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Secrets of Fabulous Fellatio

A woman's guide.

Some women dislike providing oral sex, but many enjoy it. “Lots of women derive pleasure from feeling a lover’s erection in their mouths,” says Fair Oaks, California, sex therapist Louanne Weston. Ph.D. “But few women relish what you often see in pornography—having their heads held firmly while men push their erections deep down their throats. That makes most women gag and feel used. But with the man seated or on his back and the woman kneeling or above him, she has a great deal of control and can be as playful and creative as she likes. Many women enjoy that—as well as seeing how much their lovers enjoy oral sex.”

“Fellatio,” comes from the Latin, fellare, to suck. Fellatio is popular but by no means universal. According to a recent survey by researchers at Indiana University’s Kinsey Institute, 60 to 90 percent of adult men have received it at least once, with 50 to 80 percent of those age 21 to 49 saying they’ve received it during the past year—20 to 50 percent of men over 50. If your lovemaking includes fellatio, here’s how women can boost their own confidence and men’s enjoyment.

Hygiene

Every man should wash his penis and scrotum with soap and water whenever he bathes or showers. Men who are not circumcised should retract the foreskin and wash its inner skin. If a man neglects this, dirt and bacteria build up that make the penis smell and taste foul—and increase risk of transmitting sexual infections. Some men are not as fastidious as women would like. In that case, women might suggest that the couple shower together before sex and wash him herself.

Some women worry than men might urinate during fellatio. This can’t happen. A valve in the penis allows urine—but not semen—to flow when the penis is flaccid, and semen—but not urine—to flow when it’s erect.

The Basics

Start by kissing the head of the penis. Next lightly part your lips and lick the head (glans) and the corona, the little ridge around the base of the head. Then take the head into your mouth, using your lips and tongue to caress it and the cornona—particularly the frenulum, the underside of the head. Eventually, move your head up and down so that your lips caress as much of the shaft as you can comfortably accommodate. However, the shaft is considerably less sensitive than the head, so return to it frequently unless the man asks for something different.

The Fine Points

• Alternate sucking with licking the head and shaft.

• Flick your tongue rapidly around the head.

• Lick or nibble the scrotum.

• Stroke the shaft with one or both hands while sucking or licking the head.

• Fondle the scrotum while sucking.

• Gently squeeze the head or shaft between your thumb and forefinger.

• Gently slap his erection against your lips or outstretched tongue.

• While providing fellatio, massage him elsewhere. Some men enjoy anal sphincter massage during fellatio. Others like being anally fingered—use plenty of lubricant, and trim that finger’s nail.

• Finally, if providing fellatio gives you pleasure, say so. Most men get turned on knowing that their lovers enjoy giving head.

Men should feel free to direct women’s oral explorations in ways that heighten their arousal. But gentle requests are usually more welcome than terse commands. “Remember,” Weston explains, “fellatio is a gift, not something you demand of a slave.”

About using teeth: Many men prefer lips and tongue only. However, the some men enjoy light nibbling with teeth along the shaft. Ask if the man is open to this. If so, keep it gentle, and check in: “Is this okay?”

Deep Throating and Gagging

The 1972 pornographic film, Deep Throat, invented a character whose clitoris was supposedly located in her throat. To have orgasms, she had to take men’s erections deep down there. Deep Throat became the only X-rated movie to break out of the porn ghetto and play to mainstream audiences. It grossed $600 million. Since then, many men have wanted to push their erections down their lovers’ throats, and many women have been interested in providing this variation. The problem is that deep throating—and some ordinary fellatio—triggers gagging.

Stick anything too far down the throat, and the result is gagging, a defensive reflex that helps prevent choking. In addition, some women are unusually prone to gagging, which can make them avoid fellatio. Men should never push themselves down women throats. But for women interested in deep-throating, here are some tips:

• Anxiety increases gagging. Women is less likely to gag when men remain still and allow their lovers to control fellatio.

• Self-training can dampen the gag reflex. While brushing your teeth, brush the back of your tongue. (Dentists recommend this to prevent bad breath.) Breathe deeply and visualize yourself not gagging. Discover the point at which you gag. Over a few weeks, you should notice that you don’t gag as easily.

• Try mock-deep-throating: Warm your hands by rubbing them together. Apply lubricant to one hand. Take as much of his penis into your mouth as you can comfortably, then use your lubricated hand to stroke the rest of his shaft. “This approximates deep-throating,” Weston explains.

Ejaculation Into Her Mouth?

Some men equate ejaculating into women’s mouths with deep acceptance of them. If women enjoy this, fine, but men should not insist on it. “A woman can be madly in love with a man and totally accept him.” Says Palo Alto sex therapist Marty Klein, Ph.D., “and still not want a mouthful of semen. Men should respect women’s sexual boundaries.”

Some women forbid men coming in their mouths because they fear injury from the force of ejaculation. It’s not forceful. It’s like biting down on a warm cherry tomato. Others don’t care for the taste of semen (more below).

If women dislikes semen in the mouth, try condom-covered fellatio. That way men ejaculate inside the mouth, but not into it.

About swallowing: Semen is safe to swallow, but if women would rather not, they have every right to decline. Don’t badger them. But when women understand the composition of semen, some become less squeamish. Semen is:

• 97 percent water.

• 2 percent sperm, which are mostly protein.

• Fructose, fruit sugar, which nourishes sperm.

• Vitamin C.

• Sodium bicarbonate, an compound that protects sperm from the acidic environment of the vagina and uterus.

• Magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, and zinc, which gives semen it’s odd taste.

• Proteins, amino acids, and enzymes.

Some women fear that semen in the mouth may spread sexually transmitted infections (STIs). It’s possible to transmit gonorrhea this way. However, the AIDS virus is highly unlikely to spread orally, unless the woman has bleeding gums or a sore that allows semen-to-blood contact. To eliminate fear of spreading STIs, get tested and, if necessary, treated. Or the man can wear a condom.

Weston comments: “A man once told me: ‘Coming is the fun part. Once the stuff leaves my body, I don’t care where it goes.’ I wish men would let go of the idea that to feel erotically accepted, women have to ‘drink their essence.’”

How to Improve the Taste of Semen

Some women who feel fine about semen in the mouth complain about its taste.

Urologists say the taste can’t be changed, that seminal fluid is unalterable because it includes the precise mixture necessary to support sperm, and if its composition is constant, its taste must be, too.

However, many women insist that diet makes a real difference. Former porn star, Annie Sprinkle, who claims to have tasted 1,000 men’s semen, says vegetarians taste best, that drinking fruit juices improves the taste, and that smoking, alcohol, meats, and asparagus spoil the taste.

Internet discussions generally agree that semen can be sweetened with a diet high in fruit and fruit juices, especially pineapple and apple juice. They also generally agree on the foods that foul its taste: broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, deep fried foods, meats, dairy foods, alcohol, coffee, and asparagus (which makes sense because of its well-known ability to alter the aroma of urine). Cigarettes also make semen less palatable. While there is no authoritative research on the subject, it’s good for health to quit smoking, and to consume more fruit and less meat, fried foods, and alcohol.

The taste can be masked if the woman sucks on a lifesaver while providing fellatio. Women who do this tout peppermint and wintergreen.

If women swallows, they need not worry about gaining weight. The typical ejaculation contains only 25 calories.

Finally, some men who have no difficulty with orgasm during masturbation or intercourse have problems climaxing in women’s mouths. The usual reason is that oral caresses don’t provide sufficient stimulation to trigger orgasm. If men have this problem, women should focus oral attention on the head of the penis while vigorously stroking the shaft. That’s usually sufficient to trigger ejaculation. Some men really enjoy the combination of light, feathery lip and tongue action with spirited shaft stroking.

For individualized help with oral sex, consult a sex therapist. To find one near you, visit the American Association of Sex Educators, Counselors, and Therapists, the Society for Sex Therapy and Research, or the American Board of Sexology.

Herbenick, D. et al. “Sexual Behavior in the United States: Results from a National Probability Sample of Men and Women Ages 14-94,” Journal of Sexual Medicine (2010) 7(Suppl 5):255.

San Francisco journalist Michael Castleman, M.A., has written about sexuality for 36 years. more...

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