Wednesday, 7 May 2008

Being the Receiver...

A few weeks ago, Z, Marianne and Mendicatus all made posts on the joys of cunnilingus - sipping from the hairy cup, muff diving, carpet munching, licking out, Australian kissing (like a french kiss but down under), tipping the velvet. So many different terms, so many different tongue alignments.

But what happens when you love to give head but just feel uncomfortable mentally about the whole thing of receiving it in return.

A wise and experienced practitioner once gave me some sage advice 'When he's down there, a man is really only thinking how lucky he is that you've let him be in that position.'

Certainly the few men who have been accorded such an honour have professed to enjoy it and have been very enthusiastic but, whilst I admit that I remember certain amounts of pleasure, these are all tinged with this sense of discomfort. It's as if I have some kind of mental barrier that goes up and prevents me from accessing the orgasm that I should be experiencing - that I know I can have from his fingers or from a well-placed toy.

I decided that, to overcome this serious obstacle to the complete enjoyment of my wonderful sex life, I am finally going to have to force my way through the barricades into the past and analyse what's causing it.

One memory that dredges itself from the shame drain involves an all-night party when I was about 17 and a wanker who shall remain nameless. He was one of those mouthy louts who was part of our crowd. Vaguely good looking but with a far superior image of himself as some kind of stud. I won't be so unkind as to say that he took advantage of my alcohol-induced horniness but I dont recall how I ended up on a bed with him, with his hands down my pants. To his credit, he seemed a little bit more au fait with a woman's parts than previous incumbents of the position but his desire seemed more fixated on how many fingers he could get inside me than whether or not I was actually enjoying the process.

Looking back, I am left with the distinct impression that he was there because no one else was available which is not the most flattering of memories - for either of us. To cap this off, the only thing I actually remember him saying is a comment to the effect that I was very hairy 'down there'. You can hear all the klaxons and alarm bells going off from there can't you. This, to a girl who was already having major psychological problems over her body image. We have to remember here that this was the 70s and well before the age of the Brazilian. In those days, you shaved off whatever was hanging out of the legs of your bikini - which were not the micro-panted little numbers we all squeeze ourselves into today.

He left me a little physical gift in terms of a nice dose of a thrush-type infection which evidenced itself as a smelly and itchy discharge for several days before I plucked up the courage to go to the doctor. Charming!

But his impact on my mental health was untold damage. I already hated my external physical appearance and now I had doubts about the beauty of my nether regions in terms of its hair quota, combined with a thing about its smell.

If you look on most websites, they will tell you that the vagina is a self-cleaning and easily irritated ecosystem. Most advice specifically discourages you from douching or using scented soaps. For myself, as a little girl, I managed somehow to get soap into my urethra and I cannot even begin to describe to you how much that stings. Follow that with a later sex in the shower experience where whatever soap we had used just dried up all my natural lubricant causing great discomfort.

My mother's advice was to use plenty of water from the bath/shower to rid the folds of any residual discharge and obviously use soap on your anus and the external labia.

Another girl I spoke to about this remembered her mother forcing her to scrub her bits with a soapy flannel and then lie on the floor and ride her towel until she was so thoroughly dry that it was almost raw. So I don't think I am the first woman to have 'issues' in this area.

We all have a smell and that odour can vary depending on what we've been eating, what time of the month it is (towards the time of my period, it takes on a definite metallic tang), whether we've had sex recently. You can't have failed to notice that the addition of sperm to the natural vaginal lubricant can make it smell different. This is because the natural environment of the vagina is acidic and sperm is an alkaline and to deal with that invasion, the vagina has to produce more secretions to neutralise their impact on its delicate infrastructure of good bacteria called lactobacilli.

Vaginal discharge - and that word is a problem in itself with its connotations of something nasty and unwanted - consists of water, albumin - the most abundant protein in the body - a few stray white blood cells, and mucin, the oily substance that gives the vagina and cervix their slippery sheen. Discharge is not dirt, certainly, and it is not a toxic waste product of the body in the sense of urine and faeces. No, no, no,. It is the same substance as what is inside the vagina, neither better nor worse, pulled down because we're bipedal and gravity exists, and because on occasion the cup runneth over. Page 53 'Woman, An Intimate Geography' by Natalie Angier.

I have read that 'a healthy vagina has a slightly sweet pungent odour. If it smells anymore pungent than this or takes on a fishy odour then this is usually a sign that the delicate balance has been upset and the Lactobacilli (good bacteria) are losing the battle'.

So, in the last 30 years, only three men have got close enough to me mentally for me to permit them, however unwillingly, to kiss their way softly down my belly and explore the forbidden triangle with their faces.

And, until recently, all I could think of was how horrible it must be for them.

It doesn't take Einstein to recognise that it's a bit of a tall order to take that mental attitude into such an intimate act and be able to orgasm.

Blog every day in May



Gorilla Bananas said...

I was beginning to wonder why you hadn't mentioned being pleasured in this way, given that a lot of women rate it as the best thing. Maybe you should add some flavourings to put your mind at rest.

Vi said...

Well thought out! I think it has a lot to do with the man as well. I'm sure they've also been mentally abused' somewhere and just don't know how to do it right!

Walker said...

The head games we play with ourselves is more harsh than what other people do to us.
Just let yourself go and know that the person making his way down your body wants to be there because he enjoys you not some wanker who logs more time in the palm of his hand.

Tom Allen said...

Mrs. Edge is very weird about it. She enjoys it immensely on the infrequent occasions that she allows me, but she's got to be very horned up first, or perhaps have had a few drinks. Oh, and she's got to be freshly showered, and lying on the bed, and I can't linger.

What I don't understand is that she'll have some very intense orgasms (::pats self on back::) which, in my way of thinking would make her want more.

Women. Why don't y'all have an instruction manual?

Wild Cat said...

You and I are kindred spirits on this one x

Riff Dog said...

It's funny how different men and women are in this. A guy may not have bathed in a week, but wouldn't hesitate to ask his girlfriend to "get down there."

Yet many women feel exactly as you do. I can understand that, it is very personal. But I can also assure you that most guys who claim they want to go down on a woman are telling the truth and really do love it.

One other thought - if you're not enjoying it, feel free to help with some special instructions ("slower, higher, put your finger in," etc.)

Joanna Cake said...

GB - LOL, I did plaster on a mint one and poor Ruf's face was a picture.

Vi - I dont believe any of the guys was doing it wrong. It felt nice but I just couldnt overcome the 'Voice' in my head.

Walker - Thanks for that x

Tom - As you say, we should come with instructions :)

Wild Cat - Hopefully we can both overcome some demons in the future x

Strat - I do see the irony between the two different gender approaches. As I said to Vi, it's not a question of technique but getting me so confident in myself that the Voice is silenced. Ruf is working on that and has started to have some success in the area :)

Semele said...

I've always felt that it's the most intimate thing a man can do to you, and thus it can be the hardest to relax into and enjoy. But it is worth persevering: oral can lead to lots of nice little orgasms!

Perhaps an idea is to only go for it on days when you're feeling totally fine about everything 'down there'. Sitting on Ruf's face might give him a big enough hint...

Fat Controller said...

There's no 'professing' about the enjoyment. Please believe me, it is very real. Your wise friend is wise indeed.

Anonymous said...

It's funny... I had doubts about cunnilingus, too, but for me, it was more about the feeling that sex had to be something I was giving to the man... something I was actively doing to make him feel good. Enjoying cunnilingus means allowing yourself to receive, to know that he loves it, and that you don't have to 'perform' to be fully sexual. I think I'm there... at least most of the time. :)

Joanna Cake said...

Semele - It is intimate and that's part of the problem. I was actually better if I just sat on his face. I didnt feel quite so exposed :)

FC - It was only a couple of months ago and it was a very seminal moment... I remain eternally grateful.

Marianne - The posts the three of you made, combined with the viewpoint of my friend helped me to reassess why I switch off when a man is down there. Progress is being made and there will be further posts on this subject over the next couple of weeks :)

Anonymous said...

I am also a fan of cunnilingus, but I must confess that I like it better when it is done well! And believe me, I've come to know the difference between being licked like a stamp, and being eaten like a delicious fruit!

And a couple of years ago, I decided to have a clit hood piercing, which definitely has added to the pleasure... but be warned... the pain, while brief, was very "ouch!", and you can't do the natural shut the legs when it happens!!

Anonymous said...

I agree with you about feeling exposed. Initially I think that led to my less-than-stellar response to what should be delightful. And now it's become somewhat self-fulfilling -- even when it's pleasurable I know that I don't come this way and nothing like thinking about not coming to pretty much kill any possibility!

Mortuis said...

Well, no one has said exactly what I was going to say yet....

The scent and the taste of my lover is something that I savor... For me, at least, a woman's natural scent/taste is an absolute aphrodisiac, and I'm sure I'm not the only one who feels this way. This is the reason why cunnilingus is one of my favorite things to do with my lovers.

Now, granted, if you haven't bathed in a week, things could become offensive, I'm sure, but I would think that's the exception for most women, not the rule.

I'm sure this will take time to work out in your own head, no matter what we tell you. Try to relax, and be aware that you give your partner pleasure, too, when you allow him to pleasure you....

Anonymous said...

There are two great joys here. Your great joy in being adored and his great joy in being allowed to adore you.

Joanna Cake said...

Helga - The guys in question all did it very nicely. It's my mind that is the problem. As to the clit piercing, you're a braver woman than me :)

Cupid - That's it! It's like a vicious circle... and it needs to be broken.

Magnus - It's the relaxing part that is the problem. But Ruf and I are working on it.

SK - Oh, I love that! Thank you x

nitebyrd said...

Cake, you've expounded on this subject so well. It's something I constantly think about and am also trying hard to relax and enjoy it. While I absolutely adore giving head, the receiving makes me just a bit uncomfortable. I'm so glad that I'm not the only woman to feel that way.

Note to Tom Allen ~ even if women did come with instruction manuals, men wouldn't read 'em! ;)

Cate said...

Thank you for writing this. I had always thought that my problem with cunnilingus was that my husband wasn't interested in doing it. But I have realised recently that I can't relax and enjoy it so I guess I am part of the problem. Nice to know that I am not alone.

Cate xxx

Tom Allen said...

Note to Tom Allen ~ even if women did come with instruction manuals, men wouldn't read 'em! ;)


Yeah, you're probably right. At least, they wouldn't read'em until something started to break.

Anonymous said...

I hope you can learn to relax and enjoy it. Once you become comfortable with your own body and allow your partner to just please you, you will think you've died and gone to heaven. And I promise you that any man who wants to give you oral sex is completely into you and it is DEFINATELY something he is dieing to do! As a man there is no greater pleasure for me than to be holding my wife's clit in my mouth and watching her cum. I know most of my firends love cunnilingus, several including myself love it even more than sex. My point is just relax and try to not overthing it. Just lie back and drift off into whatever state of mind that brings you to orgamsm.
P.S. I think my next blog is going to be about cunnilingus from a man's point of view.

Anonymous said...

I totally agree! Seriously. It gets to about five minutes in and I'm freaking out about how he must be getting bored.