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Name: Jake
Gender:
Age: 18
Location: London
I have never had sex mostly because I have never managed to approach the person. I am bisexual and am desperate to have sex with a guy or girl. What are the best ways to approach someone for sex?

Can’t manage to approach a person for sex?  Are you just really shy, or are you a total geek?  Either way, my friend, you gotta get over yourself if you ever hope to get laid.  And here’s a tip:  perspective partners can smell desperation, like the kind you speak of, a mile away.  And they will avoid you like the plague.

Ok, so you’re just 18 without a lot of experience in the ways of the world.  teen_sexuality.jpgHere’s what I tell everyone who asks me this question, regardless of age, gender or sexual orientation.  When it comes to asking for sex; the direct approach works best.  Just so long as you’re not a dick about it.  If you haven’t already discovered this, baggin a bird will probably take a bit more finesse than pokin’ on a bloke.  And coming on to a mate demands a different approach than hittin’ up a stranger for a shag.

If there’s a bit of charm about you, your task will be considerably easier than if you are a crude Neanderthal who just wants to notch his belt.  If you’re not sure what your selling points are, ask a friend for his or her feedback.  If he or she tells you nice things bout yourself, you might be in luck.  If he or she tells you that you’re a charmless creep, you’ll have your work cut out for you.

Regardless what group you fall into — the “maybe fuckable”, or the “not fucking ever”, you can always improve your image and hone your unique style.  Look to how you present yourself; make sure you are groomed, clean and odor-free.  Dress to impress.  Stay clear of fancy or fussy, but do make it look like you gave your cloths a thought before you dressed yourself.  Make yourself interesting; have a point of view, but share it sparingly.  Develop a sense of humor about yourself.  If you can’t be clever or witty, then keep your mouth shut for the most part.

boys_kissing05.jpgThe internet is a great place to test the waters.  Dating and hook-up sites abound.  Put up a profile…with a photo or two.  Here’s a tip, save the dick pics for the queer sites.  Women don’t want to see your pathetic willie, at least not right away.  And like I said above, there’s nothing more unattractive to most women, or men, than a desperate fuck.  Asking for what you want is good, pleading to be taken out of pity is not!

Few women are as casual about sex as are most men.  So if a woman tells you no, she just may be shy, or not ready, or not sure.  If a guy tell you no, it’s not the end of the world.  He’s probably not into your type.  Since there are so many fish in the sea, if you’re not immediately successful, move on.  Sometimes getting laid is a situational thing.  Being in the right place at the right time is helpful.

Chicks are gonna be concerned about the whole pregnancy thing. This is much more serious concern for a woman then for a dude. If you’re not well versed on all methods of contraception and willing to practice at least one, you’re not ready to have sex. Sexually transmitted infections ought to be a concern for you both.  Don’t be a fuck-up; always use a condom regardless of your partner’s gender.

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If you’re dick is hard, it’s not the right time to talk about sex with a woman, but it might be the best time to hit up a dude.  Women don’t necessarily like the lean and hungry look.  Men tend to groove on it.

There are lots of different ways to have sex, so what might be appealing to one person may not be to another.  Hand jobs and/or blow jobs are often more easy to cum by than full-on fucking with both birds and blokes.

In the end, there no standard way to ask for sex, but if you treat a prospective partner, regardless of gender, with respect, honesty, and patience, you can be sure whatever words you use will be more effective than if you’re an uncouth lout.

Name: Nita
Gender: female
Age: 40
Location: South Africa
I recently had abdominal surgery to remove a cancer.  I’m recovering pretty well, and the prognosis for my future is also pretty good.  But I am noticing two problems. The surgery left a really big scar.  It’s still not fully healed yet, but I can tell it’s always going to be ugly.  And my belly is really misshapen now. I felt pretty okay about my body before hand, but this scar really makes me look really unattractive.  Also, my sex drive has completely gone away. I used to be a pretty sexual person, but now nothing excites me. Would you say this is normal?

How long ago was your surgery, I wonder?  It’s got to be pretty recent, if you say the incision is still healing.

Darlin’, may I suggest that you’ve been through quite a trauma — a cancer diagnosis, recent surgery and all.  This would throw anyone for a loop.  I’d be willing to guess you’ve not had the proper time to process all of this.  It comes as no surprise to me that your libido has gone south.  I wouldn’t expect otherwise.

If you’re still healing on the outside, you know for sure your insides have a much longer way to go.  You’re probably still feeling some discomfort, right?  That’s enough to put the kibosh on sexual interest right there.  You’re body is consumed with the job of healing itself.  It probably hasn’t any energy to spare for sex.  And why have a libido if ya can’t be sexual, right?   So you see, your body is actually protecting itself and concentrating on the task at hand.sensual_massage110.JPG

Maybe at this point in your recovery a little pampering would be better for you than a pursuit of sexual pleasure.  Long luxurious baths will help soothe the tension, as well as giving your easy access to your fine pussy.  Even folks with no discernable libido find touching themselves enjoyable. And just to keep your head in the game, even though you’re sitting on the sidelines, you could read some erotica or watch some sexy smut.

Some modest exercise like walking or swimming can perk up the libido too.  Treat yourself to an erotic massage.  Let a pro get his or her hands on you and make you glow.  This may also help bring back some of the sensitivity to areas effected by the surgery.  One things for sure, doing something is better than doing nothing but sitting there wondering what’s up.

An invasive and disfiguring surgery will always have a profound effect on one’s body image, which goes without saying.  Feeling unattractive because of a scar? No doubt about it, it’s a bummer.  But here you are writing to me about it, instead of napping six-feet under.  So I guess the scar is not the worst thing that could have happened, right?  As you probably know, I’m hearing from a number of my country’s war vets returning home with shattered bodies and lives.  My advice to them is what I offer you now.  Move through the scar’s impact…with a therapist if need be.  And find within yourself the other things that make you beautiful, attractive, alluring and desirable. Who knows, you might luck out and find a scar fetishist out there who will worship you for what you find loathsome.

mastectomy_scars.jpgEmbracing and then moving past your scaring will open you to find the myriad pleasures your body can still provide you and others.  So while your body works on healing itself, your mind can do likewise.  No need to have two scars, on one your belly and another one on your psyche.  In the end you may find that flaunting your scar, like some women do with their mastectomy scars, will liberate you from feeling unattractive.  After all, that scare and misshapen abdomen are your red badges of courage, honey.  Not only do they make you distinct, but also they testify to you being a survivor.

Name: David
Gender: Male
Age: 27
Location: New York, NY
This is a rather disgusting question. I am a gay male who prefers to be the bottom. The trouble is that even if I perform an enema right before sex, I still seem to get some excrement onto my partner’s penis during sex. It just seems that the feeling of the motion back and forth inside of me causes a sensation that makes something come out. The odor is, at times, unpleasant and I, of course, am mortified. I wonder if this is a common problem and if there is anything else I can do to PREVENT this from happening?? Could it perhaps be my diet? Do I need to drink more water?

YIKES!  You sound like a real attractive guy, David.  Just kidding!

If you are douching properly before the butt fucking there shouldn’t be much seepage if any.  Maybe you’re not taking care of business correctly.  Or maybe you need to douche twice.  Or maybe you’re being fucked too hard.  I know that a vigorous fucking will introduce more air into the bottom’s rectum expanding it and making for that “OMG, I gotta take a dump” feeling.butt_fuck5.jpg

I understand you being mortified; a smelly dirty fuck is no fun for anyone.  That being said, you have to realize your bowels are working properly, so it’s not their fault.  Just remember, there will inevitably be some unpleasant side effects when rootin’ around in someone’s hole, regardless how fastidious the bottom is about his hygiene.

I’m not sure I see the connection between diet and hydration and messy fucking, but hell, I’d try just about anything to keep from embarrassing myself when my toes are pointed to jesus!

Name: Ken
Gender:
Age: 42
Location: Seattle
I recently went to get a massage with a “happy ending” As soon as the girl started to fondle me I came and I did not even have an erection yet.  I never have this problem with my wife or past girlfriends. Why did this happen? It sure cost a lot of money for about five minutes with this “lady”. Thanks

Well, let’s see…either this “masseuse” (and I use that term very loosely) was amazingly talented, or you were just real nervous about doing this naughty thing with someone other than your wife.

Hmmm, I bet it was the later.

Here’s a tip, always get the massage first…before the happy ending.  If the first thing that happens is the happy ending, then you got gypped, darlin’!

Name: Marion
Gender: female
Age: 32
Location: NYC
I’m 34 and single.  After 15 years of unsuccessful dating, searching for the right guy to marry and raise a family with, I decided to go it alone.  I’m 2 months pregnant through artificial insemination.  You’ll love this; the donor is my best gay pal.  I am absolutely delighted and cherish the thought of finally being a mother.  While a lot of the guys I’ve been dating aren’t father material, they are great sex and I don’t want to continue to enjoy their company.  I gather that it’s safe to have sex during pregnancy.  But is there anything I should avoid?  Are there specific sexual positions that better suit a mommy-to-be like me?

Hey, congratulations on the bun in the oven, darlin’.  And how true about some men being great in the sack, but not desirable husband and/or father material.  I know several gay men who have helped out a long-suffering straight and lesbian friends with the whole breeding thing.  Us “mos” are so selfless in that regard.  😉

It’s difficult to find accurate and unambiguous information about sex preg_sex01jpg.jpgduring pregnancy that doesn’t have a decidedly sex-negative bias to it.  For the most part, our culture promotes the message that sex is primarily for procreation.  Why then would any responsible mother to be continue to have sex if she’s already knocked up?  You can see where a lot of the misconceptions, misinformation and scare tactics come from, huh?

So let’s see if we can shed some light on this for ya.  As a pregnancy advances, the fertilized egg grows into an embryo and then into a fetus. The fetus is encased in and protected by the amniotic cavity.  This provides the fetus nourishment and protects it from infections.  A thick layer of mucus seals the cervix further isolating the fetus in the mother’s uterus.

If you’re having a normal pregnancy, as do most women, then there is no reason to alter your sex life during your pregnancy.  Since this is your first, you’ll not know this, but a woman who has a history of premature birth may be advised by her physician to abstain from partnered sex during the last three months of pregnancy.  In the same way, a woman with a history of miscarriage will probably be advised to avoid partnered sex in the first trimester.  Only women with high-risk pregnancies might be advised to avoid sex for the full term of the pregnancy.

Nature provides all protection the fetus needs in its mother’s uterus. So you don’t need to worry about semen or vaginal fluids coming into contact with the baby.  And the mucus seal on your cervix does not allow a penis to come in direct contact with the fetus either.  Which dispels several misconceptions right there, don’t cha know.

In terms of pregnancy related sex, I suspect that your libido will probably play a more determining role in your availability for sex than you capacity to have sex.  Your libido will no doubt fluctuate during your pregnancy, which may have a lot to do with hormonal fluctuations.  Increased blood circulation in your pelvic region will heighten sensations, but you may find your body feels too heavy to fully enjoy sex.

Most men will love your bigger tits and fuller hips, but sometimes an overriding concern to avoid any exertion on the uterus or in the vagina makes partnered sex too cumbersome.

Sex during pregnancy, like sex after menopause, is free of worry about contraception, which makes sex more enjoyable for some.  While others are too busy anticipating the new addition to be much interested in sex at all.

In terms of sexual positions, you’re gonna be the best judge of that.  No preg_sex08.jpgposition is automatically ruled out, but as your pregnancy progresses you’ll find some positions, like the missionary position, will be uncomfortable. One of the best positions might be the woman on top position. Sometimes known as the Cowgirl position.  This position takes all of the pressure off of the woman’s abdomen, and also allows her to control the speed and the depth of thrusting.

And if you are a fan of anal sex; that will continue to be a terrific option throughout your pregnancy, particularly doggie style.  Some pregnant women claim that butt fucking actually helps soothe their pregnancy induced hemorrhoids.  In your final weeks mutual masturbation may be the easiest option as well as the most satisfying sexual outlet.

Good Luck ya’ll

“Abstinence Only” …think again!

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, the Republican vice-presidential nominee not only opposes a woman’s right to choose, nixes comprehensive sex education in favor of “Abstinence Only”, but now we discover that she cut funding for teen moms.

“Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, the Republican vice-presidential nominee who revealed Monday that her 17-year-old daughter is pregnant, earlier this year used her line-item veto to slash funding for a state program benefiting teen mothers in need of a place to live.”  —Washington Post

What if other parents don’t buy this shit.  What if they think preparing their kids for the eventual responsibilities of adulthood, which includes sexuality, is not a bad thing.

Sarah Palin’s unwed daughter will no doubt receive all the benefits a well-positioned family can provide.  Not so the daughters of everyone else.

What pisses me off the most is the double standard.  For everyone else’s kids — no choice, no clear unambitious information about human sexuality in school…and if you get in trouble, because you don’t have a choice or you are uninformed…no help from your government.

I don’t generally do this, but the timing couldn’t be better on this.  Monday’s podcast, #78, included my response to a message I recieved from a mother of three in Toronto.  The timely nature of Lynn’s question compels me to print it in full here.

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Name: Lynn
Gender: Female
Age: 36
Location: Toronto
I’m a mother of three great kids.  My oldest, who is in middle school, went to camp for the first time this summer. A local church group sponsors the camp every year.  When my husband and I asked him about his time away from home, he said rather noncommittally; “It was ok.”  He seemed to like it well enough, but you know how uncommunicative kids can be at that stage.
Anyhow, yesterday I was going through some laundry from his camp outing and discovered a pamphlet in the pocket of his pants.  It was for an “Abstinence Only” program.  It was full of the most sex-negative fear and shame.  It was awful.  We are not raising our kids like that; my husband and I were appalled.
Now we’re wondering if this is why our son was so unenthusiastic about his camp experience.  Do you think we should quiz him on this?
What gives with this kind of indoctrination anyway?  I thought that those “Abstinence Only” programs had been discredited.

So wait, wait, wait; are you thinking that just because a social engineering strategy, like abstinence-only, has been debunked that it wouldn’t still be employed by certain factions of our culture?  Oh hun, I think you oughta rethink that supposition right away, don’t cha know.

I mean, come on!  There are loads of outdated and discredited philosophies being promulgated in an effort to ensnare the  uninformed and gullible.  I don’t know about ya’ll there in Canadaville, but here in Amercanski land we have a whole segment of our population who believes in creationism as a viable explanation for the universe.  In fact, one was just nominated to be Vice President for the Republican party.  D’oh!

So, as you can see, there is no necessary connection between what has been discredited and what is still wildly popular in some segments of the population.

Back in the spring of 2007, a long-awaited congressionally funded national study concluded that abstinence-only sex education does not keep teenagers from having sex. Nor does it increase or decrease the likelihood that if they do have sex, they will use a condom.  (Attention:  Governor Palin!)

Authorized by Congress in 1997, the study followed 2000 children from elementary and middle school into high school. The children lived in four communities — two urban, two rural. All of the children received the family life services available in their community; in addition, slightly more than half of them also received abstinence-only education.

By the end of the study, when the average child was just shy of 17, half of both groups had remained abstinent. The sexually active teenagers had sex the first time at about age 15. Less than a quarter of them, in both groups, reported using a condom every time they had sex. More than a third of both groups had two or more partners.

So if abstinence-only programs don’t work, at least the way they are supposed to; why do we still have them?  Ahhh, good question.  We still have them because for a large segment of the population, especially those who are makin all these babies, it’s easier to just say “NO” than to step up to the plate and educate their kids about sex in a wholesome and holistic way.

Another problem is that the word abstinence often means something quite different to kids than it does to adults. That’s one reason why abstinence-only programs do not have strong effects in preventing teenage sexual activity.  At least that’s what a recent University of Washington study found.

The researchers found that interventions that encourage abstinence treat abstinence and sexual activity as opposites.  Teenagers, on the other hand, don’t consider them to be mutually exclusive concepts. Like in the congressionally sponsored study, the UW researchers found abstinence-only programs are less likely to work than more comprehensive sex-education programs because they are not speaking the same language as adolescents.

The study showed that attitudes and intentions about sex were more powerful than attitudes and intentions about being abstinent.  No surprise there, I suppose.

Again, I don’t know how things are there in Canada, but down here there is no federal funding for comprehensive sex-education.  But there’s a shit-load of funding for abstinence-only programs.  Funding has mushroomed from $9 million in1997 to $176 million in 2007.  Leave it to the current administration to dump loads of money into a program that doesn’t work.  But such is the power of the conservative religious lobby.  They are the people who back these programs.

This wouldn’t be such a big issue if it didn’t hold such dire consequences. For example, the United States has the highest teen pregnancy rate among all first-world nations.  The rates of sexually transmitted diseases in this country are also astronomical.  If we want to keep our young people safe from the negative aspects of casual sex, abstinence-only programs are not the way to go.

However, more comprehensive programs that include abstinence as one choice are much more likely to have a more productive outcome.  Besides, is it ever a good idea to try and motivate behaviors out of fear and shame?  I don’t think so.

Since abstinence-only programs often only look at the negatives of sex, it doesn’t really empower a young person to take responsibility for his/her behaviors.  This is particularly thorny for young women who often bear the brunt the peer pressures to be sexual.  And they have way more at stake in terms of pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

When kids aren’t expected to take responsibility for their behaviors, especially in terms of sexuality, it cripples their ability to make good life-affirming choices.  Abstinence-only programs disqualify all sexual options, even the relatively innocuous behaviors like mutual masturbation and oral sex.  So if all sexual options are equally out of bounds, there’s no way for the average kid to distinguish between harmless and risky behaviors.  And this is what leads to the high rate of sexually transmitted infections and unplanned pregnancies.

If we want our kids to grow up with healthy and integrated attitudes about sex, ones that will lead to loving and fulfilling sexual relationship later in life, we ought teach from a more sex-positive theory.

Back to the other question you raise; the one about quizzing your son about his camp experience.  I think that would be great.  It would let him know that you care, that you don’t support this fear and shame-based approach to human sexuality and that he doesn’t have to embrace it either.

Good Luck

Shaming Men Doesn’t Build Healthy Sexuality

By David J Ley Ph.D

StandingNudeMaleTorso

Male sexuality is intensely under attack, in the increasingly vitriolic social dialogue related to pornography. Though women watch and make pornography, most of the current debates focus on aspects of masculine sexual behaviors. These behaviors include masturbation, use of pornography, prostitutes or sexual entertainment like strip clubs. Promiscuity, sex without commitment, and use of sex to manage stress or tension are all things that are frequently a part of male sexuality, whether we like it or not. But, male sexuality is not a disease, not a public health crisis, it is not evil, and it does not overpower men’s lives or choices. Shaming men for these behaviors isolates men, and ignores powerful, important and healthy aspects of masculinity.

There is a common perception of male sexuality as intrinsi­cally selfish, overly focused on “scoring” and sexual conquests, on anonymous, “soulless” sex, and on the outward manifestations of virility.  But there are other, oft neglected sides of male eroticism. Straight men are far more focused upon women’s needs, and upon closeness with women, than we give them credit for. Nancy Friday wrote that “Men’s love of women is often greater than their love of self.” Men give up friends and male camaraderie and accept a life of economic support of women, even leading up to an earlier death, all in order to be with women. More than half of all men describe that their best sexual encounters came when they “gave a woman physical pleasure beyond her dreams.” Men redi­rect their selfishness away from their own satisfaction, and toward a sense of fulfillment and accomplishment, by giving sexual satisfaction. Male sexuality often involves an intense focus on the needs of their partners, and men gain great pleasure, even a strong sense of manliness, from giving their lover sexual pleasure.

In fact, men’s desire to sexually satisfy their partners comes at the price of their own satisfaction. When a man is unable to make his partner orgasm, many men report incredible frustration, disappointment, and self-doubt. Women even complain that men put so much pressure and intent upon helping the woman achieve orgasm that the act ceases to be pleasurable and starts to feel more like childbirth. In such cases, women fake orgasms, not for themselves, but to satisfy their partner’s needs. Until a woman has an orgasm, a man doesn’t think he’s done his job, and his masculinity hangs in the balance.

Franz_Von_Stuck_-_SisyphusMen are taught from a young age that they must be sexually competent and sexually powerful with exaggerated and impossible ideals. Surveys of sex in America find that, compared to women, men are far more insecure and anxious about their sexual performance. Nearly 30 percent of men fear that they ejaculate too soon, most men sometimes experience erectile dysfunction connected to anxiety, and one man in every six reports significant worries about his sexual abilities to satisfy his partner. These are huge burdens that men carry, and are just one reason why many men pursue other forms of sex such as masturbation to pornography.

Compared to women, men actually experience greater pain and psychological disruption from the ups and downs of romantic relationships. Not only do the negative aspects of a romantic relationship hurt men more than women, but the positive aspects and benefits of that relationship have greater impact upon the man than the woman. Because women are better able to access outside support from friends and family, they often fare better than men. Men are often isolated and burdened with the expectation that they shouldn’t feel pain, or if they do, they must suffer alone.

For men, physical affection and sex is one of the main ways we feel loved, accepted, and regarded. For many men, it is only through physical love that we can voice tenderness and express our desire for togetherness and physical bonding. Only in sex can we let down boundaries and drop our armor enough to be emotionally vulnerable.

Sex plays a greater role in the lives of men as a form of acceptance and mutual regard than it does for women. Women touch each other all the time, with hugs, holding hands, closer body contact, and smaller “personal space.” Men shake hands. Really good friends might, at best, punch each other in a loving way, do a careful “man hug,” or even swat each other’s buttocks, if it’s during an approved masculine sporting event. (Many homosexual men experience this differently, when they come out and are part of the LGBTQ community) So the body-to-body contact that sex offers feeds an appetite, a craving, one that is often starved near to death in men.

Male sexuality is portrayed as something that men must guard against, and describe it as though it is a demonic force, lurking within our souls, which must be constrained, feared and even rejected. Men are portrayed as powerless to control themselves, in the face of sexual arousal that is too strong. Men are painted as weak, harmed and warped by sexual experiences such as pornography. As a result, men are told to be ashamed of the sexual desires that society has called unhealthy, and told to forego those condemned sexual interests. But an essential part of man is lost when we encourage men to split them­selves from their sexuality.

Unfortunately, as we teach men to be men, to understand, accept, and express their masculinity, we rarely attend adequately to the loving, nurturing, and amo­rous side of men. The most positive way that society and media currently portray male sexuality is when it is depicted as bumbling and stupid-making, a force that turns men into fools, easily led by our penises. But more often, male sexuality is depicted as a force that hovers just on the edge of rape, rage and destruction.

What is necessary for a healthy man, for complete masculinity, is the in­tegration, consolidation, and incorporation of ALL the varied aspects of our sexuality. When we try to externalize our desires for love and sex, excising them from ourselves as something external and dangerous, we run the real risk of creat­ing men without compassion, without tenderness, and without the ability to nurture. It is easy to suggest that what we are trying to excise are the base, primitive parts of men’s eroticism, those desires to rape, dominate, and sat­isfy oneself selfishly. But in truth, those desires, as frightening as they can be, are integrally linked to male emotional desires for safety, acceptance, protection of others, and belonging.

A_ShipwreckThose things that make men admired and respected—their strength, courage, independence, and assertiveness—are the same things which contribute to the differences in male and female sexuality. By condemning these characteristics, we run the real and frightening risk of abolishing qualities that are essential to healthy masculinity.

A healthy sexual male is one who accepts and understands his erotic and sexual desires, along with his drive for success, dominance (and often submission as well) and excellence. Healthy sexual choices come from internal acceptance and awareness, not rejection and shame. Research has shown that all men have the ability to exercise control over their levels of sexual arousal and sexual behavior, but no men can fully suppress their sexual desire. Healthy men can be men who go to strip clubs, visit prostitutes and watch pornography. They are men who make conscious sexual choices, accepting the consequences of their actions.

Our culture needs a sexual ethic focused on personal relationships and social justice rather than particular sexual acts. All persons have the right and responsibility to lead sexual lives that express love, justice, mutuality, commitment, consent and pleasure. Grounded in respect for the body and for the vulnerability that intimacy brings, this ethic fosters physical, emotional and spiritual health. It accepts no double standards and applies to all persons, without regard to sex, gender, color, age, bodily condition, marital status or sexual orientation. The Religious Institute

We need to begin encouraging personal integrity, responsibility, self-awareness and respect, both for oneself and one’s sexual partner(s). This is, I think, the goal for all men – to make their sexual choices an integrated part of who they are, and the kind of man they desire to be. Unfortunately, as long as we continue to shame and condemn men in general, and specific sexual acts, we are merely isolating men. Further, we are exacerbating the problem, because removing porn or shaming men for their desires or fantasies, does not teach men how to be a sexually healthy man.

Complete Article HERE!

How the penis disappeared from the sex toy

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by Hannah Smothers

You’ve seen what a penis looks like. Sure, there are variables that make each one a little different—the world is beautiful that way—but, generally speaking, they all fit a certain mold.

As the male sexual organ, the penis was designed to transport sperm from one body into another. As an added feature, the penis can also summon orgasm in a female partner during this process. But we know this isn’t always the case. While a healthy male organ works pretty well for its intended reproductive purpose, there are some design flaws in terms of maximizing female pleasure.

LILY 2So what if you could redesign the penis, make it a little bit better? Which pieces would you change, and which would you keep? Erasing the need for reproductive functionality, would you scrap the whole thing and start from scratch? In the end, would this magic device—capable of bringing women waves of pleasure—even resemble the penis in its current human form?

Welcome to the world of modern-day vibrators, a place largely devoid of the original pleasure device.

As sex toys have become increasingly sleek and modern—taking cues from the minimalistic designs of like Apple and Ikea—one clear trend has emerged: They no longer look like human penises. In fact, they no longer look human at all—which, according to designers, entrepreneurs, and sex therapists alike, is a very good thing.

Kitschy and grotesque

The first time the American public saw a non-human organ used to stimulate sexual arousal was in the early porn films of the 1920s. Over the previous few decades, small home appliances marketed under the guise of medical necessity (to cure the female ailment of “hysteria“) had become commonplace—kind of like how we now see “personal massagers” advertised in Brookstone. But in the new black-and-white pornos of the ’20s, audiences saw these appliances used for very non-medical purposes.

zini-deux-293x300And once the public was confronted with the idea that these devices could be used strictly for pleasure, the products disappeared from women’s magazines and reputable store shelves.

Vibrators made a second coming about 30 years later, during the sexual revolution of the 1960s. But even though Americans were talking about sexuality more openly than ever before, we still weren’t totally cool with the idea of incorporating these objects in our sex lives. In response, early industry leaders made them as outlandish as possible: Rotating glitter-dicks, two shafts emerging from one testicle-shaped base, rubber duckies that secretly vibrated. We displaced the awkwardness of using machines as sexual aids by turning these aids into novelty objects, or toys.

But there was a big problem with this approach. Since the products were advertised as “novelties,” not health aids, they were held to lower standards than medical devices and other things we put inside our bodies. The cheap toys were unsafe, ugly, and ineffective. And not at all sexy.

“I don’t think anyone has ever said, ‘I want a vibrator that looks like a bunny rabbit and a penis all smashed together,’” Ti Chang, the female co-founder of sex toy and jewelry design company Crave, told me. “I think the sex toy industry has really had a lot of male voices—it’s been men designing products for women, so it tends to be very male anatomy centric. Like, ‘Oh, it’s sex, she wants a big cock, so we’ll just make lots of different colors of cocks, and to make this really silly, we’ll put a little rabbit on it.’”

Companies like Doc Johnson—a leading novelty company for decades, notorious for its line of Zini DonutRealistic Cocks—offer a good example of the “she wants a big cock” mentality that dominated the industry during the late-20th century. Robert Rheaume, the president of high-end sex toy company JimmyJane, charmingly described these hyper-realistic dildos as the kind of severed penis you’d get if “there was an Orc from Lord of the Rings walking around, and they cut his penis off.”

He also argued, by nature of them being just so grotesque, they’re not very sex-positive. He put it to me this way: “Let’s say you and I are well into our sexual relationship, and I pull out this giant, Doc Johnson, 15-inch cock,” Rheaume said. “You might be like, WOAH, where’s that going? Get out of my apartment right now, I’m leaving—call me a taxi, call an Uber. It’s just intimidating and scary for some people.”

Kitschy, intimidating, grotesque—all are terms you could use to describe the sex toy market up until the early 2000s. The poor designs, cheap rubbers and plastics, and incredibly dick-centric domain of products presented itself as an untapped valley of junk, just waiting for a messiah. This is what Ethan Imboden, the founder of JimmyJane, realized upon walking into an Adult Novelty Manufacturers Expo a little more than a decade ago.

“As soon as I saw past the fact that in front of me happened to be two penises fused together at the base, I realized that I was looking at the only category of consumer product that had yet to be touched by design,” Imboden said in his 2012 Atlantic profile. Coming from an industrial design background, and lacking the desire to manufacture what he saw as landfill products, he left his job designing everyday consumer products to launch JimmyJane—a sex toy company that would put safety, design, and sex-positivity first. Around this time, a small, luxury intimate toy company in Sweden called LELO started doing the exact same thing.

post-phalic 01The kitschy sex toy industry was primed for a big change, and companies like JimmyJane and LELO were ready to usher it in.

Disrupting the dick

Skeuomorphism is a concept in technological design that describes our tendency to retain tactile aspects of the physical world as we move more of our lives onto screens. At Apple, for example, skeuomorphic design was thought to ease the transition from the real to the virtual. Turning a page on your Mac or iPhone would closely resemble turning a page in a real notebook, paper sounds included. If you can recreate the physical aspects of a very familiar, tactile world in the flat, virtual reality of an operating system, designers have long believed, maybe more people will feel comfortable using the product.

In sex toy design, this has translated into manufacturing dismembered penises and inventing crevices meant to resemble human vaginas and mouths. But why—if women and couples are looking for something more than their own, very real human parts—would they want a plastic knock-off of those same parts in bed? Just as some people argue that retaining archaic, physical traits of notepads on our iPhones is unnecessary, companies like JimmyJane and LELO saw retaining the original design of human organs as unnecessary and outdated.

Of course, there will probably always be a market for straight-up dildos—which are different from vibrators—and which, by nature of their intended internal purpose, must resemble a human penis. But female-oriented vibrators allow more room for innovation.

With this in mind, JimmyJane and LELO’s emphasis on design, coupled with major tech advances of the early 2000s, allowed these pioneering sex companies to essentially reinvent the penis. “Technology drives the industry—it’s tech, tech, tech,” Patti Britton, a clinical sexologist in southern California, told me. “Everyone’s going for the faster, the most options for control, as well as these really unusual and really sophisticated designs.”post-phalic 02

Those sophisticated designs are now pretty commonplace, and they look nothing like human parts. The design shift comes as a result of technological advances, yes, but also reflects a pretty significant ideological shift. Vaginal penetration, as we now know, isn’t necessarily the key to female orgasm, and penises aren’t naturally shaped to stimulate the elusive G-spot. Skeuomorphism started disappearing from the industry, and the dick was reinvented—and ultimately displaced.

Luxury investments

When sex toys start looking less like severed organs, it gets easier for consumers to take them seriously. And when consumers start to take them seriously, it opens up room for a luxury class of sex toys—something that LELO and JimmyJane, especially, have capitalized on. Most of LELO’s products start at more than $120, though the company also boasts a 24-karat gold plated vibrator for $15,000. As Steve Thomson, LELO’s global marketing manager, told me, creating toys that last a lifetime, like a nice espresso maker or television, is “a way of challenging assumptions about the sex toy market as a whole.”

“There’s always going to be a place for novelty goods and phallic-shaped items,” Thomson said. “But I don’t believe that’s the future of sex toys in any way. People are moving away from the assumption that it’s purely a substitute for a partner.”

post-phalic 03To Thomson, as well as industry leaders at JimmyJane, Crave, and the numerous other companies that have joined the modern sex toy craze, the future of sex toys is in making objects that fit easily into a consumer’s everyday life. That’s why, as technology improves, we see things like app-controlled panty vibes and vibrators equipped with memory that will store your favorite sexual patterns.

Along with loosening cultural values around discussing sex—almost everyone I interviewed cited the Fifty Shades of Grey franchise as a major breakthrough—the shift in toy design has transformed the industry from a $1.3 billion a year industry to a $15 billion a year industry in revenue alone. “If it’s okay for the modern mom to have dialogue about Fifty Shades of Grey, sexuality and masturbation, I think it gives us complete permission to have these conversations and to make these products available,” Rheaume said.

He’s not wrong. Research shows that not only are more women using toys, they’re owning up to using more toys. Consumers are literally taking their orgasms into their own hands, and they’re commonly paying upwards of $150 to do so. Is it worth it to buy a vibrator that costs a bit more than something you might find at your neighborhood adult novelty shop if it means it’ll last longer and isn’t toxic to your body? Absolutely.

But not everyone can afford it, and while some products come with a money-back, orgasm guarantee—they don’t always work as advertised. Has design for the sake of being beautiful, and innovation for the sake of being advanced, displaced the actual functionality of the vibrator?

That’s what was bothering Janet Lieberman, a mechanical engineering grad from MIT and enthusiastic sex toy user. Facing repeated disappointment in the toys she bought, Lieberman realized she was in a unique position to utilize her expertise to make things better. The technology was good, but she saw it going in the wrong direction. There was a sort of machismo attitude slipping into products designed for women—who cares if your device can track your orgasms, give you Bluetooth feedback, and looks like modern art if it doesnt work?

Now, as co-founder and lead engineer for the New York-based sex toy company Dame, she’s ushering in the newest wave—and quite likely the future—of sex toy design.

Women come first

One of the big problems with the sex toy industry is how male-driven and controlled it’s been throughout most of its history. Sure, the men at LELO and JimmyJane have women’s desires in mind—both Thomson and Rheaume told me about the extensive research measures their companies take when designing new products. JimmyJane, for example, relied on data about average labia size from the renowned Kinsey Institute when creating its new Form 5 vibrator, which is designed to simultaneously stimulate a woman’s labia and clitoris.

And to make sure the products hitting the market are truly effective, the leading companies also rely on demo communities—women who test new prototypes and provide detailed feedback. But, as Lieberman argues, there’s a difference between running a product by a demo audience and having a woman—the target consumer of the product—involved each step of the way.

And so, it’s becoming increasingly common to see women-run sex toy companies, or to see women involved in the design and engineering process, according to industry insiders. “If they’re products for women, you kind of want women everywhere in the process so they’re making the right priorities,” Lieberman told me.

A female designer and engineer, for example, might know right off the bat whether something is going to work. It’s not that men don’t take all the important components into consideration—after all, some of these products are used mutually between partners—it’s just that women are more likely to understand the various nuances in their own anatomies, and take those into consideration in the engineering process.

While enabling sex toys to track activity and communicate long distance via the internet—both features on the newest models—is cool, Lieberman and Crave’s Chang both stressed a personal mission to deliver what sex toys have long promised: really fantastic orgasms.

“Having an orgasm is like a birth right, you should have it!” Chang said, in a sentiment famously voiced by Nicki Minaj and, more recently, Amy Schumer. In her process at Crave—which steers clear of trying to mimic anything anatomical—function always comes first.

Lieberman and her business partner, Alex Fine, took a similar approach when building Dame’s first product, a couple’s vibe called Eva. “I wouldn’t say that one of our primary goals in designing this was that we wanted it to be beautiful,” Lieberman said of the device, which resembles a futuristic beetle. “We wanted it to be accessible, but we put function ahead of form.”

They also wanted to make sure the cost wasn’t prohibitive—a sex toy that’s too expensive can actually detract from sex, she argues. Eva sells for $105, a price-point Lieberman attributes mainly to the device’s high-quality silicone and the rigorous research and design process that went into it. Lieberman likens the Eva to a pair of really good headphones: You can hear the music, it sounds incredible, but you aren’t super aware of the fact that there are two small speakers in your ears.

Lieberman acknowledges that before sex toy designers could think about getting back to the core purpose of the industry, consumers needed to be introduced to beautiful, high-end luxury products. But the next wave of sex toys will likely follow her function-over-form philosophy—and encourage an even bigger audience to come.<

So, are we moving toward a world where penises, and human sex organs, are obsolete? Of course not. We’re just moving toward one where we can do better than what the average human body has to offer. As Patti Britton, a certifiable expert in all things sex, put it, there will always be an element of humanity that can’t be captured by even the most elaborate of sex toys.

“We’re still human beings—we’re skin and bone and flesh and energy,” Britton told me. “So far we really haven’t matched that one in the lab, we may one day. But I think, overall, humans will want to be with humans. That’s how we’re wired.”

Complete Article HERE!

Tricks Of The Trade — Part 4

Today I conclude this four part series that I started back in October. (You can Find the first three parts of this series HERE and HERE and HERE!

As you may recall, a friend of mine, who is writing a book about male sexuality for women, asked me if I could be her go-to-guy for a bunch of questions she had about pleasuring a man which she wants to include in her book. I think it is only fair that you, my loyal audience, should get this information before anyone else does.

SEX TOYS

Have you ever suggested to your clients that they use sex toys for men either solo or during (hetero) partner play?

Absolutely! And yes, for both solo play and for play with a partner.she didn't come

Sometimes it’s difficult getting straight men to warm up to the idea of incorporating toys in partnered play. They can also be resistant to toys for solo play. Some straight men think toys are gay, or only for women. Some haven’t a large enough sexual repertoire to even imagine how toys could assist them or be fun. So generally I have my work cut out for me in this regard.

What are some benefits of using sex toys for men?

First off, they increase one’s sexual repertoire. They increase body awareness. Take prostate massage, for example. It’s fun, it’s healthful, and it’s enriching. The guy becomes less cock-centric and less ass-phobic.

And another toy I often recommend is a cockring. Check out my tutorial: Cockring Crash Course HERE!  This is a low-tech aid for keeping it up and keeping it hard.

What are some of your favorite sex toys for men and why?

Orbit BodyFit Vibrating Stimulator blackGosh, there are so many. Probably my favorite manufacturer of sex toys for men these days is Perfect Fit Brand. Every one of their products that we’ve reviewed over the years is a winner. Want to know more about them? Perfect! Visit Dr Dick’s Sex Toy Reviews, use the search function in the sidebar, type in “Perfect Fit Brand” and PRESTO!

Then there are the granddaddies of sex toys for men, the Fleshlight and FleshJack.   Guys can actually learn how to last longer using one of these. And you know how I keep talkin’ about the mutual joys and the important information shared when a couple masturbates together, right? Well, this is the ideal masturbation toy for him.

The Aneros products are designed and developed by folks who are as serious about prostate health as they are about prostate pleasure. Listen, I’m all in favor of toys that have no other purpose than to dispense a good dose of the jollies. But if a fella can pleasure himself AND do himself some good health-wise…all at the same time; well that just about beats the pants off diddlin’ just for fun.

Check out the Zini Donut for couple play.  It’s shaped like a doughnut or bagel if you prefer. It’s about the same size too. It’s very unassuming when you see it sitting in its box, in fact you’d never guess at its versatility by just looking at it. A closer look reveals that it’s actually an amazing C-shaped vibe and both ends of the thing vibrate with independent motors, but they vibrate in unison.

What’s the correlation between sticking a massager up your butt and prostate health? What good does this do?

Why is massaging any part of the body beneficial? It increases blood flow, relaxes, stimulates, reduces stress, (in the case of prostate massage, it reduces the discomfort associated with prostatitis). prostate_massage_copy.jpgMassage also aids in healthy function of one’s prostate and associated glands, in the same way general massage assists other parts of one’s body in range of motion and overall limberness.

You’ve probably heard of the tee-shirt study that showed women have an attraction to men based on scent/pheromones/immune system variance. However I’m wondering if you can think of any studies where men were shown as being attracted to women on a similar basis.

I’ve read in a couple spots that men may not be influenced by pheromones/DNA variance because their goal is to spread their seed far and wide and hope for a good crop, whereas women need to be more selective since they will be carrying and ultimately caring for the offspring. This is all biologically speaking of course. I’m not sure if I buy that…do you?

I can’t point to any studies that show pheromones play an equally important part in male to female attraction and bonding. It is a very interesting question though. There’s got to be some studies out there on the effect of a woman’s perfume on men, wouldn’t you think? I mean, imagine if there is no connection at all; the multi-billion dollar perfume industry would be a joke.

I think that male pack animals are, for the most part, only interested in the scent of estrus. Since only dominant males get to breed, they don’t concern themselves with individual females, except in as much as they are part of his harem. Males who pair-bond for life may have other interests. But in that situation it is generally the female who does the choosing of a mate, not the male.

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