Jun 132011
 

Shanna-

You’re always telling people about lubricant and its importance in sex. I think I know the different between silicone lube and water based lube, but what if I want a tasty lube for oral sex (both blow jobs and eating out), that is also safe for vaginal intercourse? I know some flavored lubes contain sugar. What do I do?

Tentative and Taste Challenged

Hey T n’ T!

Great question. A good deal of cheap flavored lubes contain sugar — it’s my advice to stay far far away from those. Now, there are a lot of pretty decent flavored lubes that are sugar free, but contain glycerin. I always suggest people try to avoid glycerin, as it is derived from glucose, which is a type of sugar — many people have sensitivities to it, and it can cause irritation or yeast infections in some people who use it. However, if you have no issues with glycerin, System Jo makes a whole bunch of flavors (think Watermelon, Strawberry, Raspberry Sorbet, Lemon and Chocolate) ; I like to mix and match them to make new tastes. If you’re looking for a tasty glycerin free lube, Sliquid makes a variety of yummy flavors (like Blue Raspberry, Green Apple, Pink Lemonade, and Cherry Vanilla) and Wet Naturals has a glycerin free, natural Strawberry lube that is actually pretty good.

Otherwise, you can always use one lube for blow jobs, and wipe it off or hop in the shower and switch to another.

Best of luck!

-Shanna

May 112011
 

Note: Permission is ALWAYS obtained before posting people’s questions on this site. Have a question you’d like to ask anonymously? You can use my contact form, or email ShannaKatz at Gmail.com!

Dear Shanna-

I have PCOS so I have a weird VERY infrequent period situation. In 2010 I had a total of five periods, and two were induced with Provera.  I haven’t had a period yet in all of 2011, and I went to the gyno for my yearly last month. My pap was normal but they told me I had a yeast infection. Took care of that with no problem – didn’t even know I had it!


My husband and I were going at it the other night and after a [vaginal]  fisting session – he noticed a brown-ish fluid. We cleaned up and I woke up the next morning with my period – on FULL FORCE! This has happened before (last December) where no period, then BAM! It is hard to look up with google because everything says that you are or may be prego and so on.
We are just wondering if it normal for rough sex/fisting and or fingering to bring on periods? I mean- is it safe to do this more often so I do get periods since my body doesn’t do it on its own? Its really confusing to me! At our last visit last month my gyno wants me to take Provera about every 3 months to make sure I am shedding my liner. Grrrrr.

-Pissed at PCOS

Dear P@P-

Firstly, mazel tov on remembering to go in for your yearly gyno visit! What seems to be happening is that intense uterine spasming is encouraging the start of the shedding of your uterine lining, starting your period. For some people, fisting, rough sex, g-spot specific fingering, and other sexual activities can cause a different type of orgasm, that can be more intense as far as the involvement of your uterus (versus, for example, a more clitoral centric orgasm, which feels just as good, but uses other body parts).

I’ve known many other folks who have PCOS, and sometimes, certain types of sex can trigger the onset of a period (as can other things, like eating less dairy/fatty foods, etc). Sounds like fisting might be one of those triggers for you. In my completely NOT medical opinion, I’d say it’s safe to play with rougher sex and/or fisting as much as you’d like — just know that it might not always trigger your period. It might all the time, some times, or this may be a one off. But as long as you’re enjoying it, is sounds like it’s a fun experience with a bonus for you! If you start feeling pain regarding any of this sexual play, or have excessive bleeding beyond your period, it’s time to go see the doctor, but in the mean time, have fun!

Hope this helps!

-Shanna

Feb 062011
 

Question:

I’m a pretty strict vegan, but also all about the sexy times. I’ve heard horror stories about companies saying lubes are vegan, and then retracting their statements when questioned. What lubes are ACTUALLY vegan?

Answer:

Great question. First of all, check out Furry Girl’s list lubes on her all vegan sex toy site The Sensual Vegan. Basically, Yes is vegan, ALL Sliquid lubes (including some of their delicious flavors – look for the Swirl line) are Vegan, Hathor Lubes are vegan, Blossom Organics are vegan. Good Clean Love once claimed to be vegan, but now states that are are not vegan, only “mostly” vegan.  There are also vegan condoms and vegan dams available, so know that you can protect yourself and your partner(s), and still remain true to your vegan lifestyle!

-Shanna

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Jan 172011
 

Question:

My husband and I want to start exploring anal sex. I know that you have to start slow, use fingers first and all of that, but what is a good beginners anal toy to get me started?

Answer:

First of all, before you bring sex toys into the picture, make sure you add lube. It can be either silicone base lubricant or water based lubricant (unless you’re using silicone toys, then just use water based lube), but your butt does NOT naturally lubricate in any way, shape or form, so you need some lube to help it feel better, go in easier, and to help prevent any pain or tearing. My favorite anal lube to suggest is water based and is called Maximus.

As far as toys, my number one anal toy I love recommending to people is the Flexi Felix from Fun Factory, a 100% silicone set of anal beads. You can start small with just one tiny one, and work your way up. Great first timer dildos are the Silk set from Tantus; they come in small, medium and large. Then of course, if you want to go with a butt plug, I like the Tantus B-Bomb or the Crystal Delights Butt Plug, but these are a little more intermediate than anal beads or small, smooth dildos.

Good luck, have fun, and remember; anal sex isn’t supposed to hurt, so if it does begin to feel uncomfortable, STOP!

-Shanna

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Dec 222010
 

Question:

Is it normal for a guy to bleed during a blow job?

Answer:

For the most part, no. Can it happen? Certainly. Skin on the penis (and definitely on the scrotum covering the testicles) is pretty hardy, but can get nicked by teeth, braces, etc. If it happens once and is just a little blood, make sure to clean it, move onto a different activity, let it heal, and be careful with sharp objects in the future. However, if it continues to happen, or is accompanied by sores, bleeding from the urethra (the “pee-hole”), pain, etc — go to the doctor. Of course, if it is severe bleeding that you cannot stop, it’s time to hop over the ER and have it checked out right away.

If you or your partner did in fact nick it with teeth, nails, etc, it’s ok. Sex mishaps happen all the time. Clean up, hug a little, and definitely laugh about it.

Hope that helps,

-Shanna

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Dec 032010
 

Question:

Why do guys like to cum (ejaculate) on their partners?

Answer:

Great question. Well, first of all, not all guys like to ejaculate on their partners. Some prefer to do it inside their partner, and/or inside a condom. Others prefer to do it in a towel/rag (some people call it a cum towel or cum cloth). Yet others like to ejaculate on themselves. It all depends on the guy you’re talking about.

In mainstream porn, the “cum shot” (the guy ejaculating on the woman’s chest/face/etc) has become extremely popular, and therefore has become popular in our culture. However, ejaculating on someone else’s face/chest/butt doesn’t change the ejaculation sensation. Ergo, if someone wants to be ejaculated on, then great; they should let their partner know that this activity turns them on and that they’d like to have that done. However, if someone does not in fact want this to happen, they should also explain to their partner that they are not into this activity, and would prefer for them to ejaculate else where.

This conversation should definitely be had before sexual play starts, so that there is no confusion at the moment of ejaculation as to where the penis should be pointing.

Hope that helps,

-Shanna

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Nov 282010
 

This person had THREE questions, so I’m going to be answering them all together.

Question 1: Do all men and women masturbate?

Answer 1: Great question…and well, how would we even begin to figure out if all people masturbate? What if you masturbate once a year — does that count as actively masturbating? Or what if you do it every single day, but never even touch your genitals (some people can masturbate this way) — does that count as being someone who masturbates?

People are so unique and different that it’s incredibly hard to answer this one. Do MOST people, of all sexes and genders, try masturbation at SOME point in there life? DEFINITELY — almost everyone has experimented with masturbation.  But as far as who masturbates and how often? We cannot make big generic statements about that. Lots and lots of people masturbate; men, women, and people with other gender identities as well…some do it daily, others weekly, some do it when they’re stressed, others never masturbate when stressed. It’s constantly changing!

Question 2: How do you know when a woman has an orgasm?

Answer 2: You ask her. I mean, really, that’s how you can tell. Different women experience orgasm differently…sometimes the same woman will have different orgasms due to different types of stimulation — there is no way to REALLY just know. Now, usually moaning is good, there is often (but not always) a redder tint on their face/breasts called a sex flush, but these are also general signs of arousal. Sometimes someone will say “I’m coming” or “oh god oh god oh god” or “holy guacamole” and then suddenly be more still and quiet. Other people will want more stimulation post orgasm, so you can’t tell. Just ask. You don’t have to say “did you come/” but things like “how was that for you?” or “do you want me to keep going?” let you know if your partner wants some more/some different action.

Question 3: Can you get someone pregnant from pre-cum?

Answer 3: I get asked this all the time. Yes. Pre-cum, or pre-ejaculate, can sometimes contain sperm…this means playing “just the tip” or using the withdrawl method is not a sure shooting way to practice birth control/contraception. However, the biggest concern I have with the sharing of body fluids like pre-cum doesn’t have anything to do with sperm. Pre-ejaculate also can contain STIs (sexually transmitted infections) and you can give it to (or get it from) your partner.  An estimate 75% or so of sexually active people in the US have at least one STI — and most of them don’t even know it.  So your best bet to keeping both yourself and your partner safer from transmission is to put the condom on before the penis goes in the mouth, vagina or anus!

-Shanna

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Nov 222010
 

Question: I am in a long distance relationship and my girlfriend wants to sleep with other people with no emotional attachment. Is it more likely than not that if we tried this, our relationship would tank?

Answer: I’m not going to put a probability on it. Why? Because I don’t know how well you communicate, how your relationship is right now, how long you’ve been long distance, or how you personally feel about consensual non-monogamy. All of these are factors that can and will contribute to how well this will work out.

Step one: Get a copy of Opening Up by Tristan Taormino. You can click the link to buy it, but lots and lots of libraries have it to check out, or one of your friends may have it to borrow. Make sure both of you read it, especially the parts about “is non-monogamy right for you” and the sections about jealousy. Not everyone is suited for non-monogamy, and even those that are may not be ready for it now, or know how to make it fit with their current partner.

Once you’ve read this, think about how it makes you feel when your girlfriend talks about this. Happy that she’s getting more physical needs met? Sad that you can’t do it for her? Angry that she’d consider this? Jealous that she wants to do it? There are tons and tons of emotions that center around non-monogamy; there are no right are wrong ones, but you need to recognize that they are there. Also, look online. Lots of bloggers write about polyamory/non-monogamy — there is even a Poly Podcast. Check out these resources, and continue to talk and communicate with your girlfriend.

You may decide to have her give it a try, and realize it doesn’t work. Then you communicate again, and go from there. You may decide not to try it…but you still need to communicate with your partner. Non-monogamy or monogamy will not break you up or keep you together, but lack of communication most certainly will.

-Shanna

Nov 192010
 

This person had THREE questions, so I’ll answer them all together in one post.

Question 1: Is a man’s prostate equivlent to a woman’s clitoris or G-spot during sexual arousal?

Answer 1: It is much more similar to the G-spot (or Grafenberg spot) than it is to the clitoris. The clitoris is the same tissue as the head/tip of the penis (the clitoral hood is similar to the penile foreskin).  While the G-spot and prostate (some people call it the P-spot) are not similar tissue, the deep, internal, full body orgasms that they can help to create are much more similar than those more intense, genital centric external orgasm driven by clitoral or penile stimulation.

Question 2: Is sex better with a circumcised person or an uncircumcised person?

Answer 2: It depends on the person. Sex can be different, and in general, there is a big push against male infant circumcision right now, as some studies have show that it can remove pleasurable areas for the penis possesser. However, as far as whether a person is better at sex? It has nothing to do with circumcision, but more on knowledge, their listening ability and practice.

Question 3: What amount of protein does cum have?

Answer 3: The average amount of ejaculation has lots of different nutrients in it; similar to what composes the human body. It contains approximately 150 MG of semen…so just a trace amount that will not actually affect your daily protein intake. I’ve definitely heard people say things like “just swallow — that way you can get like 30 grams of protein” — it’s total bull. Swallow if you want to, but please don’t do so solely for the purpose of ingesting protein!

Shanna

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Nov 182010
 

I feel like I may need to start a series of posts on “this does not equal that,” the first one being my post on how sex and gender are two different things.

This week is about how activity and orientation are completely different.

One of the post common questions I get asked (and gets asked of most sexuality educators, having seen many of them present) is asked by cisgender men and/or their partners. It is either asked as “if I like to receive anal sex/enjoy prostate play, does that make me gay?” or “is my boyfriend/partner/husband gay because he enjoys anal play on his own ass?” Sometimes it is asked with different wording, but it boils down to “does enjoying anal play make a guy gay?”

Answer is simple: NO. Period.

However, we can certainly explain it more. It doesn’t make you gay, just like cisgender men enjoying vaginas doesn’t make them straight. Whatever sexual activity you like, all the means is that you like that activity. Who you like is your orientation. Now, if you only like men sexually, that may or may not mean that you’re gay, but it has nothing to do with who is putting what in which orifice, or even with sexual activity at all.

As a side note, gay males (studies show) participate more in giving/receiving fellatio (oral sex on the penis) more than anal sex (oral/anal or penetrative). The idea that all gay men love butt sex is a misnomer and a stereotype…and you almost never hear people say “I like getting head…does that mean I’m gay?” (Oh Megan suggests asking that as a response to “does enjoy prostate stimulation make me/you gay?”).

Just like performing cunnilingus or vaginal visiting doesn’t make anyone a lesbian, no activities make anyone a new orientation. Take a moment and think about who you are sexually oriented to; is it based on sex? On gender? On height? On hair color? On shape? On wit? On commitment to social justice (that’s me!)? THAT can help you figure out your orientation…but what you enjoy as far as sexual activity has nothing to do with it.