Shall we rename the clitoris the “clitoral complex”?

 

A recent (scientific) article that I read suggested that we scientists might start referring to women’s "clitoral complex" given the way that the clitoris, vagina and urethra all sort of interact and are affected by each other (e.g., during vaginal penetration, the pressure on the vagina can result in stimulation of the clitoris or pressure on the urethra, etc). Anatomically, these parts are fairly interconnected.

Part of the argument relates to the fact that even though people often talk about stimulating a woman’s clitoris, in fact the clitoris is much larger than meets the eye – it extends backward into a woman’s body by a few inches (and in two branches). When we say a woman likes direct clitoral stimulation, we often mean direct stimulation of the glans clitoris (the tiny part one can see from the outside) as vaginal (and g spot specific) stimulation also stimulates the inside parts of the clitoris that are out of view (on the other side of the front vaginal wall).

So…. what do you think? Will the term "clitoral complex" take off? Women of the world: might you tell your partner that you’d like to have a little "clitoral complex play"?

Personally, I find it interesting from a scientific point of view but I don’t really see people using the term in real life. It doesn’t give enough specific information to partners about what to do or where to touch, in order to be useful. If someone asked to be touched on their "clitoral complex", where would you start? The vagina? Urethral opening? Glans clitoris?

[Image via this web site.]

About Dr. Debby Herbenick

Dr. Debby Herbenick

Dr. Debby Herbenick is a sex researcher at Indiana University, sexual health educator at The Kinsey Institute, columnist, and author of five books about sex and love. Learn more about her work at www.sexualhealth.indiana.edu.

  • Marcey

    The more science learns about the clitoris, the more it comes in line with what I believe to be true about my body. Although it is said that women can achieve orgasm through stimulation of the clitoris, vagina, G-spot and anus, I feel all those spots stimulate one or more parts of the clitoris (clitoral complex). Just as a man can be stimulated on different parts of his penis, scrotum, anus, prostrate gland; a woman can be stimulated on different parts of her “sexual apparatus”. Why worry about what to call the various spots? Isn’t it enough to say, “that feels good” when a right spot is touched in the right way?

    A question I have about sexual stimulation concerns nipple play. Why does nipple stimulation produce an orgasm in some women? What is the connection between nipples and the clitoris? When my nipples are stimulated the right way, I feel it between my legs. Also, many men get hard when their nipples are stimulated. Do you know why?

  • Marcey

    The more science learns about the clitoris, the more it comes in line with what I believe to be true about my body. Although it is said that women can achieve orgasm through stimulation of the clitoris, vagina, G-spot and anus, I feel all those spots stimulate one or more parts of the clitoris (clitoral complex). Just as a man can be stimulated on different parts of his penis, scrotum, anus, prostrate gland; a woman can be stimulated on different parts of her “sexual apparatus”. Why worry about what to call the various spots? Isn’t it enough to say, “that feels good” when a right spot is touched in the right way?

    A question I have about sexual stimulation concerns nipple play. Why does nipple stimulation produce an orgasm in some women? What is the connection between nipples and the clitoris? When my nipples are stimulated the right way, I feel it between my legs. Also, many men get hard when their nipples are stimulated. Do you know why?

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