Welcome to Ask Ang, your anonymous campus sexual health resource, brought to you by H*yas for Choice. We are made up of a team of undergraduate students who work to answer your sex questions! We post questions and answers weekly on Sundays. Anyone can submit a question, and the anonymous form can be found here: www.tinyurl.com/askang.
1. Cis female here. How do I limit "queefing" during sex?
“Queefing,” or the passage of air through the vaginal canal, can happen during penetrative sex because air get pushed into the vagina (by fingers, a penis, or a toy), and the vagina expels the air afterwards. Unfortunately, there isn’t a ton you can do to prevent it. You can choose sex positions that don’t involve being bent over or upside down (i.e. not doggy-style), or you can ask your partner to use slower, less forceful thrusts where they don’t pull out too far, but it’s nothing to be ashamed of! If you like that kind of sex, don’t miss out because of embarrassment. Know that a queef during sex is not a fart, so there is no odor, and it’s really just a natural thing that your vagina does - as Planned Parenthood points out, sex involves bodies and bodies do weird things sometimes. Most people are aware that it is natural and not a bad sign, so you can often just ignore it and carry on. If you’d rather acknowledge the queef, laugh it off or just say something simple, like “excuse me” or “carry on!”
For more suggestions on how to deal with awkward moments during sex, check out this Bustle interview with a sex psychotherapist.
2. I know you're supposed to take the birth control pill at the same time everyday, but somedays I'm a few hours late (3-5 hours) because I forget. Is this a problem and will it affect the effectiveness of the pill?
The birth control pill is 99% effective when used perfectly, however when accounting for reality it is about 91% effective. For optimal effectiveness it is very important to take the pill at the same time and avoid certain medicines. Different types of pills act differently:
1. Combination Pills: if started in the five days after your period, you are protected immediately, if started at a different time you need to use backup birth control for at least 7 days, if you miss a pill you should use backup birth control for the remainder of that cycle.
2. Progestin-Only Pills: you can start at any time and you will be protected after 2 days, if you are late by taking your pill by three hours or more you should use backup birth control for 48 hours.
Learn more about other birth control options here: https://www.plannedparenthood.org/learn/birth-control
3. Is female ejaculation (squirting) a thing, and how do I do it?
Squirting happens in people with vaginas when fluid generated by the Skene’s glands exits through the urethra. It happens naturally for some people, some people learn how to do it, and some people have trouble not squirting during sex acts. Squirting often accompanies an orgasm, but is a separate process and can happen without orgasm. Although both urine and ejaculatory fluid exit through the urethra, squirting is not the same as peeing! This release of fluid happens either due to pubococcygeal (PC) muscle contractions or external pressure against the G-spot. The fluid is usually very alkaline, with a clear or milky color or slight yellow tinge. There is a fair amount of debate regarding why squirting happens biologically. One theory, posited by educator and nurse Sherry Winston, is that squirting is a way to keep the urethra clean during and after sex.
So, how does one squirt? Here are some tips from the genderqueer porn performer and activist, Jiz Lee:
The “Anti-goal” The first rule about trying to squirt, is not trying to squirt. Try different actions and tips that help people squirt, but take the pressure off.
Foreplay!! [Editor’s note: anecdotally, a lot of people report squirting when they are super turned on, so don’t be afraid to explore fantasies/acts that really turn you on! Chances are, it’ll make you more likely to squirt.]
Pee before and after sex (but don’t be afraid to pee during).
Get messy but stay clean. Use gloves or wash hands thoroughly with soap if you’re using fingers/hands, and use a non-glycerine lube [Editor’s note: Uberlube is awesome!]. Keep whatever surface you’re having sex on covered with towels or any other washable absorbent material.
Aim to please. Enjoy the process! Try different techniques and find what works for you. Many people find that G-spot pressure (using curved fingers or hard, curved toys, like the Njoy Pure Wand) makes them squirt. Other people prefer external clitoral stimulation. Every body is different, so take time to figure out what is best for yours!
Here’s some more reading from our pals at Cosmo: http://www.cosmopolitan.com/uk/love-sex/sex/a10257892/how-to-make-a-girl-squirt/
[Editor’s note: the information from this answer comes mostly from Girl Sex 101 by Alison Moon. You can find it on Amazon here. I highly recommend it if you’re a cis or trans woman and/or a person who has sex with cis or trans women!]
4. How can you have two [cis] guys have better sex in terms of cleanliness?
In regards to anal sex hygiene, question 5 in our article from last week includes some advice for anal preparation and cleanliness.
To add to the tips mentioned last week: A high fiber diet can help clean out your anal canal because it keeps your poop together and therefore leaves less residue behind. Following this with a shower will give you peace of mind as well. Make sure to drink plenty of water as well to help the fiber do its job!
Read more here:
Many people also recommend douching [Editor’s note: while technically termed douching, when used on the anus, this act actually involves using an enema, not a douche you would find at the drugstore], but if you do decide to douche, make sure you are doing it safely, because it can harm your health. Use lukewarm water because the mucosal lining of your colon and intestine is delicate and you should not be burning your insides with hot water. One of the safer methods of douching is with a fleet enema which has a pre-lubricated tip to prevent tearing and smaller volume to prevent overdoing it. I don’t recommend shooting water up your bum because the wrong amount of pressure and temperature can harm you. There is no number of times that is too much for douching, but please don’t engage in it everyday or multiple times a day. Listen to your body and remember, poop happens sometimes! For more douching tips, check out:
As always, remember to relax and engage in plenty of foreplay. Use lube, use protection, and have fun!
5. Are there a lot of people with vaginas at Georgetown that own vibrators? If so (asking for a friend), any recommendations?
Although I don't have statistics relating specifically to Georgetown, I myself have one and according to a 2009 study, more than half of American self-identifying women (52.5%) reported using a vibrator. Three different uses of the vibrator were considered in the study: masturbating alone, during intercourse for added stimulation, and something both partners could use together. The scenarios in which you want to use the vibrator should be the first step you tackle in your hunt for a toy.
For a newbie, I would recommend searching for something suited for individual use as you should figure out what kind of stimulus you like on your own first, before looking for couples’ toys. The next step is to get a sense of what kind of sensations your body likes best. Consider what you prefer during masturbation: do you tend to focus on your clitoris? Do you like to add fingers to the equation? From here, you can determine whether you like direct or indirect clitoral stimulation and whether you want the g-spot to be stimulated as well. About seventy percent of women require clitoral stimulation to orgasm so don't feel pressured to invest in all the phallic-shaped toys out there.
Some great toys for beginners that are easy and pleasurable to work with are the JimmyJane Iconic Bullet and the SHEQU Silicone Rabbit, which stimulates both internally and externally. If your clit is sensitive and/or the touching the sides of it feel better, a great one is CRAVE Deut. Also feel free to simply search online or in person for the right toy for you. Be sure to consider reviews but not follow them to a T since there are (quite literally) different strokes for different folks.
6. I’ve been questioning my sexual orientation for a while now but I’m really not totally sure of my identity exactly. Can you suggest some resources?
Sexuality can be seen as a spectrum, and that can often be difficult to navigate. It’s important to know that you’re not alone in this! There are tons of resources that can help you through this; there are lots of articles, videos, and sites with information that can may help you figure some of this out. If you’re looking for something more personal and direct, hotlines like Teen Line or the Trevor Project offer free and confidential help - you don’t need to be “in crisis” to use these services, and you can also text, email, or join chatrooms if you’re not comfortable calling. If you're on campus here at Georgetown, you can also reach out to Georgetown's LGBTQ Resource Center. A lot of the time, just having someone listen can make you feel a lot more supported and comfortable, and it can help you gain some clarity as well.
Another important thing to note is that it’s
okay to not feel like there is a specific label or term that defines your sexual identity - whatever feels right to you and makes you most comfortable is best. Additionally, that may change over time - or it might not - and that’s okay too.
Note: some questions have been edited for length and/or clarity.