Sex and Relationships
Answers to questions about sex therapy and sexuality
Copyright (C) 1998, 1999, 2000 William F. Fitzgerald, Ph.D.
Welcome to ASK THE SEX DOC
Answer page #24
Link to the Home Page of ASK THE SEX DOC
Link to excerpts from Dr. Fitzgerald's
current book: "SEX: What Every Young Woman NEEDS to Know."
This question may fall under the category of none
of my business,
but I am puzzled by the sexual habits of gay men I know personally as
well as ones I have heard about. I saw a gay man interviewed on TV
yesterday and he said he had had 400 sexual partners. My puzzlement is
why this extreme promiscuity seems prevalent in gay men, am I old
fashioned in my views of what is appropriate and satisfying ie.
meaningful, carefully chosen partners? I am also very puzzled as to why
there seems to be such an emphasis on sex in gay male relationships, eg.
gay pride parades where there are floats featuring 2 story high penises.
I feel I lack a very basic understanding of something important here.
Can you help me to understand these things?
A: Dear Puzzled,
Trying to understand other people is always appropriate. You seemed to be
surprised by the gay man on TV who had 400 sexual partners. There are some
gay men whose partners have numbered in the thousands! Why this
promiscuity, you ask. The simple and true answer is: Because they can! It
is a myth to believe that gay men and straight men differ sexually in other
than preference. The reason most straight men are not as promiscuous as
gays is because they don't have as many opportunities and the penalties are
greater. It is important to remember that many gay men do maintain
reasonably faithful relationship with their lifemates. Most people, gay and
non-gay, do seem to prefer pair bonding. Gays seek love as much as do
non-gays. The appeals of promiscuity include: novelty, variety, and
increased sexual excitement; approval by others for those who are in
particular need of it; a quick relationally uncomplicated sexual release;
and the ongoing search for that right person who will make life blissful.
Gay males, as well as straight males, can easily distinguish sex from love
and friendship. Most gays see sex as a simple, enjoyable, and friendly thing
to do with no relationship strings attached, and they have countless
opportunities to act on those feelings with other like-minded males, unlike
their straight brothers who would do so if they could..
As to the two-story penises, remember that the Greeks and Romans proudly
displayed penises and giant phallic symbols, as did the Hindus until India
was occupied by the British for 150 years. The lingum in Hindu temples
today is a phallis. St. Paul, who obviously had sexual problems, (he never
married and held negative attitudes about sex,) was the historic founder of
Christianity. Thus, Christianity now has an anti-sexual, or non-sexual,
bias. It is blasphemy to even suggest that Mary or Christ had orgasms or
masturbated! How sad, and how degrading of our natural sexuality.
Dr. Dennis Hinkle
A: Dr. Fisher replies: There is often a
libido change after a pregnancy and birth of a child. I
would say it is due to hormonal changes and the stress of raising children,
but since it has continued for a few years it needs to be addressed. Stress
will kill a libido the same way rabies will kill a dog. Medically, I think
it would be worth having a complete hormone assay done to check ALL hormone
levels as well as your thyroid and pituitary gland function. In most cases
a testosterone or progesterone mixture in topical cream form can help a
If you are on birth control, this sometimes dulls the
sex drive. If you
think this may be the culprit, switching and experimenting with other types
may benefit you. Secondly, it sounds like you may be a little depressed,
which is perfectly understandable. If you are depressed this will decrease
the sexual response because it "numbs" the receptors in your brain that
says, "Hey, I need to be getting laid here." Antidepressants do wonders and
these days, there are several on the market that actually boost the sex
The question I have is regarding anal sex and the female.
Firstly, how can a woman achieve pleasure and orgasm during anal
The problem I am having is regarding my girlfriend. She loves
penetrate me (i'm male) with a vibrator. She has no objection to
satisfying my anus orally.
However, she will not be reciprocated. She refuses to allow me
even touch her anus. She won't allow me to lick it, and certainly will
not allow insertion of any kind.
She claims to have a "hangup" about this. How can I get rid of
hangup. How can I get started on satisfying her anally?
A: Women achieve pleasure first the same way you do -- the anus is rich with nerve endings that many people find very pleasurable when stimulated. Some achieve pleasure from the tip of the penis nudging their g-spot through the tissue that separates the rectum from the vagina. Some women cherish the orgasm thus achieved as being categorically from clitoral stimulation.
Men and women engage in sexual and other activities that they define as being enjoyable and that feel good. If her sucking hard on your nipples was noxious and painful and her question was how she could get you to agree to that, what would you say? Read the sections on anal sex linked from my homepage and see if her objection has to do with hygiene or odor. If you can determine the components of her refusal you might find a way to deal with the impediments. And maybe she just doesn't like it. Your choices then are either to accept her particular complexion of sexual expression or find a lover with whom you are more compatible.
A: He didn't do that during the year you were living together but since you got married he does? I suggest a firm talk about negotiation in marriage and that you calibrate his expectations. The marriage license is not a contract of ownership for indentured sexual slavery -- which it sounds like what he is thinking.
If you two can't resolve this peacefully, you desparately need to see a therapist immediately.
A little background. My son is 6 yrs old. When he was 3, he was kidnapped by his Dad for two years. When I found them both, his Dad was in jail for molesting our son and two other young boys and my son was in foster care. I've had my son back for about 18 months now. The molestation charges were never proven and there is supervised visitation occuring between them. It seems to be going well. So well, in fact, that I'm beginning to really doubt that any molesting occurred. There have been no lasting, obvious effects of it that cannot just as easily be explained by the kidnapping alone. That was trauma enough. Also, my son's grandparents (my ex's parents) were his primary caregivers during the kidnapping and they are extremely verbally abusive and have seriously negative cult-like religious beliefs. I have no doubt that at least one of two things occurred.
A) My son really was molested, perhaps not raped, but fondled...prematurely
B) My son was not actually touched, but was constantly verbally exposed to sexual knowledge beyond his years or need to know.
Here is the development that has me concerned. In the past few days, he has been holding (and playing with) his penis and testicles through his clothing in public. The first time I noticed it, I asked if he had to go to the bathroom. He didn't. I said, "Well, stop holding yourself like that. It makes me think you need to go. Let me know if you do." It continued at other times, but I said nothing, not really noticing it, until last night. He was doing it and my current husband asked if he had to go. Again, no. He flat told him not to hold himself at all. When my son had gone upstairs (he was ready for bed), I related to my husband what had happened, just realizing that it was frequent. I thought he might be getting some irritation. Perhaps he wasn't washing himself properly or was getting a bladder infection and the stronger urine was causing a rash or something.
Well, there's only one way to find out. I went up and sat near him and said, "Do your penis or testicles itch?"..."No". Then I asked, "Do they hurt?"..."No." Now I was getting tense, not knowing what to expect. I said, "Why are you holding yourself, then?" The simple response was, "It feels good."
Now, I was fully prepared to deal with this and other sexual issues with him when he was older. I expected wet dreams about 7 or 8 years old and expected the "good feelings" to come around about the same time. Going with what I had prepared (in spite of being caught way off-guard), I said, "Well, it's OK for you to touch your body anywhere you want to. God made your body and that area is supposed to feel good when you touch it. It's no accident. But, that is something for you to do privately. In public, other people don't want to see each other touching themselves there. It feels good to everybody, but you don't see everybody walking around holding themselves between the legs, right?" He laughed and said, "No, of course not!"
Not knowing until it was too late, I pushed a little too far by asking him if he had ever woken up in the morning with his underwear wet. He recalled a bedweeting accident several months ago. I said, "Not from pee, but something else." He said no. I let it drop and proceeded to pick up the book he wanted me to read to him. He didn't let it pass, though, and I ended up desribing a wet dream as delicately as I could, saying, "Your testicles make a liquid that will have to come out later on, through your penis. It feels like snot, but it's white or clear. It's normal, but you may not have that for a few years. It's nothing to worry about." He questioned me a little more and I gave simple answers, but it's nothing relevent to this question.
The question is this:
Is it normal for a six year old boy to be having enough sensation in
his penis/testicles to want to stimulate himself? If not, how unusual is
it? Is it a possible indication of real abuse, to your knowledge? Did I
handle this situation OK?
A: You handled this very well. I suggest only that you take a deep breath and relax because he WILL pick up on the body language tension.
In utero, males get erections and females vaginally lubricate. It's reflexive. Most people are able to achieve orgasm only during the flood of hormones starting between 10 and 14, but there are exceptions.
Your explanation -- telling him that what you are doing is fine; where you are doing it is not (references to farting in public and being seen having a bowel movement also are understandable to 6 year olds) -- is great.
Boys and girls of all ages discover that it feels good to touch themselves "down there" and that is common, normal, and not indicative of sexual molest. In fact, more often, the opposite is true: the child expresses bizarre fear or "crazy" behavior (like rocking, head banging, or repeated phrases) if he or she is "required" (as in toilet paper) to touch "down there" or anyone else does, whether in bathing or a medical exam. If you see any of that abnormal behavior an assessment by someone with advanced specialty training in such matters is called for.
The only factual difference is that what comes out will be clear not white most likely until somewhere between 10 and 15. I suggest also noticing if there are any skin friction sores -- he might start masturbating without lubrication. It won't be a disease but friction sores that may be reddish or actually scabs. Be prepared and DO NOT FREAK OUT.
Does that answer it for you?
A: Rape is a crime defined by State law (in all the states I know, anyway), and while the wording is somewhat different from state to state, the essence of rape (for women) is penetration of a body cavity WITHOUT COMPREHENDED CONSENT. Thus, sexual intercourse is rape if it occurred by physical force, by intimidation (if you don't I'll kill you), by extortion (if you don't I'll kill your children or parents, etc.), while you were under the influence of drugs including alcohol, or if you were mentally incompetent, as in retarded or psychotic ("crazy").
In California, sexual intercourse with a person under the age of 18 is called "statutory" rape -- that is, rape according to statutes which are detailed descriptions of the law. That means that the State of California has decided that anyone under the age of 18 is not mature enough to make a truly informed decision regarding intercourse.
The most you are "at fault" for was trusting that you were safe in the company of those people. You need to stay in therapy until you no longer feel "awful, slutty, and that it was your fault." If you abort therapy prematurely, there is an extremely high probability that you will have sexual problems later in life. Do it -- work through it -- now, while it is still fresh and before you repeat the negatives over and over and over, thus etching them in your memory deeper and deeper (and requiring MUCH more therapy later in life).
That having been said I have two more things that impact what you describe. 1) There is a chance that this is a horrible creulty, and that the young man tried, failed, and to "save face" and "prove he is a man," said he succeeded. I infer that he is quite immature himself, and it is entirely possible that the nervousness, anxiety, worry, etc., of the moment might have caused him to lose his erection or prematurely ejaculate (before penetration). And 2) you say "my friends and therapist think I was raped..." and I sincerely hope that it was just your sentence construction that implies that your therapist considers this a matter of opinion. I hope the truth is that your friends think that you were raped and your therapist states categorically that it was rape. Going way out on a limb here, I would be so distressed by your therapist's competence in this matter as to advise you that IF your therapist thinks this is a shade of gray and not black and white, that you get a second opinion from a therapist who has a reputation for dealing with rape victims.
Please clarify the second point and let me know if you get any medical determination as to evidence of rape.
NOTE TO ALL READERS: If anyone gets raped or is told that they had intercourse while drunk, etc., time is of the essence to contact your local police department so they can arrange for a medical facility to collect evidence. Do NOT wash or shower or "rub down there." Call for help immediately. Many cities have rape intervention crisis teams with counselors who will help you get through the process every step of the way. Remember that every day you are not raped might be because a woman before you was traumatized and got the rapist off the streets. If you are raped you owe it to all your sisters in the future who this rapist might also rape because he got away with it. Think about that!
A: [Note: for those of you not familiar with the term, "fisting" (also called "wristing") is a sexual behavior in which one inserts his or her entire hand into the vagina or the rectum. When there is no modifier, vaginal fisting is assumed. This is an "advanced" behavior and should not be performed except by someone with prior experience.] You're right. You are not free and you don't deserve to engage in enjoyable sex. Only men are supposed to enjoy it. Women who are sexual are nasty and those who enjoy it are all sluts. Feel better now? I read your e-mail and the first thought was "Oh no, not another victim of archaic anachronistic Judeo-Christian morality!" If tickling (neurological stimulation) and sneezing (reflex like orgasm) were related to making babies, they would be shameful, too!
Sexual customs are largely defined by cultures and religions, and what is acceptable in some places is taboo, illegal (see the footnote on the answer to the question of 7/8/00, below), or both in others. I have mentioned in several locations on this web site that there are many women who engage in oral and anal sex (among other sex acts) often and by choice, but because they are "... good Catholic girls and want to be a virgin on their wedding night," don't engage in penile-vaginal intercourse.
I respectfully suggest that you have internalized good old fashioned North American guilt. You need to challenge yourself firmly regarding why you feel this way. What is "wrong" with enjoying alternatives to penile-vaginal intercourse? The religious messages are that you can't masturbate and anything that is not "making babies" is a sin! If you can't get over it, for the sake of your quality of life, please seek therapy!
Can anal sex and fisting cause any long-term damage? There are limits to how far the introitus (opening of the vagina) and the anal sphincters (internal and external) can stretch, but the introitus is able to accommodate the diameter of the head of most babies, and I have had several reliable sources describe the joy of anal fisting. But yes, if the diameter of the stretching is too much, yes, there can be tissue damage.
A: Thank you VERY MUCH for asking this question! The VAST majority of women who start having intercourse before 18 or 19 seriously regret it and implore -- beg -- me to tell other young women NOT to make the same mistake.
There are emotional consequences that often show up as serious sexual boredom by the mid-twenties.
I encourage sexual experience before marriage so you can determine your sexual compatibility, but starting that when you are more mature would be best.
I have written about this in my current book (links to excerpts from my home page).
At 15 I suggest experimentation with using your hands and if you want more, your mouth, to bring each other to orgasm. Vaginal and anal intercourse are psychologically much more penetrating.
Please let me know what you do.
I was wondering what I was to do with the condom after
my girlfriend and I were done. Also, if I should cum
inside or pull-out before I ejaculate into the condom.
Finally, out of curiousity, if I was not using a
condom, where would I ejaculate?
A: Your best disposal would be in a zip-lock sandwich bag (or any waterproof plastic bag sealed with a twist tie) until you can discretely toss it into a dumpster (not near your home).
Most men overwhelmingly prefer to ejaculate while their condom-covered penis is still in the vagina. It feels better.
If you are not using a condom DON'T INSERT YOUR PENIS INTO A VAGINA! Your "pre-cum" -- the clear stuff like nasal mucus -- contains about 80,000 sperm, only one of which is needed to get her pregnant. So if you are not using a condom, where would you ejaculate? Depending on the volume, 2-5 facial tissues or pieces of toilet paper would probably be called for (your handkerchief or her dress are subject to disclosure!).
A: TWO things are operative here: First, you illustrate nicely the assertion that your biggest sex organ is between your ears. Yes, primates in general and humans in particular are much more eroticized by mental processes than "mere" neurological stimulation.
The second thing is the artificial tying of orgasm to intercourse. Only about 40% of women achieve orgasm from penile thrusting alone. The other have orgasm before, after, never, or during intercourse ONLY if their clitoris gets added stimulation.
This is a hangover from the Judeo-Christian ethic that the only purpose of sex is to make babies, and the only REAL sex is penile-vaginal intercourse. I encourage you (and all readers) to pause to question why there is this debilitating myth that during intercourse the guy has to "hold out long enough" for his woman to have an orgasm before he does. Why? Try several sex play sessions in which you take turns spending 15 minutes telling your partner (your sex slave) what you (the master) will have done to him/her. The circumstance of having all pleasure focussed on you (when you're receiving), and the TOTAL absence of responsibility for what she wants as far as sexual stimulation goes (when you're pleasuring), can be immensely liberating!
So if your orgasms are more intense early in copulation, I suggest that you experiment with bringing her to several orgasms before or after you experience yours when you damn well want it! Be prepared, though, that she might "discover" a non-intercourse sequence (such as oral sex with simultaneous g-spot stimulation) that she prefers more than intercourse.
p.s. Sex therapists LOVE it when a couple presents for "enhancement" or "boredom doing the same old same old" instead of with a sexual dysfunction.
A: Almost all women have vaginal lubrication, and it varies in volume from woman to woman and from sexual event to event. A minority of women produce lots more liquid from several tablespoonsful to over a cup. When these latter women experience the involuntary pelvic muscle contractions on orgasm, the greater amount of liquid comes spurting out.
So "should" she release fluid is like asking if she "should" hiccup. Some women do and some don't. Both are "normal."
A: What you are referring to is commonly called
"designer pussies". In past
days, the doctor delivering a baby would "Give it any extra stitch for the
husband" regarding closing up an episiotomy after childbirth. Making the
vaginal opening more "tight" for the husbands sexual pleasure, but not doing
a damn thing for the woman.
There are several different procedures that can tighten
the vaginal muscles.
The technique and procedure are reliant on the type and extent of damage you
have (i.e. vaginal opening, anterior or post. walls,etc...) . The surgery
is grouped under the term vaginal myoplasty. It involves snipping and
stitching the muscles and ligaments in the affected areas and allowing the
stitching to "heal" and in turn anchoring them in a tightened position. In
certain cases it can be done by using laproscopic tools that allow faster
recovery. Or most recently there is a laser technique that is offered at
It usually costs between $4,000 to $9,000 depending
hospitalization, etc.... Make sure a GYNECOLOGIST DOES IT!!! Plastic
surgeons are not trained (even though many claim to be) as to the anatomical
internal features of a woman's reproductive tract well enough to ensure
proper healing and technique.
I do not recommend having any form of tightening surgery
done if you are
planning more children after your third. And also, Kegels are important
before and after childbirth, so do them! You need to address this issue
with your care provider now. But odds are, and in my opinion, you need to
wait a couple months after the birth of the child to have the procedure done
because it takes time for all the tissues to heal and return to their
maximum original state...even though that may not be as tight as they were
Firstly i would just like to applaud you for such an excellent, and
informative website and service you provide.
Now, i do have a question for you. Well, i am 20 years old, i have a
and we have agreed not to have sex before marriage, however i would like to
pleasure him in other ways, through touching, and petting. I would
appreciate it if you could tell me any good techniques and tell me in which
places a guy is most sensitive. And any good massage techniques...
I also have another question, please don't laugh! - i want to give my
a lovebite, but i don't know how! Please could you tell me how to give a
lovebite! Do you just bite or what??! (i feel quite embarrased now!)
Thankyou Doctor, i will be seeing my fiance next Wednesday, after 2
(he lives 3 hours away from me) so i would be really grateful if you could
reply to my e-mail at this e-mail address before then, although i do
appreciate how busy you must be.
A: It all depends on how much body contact you are willing to have short of penile-vaginal penetration! AND start with a shower together so neither of you will be sensitive to bad odors.
Essentially ANY contact with his penis would most likely be appreciated. You can use your hand(s) and/or mouth. Some guys enjoy the passivity of being told to "just lie there and let me pleasure you," then with him lying on his back, get slippery stuff on your hands and stroke his penis hand over hand as though it is a rope you are pulling on. And some guys, especially those most comfortable with their masculinity, like anal contact (only with a short fingernailled-finger) and/or prostate massage (finger inserted all the way into his rectum and making a "come here" motion with your finger pushing gently toward his pubic bone [front of the body]). There is also frottage: get naked and put slippery stuff between your thighs and both lying on your side facing the same way (not each other) have him put his erection between your thighs and rock back and forth. Have a facial tissue handy to catch the ejaculate.
Also: if anal intercourse is acceptable (see my web page links for how to gently stretch your anus to accept his penis without discomfort) he might enjoy that OR lie on your stomach, put slippery stuff between your buttocks and have him slide his erection up and down the crevice while he is lying on top of you. That's called inter-gluteal frottage, and explicitly discuss whether anal penetration is allowed or not, because in the "heat of passion," if he slides lower than usual and you are very slippery and relaxed, he might just slip into your rectum with minimum effort (especially if you are bearing down like you are trying to pass gas).
Try asking him or do things and ask for his reaction. Remember that different men like different things. Some enjoy nipple stimulation or grazing your fingernails on the inside of his thighs. Some like a good back rub while others enjoy having their buttocks massaged. Some men enjoy having their perineum (skin between the scrotum and anus) stroked or pulsed (the latter puts pleasurable pressure on the prostate).
Also keep in mind that many men "get off" seeing YOU get off. Bringing a woman to the brink of orgasm and keeping her teetering on the edge until she has a violent orgasm can be an extreme turn-on to many men.
The love bite is hard to describe -- it is medium force, more than just resting your teeth on the skin and way before breaking the skin. Be careful: it may take hours before the bruises show up so make sure the love bite is where clothes will cover the bruise (thighs near the crotch?).
As for the massage, there are great books available on erotic massage, and a book with pictures is superior to my attempts to describe it.
This answer would not be complete without references to virginity/experience and compatibility. While I respect each person's decision regarding virginity, if you are both inexperienced, things can be clumsy and complicated (they aren't usually if one is experienced), and if it turns out that you have a serious sexual desire discrepancy, this could result either in a miserable marriage or divorce.
If you appreciate this answer, please e-mail what you did and his reaction.
Dr. Fisher replies: A: Since you are reluctant
to try HRT, it can be challenging to help in the
libido department. To answer your question about testosterone cream: There
are several different types of testosterone creams that can be applied
topically to increase libido. It does not work for everyone and it can be
expensive. The cream is mixed according to your doctor's prescription.
There are also transdermal patches that are applied to the stomach that
deliver testosterone. There can be side effects such as weight gain, facial
hair growth, etc...from using testosterone products.
I have found that products (creams, oral therapies,
etc...) that contain
androgens testosterone and estrogens work the best.
I will say that the herb Sarsaparilla stimulates the
testosterone in the body and since you implied that you wanted to keep it as
natural as possible, this may be a possible therapy. Also, if you apply
Peppermint Oil to the clitoris during foreplay this increases stimulation
and in turn may provoke a little more interest on your part.
It is worth mentioning that the imbalance of hormones,
estrogen, can cause depression and that in fact can cause a lack of libido.
If you feel that you may have even slight depression it is worth discussing
with your care provider.
I am sure you are knowledgeable to the fact that certain
alcohol and caffeinated products can cause a decreased sex drive.
Dr. Fitzgerald's comment: Your reference to your husband not seeming to notice is a red flag. In addition to what Dr. Fisher suggests I encourage you to see a sex therapist for sex life rejuvenation. While we are skilled at using behavior modification for sexual dysfunctions, the same techniques are effective for re-establishing a boring sex life -- often with delightful results!
A: Thank you for such an articulate description. I KNOW that many readers (women and men) will identify with this. There are aspects of all the words in my title here. He is being selfish -- and you are letting him get away with it. This is immature behavior at any age (and yes, there are middle-aged men and women who behave exactly the way he is). It is short-sighted because your e-mail signals that you're fed up, and without more "in it for you," you are going to vote with your feet. If you two have access to each other for intercourse essentially every day, and you want it every day and he wants it once a week (or less), you two are simply incompatible sexually. That doesn't make either of you "needy," "deficient" or a "bad" person; it simply states that you have different sex drives. And, dear writer of this e-mail, I KNOW that more than half of the men under 38 who are reading this are thinking "Baby, just give me your phone number and I'll take good care of you every single day." (Most of the guys over 38 are saying "Thanks, but every 2 or 3 days is fine.")
And yes, there is a component of premature ejaculation in that he is choosing not to "pace" himself so that he can afford you pleasure. If he were to do the self-help exercises I have described in my link from the home page to [Answers to questions about ...] Premature Ejaculation, he would likely be able to engage in vaginal thrusting longer. And please don't buy that "you just feel too good" line. It is a left-handed compliment designed to confuse you with a paradox you can't argue with, and to shift apparent responsibility onto you.
I suggest confrontation and negotiation, and if both quality and quantity don't change enough, I strongly urge you to search for a partner with whom you are more compatible. Your sexual flexibility and desire would be absolutely CHERISHED by many (much more appreciative) men.
Speaking of oral sex, however,
I hope you do not live in Louisiana. That state's Supreme Court has
upheld a 200-year old law that makes oral and anal sex between CONSENTING
adults punishable up to five years in jail. Louisiana is one of 12
U.S. states that still have sodomy (oral or anal sex) laws applying to
both heterosexual and homosexual couples.
A: I regret that you have handed one of your testicles to the church and the other to your wife. Your failure to take responsibility for your quality of life, and not to assert your needs, has made the bed you made and are lying in, a bed of nails. Anyone who is hesitant to assert his or her needs MUST read the book "When I Say No I Feel Guilty" by Manuel Smith, Ph.D. The sexdoc has been prescribing that book (it's called "bibliotherapy" -- cute, eh?) since 1975 and it is still making a PROFOUND difference in people's lives.
I feel very sorry, sir, that you did not have better
role modeling or encouragement to take care of yourself. Anti-depressants
and a gradually increasing frequency of orgasm (however attained) are in
order. And I seriously doubt that we will ever have an accurate count
of how many other men there are like you out there; at least you have enough
memory of what it is like to have balls to tell your story.
I'm a fifteen year old boy. When I was around the age of ten, me and a friend would spend the night over at eachother's houses and orally please eachother. I had no prior sexual relations with anybody before these incounters. After about 8 months I decided that I didn't want to do this anymore for fear that I would become "Gay". Since then I haven't had any sort of sexual contacts with a male or female. When I was 13 I began to masturbate. But I found myself thinking of men rather than women. However I have never had an emotional feeling for them. Only sexual. I'm attracted to women emotionally.
So here is my question.
Is the reason that I think about men when I masturbate because of what me and my friend did? And when I have sexual relations with a female, will these thoughts about men go away or at least subside?
A: Your brain starts out like a big blackboard (or do all schools these days use only white boards), and early experiences that cause powerful emotions (good and bad) are etched very deeply.
Your same sex experimentation is all you have to remember as an actual physical experience, so until that gets supplemented by other sexual experiences that is what will pop into your thoughts during sex (by yourself or with a future partner).
If the additional sexual experiences are only with women, they will be more recent, vivid, and eroticizing and will likely take precedence over the oral-with-guy memories. Relax, take it slow, and see what develops. You might end up being bisexual -- meaning ABLE to have sex comfortably with either gender, but just enjoy women more (or an occasional man just for fun).
I am a 36 year old woman who has been married for 14 years. Prior to
marriage I did not have any intimate relationships. I was brought up in a
household where sex was considered bad and dirty. My father was rigid and
controlling, clearly emotionally abusive. I do not know that I have been
sexually abused because I have no clear recollection. I do know that my
mother and father forcibly gave me enemas when I was about 5 years old and
this lasted for about a year. My dad held me down while my mom did it. I
recall being terrified and screaming but I had no way of getting them to
stop. I also am aware that my parents created in me a sense of my body being
shameful and bad. Based on what my older sister has told me I was forced to
sit on the potty seat for hours when my mom and dad were trying to toilet
train me. I had to sit there until I went even if this meant sitting for
hours. I was told how bad I was for not being able to "go" as quickly as they
When I was 14 years old and began menstruating I discovered that it
extremely painful to insert tampons. So much so that I was unable to actually
get one inside of me. I felt a burning pain. Years went by and further
attempts at inserting tampons or exploring my vagina with my fingers were met
with this burning sensation and extreme pain. I began to think that there
was something physically wrong with me. I finally went to a Gynecologist when
I was 22 as I fell in love with my husband and planned to marry. The
Gynecologist was unable to insert a speculum or a finger inside of me and
advised me to return after my marriage for an internal exam. My honeymoon was
a nightmare. Although, my husband told me that he would not expect
intercourse until I was ready, he began to pressure me the first day of our
honeymoon. Up until that point I was able to be sexual with him in some
other ways and enjoyed him touching my body and kissing me. He continued to
pressure me to just try to have intercourse. So he lay on top of me and tried
to force his penis inside of me. The pain was excruciating and he was unable
to get his penis inside. I felt as though I failed him and I also wished I
had never gotten married. After our honeymoon I went to numerous
gynecologists searching for an explanation for the pain I experienced. They
all said I was physically fine, maybe a little red around the vagina but
otherwise perfectly normal. After a couple doctors suggested I see a
therapist to explore psychological reasons for the pain I did see a number of
therapists. No amount of talking about it relieved the pain at all. I
explored every avenue I could think of reading every book I could get my
hands on about pain with sex. I got some latex dilators and tried inserting
the smallest and working up to a larger size. This came at the suggestion of
one doctor that I had Vaginismus. I never got beyond the smallest dilator. I
could get it inside but each time there was the same burning pain. Meanwhile
in my marriage my husband began getting more resentful and angry towards me.
He felt I was holding out on sex because I didn't love him enough. He
thought that if we just did it more the pain would lessen. I once somewhat
enjoyed being sexual with him but now every encounter was filled with dread.
I complied with being sexual even though I did not want to. After about 4
years of marriage one night he was able to get his penis inside. Pain was
extreme but he thought all of our sexual problems were over. Now he wanted
to attempt intercourse each week. I tried everything to relax as I thought
my problem was Vaginismus. I did deep breathing, hypnosis, and drank a lot of
alcohol. Nothing helped. Every weekend I actually became physically ill at
the thought of having to be sexual with him. Yet after my excuses started
wearing thin I forced myself to be sexual with him. Sometimes intercourse,
sometimes not but now every experience disgusted me. After about 8 years of
marriage one counselor told me that I didn't have to be sexual if I didn't
want to. I began drawing clear boundaries about what I would and would not
do. My husband grew more frustrated. I tried to do sexual things that I
enjoyed but now I didn't enjoy any intimacy, not even kissing.
After 11 years of marriage I moved out for a 6 month period of time
and had a
relationship with another man. This man did not pressure me for sex and was
very gentle and kind. I enjoyed being sexual with him to a certain extent.
Any attempts at intercourse failed, again there was significant pain upon
attempted entry. This man did not pressure me in any way for intercourse he
was happy to be sexual with me in other ways. I loved his touch and touching
him and kissing him. I pleasured him through manual and oral stimulation of
the penis. I did this because I loved him, not because I liked touching his
penis. I have a problem with penises. I find them disgusting and always have
for as long as I can remember. After living alone for 6 months my husband
desperately wanted me to return and told me that he would no longer pressure
me for sex. I returned home.
In the summer of 1999 I learned about a condition called Vulvar Vestibulitis
and went to a Gynecologist who was familiar with this condition. He
diagnosed me with this condition at my first visit, without hesitation. He
simply touched me with a Q-tip in several places surrounding the entrance to
my vagina and measured my pain reaction. Each place he touched caused an
extreme burning sensation. He noticed how red the tissue surrounding my
vagina was. So far various treatments for Vulvar Vestibulitis have not
resulted in any improvement in my condition.
Knowing that the pain is caused by a medical condition brought some
no longer thought I was crazy or "making it up". But now here I am 36 years
old and I have absolutely no desire to be sexual or intimate with my husband
in any way. I cringe at his touch. I can't even kiss him without feeling
disgust. We have been going to couples counseling for 3 years to try to get
over this sexual aversion that I have developed. We have gone to two
different counselors. We essentially now live in a marriage without any
passion or physical intimacy. Each night we numb ourselves with a few glasses
of alcohol. Our lives are not fulfilling. I feel a huge sense of guilt for
not being sexual with him. Do you have any recommendations for how I can
overcome this aversion to physical intimacy with my husband? As much as I
want to feel desire and love for him I can't seem to feel those feelings.
Also, do you have any suggestions for how I can overcome my aversion to
penises? (By the way, I am not attracted to women at all, so this is not an
issue of me being a lesbian.) My husband no longer pressures me to be sexual
in any way. One might think that I am relieved by this and would want to
stay in this "safe" relationship forever. But I feel such a tremendous loss
and I don't want to live the rest of my life without passion or physical
I know that this e-mail has been very lengthy. I apologize for the length
wanted to give you a complete picture. If you print this e-mail on your
website please don't refer to me by name. Thank you very much for your time.
A: Psychological aspects (Dr. Fitzgerald)
That the mind can cause profound changes in the body is easier to accept in certain symptoms, and seems more elusive in others. Psycho- (mind) somatic (body) illustrations of stress are often and usually easily seen in headaches, TMJ (jaw hinge joint) dysfunction, "nervous" tics, stammering, stuttering, tense shoulders, nocturnal bruxing (teeth grinding), shortness of breath, asthma attacks, heart palpitations, stomach ulcers, duodenal ulcers, irritable bowel syndrome, spastic colitis, hemorrhoids, and other physical interferences with "normal" functioning.
Childhood abuse, whether physical, emotional, sexual, or neglect, is often associated in adolescence and adulthood with sexual problems and weight problems such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia, and obesity (sometimes morbid). Although the precise linkage is not clearly known, childhood messages that sex is bad and dirty, coupled with boundary violations such as an emotionally abusive parent and/or the forced enemas, are often associated with numerous sexual problems, more often in women than in men. It might be that unconsciously clenching the pelvic muscles irritated the tissue making it susceptible to infection, and what better way to avoid doing anything dirty by experiencing serious debilitating burning when anything attempted vaginal penetration? The child's mind cannot distinguish between a penis and a speculum or a dilator.
And so when women report these problems, the greatest probability for a successful outcome lies with a coordinated treatment plan that includes psychosexual psychotherapy and medical monitoring and intervention.
Medical aspects (Dr. Fisher)
It is important to find out what is causing the vestibulitis
(i.e. Is it a
certain bacteria?) Not only should you have a complete exam, you need to
have swabs taken of the infected area to identify any bacteria or other
The most common treatment is topical creams applied
to the affected area
such as Estrogen or steroid creams. some patients respond well to
interferon shots. I have found that steroid injections applied directly in
the affected area, followed by a topical cream called Elocon has also worked
for a number of patients.
It is important to mention that recent studies have
shown that patients with
vestibulitis tend to have problems with pelvic floor muscles (contractions).
Electric (Biofeedback) Stimulation Therapy can be instituted in situations
like this. It contracts pelvic floor muscles passively and tends to ease
pain. This is usually prescribed coupled with Kegel exercises. (Note: Dr. Fitzgerald describes the complete Kegel exercise in the excerpts of his book [see top of page].)
Last ditch effort: excision. This is a surgical
procedure where a surgeon
actually removes the affected tissue. It is dependent on to what extent the
area is affected. It is a 50/50 chance of improvement here.
In some larger teaching hospitals they are experimenting
with a form of
laser surgery for the condition, but this technique is fairly new and would
need to be discussed in detail with your physician.
Also, be careful to wash or rinse all of the soap residue
from your vagina
and surrounding areas after bathing and dry really well. Soap can irritate
A: In the absence of intervention and assessment by an experienced sex therapist, I predict increasing frustration leading to problems like affairs or divorce. He might be gay, as you speculate, but I would want to exhaust the hypotheses that he might be inhibited, intimidated, have a mild case of "whore-madonna" syndrome, or just be on the low end of the sexuality normal curve, first. Things like this need (benefit from) an experienced sex therapist to flesh out the nuances from ambiguous behavior. If you accept my speculation that this is trending in a downward spiral, please seek help as soon as possible before this gets worse and there is more relationship and self-esteem damage.
I am compelled to add that probably 85% of the male
readers of your question would LOVE to have the opportunity to join you
in your sexual interests, and that 99% of women with similar feelings can
identify and feel your frustration (etc.).
We've had a great relationship over the past year of being together.
have fun when we do things. We're best friends. We support and listen to
each other. But, we aren't having sex.
The very first time we tried - almost two years ago now, he didn't get
errection. I was worried about it, but kinda inexperienced and had always
heard that I should be supportive, so I tried to be. The next couple of
times that I went to see him, I tried all the stupid things that college
girls do to get him interested in me, but none seemed to work. I was
actually out visiting him about a week before we were supposed to move in
together and I forced a conversation about it. We both admitted that
neither of us was hugely sexually attracted to the other person. But, we
decided that we'd move in together "just as friends" because we still liked
each other and we still wanted to go. But, we weren't here more than a day
before the "just as friends" concept went away and we tried to have sex
again and failed.
Since that first time while we were living together, we've actually
but it hasn't been frequent and it hasn't been fulfilling to either on of
us. We've talked about it, but for a long time, I just got excuses from him
- he was too stressed out, there wasn't time, I wasn't experienced enough
like him, he needed a woman who was more in control, etc. None of these
things were really it and so in the past couple of days, we've been fighting
again. I finally got a letter from him today saying the same thing that he
said a year ago (and that I agree with) we're not sexually attracted to each
other - most of the time.
Now we're at the point where we're engaged. I know that neither
of us is
thinking that with things as they are, we're going to go through with it. I
know for myself at least that I won't be happy in the long run.
I guess my question to you is if we postpone the whole engagement thing,
try one more time to work on this, is there any hope that this can be
solved? Can people learn to be sexually attracted to one another? Or is it
just a lost cause and we ought to move on?
Thanks for your help.
A: As a student of human behavior I am fascinated by the dissonance between understanding and behavior. My perspective, in the sense of "preventive medicine" is that there would be much less anguish, frustration, and heartbreak in marital relationships if the prospective partners had had sexual relations (of a wide variety of sexual behaviors) with several partners before this relationship, and had lived with each other for 12 months (all seasons and all holidays and some travel) BEFORE announcing an engagement.
Can people learn to be sexually attracted to each other? Not exactly. People can be conditioned to perceive their partner as a source of pleasure and need fulfillment, but the attraction component gets imprinted when one is young, impressionable, and defenseless against eroticizing stimuli (which is where fetishes come from).
It is obvious that you two have not been able to figure
this out by yourselves. I strongly urge you to see a sex therapist
for values clarification and disinhibition to assess your sexual (in-)compatibility.
In the absence of that, I respectfully suggest that there is a high probability
of relationship discord, and/or divorce, and/or affairs (and misery).
A: Of course! You're both gay when she performs anal intercourse on you, and you're a lesbian and she is bisexual when you perform cunnilingus on her, and the only time you two are "straight" is when you have penile-vaginal intercourse (and you are "straighter" if it is in the missionary position in the dark).
"Modern" sexuality is an oxymoron! Please indulge the sarcasm -- I assure you it is meant for theatrical effect, not to be critical, but I wanted to make the point like a bullet between the eyes: Homosexuality is defined by the gender of the participants, not by the activity! Sexual behavior is so vilified by religion, politicians, and up-on-their-high-horse "I'm right and you are wrong" alleged moralists, that people are paralyzed from thinking "out of the box" (and I am NOT referring to cunnilingus here).
Many women and many men are seriously anxious that the man "might be gay" if he were to enjoy ass play. Well, folks, does that mean that most of the women who enjoy anal intercourse are really closet homosexual transsexuals? Notice that if a woman enjoys anal sex she's "uninhibited" and "liberal" (and I would interject "secure in her sexuality" as well). But if a man likes his prostate massaged from the inside, and/or to have a butt plug installed while he is engaging in vaginal intercourse (slightly acrobatic and innovative but quite easily achieved), we quickly ask if something is wrong with this picture.
All the foreplay activities that do not involve a penis, that men engage in to stimulate a woman are done by some lesbians, but we never ask if that makes the man lesbian, do we? It's the artificial penis, you say? What about vibrators? Because some lesbians use a vibrator on their partner, that doesn't make the man who uses one on his female lover any part lesbian.
Some men DO wonder what it would be like to have a real live cock in their ass, but I respectfully suggest that if you dig deeper, the majority of those men are looking for a bonding, an intimacy, with someone they feel has more in common with them than any woman can. But that's another soapbox.
Please find the link to Good Vibrations on my home
page and order the videotape(s) "Bend Over, Boyfriend" for an excellent
presentation of this topic.
Dr. Fitzgerald replies: I guarantee that this will get better, get worse, or stay the same. Guaranteed. Actually, the probability is that with experience you will learn techniques that "speed you up" or "slow you down." Different sexual positions cause greater or lesser pressure/stimulation on the labia, the clitoris, and the g-spot. You need to become a research scientist and experiment to find what works for you. It's a dirty job but you are the only one who can do it.
Primates in general and humans in particular are powerfully stimulated by novelty. Because you have just started to be sexual, you're getting a heavy dose of Coolidge Effect on top of hormone rushes. Do the same thing over and over and it becomes more of a "ho hum, been there, done that" thing. Hey -- I said "more of" not "boring!"
Have towels and maybe even a plastic sheet as part of your sexual preparedness; try anal intercourse -- NOT to have fewer g-spot orgasms; you might have MORE -- with tons of Albolene moisturizing makeup remover for the "so slippery that he slipped out many times" problem, and make sure that NOTHING that was on your anus or in your rectum goes into your vagina without killing all the bacteria (see my "anal sex" links from my homepage).
You say the ejaculate makes things so slippery. I am assuming you mean your female ejaculate, not his (condom or bc pills, please).
Also, when giving a handjob (I've never seen a guy masturbate), is your
supposed to move over the skin, or grip the skin and squeeze the erection?
It seems too "dry" to get much in the way of real action... can you give me
some tips on a good handjob too?
Dr. Fitzgerald: The next time you want to give a hand job, say to your lover "I want to give you the best hand job you have ever had, but because different men prefer different kinds of contact, the best way for me to learn what YOU like is for you to pleasure yourself to orgasm with your hand while I watch and take mental notes. But please don't do that until you want me to learn how to please you the most." (NOTE: Guy readers: change the gender and say that to your woman.)
One last question. I feel that I should be on the birth control
not just using condoms, but I'm really frightened of gaining weight when I
start taking them, because I have been struggling with my weight for years
and finally have it under some semblance of control. What is the best pill
Dr. Fisher replies to this part: When starting
birth control pills, the weight gain is usually due to the oral contraceptive
altering your water metabolism. Both the estrogen and progestin in
the pills can cause fluid retention, a temporary and usually cyclic effect
that often begins in the first month as a result of an increase in sodium.
The estrogen in the pill can cause weight gain due to
increased breast, hip, and thigh tissue, usually after several months on the pill. Reducing your salt intake moderately can help control this type of water retention. Some progestin dominant pills can cause appetite increase and permanent weight gain. Pill related depression may also lead to
increased appetite and weight gain. Gee, sounds promising doesn't it. Basically, there are side effects with any oral contraceptive. Your doctor usually recommends what he or she feels is the best type that will not horribly fool with your other metabolic systems. There is not a superior
form of oral contraceptive, they all work on the same order. You need to address the gaining of weight to your doctor BEFORE they give you something. But just think, if you go on the pill you chance to gain a few pounds. But just think of how much you'll gain if you get knocked up!!
Also, I am having a hard time knowing when my boyfriend is "finished".
first boyfriend would get an erection, blow his load all at once, and lose
his erection for 20 mins or more. My new boyfriend was able to have
intercourse and oral sex and keep an erection. I don't want to leave him
unsatisfied, because as you can see by the main topic of this e-mail, I
certainly am. Is it ok to leave a guy with an erection? Can some guys just
come in little bits and keep going?
Dr. Fitzgerald: In both genders major sexual excitement (getting ready for intercourse) not culminated in orgasm is uncomfortable, more in some people than others. Women who consistently get sexually excited (it happens during REM sleep whether you like it or not) without orgasm can develop "chronic pelvic vasocongestion" which shows up as a concentration of fat in the abdomen. In men, the slang term for this is "blue balls," and for some guys it is like an abdominal cramp. (Women -- don't let the guy "guilt" you into sex for this reason. He could always take care of it himself!) Some men have a very short or no refractory period, and either regain an erection very quickly or never detumesce (go limp). As a precise answer, then, after his last orgasm don't stimulate his penis any more. But hey, if he has had several I wouldn't worry about it. Everybody: an orgasm at least every 3.5 days for your minimum weekly requirement (more is better).
Thanks for your wise words, you're educating me a little more every week!
Please use the name Julia for the letter if you post it. Thanks again Dr. F!
PS- g spot cannot be a myth!!!!! It's not, but
not every woman has one!
A: I have hypnotized hundreds of people and trained dozens of doctors of all kinds to be hypnotists, and one of my favorite demonstrations is to give the post-hypnotic suggestion that the first sip of a soda after the hypnosis will taste like vinegar and the subject will spit it out. Works about 95% of the time. But hypnosis is a temporary way of "fooling" the brain, and if the sensory data consistently fail to support the hypnotic suggestion, it "wears off."
So to answer your question, yes, I could likely hypnotize her and give her the suggestion that your semen tasted like strawberries, and it likely would be interpreted as that on the first, or first few, tastes. But after that, no more.
A: I provide treatment for sexual offenders, and exhibitionists are the most reluctant to change their behavior. It almost always escalates until they get arrested. It is not a "guy" thing (although women are rarely arrested for flashing breasts or genitals in public). I strongly encourage psychological intervention before it gets more serious.
He could compensate for his ED with Viagra or penile injections of Prostaglandin E1, but it sounds to me that you both need psychotherapeutic intervention.
There was no blood or anything visibly wrong. But the first few days
happened I was in a lot of pain. It was 3 weeks before I had a day without
discomfort (last week.) Even now, when I feel the beginning of arousal or sit
for a long time I still feel discomfort. The pain feels like a tear maybe an
inch into my vagina toward the back and left side. There are also times when
the area feels swollen, but when I touch/examine it there is no noticable
So what is wrong with me!?
I wonder if it is just a hymen issue? Given the amount and duration
discomfort I find that hard to believe...
I have been thinking about that topic, however, and have some embarrassingly
naive questions about it.
- People talk about stretching the hymen and tearing the hymen. Which is it?
Stretching or tearing? Those are very different actions!
- Are there ways of touching that promote stretching vs. tearing?
Thanks for your reply.
Dr. Fisher replies: Well, first NEVER let
anyone put a finger, penis, or anything for that
matter into your vagina unless you are well lubricated. When you are
sexually aroused your vagina will "tent" to accommodate the incoming penis
or object. Use saliva as a lubricant if you have to. It sounds like a
combination of two things....angle and roughness. If you were not ready and
he put his hand up there and he caused you discomfort, he probably cut or
lacerated the tissue a little in the vagina with a finger nail when you
pushed him away. Kind of like a jab and cut effect. And yes, this can hurt
like hell for a while because of the bruising and the cut. Make sure all
finger nails are well trimmed.
Tears and cuts are hard to see in your own vagina unless
you own a
Now for the hymen talk. Some people call it tearing
and some stretching,
basically its the same action here that they are talking about. I like to
call it "regression", but stretching is the more appropriate term between
the two. When a penis or object penetrates the hymen and that's if you even
have one, it causes the hymen to stretch (like your head going through a
turtle neck sweater) and may cause a little bleeding as tiny vessels snap,
this is why some people refer to it has tearing. After it is stretched, the
tissue clings to the vaginal walls and is usually reabsorbed by the vaginal
walls (like blowing a bubble and it sticking to your face).
You can promote hymen stretching by simple exercises.
Take two well
lubricated fingers and place them in the vagina and push down towards the
anus on the vaginal floor for two minutes. Then repeat the action on the
sides of the vaginal walls. The best time to do this is in the shower or
right after you get out. If you do this once or twice a day for several
days you will be a little more comfortable when intercourse takes place.
Retarded ejaculation (Anejaculation)is the like the
California...it can be heaven or it can be hell. Anytime you have a
consistent problem with ejaculation you need to see a Reproductive
Endocrinologist. Endocrinologists are specialized in body chemistry, but
well trained to deal with and treat general health problems that surround an
endocrine problem. When hormones are the cause of RE, it is usually due to
low Testosterone and/or an excess of Prolactin. But my God, the causes are
endless. An Endocrinologist will check the hormones, vascular,
neurological, and also the pituitary/hypothalmus glands, as well as other
One thing you need to point out is that some positions
RE....missionary and doggy style. While woman on top seems to "rush"
ejaculation in most men. Also, drugs can effect the process...cocaine is
Dr. Fisher replies:
Get to the doctor or clinic fast! Swallow your pride or embarrassment.
Chlamydia is one of the most common STD among young people. There is
usually no symptoms, but the symptoms you report are signs of the
infection......pain during intercourse, burning upon urination, discharge.
It is important that you get this checked out because
if the infection
continues it can cause infertility. It is easily tested by a urine test or
swabbing the vaginal walls. And it is treated with one simple pill or a few
days of pills, depending on the doctor's recommendation.
IMPORTANT: It can also be transmitted and found
in the mouth and throat if
you give a guy head that is infected with it!!!!
You BOTH need to go to the clinic and get tested not
only for this, but a
couple of others that sometimes "couples" with this infection. And pick up
some condoms while your there, one mistake is okay, but next time it may not
be something that you can get rid of!
Link to Answers #23
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