May is here which means different things for different people. But for sex therapists, it's the International Masturbation Month! What does it mean? It means that for the entire 31 days we encourage everybody to openly discuss self-touch, self-pleasure practices and...
I was about twenty when I first found out what a clitoris was and that I had one. Up to that point my genital structure was quite mysterious to me and I didn’t have any clear idea of what was really hiding “down there”. When I lost virginity at 20, my first boyfriend was more experienced than me and introduced me to the world of oral sex and clitoral stimulation. He had learnt about it from his previous girlfriend who was older than him. The way he was touching my clit was pleasurable at first but with time he would keep adding pressure in order to make me orgasm. He wouldn’t listen to my pleas for him to be gentler or to stop. I had to orgasm each time, whether I liked it or not. The purpose of my climax was only partly for my pleasure with the main goal being the proof of his value as a lover.
Many years later, I now teach men of all ages and backgrounds about the female pearl of pleasure. Where it is, how it works, how to touch it, etc. I do wish my first boyfriend received this kind of detailed education! I also often wonder – when do men actually learn about the existence and function of the clitoris? The lucky ones will learn in their teenage years while playing with their girlfriends. But many will not. Many men go through years of their early sexual experiences without any understanding of female arousal and assumed that the penetration was the main deal. Only once they discover the clitoris, their sexual game changes. But they’re still far away from sexual mastery as the awareness of the clitoris is just the beginning.
For so many years now, we’ve been badly misinformed about the real structure of the clitoris. Did you know that this little button shaped organ you see is only a tip of an iceberg? The internal structure of the clitoris is much larger. The clitoral glans (the external part) is connected to the shaft which connects to the clitoral legs. The legs encompass the vagina on either side and are up to 9cm long. There are also clitoral bulbs (vestibules) located under the labia majora. When engorged with blood, they protrude out, pushing the vulva outward and causing a tighter-feeling vaginal opening.
By penetrating the vagina, you’re stimulating the internal clitoris which is wrapped around the vagina. According to scientists, the internal walls of the vagina are quite insensitive in most cases, indicating that the vagina is not the sole source of arousal. The internal clitoris is highly erogenous when stimulated through the vaginal walls and externally through the stimulation of the glans.
It wasn’t really until 2009 that a proper study of the internal clitoris was conducted. That’s when two French researchers (Dr. Odile Buisson and Dr. Pierre Foldès) completed a first 3D sonography of the stimulated clitoris showing how the erectile tissue of the clitoris engorges and surrounds the vagina. This was a complete breakthrough explaining that what was before considered a vaginal orgasm, is really an internal clitoral orgasm.
And as for the G-spot, it’s the area where the clitoris contacts the anterior vaginal wall. This explains why the G-spot’s location is different in every woman since the internal clitoral structure varies from person to person.
It’s also important to remember that sexual arousal is not only about the clitoris and vagina, there are many other physical and mental components involved. Plus we’re all different – physically and otherwise, we all have had different experiences that have shaped our bodily responses differently and no two human beings orgasm in exactly same way.
So there you go – the little button of pleasure packing an amazing number of 8,000 sensory nerve endings is much more than we’ve once thought it was! And this information is important for anybody who wants to enjoy a fuller experience of female pleasure and sexuality – whether it’s herself or her partner.
And one more final tip from me – the clitoral shaft is extremely pleasurable to touch. You will locate it just above the clitoral glans. Once you find it, place two fingers on either side of the shaft and slowly rub them up and down – your lady will love it!
Image source: OpenStax College – Anatomy & Physiology, Connexions Web site. http://cnx.org/content/col11496/1.6/, Jun 19, 2013., CC BY 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=30148635
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