All Articles Tagged "sex"

Want To Have Sex With No Strings Attached? Avoid “Nipple Play”

August 26th, 2016 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
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You’ve probably already dismissed this article by its title alone and, listen, we don’t blame you. We have no intention of giving up “nipple play” anytime soon. But we also know plenty of ladies who find themselves (seemingly) inexplicably) attached to their lovers, who they sometimes don’t even like, after a simple romp in the hay and they’d very much like that to stop. If you’ve found yourself in that position one too many times, listen to this advice from Larry Young, a researcher from Emory University, who spoke to Broadly about the way the human brain produces oxytocin and vasopressin receptors when humans indulge  in the splendor of sex.

As it turns out, breast and cervical stimulation makes women release heavy doses of oxytocin; thus we become increasingly attached to sexual partners who touch us in these hot spots.

“Humans are the only species where men have adopted the strategy of breast stimulation during sex to stimulate oxytocin release,” Young explained. The breast has become in humans a point of sexual attraction and foreplay. It’s a way to activate the oxytocin system, coaxing the female’s brain to become attached to the sexual partner.”

When we tend to cling to our sexual partners, it’s because our human evolutionary makeup is wired for romantic attachment, which is said to help partners “develop a bond so they could work together to raise healthy offspring,” Young added. But in this day and age of random hooking up and casual rendezvous, Young suggests one other thing that might help you “bounce to the next d-ck” a little more easily: avoid eye contact during sex.

“When you’re having sex with someone you’re making an intimate connection with their face and eyes particularly. This is going into your brain, and it’s inherently rewarding. Love and attachment are very much like addiction. They have a lot of the same chemicals. So if you can divert that information from coming in by not having that eye contact, that will help.”

Noted, thanks.

Learn more about women bio-hacking their way out of emotional attachment from Dr. Young’s entire conversation with  Broadly.

Do Gender Roles Apply In Your Bedroom?

August 23rd, 2016 - By Theresa Ukpo
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It’s a Monday morning, and I’m on my usual hour-long odyssey to get to work. On this particular morning I forgot my headphones, and while navigating planes, trains and automobiles, I happened to overhear a conversation by two men about the presidential candidates, specifically, Hillary Clinton. From what I gathered, there was a quip shared that went exactly like this: “Bill must be getting plugged now that his wife is about to become commander in chief.”  They went on and on about the roles being reversed in their relationship, and that Bill was now “Hillary’s b—h.” It was the most ignorant of conversations, and yet, it got me thinking about perceived gender roles and the manner in which we address them — particularly when it comes to sex.

I’m of the belief that anything goes in the bedroom as long as it’s consensual, safe, and both parties enjoy whatever is going on. But I do wonder about gender roles when it comes to sex and how many of us trap ourselves based on what we do and don’t perceive to be feminine and masculine. I’ve had many a conversation with girlfriends about spicing it up in the bedroom and asked if they’ve tried a few different positions with their partners. When I mention anal play, it tends to be to the chagrin of a lot of them. The general feeling about such foreplay is that it’s not “manly” for a guy to receive pleasure in that area. And just like that, one’s sexuality is questioned.

There is a huge misconception that if you are a heterosexual man, certain kinds of foreplay, penetration and positions are less manly than others. It plays on this annoying hypermasculine archetype that society has put in place. Things like nipple biting, prostate stimulation or even something as simple as a butt grab can be taken the wrong way. A friend of mine laughs at me because I have a whole series of interview-style questions I pose to guys I date about this. Inquiring minds need to know, and I’d rather know upfront what I’m able to do and can’t do in a relationship, as it serves as a good gauge of fluidity when things get boring. Let’s be honest, when you’ve been with your partner for a while, you can start to tell how the lovemaking will go and things may need to be livened up every now and then.

I remember a guy I recently dated being adamant about me not touching his backside. He told me that I was doing too much and that it wasn’t “manly.” So I started asking questions. The topic of handcuffs came up and he made it very clear that they were not to be used on him because “bad man nuh do that.” An ex from many years ago even came pretty close to putting his hands on me because I got a little too close to his perineum. Recently, we reconnected (not romantically), and I asked what the issue was at that time. He drove home the point that he’s Caribbean and his general upbringing hammered down the idea that the man is always in a dominant position, especially when it comes to sex — never submissive. And a girlfriend of mine said she couldn’t entertain the idea of “pegging” her now ex-boyfriend. He asked her to do so and she felt it was “suspect” behavior, so she broke up with him.

I was not aware that the idea of being receptive and submissive to pleasure from another person was solely a feminine trait. If you think about it, that’s the way we’ve been taught about how this whole rodeo goes. If a man receives pleasure orally for example, it’s usually from a place of “dominance.” He’s looking down on the giver. And some men won’t even perform oral sex (kneeling or otherwise) because it implies submission.

I say all that to say this: When it comes to sex and intimacy, all bets should be off in the name of pleasure. How can you be uninhibited if you’re so focused on keeping up with gender roles in the bedroom? If you’re at the point where you’re being physically intimate with another human being, there should be some mutual trust and an allowance for vulnerability. There really shouldn’t be a fear of being perceived as less masculine or feminine (a.k.a., “butch” for women) or perceived as showing “suspect” behavior if you want to reverse roles and try something new. If there is, just know that things are likely to get as stale as Wonder Bread sooner than later.

To the men out there, are there things you won’t do in bed because you feel it emasculates you? Ladies, would you think of your partner as less “manly” if he wanted to take on a more submissive role sexually?

Is This Petty? I Caught My Husband Wearing Lingerie

August 19th, 2016 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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If you came home from work one day and found your significant other walking around in a pair of your underwear, how would you react? Would it be immediate grounds for the dismissal of your relationship? Or could you go with the flow as long as he kept this practice within the confines of your home?

As shocking as such a discovery might sound, it’s more common than you would think.

“I’ve been married for 12 years to a man I love. Some time ago, I discovered by accident that he likes to wear women’s lingerie,” a woman shared in the UK’s Independent.

“I arrived home early one night to discover him in some of mine, and was very taken aback. Initially, he said he was just experimenting, and was a bit embarrassed. I didn’t believe him, and challenged him to tell me how much and how often – and eventually he admitted it was something he’d been doing for some time in secret.”

As the woman would go on to say, when he showed her how he looked in a pair of her tights, she had to admit that he didn’t look so odd after all. She “reluctantly agreed” to bear with his lingerie fixation on the grounds that he never tell anyone about it or “overdo” it. She found that his “heightened arousal” actually improved their sex life (which seems to be the familiar result — more on that later). But once he started asking her to pick up some new lingerie for him in specific colors and styles, she became uncomfortable.

She ended up wondering if his fascination with women’s lingerie, a.k.a., cross-dressing, was something that would pass or if it would become something that could no longer be hidden. For her, she was more worried about others finding out about his love of lingerie over time than anything else.

As I scrolled through the Internet, from Dear Wendy pages to The Experience Project, I came across more and more women who were trying to figure out what to do about their husbands wearing their panties and pantyhose. And one of the women giving advice actually said that women should try and be open-minded, and that such kinks, as she called them, could improve their relationships.

“If you can reserve judgment and just listen to his explanation with an open heart, hopefully your husband will trust you enough to share his feelings and you will find that this is really nothing more than a kink — and a pretty harmless one at that — and doesn’t have to have a negative effect on your marriage. It could even have a positive effect.”

One man, in the comment section, even admitted to doing it and also said that it improved his sex life with his girlfriend: “I am a guy who wears panties everyday. MY girfriend [sic] was frist [sic] freaked now she buys me nightgowns, and panties she loves me in stockings, We have an AMAZING love life
Be open, guys like soft things to [sic]. I am a guy who ride [sic] Motorcycles, plays sports and a manly man >> no one but me knows whats underneath”

Reading such accounts left me wondering what those around me would do if they caught their spouse in women’s underwear, specifically their own. The consensus? A pretty contorted face. One of my girlfriends did say she might make it work if they were married and had been together for quite some time (“Like 30 years…”). Another emphatically said she couldn’t accept it.

“I just don’t like the idea of a man being very feminine,” she said. “I don’t even wear silk slips, what I look like coming in and you’re wearing one? Plus, it’s a slippery slope into other things. If you want to dress up like a woman, where do we go from there?”

But is it? Experts remind us that cross-dressing, being homosexual, and even being trans, are not the same things. As the man above pointed out, he could appreciate women’s underwear but still be a “manly man.” And a man could wear your stockings and drawls and very likely do so without finding himself sexually attracted to the same sex or, as “Dear Wendy” put it, “feeling like he’s a woman in a man’s body.”

Still, I don’t know what I would do. Some kinks really are harmless, but I feel like such a discovery would make me more uncomfortable rather than open-minded. But at the same time, you telling your partner that you don’t want them to do such things probably won’t keep them from looking through your lingerie when you’re not home. If they’re passionate enough about it, it’s going to happen. It’s all about what you truly feel you can deal with and what things are just a little too outside of the box for you. And I’m sorry, but me seeing my significant other in my underwear as he changes out of his work clothes every day would just be a little too much for me, child…

But as always, that’s just my opinion. What say you? Is a man in women’s underwear a harmless kink or something you couldn’t see past? 

Tantric Sex 101

August 18th, 2016 - By Nneka Samuel
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“I’m in between sheets tryin’ to have sex that’s tantric.” – Common

What do you know, or what do you think you know about tantric sex? Maybe you think it’s something that hippies, hipsters, yogis and like-minded individuals flock to. Or maybe you think tantric sex is a long, drawn-out process that’s unrealistic in today’s busy, always on the go world.

The ancient Indian tradition, whether applied to yoga, massage or sex, is meant to foster deeper connections with the physical and spiritual self. An intimate merging of the mind, body and soul. Those who practice and teach tantric sex claim that knowing how to channel your sexual energy can lead to more creative, productive and fulfilled living. And of course, better sex. Here are some of the basics to help get you started.

He Didn’t Make The Cut: Can You Ever Ask A Grown Man To Get Circumcised?

August 15th, 2016 - By Theresa Ukpo
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I’m sure most of us aren’t strangers to the latest news cycle of celebrity penis reveals, or as I call it – penisgate. In talking to some friends about such leaks and unveilings from numerous celebrities, our conversation revolved around penis aesthetics and preferences. Specifically, circumcised vs. uncircumcised men.

I’m pretty liberal when it comes to this and am of the school of thought that says a penis is a penis. Surprisingly, some of my friends don’t subscribe to this way of thinking.  A few of them expressed that they would rather not deal with a man who was uncircumcised with reasons ranging from the lack of aesthetic appeal to a perceived lack of cleanliness. One even went as far as to say that it would be a deal breaker. I found it hard to believe that a great guy could be let go of solely on the basis of what his privates look like. That’s almost like someone dismissing you because of an especially large labia.

As far-fetched as this is, this sentiment is relatively commonplace. I’ve come across forums on the topic, filled with a lot of bad and incorrect information on circumcision and women who have admitted to leaving a guy because they didn’t feel comfortable with his genitals. Some have even asked their partners to consider foreskin removal surgery. Now, I’m all for having preferences and speaking up when it comes to your sexual needs and wants. However, I draw the line at asking someone to have surgery for your comfort. The idea of asking a grown man to rearrange his anatomy to fit some aesthetic mold that society (via porn and old wives’ tales on cleanliness) has imprinted on us is really a sign of the fickle times we are in. Whatever happened to accepting people just as they are?

In having these conversations, it brought me back to an old episode of Sex and the City that has never sat well with me, as well as my own dating history. In one particular episode, Charlotte was seeing a guy who was not a fan of his natural self, so much so that he decided to get an otherwise elective surgery as the consistent feedback he was getting from women was repulsion. As for myself, I dated a guy in my early 20s who happened to be uncircumcised. He had mentioned to me that he was seriously thinking of getting surgery. He’d been turned down by women on multiple occasions who felt his genitals weren’t attractive. I could tell that this weighed heavily on his self-esteem and I did everything I could to provide some positive reinforcement in that regard. To me, it was important to do so. This is no different than the subliminal (and sometimes outright) pressure that women receive that says you have to have a large derriere and bosom in order to be considered sexually attractive. These sorts of message play on the confidence of a lot of men and women alike and usually tend to spur a lot of self-deprecation.

At the end of the day, we as women are allowed to dictate what we want sexually, and I for one will always champion that. However, having a preference when it comes to the look of someone’s anatomy, so much so that anything else is considered a deal breaker, is pretty cold.

How do you guys feel about this? Would you let a good guy go over aesthetics? Are uncircumcised penises that big of a deal?

Who Should Pay For Plan B After Unprotected Sex — The Man Or The Woman?

August 12th, 2016 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
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Last week we reported on how many times a woman should take Plan B; today we’re discussing how many times she should pay for it. Or better yet, should a man pay for the morning-after pill for a woman after they’ve had unprotected sex or when the condom breaks?

According to XO Jane writer Sarah Sahagian, they should, and if they don’t, dump ‘em!

In her think piece, “Why You Should Dump Any Guy Who Won’t Pay For Your Plan- B,” Sarah claims that if a man you’re dating doesn’t pay or even offer to pay for the pill, he is and will never be the man for you. “Why is it so important a guy pony up the cash for your Plan B needs? Well, emergency contraception, while sometimes necessary, can be unpleasant to take (although likely less unpleasant than an unwanted pregnancy would be). It causes cramping and breakthrough bleeding, and, in many of my friends’ experiences, it can mess up your menstrual cycle for months. If you have to go through all that physical suffering just to avoid a pregnancy neither of you desire, the least a guy can do is shell out the $10 to $70 it takes to buy the pill, depending on where you are,” she writes.

Sarah based this belief on a relationship she had during her mid-twenties when her significant other of five months traveled with her to the pharmacy, but instead of reviewing the different types of Plan B options, he wandered around the store, shopping for granola bars. “I guess he figured he might as well kill two birds with one shopping trip? Why not load up on groceries for next week while I was busy preventing the birth of his firstborn child,” Sarah said of his behavior.

As she recounted many other events that lead to the demise of their relationship, Sarah shared that the experience in the pharmacy that day taught her to do one thing: create the “Plan B Relationship Test.”

“So, here’s how it works: If, for some reason, despite all your best-laid plans, it becomes necessary for you to swallow some emergency contraception, dump the dude if he won’t pay. It’s that simple. Now, I’m not saying you have to let him pay. If you don’t feel comfortable with that, for whatever reason, it’s totally cool. But he should at least give you the option of letting him pay,” Sarah advised in her piece. “In 2016, if a man offers to buy the Plan B pill, that’s how you know he’s a freaking gentleman…hey, if there’s sperm on the loose in my uterus, I’d like a cash contribution to aid in the war against it.”

While some commenters understood Sarah’s point of view, others deemed it unconventional and a bit crazy, arguing if you’re participating in risky sex, you should be accountable for your own reproductive health — not to mention be more mindful of engaging in such behavior. For those who believed a man should be financially responsible, they said that’s only the case if you’re in an exclusive relationship. Overall, the idea of resting the future of an entire relationship on a pill purchase seems a bit much. While it may say something about a man that he wouldn’t offer to purchase Plan B, if he does, is that a good enough reason to stay in a relationship with him? Further, is Sarah’s “Plan B Relationship Test” a bit ridiculous?

When it comes to matters of the heart and uterus, what’s more, important to you?

 

Big Feet, Big Hands, Big Everything Else: How Accurate Are These Size Stereotypes?

August 11th, 2016 - By Meg Butler
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Image Source: Tumblr

Can we press the pause button on political correctness for a moment and talk about these size stereotypes? #EggplantFriday may officially be history on Instagram, but size will never stop being a hot gossip topic.

We’ve all heard the rumors about big feet meaning big everything else, but have you heard of some of the other size-related stereotypes? Can you tell what a guy is working with by the sound of his voice? What about the size of his hands? Or how about the size of his stomach?

We’ve gathered all of the size tea we’ve heard and now we’re turning to you. Have you found any of these to be true?

Things Our Parents Never Taught Us About Sex

August 11th, 2016 - By Nneka Samuel
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Image: Shutterstock

Chances are, having “the sex talk” is just as awkward for a parent as it is for their kid. But that’s no excuse for parents to avoid talking about sex with their children and going deeper than the stereotypical line “You shouldn’t be having sex but if you are, wear a condom.” If anything, protection to prevent pregnancies and against STDs is what parents stress most. Because of that, a lot of what we end up learning about sex comes from our friends, things we’ve read in books, online or saw on TV, and of course, through good old-fashioned trial and error. But together, we can collectively work to take the taboo out of sex. Women especially still deal with certain stigmas and myths when it comes to sex, but here’s the kicker: None of us should feel bad about wanting or enjoying sex. Being sexually empowered and making smart, healthy decisions is key. If our parents told us some of the following things about sex, it might have saved us a lot of stress, embarrassment, heartache and time.

What Does The First Kiss Really Tell You?

August 10th, 2016 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
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A few months ago, I went on a date with my college crush and I was excited to see if we could make it work a second time after our short-lived stint in college. While I was on the train, headed to our date, I excitedly texted my best friends about the anticipation I felt and, at the same time, the train ceiling where I was sitting began to leak. Luckily, I dodged the leak but I couldn’t help but wonder if it was an omen for how the night would be.

Sure enough it was.

The date was drier than parchment paper, but by the time we reached our second stop on the World’s Most Boring Date tour, we began to warm up to each other — mostly because of the alcohol we continued to chase. When we eventually got ready to leave the restaurant, my crush leaned in for a kiss and I decided not to leave him hanging. Boy, was that a mistake!

Let’s just say I didn’t rub or lick my lips for the rest of the night and since then we haven’t spoken to each other.

The closest glimpse into what I experienced can be seen on TLC’s new show Love At First Kiss, where strangers lock lips and swap saliva to see if there’s enough spark for them to have a first date. While some of the participants’ kisses are quite steamy, others will leave you squirming in your seat. (See GIF above).

As each episode unfolds, the cameras reveal if it’s fate the participants felt when they tongue-wrestled one another or just a blip of unrequited love. I learned in my own experience that I was disappointed to like someone for so long only to realize #HeDidntHaveTheJuice. It might be petty, but you know…

The truth is, a first kiss may not be able to predict love but it sure can usher in feelings of dislike. Watch the Love At First Kiss trailers below and tell us what the first kiss tells you about a potential lover.

Have You Ever Had A Vacation One-Night Stand?

August 8th, 2016 - By Brande Victorian
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One-night stands may be considered taboo for most women stateside, but there’s something about being on a different continent that causes most of us to toss our inhibitions out the window — even our sexual ones. And the latest Singles in America survey from Match.com confirmed as much.

Of the more than 5,000 U.S. individuals surveyed, 20 percent of those in their 20s and 30s had a vacation one-nightstand. But don’t assume the partakers were mostly the young wild, and free. Singles in their 40s and 50s were actually more likely to get it in while getting away than those in their 20s and 30s (40 percent vs 23 percent). And, as should come as no surprise, those more liberal in their political beliefs were also more liberal with their sexual escapades than those on the conservative end of the spectrum; in fact they were twice as likely to have a vacation one-night stand.