made between vaginal and clitoral orgasms and women's biology not being properly analyzed.
Further research, such as that done by Shere Hite, has additionally found that most women (70-80%) achieve orgasm only through direct clitoral stimulation, though indirect clitoral stimulation may also be sufficient. The Mayo Clinic stated, "Orgasms vary in intensity, and women vary in the frequency of their orgasms and the amount of stimulation necessary to trigger an orgasm." Clitoral orgasms are easier to achieve because the tip or glans of the clitoris alone has more than 8,000 sensory nerve endings, more than the human penis or any other part of the human body. It is homologous to the penis (making it the equivalent in its capacity to receive sexual stimulation) and surrounds the vagina somewhat like a horseshoe, with "legs" that extend along the vaginal lips back to the anus. The urethral sponge (an area in which the G-Spot may be found) runs along the "roof" of the vagina, and it can be stimulated through the vagina, but the vagina itself is considered to have little to no mechanism to stimulate pleasure or orgasm for women. Go Ask Alice! reports that although vaginal intercourse may promote a satisfying feeling of fullness or closeness with a sexual partner, the vaginal walls "contain relatively few nerve endings, making intense sexual stimulation, pleasure, and orgasm from vaginal-only penetration unlikely" and that "it's generally only the lower third of the vagina that has enough nerve endings to feel any stimulation at all from a penis, finger, toy, or other penetrative object". Negating clitoral legs, only one part of the clitoris, the urethral sponge, is in contact with the penis, fingers, or a dildo in the vagina. "The tip of the clitoris and the inner lips, which are also very sensitive, are not receiving direct stimulation during intercourse." The G-Spot, a small area behind the female pubic bone surrounding the urethra, is reportedly accessible through the anterior wall of the vagina and may produce orgasm. Such an orgasm is referred to as "vaginal" because it results from stimulation inside the vagina.
The contention that the vagina itself is capable of producing orgasms continues to be subject to debate because of the vagina's low concentration of nerve endings, the G-Spot's location and size being inconsistent or appearing to be nonexistent in some women, and because the G-Spot may be an extension of another structure (such as the Skene's gland or the clitoris, which is a part of the Skene's gland). Masters and Johnson were the first to determine that the clitoral structures surround and extend along and within the labia, and observed that both clitoral and vaginal orgasms had the same stages of physical response. On this basis, they argued that clitoral stimulation is the source of both kinds of orgasms. Likewise, Australian urologist Dr. Helen O'Connell's 2005 discoveries about the size of the clitoris show that clitoral tissue extends considerably inside the vagina, which may invalidate the hypothesis that clitoral and vaginal orgasms are of two separate structures. While some studies, using ultrasound, have found physiological evidence of the G-Spot in women who report having orgasms during intercourse, O'Connell asserts that the clitoris's interconnected relationship with the vagina is the physiological explanation for the conjectured G-Spot and experience of vaginal orgasms, taking into account the stimulation of the internal parts of the clitoris during vaginal penetration. "The vaginal wall is, in fact, the clitoris," said O'Connell. "If you lift the skin off the vagina on the side walls, you get the bulbs of the clitoris—triangular, crescental masses of erectile tissue." O'Connell and her team were already aware that the clitoris is more than just its glans – the "little hill". They reasoned that it is possible that some women have more extensive clitoral tissues and nerves than others, and therefore whereas many women can only achieve orgasm by direct stimulation of the external parts of the clitoris, for others the stimulation of the more generalized tissues of the clitoris via intercourse may be sufficient.
Regular difficulty reaching orgasm after ample sexual stimulation, causing personal distress, is known as anorgasmia. This is significantly more common in women than in men (see below). Dr. Gail Saltz stated, "Women take on average 20 minutes of stimulation and arousal to have an orgasm. Men take quite a bit less. Women also have more variation in what they find to be stimulating as well as having more difficulty defining exactly where and how stimulation works best." Dr. Drew Pinsky added that not only are men and women "wired differently" but "women are wired differently from each other" and that "many times women will feel as though they are flawed because they are not living up to a certain standard of climaxing" and men "make it worse because they generalize what’s needed to make a woman climax. Often men believe women are the same, and once they figure what works for one woman they apply that same method to all the other women they are intimate with, and that’s one of the major problems". Masters and Johnson found that men took about 4 minutes to reach orgasm with their partners. Women took about 10-20 minutes to reach orgasm with their partners, but 4 minutes to reach orgasm when they masturbated. Psychologists and authors Wayne Weiten, Dana S. Dunn and Elizabeth Yost Hammer concluded, "Unfortunately, many couples are locked into the idea that orgasms should be achieved only through intercourse [penetrative vaginal sex]. Even the word foreplay suggests that any other form of sexual stimulation is merely preparation for the 'main event.'... ...Because women reach orgasm through intercourse less consistently than men, they are more likely than men to have faked an orgasm."
Women's orgasms have been estimated to last, on average, approximately 20 seconds, and to consist of a series of muscular contractions in the pelvic area that includes the vagina, the uterus and the anus. For some women, on some occasions, these contractions begin soon after the woman reports that the orgasm has started and continue at intervals of about one second with initially increasing, and then reducing, intensity. In some instances, the series of regular contractions is followed by a few additional contractions or shudders at irregular intervals. In other cases, the woman reports having an orgasm, but no pelvic contractions are measured at all. There are also cases where women, or less often men, either do not have a refractory period or have a significantly short one and thus can experience a second orgasm, or others, soon after the first. Additionally, most women do not experience a refractory period immediately after orgasm, and, in many cases, are capable of attaining additional, multiple orgasms through further stimulation. After the first orgasm, subsequent climaxes may be stronger or more pleasurable as the stimulation accumulates. For some women, the clitoris is very sensitive after climax, making additional stimulation initially painful.
Anal stimulation in both sexes
In both sexes, pleasure can be derived from the nerve endings around the anus and the anus itself, such as during anal sex. It is possible for men to achieve an orgasm through prostate stimulation alone. The prostate is located next to the rectum and is the larger, more developed male homologue to the Skene's glands (which are believed to be connected to the female G-Spot).
"For some men, prostate stimulation produces an orgasm that they describe as 'deeper,' more global and intense, longer-lasting, and associated with greater feelings of ecstasy than orgasm elicited by penile stimulation only." For women, other than nerve endings found within the anus and rectum, anal pleasure may be achieved through clitoral "legs" — extensions of the clitoris stretching along the vaginal lips back to the anus. The G-Spot, considered to be interconnected with the clitoris, may also be accessible through anal penetration; orgasms, other than those derived by clitoral legs, are made possible because only a thin membrane separates the vaginal cavity from the rectal cavity, allowing for indirect stimulation of the clitoris or G-Spot. Only a small percentage of women are able to orgasm from this type of stimulation alone. Direct stimulation of the clitoris, G-Spot, or both, during anal sex can help some women to enjoy the experience and reach orgasm.
The aforementioned orgasms are sometimes referred to as "anal orgasms," but experts generally believe that orgasms derived from anal penetration are the result of the anus's proximity to the clitoris or G-Spot in women, and the prostate in men, rather than orgasms originating from the anus itself. Jack Morin, however, has postulated that "anal orgasm" has nothing to do with the prostate orgasm, although the two are often confused.
Breast and nipple stimulation in both sexes
In some women, stimulation of the breast area during sexual intercourse and foreplay, or just the simple act of having their breasts fondled, creates mild to intense orgasms. Research has suggested that the sensations are genital orgasms caused by nipple stimulation, and may also be directly linked to "the genital area of the brain". Though at least one account has suggested that the orgasms radiate from the breasts. An orgasm is believed to occur in part because of the hormone oxytocin, which is produced in the body during sexual excitement and arousal. It has also been shown that oxytocin is produced when a man or woman's nipples are stimulated and become erect.
A study published in the July 2011 Journal of Sexual Medicine was the first to map the female genitals onto the sensory portion of the brain, and concluded that sensation from the nipples travels to the same part of the brain as sensations from the vagina, clitoris and cervix. "Four major nerves bring signals from women's genitals to their brains," said researcher Barry Komisaruk of Rutgers University. "The pudendal nerve connects the clitoris, the pelvic nerve carries signals from the vagina, the hypogastric nerve connects with the cervix and uterus, and the vagus nerve travels from the cervix and uterus without passing through the spinal cord (making it possible for some women to achieve orgasm even though they have had complete spinal cord injuries)." Komisaruk cited one reason for this possibility to be oxytocin, which is also released during labor and triggers uterus contractions. Nipple stimulation triggers uterine contractions, which then produce a sensation in the genital area of the brain. Komisaruk also relayed, however, that preliminary data suggests that nipple nerves may directly link up with the brain, skipping the uterine middleman, acknowledging the men in his study who showed the same pattern of nipple stimulation activating genital brain regions.
Most women do not experience this effect when the breasts are stimulated. According to one study that questioned 213 women, 29% of them had experienced an orgasm of this kind at one time or another. Other researchers have reported the incidence to be 1%.
Women and girls masturbate in an endless list of ways. Common methods are, massaging of the clitoris with hands and fingers, rubbing the vulva up against pillows, bed cloths, stuffed animals and furniture, etc. The vagina appears to play a limited role in the masturbation practices of women, but vaginal penetration during masturbation is by no means unusual or uncommon. Some women employ anal and/or nipple stimulation in addition to clitoral and vaginal stimulation.
It is important to understand that there is no "correct" or "right" way to masturbate. Some women feel they should be able to masturbate to orgasm using a different or more correct method because they hear other women do it that way. It is important to keep in mind that each woman's anatomy is slightly different and her psychological makeup is quite different. This results in every woman masturbating differently, even if they use the same basic technique. While some women can masturbate to orgasm employing several different techniques, others find they can reach orgasm only when they use the same method each time. There is nothing wrong with this. Due to conditioning and the differences in women's bodies, learning new techniques for some can be difficult. If you are orgasmic with your current masturbation technique, feel free to experiment, but do not feel you have to reach orgasm in other ways. Remember, masturbation is supposed to be fun and enjoyable, no matter how you do it.
Here are some tips for the beginner - or anyone looking to improve their repertoire:
When you have relaxed your body lie on a bed, or sit in a comfortable chair, and explore your nude or semi-nude body. Run your fingers and hands across your body. Explore your breasts and play with your nipples; caress your legs and thighs. Cup your vulva in your hand and gently rub in small circles. Stimulate your body, but do not try to reach orgasm. Make yourself feel good. If you feel yourself get tense, stop what you are doing, breath deeply and relax. Do this exercise as often as possible, but for no longer than 20 minutes per session. Do not tire or stress yourself out. The point of this exercise is to make you feel good while staying relaxed, not to have an orgasm. You want to feel a little aroused, but at peace - not compelled to go further.
After you become comfortable exploring and touching your body you will want to try more direct means of stimulating your vulva. Slip your fingers between the folds of your vulva and massage and play with your inner labia, perhaps pulling on them lightly or firmly. Slip your fingers up to the top of your vulva and place them on top of your clitoris. Gently move your fingers up and down, around, and perhaps even wildly jiggle them. Make the loose tissue covering your clitoris slide across the body and glans of your clitoris. If you feel a need to be filled, insert a finger or two into your vagina. You want to make yourself feel really good, but you do not want to intentionally try to have an orgasm. If an orgasm occurs, you want it to be a total surprise. If you are thinking about having an orgasm, you need to slow down, relax, and redirect your thoughts. You do not want your brain to know you are about to have an orgasm.
You may not experience orgasm the first few times, so do not try to. Just enjoy the pleasures of touching yourself. If you get to a point where you suddenly find your body is super-tense, you are trying too hard. Try to enjoy yourself, not orgasm. You want to surprise yourself with an orgasm. If you feel yourself on the verge of orgasm, but cannot get there, you are probably trying too hard; you cannot force your body to have an orgasm. The more you concentrate on trying to have an orgasm, the less likely you are to have one.
Using your hands and fingers, stimulate (rub, stroke, pinch, etc) the clitoris with one or more fingers or the palm of your hand. Some find direct contact with the clitoris too intense, and prefer stimulation near or around the clitoris. Others prefer to have a layer of clothing or some other fabric between the hand and clitoris. Try it both ways and see what works best for you.
Inserting a vibrator or dildo into the vagina can help locate and stimulate your G-spot and offers a feeling of fullness in the vagina. You can locate your G-spot with your fingers, but it's difficult to provide adequate stimulation through manual masturbation. Women who enjoy stimulation of the G-spot usually employ sexual toys to make it easier and more enjoyable.
Vibrators are used primarily for clitoral stimulation, though many women also use them for vaginal or anal stimulation. They also may be combined with other toys and used in any number of positions. A good, discrete alternative to a vibrator for clitoral or anal stimulation is a massage wand. However, massage wands cannot be used for vaginal or anal penetration.
Common, Everyday Objects
Rub your clitoris against any soft, non-abrasive object (e.g., a pillow, the corner of a couch, etc.) and see if you enjoy the stimulation it provides.
A detachable shower-head can be quite scintillating for just about any woman. The best shower available is the ones with the versatile control that switches the water from a steady stream to a pulsating jet spray. In hot tubs, avoid sending strong streams of water into the vagina; in extreme cases this can cause fatal air embolism!
- Penetrative vibrators usually measure twelve to eighteen cm (five to seven inches) in length and two to five cm (one to two inches) wide often to mimic the size of the average penis.
- Anal vibrators are designed to be inserted into the rectum to pleasure the prostate in men and give a feeling of fullness to women.
- The G-spot vibrator is curved at one end to facilitate stimulation of the female G-spot. Some are small and can fit on to a finger.
- Bullet vibrators are small, bullet-shaped vibrators that can be used for direct stimulation or inserted into other sex toys to increase stimulation.
- Vibrator wands, such as the Hitachi Magic Wand, are large vibrators that generally plug into a wall (versus operating on battery power) and are marketed as back massagers. They are typically used for clitoral stimulation.
- The rabbit vibrator, of which there are several variations, is a popular female sex toy popularized by the television series Sex and the City. It comprises an insertable shaft which often has additional functionality, such as rotation and internal beads or a thrusting action. Attached to the shaft is a vibrating clitoral stimulator. For most rabbit vibrators this comes in the form of "bunny ears" which sit each side of the clitoris.
- Luxury vibrators have an increased focus on design and the use of expensive materials that appeal to a more upscale fashion market.
Glass sex toys
Glass sex toys are commonly made from clear medical grade borosilicate glass ("hard glass"), which is non-toxic and will withstand extreme temperatures as well as physical shock without compromising its structural integrity. The choice of this material provides safety in use and the option to heat or chill the toys. It is also non-porous and can be sterilized to help prevent infection with reuse. Apart from their practical qualities, a main selling point of glass sex toys is their visual appeal.
- A nipple clamp is a clamp used to stimulate the nipples by applying varying degrees of pressure.
- Suction devices are generally either rubber or glass, fit around the nipple, and cause nipples to become more sensitive due to engorgement. Glass suction devices may use either heat or a pump to create suction.
- Butt plugs are often shorter dildos intended for anal insertion. They tend to have a flared base to prevent the device from becoming lodged in the rectum.
- Butt plugs are usually used covered by condoms for hygiene, and to allow for the easy disposal of any feces that they may come in contact with. They should not be shared with other people, due to the risk of blood-borne diseases, including HIV that can arise from the transfer of body fluids from one person to another. These should also never be used to stimulate any area other than the rectum, though they often are.
- Prostate massagers are devices designed to stimulate a man's prostate for health and pleasure.
- Anal beads are a sex toy consisting of multiple spheres or balls attached together in series which are continuously inserted through the anus into the rectum and then removed with varying speeds depending on the effect desired (most typically at orgasm to enhance climax). Those who use anal beads enjoy the pleasurable feeling they receive as the ball passes through the narrow sphincter of the anus.
General Penetrative Toys
- A dildo is a non-vibrating device which is used for sexual stimulation of the vagina and/or anus. Dildos are generally made of silicone rubber, but can be made of other materials such as metals or glass. They are often made to resemble a penis.
- A double penetration dildo is a long, usually flexible dildo with both ends designed for penetration. It allows for mutual penetration between two persons (or for double penetration of a single female, both anally and vaginally).
- Ben Wa balls are hollow metal balls inserted vaginally which can be worn inside the vagina for extended periods of time. The internal rolling is claimed to enhance orgasms.
- Kegel exerciser, also known as vaginal barbells or jugglers are designed to improve muscle tone in the pelvic floor, and can be used for sexual pleasure as well as enhancing vaginal response.
- A horseshoe is a non-vibrating sex toy which is shaped similar to a horseshoe, which is put into the vagina and anus at the same time. It is made with softer plastics.
- A sex-machine is a motor-driven device that combines penetration with rotational and/or reciprocal movement.
Erotic furniture is furniture specially shaped for comfort, penetration levels, and stimulation.
Benefits of Kegel exercises</a>
Kegel exercises strengthen some of the muscles that control the flow of urine. Doctors often prescribe Kegel exercises for people who have bladder control problems (urinary incontinence).
Kegel exercises are also called pelvic floor exercises because they treat and prevent pelvic floor weakness. The pelvic floor is a "hammock" of muscles that hold the pelvic organs in place.
In women, Kegel exercises are helpful for those who have stress incontinence or uterine prolapse.
During pregnancy and delivery, the pelvic floor can become stretched and weakened, commonly causing urine control problems for months to years after childbirth. A weakened pelvic floor can also allow one or more pelvic organs to sag (uterine prolapse). If you are pregnant, start doing daily Kegels and continue them after having your baby.
In men, Kegel exercises are used to treat stress incontinence and urge incontinence, a need to urinate that is so strong that you cannot reach the toilet in time.
Performing Kegel exercises
- Kegel exercises are easy to do and can be done anywhere without anyone knowing.
- First, as you are sitting or lying down, try to contract the muscles you would use to stop urinating. You should feel your pelvic muscles squeezing your urethra and anus. If your stomach or buttocks muscles tighten, you are not exercising the right muscles.
- When you've found the right way to contract the pelvic muscles, squeeze for 3 seconds and then relax for 3 seconds.
- Repeat this exercise 10 to 15 times per session. Try to do this at least 3 times a day. Kegel exercises are only effective when done regularly. The more you exercise, the more likely it is that the exercises will help.
- Your doctor may want you to try doing your exercises with biofeedback to make sure you are doing them right. Biofeedback allows you to see, feel, or hear when an exercise is being performed correctly.
As the pelvic floor muscles are the muscles that that surround the vaginal opening and contract rhythmically during orgasm (in both males and females) it is not surprising that sex therapists have emphasized the importance of these muscles as playing a major role in the orgasmic response.
In 1952, Dr. Kegel published a report in which he claimed that the women doing his exercises were becoming more easily, more frequently and more intensely orgasmic. Thirty years after Dr. Kegel's article, sex therapist Bryce Britton wrote a book titled "The Love Muscle," calling her publication "Every Woman's Guide to Intensifying Sexual Pleasure." There is controversy over the precise effects of the PC muscle on orgasmic response but certain benefits of a strong pelvic floor are well accepted.
A fitter, well-toned pelvic floor will almost certainly increase sexual pleasure for you and your partner and it can dramatically improve your sexual confidence. The physiological reasons for the improvement go far beyond the increased tactile sensations resulting from a tighter vagina.
Kegel exercises create an increase in pelvic vascularity which means more blood flow and more veins in the pelvic region. This will increase your awareness of the clitoral and vaginal sensations that lead to orgasm. Any stronger muscle will contract more powerfully than would a flabby muscle, and hence the likelihood of stronger orgasms is much higher with stronger PC muscles.
In a study of the effects of Kegel's exercises on sexual arousal researchers measured both women's own assessment of how aroused they felt and the the physical changes in vasoconstriction of the vagina. The study showed that vaginal contractions enhanced both the women's subjective ratings and clinical measures of their arousal. 1
With regular kegel exercise many women report being able to experience vaginal orgasm for the first time. Women also report more intense and more frequent multiple and g-spot orgasms. We can also reveal with confidence that some women squeeze their pelvic muscles, forcing blood down into their genital tissue, and in so doing turn themselves on. As Germaine Greer writes, some women are even able to bring themselves to orgasm exclusively with voluntary pelvic floor contractions. “You can masturbate no hands. This ability is not so much skill in controlling as a liberation of muscles repressed since infancy.”2 Read more on kegels and clitoral stimulation.
As Germaine also points out, you can undoubtedly add novelty and pleasure to your love making by squeezing your well-toned vaginal sphincter around your partner's penis. This will be fun for both giver and receiver!
But probably the most important thing about doing Kegel exercises is that you will become more familiar with your pelvis and more likely to take ownership of your internal and external genitalia. You will strengthen the muscles that contract during orgasm, and you are making an important investment in lifelong urinary control. Is it a major component in a becoming orgasmic? The jury is still out on that one but it is certainly something non-orgasmic women should include in their quest for the "Big O."
Kegels, Orgasms, and You
- Axillary intercourse: (slang: "bagpiping", in reference to the underarm manner in which bagpipes are played; "directing traffic", or "pit-wank", a variant of the term "tit-wank", are also terms for axillary intercourse) a sexual variant where the penis is inserted in the other person's armpit.
- Erotic massage: rubbing all over, with or without oil.
- Footjob: stimulating genitals with the feet.
- Frot: penis-to-penis rubbing.
- Handjob: stimulating the penis with the hand.
- Intercrural sex: (also known as interfemoral intercourse) type of irrumation, where one partner places a phallic object or penis between the other partner's thighs.
- Intergluteal sex: when one partner places a phallic object or penis into the other partner's buttock cleavage or gluteal cleft.
- Mammary intercourse: when one partner rubs a phallic object or penis between the partner's breasts.
- Stimulation of nipples: stimulating the nipples, usually orally or manually.
- Sumata: type of stimulation of male genitals popular in Japanese brothels: the woman rubs the man's penis with her hands, thighs and labia majora.
- Tribadism: vulva-to-vulva rubbing, commonly known by its "scissoring" position.
- Fingering: stimulating the vagina or anus with the fingers.
- Oral sex: stimulation of the genitalia by the use of mouth, lips, tongue, teeth or throat.
Mutual masturbation is a sexual act where two or more people stimulate themselves or one another (also called manual intercourse) sexually, usually with the hands. This may be done in situations where the participants do not feel ready, physically able, socially at liberty, or simply willing to have full sexual intercourse but still wish to have a mutual sexual act. It is also done as part of the full repertoire of sexual intercourse, where it may be used as an interlude, as foreplay or simply as an alternative to penetration. For some, it is the primary sexual activity of choice above all others. It enables the individuals to see face to face and leaves the hands free to caress, as seen in frottage.
Mutual masturbation can be practiced by those of all sexual orientations. If used as an alternative to penile-vaginal penetration, the aim may be to preserve virginity or to prevent pregnancy. Some may choose it because it achieves sexual satisfaction without penetration, possibly seeing it as an alternative to casual sex.
The techniques of mutual masturbation resemble those of simple masturbation, with the exception that other persons are involved. The range of participation can be as simple as two participants masturbating in the same room at the same time without any physical contact to a group of people all stimulating one another. In the case of two participants, one partner may stimulate the other, each partner may stimulate the other or themselves, or one may stimulate both themself and their partner.
Mutual masturbation might result in one or more of the partners achieving orgasm. If no bodily fluids are exchanged (as is common), mutual masturbation is a form of safer sex, and greatly reduces the risk of transmission of sexual diseases. As such, it was encouraged among gay men by some safer sex organizations in the wake of the AIDS outbreak of the 1980s, as an alternative to anal or oral sex.
Cunnilingus is an oral sex act performed on a female. It involves the use by a sex partner of the mouth, lips and tongue to stimulate the female's clitoris, vulva, or vagina. A female may receive cunnilingus as part of foreplay before sexual intercourse, during intercourse, or as intercourse.
The term is derived from the Latin words for the vulva (cunnus) and tongue (lingua).
As in all human sexual behavior, both the techniques used in cunnilingus and individual responses to them are varied.
The clitoris is the most sexually sensitive erogenous zone for most women, but may be too sensitive to pleasantly stimulate directly at times, especially in early stages of arousal. Author Shere Hite notes in The Hite Report that most women achieve orgasm easily from clitoral stimulation as part of cunnilingus. Some sex manuals recommend beginning with a gentler, less focused stimulation of the labia and the whole genital area. The tip, blade, or underside of the tongue may be used, as can the nose, chin, teeth and lips. Movements can be slow or fast, regular or erratic, firm or soft, according to the participants' preferences. The tongue can be inserted into the vagina, either stiffened or moving. The performing partner may also hum to produce vibration.
Cunnilingus may be accompanied by the insertion of finger(s) or a sex toy into the vagina, which allows for the simultaneous stimulation of the g-spot, and/or into the anus.
Anilingus (from anus + lingus (Latin Lingere: to lick), also spelled analingus, also referred to or described as anal–oral contact or anal–oral sex, is a form of oral sex involving contact between the anus or perineum of one person and the mouth (lips) or tongue of another. Slang terms frequently used are rimming or rim-job.
Sexual penetration is a sexual activity that involves the entry into a bodily orifice, such as the vagina, anus or mouth, with a body part or an object.
When a penis penetrates a woman's vagina, it is called vaginal or sexual intercourse; when a penis penetrates another's anus, it is called anal intercourse. Penetration of the mouth by a penis is called fellatio. Penetration of the vagina by the tongue of another is one of several forms of cunnilingus. If one or more fingers are used to penetrate an orifice, it is called digital penetration. Penetration of an orifice with an object, such as a dildo, vibrator or other sex toy may also be referred to as sexual penetration, but not usually referred to as sexual intercourse. The use of a tongue for penetration is a form of oral sex, although oral sex may also occur without either the tongue entering any orifice, or any object entering the mouth.
Acts involving sexual penetration are often portrayed pornographic films. This may include double penetration, where one person is simultaneously penetrated in multiple orifices, by two partners.
Cunnilingus Facts and How to Go Down on a Woman
Cunninlingus I: The Basics
Abstinence and Outercourse
Outercourse: Dry Humping, Dry Sex and Other Sexual Behaviors
Planned Parenthood: Outercourse as Birth Control
Teen Dating: Outercourse
Additional Links + Mod Notes
Lovers with Disabilities Become Liberated with Tantric Sex
Sexuality and Intellectual Disabilities
Sexuality and People With Disabilities: What Experts Often Are Not Aware Of - English/Swedish
Sexuality Education for Youth with Disability or Chronic Illness Resource List
* This post will probably have a Part 2. I'll make an official thread within the post for suggestions on what Part 2 should contain. All suggestions will be considered by I can't promise that they'll make the post... unless of course there are so many that we need a Part 3...
** Ideas: Partner communication, exploring sexuality following trauma, teen sexuality, elder sexuality, menopause, cultural explorations of sexuality beyond the Western bubble, people with disabilities and sexuality, etc. (.... Oh look, more stuff to add to the calendar!)
*** I'd love to add more pictures to the post but most image hosting sites have a conniption if you post anything mildly sex-related, so if you guys know of any places that allow more risque images to be hosted, please shoot them my way! I had to edit the post this morning because a lot of the images I'd uploaded last night were deleted D:
Thanks: roseofjuly, koken23, and chaya for assisting in the organization and image searching of this post!
And special thanks to rihannagifs for basically everything ;)
Official Threads: Part 2 Topic Suggestions, Sex Shop Recommendation Links, International Links