Many women are happy to have lovers ejaculate in their mouths and swallow the semen. Others can't stand the idea.
If women object to accepting semen orally, men should respect their wishes. No one should ever feel pressured or coerced in lovemaking.
If women refuse semen in the mouth, the couple might try condom-covered fellatio. That way the man ejaculates inside her mouth, but not into it.
However, many women cite specific reasons why they disdain semen orally. Some fear injury from the force of ejaculation. Others dislike the taste of semen. Some object to swallowing it. And some fear sexually transmitted infections.
Women need not fear injury from the force of ejaculation. Having a man come in your mouth feels like biting down on a cherry tomato.
As for improving semen's taste, my extensive search of the medical literature and the Internet show no studies--but no shortage of opinions.
Urologists generally say men can't modify the taste of semen. "In healthy men," says Lawrence Ross, M.D., of the University of Illinois, "the composition of seminal fluid is constant because it includes a precise mixture of components necessary to support sperm." If its composition is constant, its taste must be, too.
Speaking of its composition, semen is about 96 percent water, plus:
• Sperm, which account for about 2 percent of ejaculate volume.
• Fructose, fruit sugar, which nourishes sperm.
• Vitamin C, which helps keep sperm healthy.
• Sodium bicarbonate, an alkaline compound that protect sperm from the slightly acid environment of the vagina.
• Various proteins and enzymes.
• A several minerals: magnesium, phosphorus, potassium--and zinc, which gives semen its odd, metallic taste.
But many women insist that diet has major impact on the taste of semen. Former porn actress, Annie Sprinkle, who tasted hundreds of men's semen, says vegetarians taste best, that eating fruit and drinking fruit juices a few hours before sex improves the taste, and that smoking, alcohol, meats, and asparagus make semen less palatable.
Internet discussions agree. Fruit juices are often recommended to sweeten semen, notably, apple and pineapple. Meanwhile, foods reported to foul the taste include Sprinkle's list and others: meats, dairy, deep fried foods, coffee, alcohol, and asparagus (which makes sense because of its well-known ability to alter the aroma of urine), plus one nonfood item, cigarettes.
While there's no authoritative research on this subject, the foods that sweeten semen--fruits and vegetables--are good for health, while most of those that spoil it are risk factors for heart disease and cancer. So sweetening semen improves men's health.
If a man would rather not change his diet, or if diet changes don't provide sufficient taste enhancement, any foulness can be masked. While providing fellatio, women might suck on peppermint or wintergreen lifesavers.
As for fear of swallowing, semen is 96 percent water and there's nothing harmful in it. It's also non-fattening, around 20 calories per ejaculate.
To make swallowing easier, women might use lifesavers or keep a strong-flavored drink and a straw handy: wine, liqueur, grape juice, chocolate milk, or ice tea. After the man ejaculates, take a sip.
But if a woman would rather not swallow, that boundary should be respected. In porn, the women rarely swallow. Instead, they make a great show of letting semen dribble out of their mouths and massaging it into their skin. Some men find this erotic.
Finally, gonorrhea can be transmitted during fellatio, but other sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including HIV, are unlikely to spread orally, unless the woman has bleeding gums or a sore that allows semen-to-blood contact. To eliminate risk of STI transmission, get tested for STIs. Or use condoms during fellatio--and intercourse.