The week I've been working so hard for has finally arrived. I have been working on getting my official licensure here in the state of Pennsylvania, and I have my test this weekend on 12 June. Soon after, I will be pursuing my residency, and eventually will have an actual office for in-person appointments. We also have a show coming up on the podcast on Wednesday this week, which I am super excited to share with you. To top it all off, my kids are officially done with school today, so the summer season has officially begun. As you can tell, life, as usual, is moving at a frenetic pace.
This week, since it has been a topic that has come up quite frequently in conversations, I wanted to focus on oral sex. While many times oral sex gets relegated to the realm of foreplay-only activity, there are also many times when oral is very much the main event. With that in mind, shouldn't we aim to make sure it is just as exciting and pleasurable an experience as actual intercourse? If you have never tried oral sex or get grossed out or have shame regarding the idea of it, I hope that today's blog will give you some new insights into it and encourage you to give it another try.
I would like to touch on two things before we get started. Number one, the best oral is done with enthusiasm, because the person giving it is truly and completely wanting to give. This goes hand in hand, with number two: that if someone tells you they want to give you oral, take them at their word. I know for vulva owners especially, we are taught not to enjoy it, or to think we'll smell or taste weird. If your partner is enthusiastically wanting to go down on you, believe that they want to be there. If relaxing and enjoying it does not come easy to you, perhaps try a blindfold or some tantric meditation practices before you begin. Doing so will help you be more in the moment and focus on the sensations and not be in your head. Another technique would be to set a timer, and try to just relax into it for those 5 minutes or so, and if after that amount of time you still can not relax and enjoy it, you can stop. No shame, no judgement, and feel free to try again another time.
#1 Going Down on a Vulva
The key thing to note about vulva owners, is no vulva is like another. The clitoris could be a bit higher or lower, and also smaller or larger. The outer lips may be smaller than the inner lips, or vice versa. Not to mention due to traumas of many kinds, both physical and emotional, the pleasure responses of the vulva vary wildly between people. Suffice it to say, that while this article shares a lot of great tips, the best tip is to not be afraid to try new things with your partner and to get their feedback. One person may love having their clitoris sucked, while another may only be able to withstand the gentlest of licks to the clitoris. Perhaps one person loves having her labia nibbled, whereas another wants very firm, long tongue strokes. Open lines of communication between partners, about what is and is not working is essential when talking about oral.
#2 Going Down on a Penis
Just as with vulva owners, personal preference as far as how oral is done will differ from each person with a penis. This article clearly states up front, no teeth, but it may shock you that for some that is a turn-on. This is where that all important communication comes in. Also, I want to take this moment to talk about penis-owner grooming habits. So often it is expected of vulva owners to shave or wax their nether regions, but what about penis owners? I encourage partners to have discussions about their personal grooming preferences when it comes to their partners, especially when it comes to going down on their partner. If you like a clean shaven shaft and balls, ask for it; your partner might surprise you with their enthusiastic response. Also, for penis owners who are hesitant to do some grooming down below, just think about the sensations of direct mouth-to-skin, or possible skin-to-skin contact when you are free of hair.
#3 Oral Sex Safety
Many people are taught or belive incorrect information when it comes to oral sex and sexually transmitted infection (STI) risk. Oral sex is a form of fluid bonding, which means you are just as capable of getting and STI from oral sex as you are from penetrative sex. This article from healthline provides a lot of great information about how to have safe oral sex, and also how to navigate the difficult conversations of oral sex safety. These conversations shouldn't be difficult or uncomfortable, and should just be another part of normals sexual experiences with partners, but unfortunately, that is not always the case in our culture. Regardless, you should never feel pressured or coerced to perform oral sex without some sort of barrier in place, especially if you do not know the STI status of your partner.
As Dr. Emily Morse loves to point out again and again, one of the most important keys to good oral sex is enthusiasm. The flavored lubes can be a total game changer when it comes to oral sex, especially if it's something you are still getting use to. The company JO has a ton of flavors to choose from, too. Perhaps these are your cup of tea, there are tons of other great flavored lubes on the market nowadays. **A word of caution, though, that occasionally a lube will include glucose. Glucose, if it gets inside of a vagina can cause yeast infections. So be sure that you get a lube that does not have glucose in it.
Perhaps you do not have a current partner to perform oral on you. If that is the case, perhaps it is time to go toy shopping. For vulva owners especially there are a lot of products out there that can simulate the oral sex experience. The technology is not quite there for penis owners, yet, but there are still toys and options for them, too. If you need help finding a new toy, please feel free to reach out, I would love to help you shop for the perfect toy.