Sex Advice

Recent posts

MSP Sex Q&A: What are polyamorous relationships like? Can they work?

Question: What are polyamorous relationships like? Can they work? Answer: Strictly speaking, polyamory refers to the practice of having “several lovers”. In practice, people use this term to describe a variety of different sexual and romantic relationship structures including open relationships between two people (in which it is understood that one or both partners may sometimes be sexual with others), swinging, tribes or circles (two terms sometimes used to refer to groups of people who may be sexual with each other, either at the same time or in coupled situations) and other types of structures. Human beings are creative and, as such, there are numerous ways that they may experience openness in their sexual and romantic relationships. 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 →

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 →

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 →

MSP Sex Q&A: Where is a woman’s g spot?

Question: My wife and I were both virgins when we got married, so even though we are almost 30, we lack experience. Hence my question: where is a woman’s g spot? Does every woman have one? Answer: Technically speaking, the g spot is more like a zone than a spot (yes, I know, in spite of its name). It’s roughly one or two inches inside the vagina, on the front vaginal wall (the same side as one’s navel) and gentle but first pressure tends to stimulate the area better than light touching. Continue Reading →

MSP Sex Q&A: Sex after childbirth

Question: I’m in my second trimester of pregnancy and I’ve got to say – I’ve read so many different things on the internet about how sex changes after having a baby. I don’t know what to believe anymore! What’s really happens to a woman’s sex life after childbirth? Answer: There’s no doubt that having a baby affects a couple’s sexual life – but having a baby (e.g., dealing with fatigue, stress, sleepless nights, and seeing oneself as a parent rather than a sexual being) is different than actually giving birth (not that I need to tell you that!) and so the sex issues are different too. It seems that your main curiosity relates to the extent that pregnancy and childbirth might impact a woman’s body rather than the effects of living with a baby, so let’s turn to the former. Continue Reading →

MSP Sex Q&A: Where can I find porn for couples or women?

Question: I’m one of those rare women who LIKES PORN! Now, uh, where can I find some (and please don’t say those sleazy adult bookstores crawling with men) that I can watch with my husband, or by myself when he’s traveling for work? Answer: Although few women have been raised with the sense that it’s okay for women to like porn, the fact is that some do. Some women like watching porn alone, such as to up their arousal or to ease orgasm during masturbation, and other women enjoy watching porn with a partner. One site,, is sort of a clearinghouse of woman-oriented porn sites and resources. Continue Reading →

My students’ videos about sex

Last semester, students in my human sexuality class had an assignment to create a public service announcement (PSA). The videos touched on a wide range of topics from college hook-ups to condom use to alcohol and sex to chlamydia and HIV.  Though the the PSAs were shown exclusively in class, some of them also added theirs to the conversation on YouTube. Check out their brilliant (and sometimes touching, sometimes quite funny) work here:

and here

and here:


Thoughts? (P.S. F255-ers, if I’m missing any others on YouTube, let me know!) Continue Reading →

MSP Sex Q&A: How can we spice up our sex life?

Question: My girlfriend and I are both 22 but we have a pretty routine/boring sex life. How can we spice it up? Answer: Don’t give up! There is no reason that 22 should be as good as it gets. Whenever I hear someone of any age – but especially someone in their 20s or 30s – say that their sex life has hit a stand still, I usually ask if they and they partner talk about sex during times when they’re not already having it. Continue Reading →