Monthly Archives: March 2009

Oral Sex Techniques and Games for Couples: Body Sugar

When two people want to be together for a long time – whether as friends with benefits or in a committed long term partnership – it can help to keep sex interesting by making it fun. Some couples enjoy using sex toys such as vibrators, dildos or couples toys as part of their sex play or foreplay techniques; others try different positions, have sex in different rooms of the house, or perhaps they sneak away to a hotel or bed & breakfast for a sexy night. Recently in Chicago, I dropped by Tulip (one of several terrific sex boutiques in the city) and sampled two of their flavored body sugars in Mint Julep and Brown Sugar flavors. Both were tasty, though I ended up purchasing the Mint Julep flavor (see above photo). Body sugars and powders can help to make oral sex more tasty – but they can also enhance sex more generally. Continue Reading →

Sex Toy Shopping Tip#1: Learn about materials sex toys are made with

Before most women shell out their hard-earned cash for a haircut or a fabulous dinner with even more fabulous wine, they’ve usually talked to their friends first or otherwise done their homework. For example, you’ve probably asked a friend of yours (whose hair you’ve long admired) where she gets her hair cut or colored and how much her stylist charges. And don’t even start with dinner – most likely, before you and your friends went all-out at your last chic affair, you perused online menus, asked friends for recommendations, or scanned online restaurant reviews to make sure your dinner would be well worth the cash. Yes? Yet, given how hush-hush many women are about their self-pleasuring, there is very little sex toy advice being shared among friends. Continue Reading →

MSP Q&A: Can a woman have an orgasm after she’s had a hysterectomy?

Recently someone at Yahoo Questions posted that they had not been able to have orgasms following a hysterectomy, and they were wondering if this was normal and whether it would continue. This is what I wrote in reply:

Actually, sex can indeed change after a hysterectomy – but that does not mean that you will always have difficulty reaching an orgasm. Sexual changes following a hysterectomy can be influenced by hormonal changes (a woman’s ovaries produce both estrogen and androgens – like testosterone). Estrogen supports sexual function in various ways including helping with vaginal lubrication and the thickness of vaginal tissue; testosterone has been linked with sexual desire (libido). The method of hysterectomy may be linked to a woman’s physical experience of sex following the procedure. Continue Reading →

Bleeding During Sex: Common Causes and Solutions

Dear Dr. Herbenick, I’ve been having sex with my boyfriend for more than a year. In the last couple of months, I’ve had bleeding during sex. It’s happened a bunch of times, it’s very embarrassing and I don’t know what’s causing it. Neither of us have had sex with other people since we got together, so it can’t be an STI, can it? Answer:
I’m sorry to hear about your experiences with bleeding during sex. Continue Reading →

MSP Q&A: Trimming Pubic Hair

On Yahoo Questions, a young man asked how to approach his girlfriend – who he liked very much and didn’t want to offend – about shaving her pubic hair. This was my reply:

I have a different reaction to some of the other posters here. First, I’d like to mention that most girls and boys grow up – at least initially – feeling good about their bodies. It’s only later on when kids and adults start being critical of them, telling them how they should or shouldn’t look, and what’s “acceptable” or not in terms of how fat/thin, hairy/not hairy, etc. they should be that people start to doubt or even hate their bodies. Continue Reading →

How to last longer during sex: Do cock rings work?

Having worked in the field of sexuality research and education for more than 10 years, an enormous number of men have asked me questions about how to last longer during sexual intercourse (usually, vaginal intercourse). Some of these men find it difficult to last more than 30 seconds or a minute or two no matter what they try and their situation would likely fit the description of what some call “premature ejaculation” or “rapid ejaculation”. Other times, men may believe that they aren’t lasting long enough during sex when, in fact, they are lasting a fair amount of time – say, 10 or 15 minutes during intercourse – before they ejaculate or orgasm (ejaculation and orgasm are not one in the same, by the way, though usually they coincide, so for the sake of this post we’ll treat them as occurring at the same time). Stop-start and squeeze techniques (first practiced during masturbation, then sometimes carried over into partnered sex) are commonly recommended to men who wish to learn to delay their ejaculation (last longer during sex). Some research in recent years suggest that, for some men, there may be an inherited/genetic propensity toward premature ejaculation. Continue Reading →

Planned Parenthood Fundraiser this Friday in Chicago

I’m helping to co-host a fundraiser for Planned Parenthood this Friday evening in Chicago – learn more about the event here. As you likely know, many Planned Parenthood clinics offer a range of sliding scale medical services for both women and men and the work that they do helps to promote sexual and reproductive health and well-being among families in the United States as well as internationally. Learn more about their organization on their web site. I hope you can make it! Continue Reading →

MSP (Potentially) Great Sex Position of the Week: Downward Dog (not the yogic kind)

Okay, it’s not exactly like Downward-Facing Dog in yoga, but it does give you an idea of what’s to come, right? One of the cool things about the way human beings have sex is that we are one of the few species that has sex face-to-face, which makes it easier to whisper sweet nothings and get all our ooey-gooey feelings expressed during what some affectionately call “lovemaking”. Then there are times where that vibe isn’t quite what either of you are going for and you’re feeling more like you want to turn over and get spanked or have your hair pulled. Am I right? Not that that’s the only benefit of downward dog (DD). Continue Reading →

MSP Sex Q&A: How are orgasms supposed to feel?


Question: Okay, so I am pretty sure that I am (finally!) having orgasms. Only they don’t feel like I thought they would. Like, there’s no “high”. How are orgasms supposed to feel? Answer: Every woman’s experience of orgasm is different and, for reasons we don’t fully understand, not all women experience the “euphoric high” or sense of calm related to orgasm. Some women may simply experience less dramatic orgasms than others; then again, sometimes orgasm feels differently from different types of stimulation. Continue Reading →