Vag-gasms are the Underdog of Orgasms Like Christians are the Underdogs of America

I have something I'd like to say. The vaginal/uterine/g-spot orgasm (whatever you want to call it) is not the underdog of female orgasms. You probably have more pressing things to think about in your life, but this stuff  is my obsession, so I don't, and I'm gonna go ahead and talk about it real quick, 'cause I'm kinda sick of hearing it described that way.

I just got done reading Vagina: A New Biography, by Naomi Wolf. I'll be talking about that in a later post after I re-read a few things, but more than a few times, she approached vaginal orgasms in that way. Beverly Whipple and her cohorts approached vag-gasms that way in The G-Spot and Other Recent Discoveries About Human Sexuality. I also often get comments on Sex-Positive or feminist parts of Reddit with someone saying something to the effect that they are just sick of hearing about clitoral orgasms because their vaginal orgasms are just fine too.

I know I don't have any actual examples of these oh-so-terrible, horrible, no good incidents when someone acts as though the vaginal orgasm doesn't get enough love. I don't have the time or energy at the moment to go find quotes, so just consider this a quick bitch fest and not a thoughtful discussion. So here goes.

If the vaginal/uterine/g-spot orgasm is so put upon in our culture, if it is such a low status thing to have an orgasm simply from the stimulation of a ding-a-ling rubbing against your vaginal walls, then why does almost every media image we see of lady-gasms consist of a woman getting a fantastic, hands free orgasm from straight up P-in-V banging...seriously, porn, movies, TV? Why all the clit-less orgasms in romance novels where the heroine shatters into a million pieces and becomes one with both her lover and the universe? Why is this "vaginal orgasm" that has never actually been recorded, so often described by sexperts with gushy words like "whole-bodied," "deeper," and "more fulfilling," while the clitoral orgasms are often poo-pooed as "surface," "genital," and "quick" (I'm talking to you Beverly Whipple and Naomi Wolf)? Why does every teenage girl in America get to read about "Best Positions to Hit Your G-Spot" or some bullshit like that in Cosmo and Glamour, but ask anyone who wasn't around when it came out about the Hite Report or the "Myth of the Vaginal Orgasm" article, and I bet they've never even heard of them.

The idea of being penetrated by a man and orgasming as a result of that simple act, is so a part of our cultural understanding of sex, that it permeates everything. That is the default, and if anyone is an underdog of female orgasm it's the clit and the clitoral orgasm - the silent majority gal. Oh, and Artist Sophia Wallace agrees that the clit is disrespected, misunderstood, and needs our love. Yeah, that's right - her goal to make the clit part of common sexual knowledge is so radical it's fine art..fine art.

That's my rant. I'm done.

You see what I'm talking about, here? Vag-gasms (whatever they are - cause frankly they've never been recorded or specifically described in science) are supposed to be all way-better-than-boring-ol'-clit-gasms or something . buncha BS.


Friday Report from a Cunning Linguist (In the Form of a Comic)

It's Friday, and I've been sick, so I'm going to post something easy - but not just easy, also useful and good for the greater ladygasm good. It's a post in Oh Joy Sex Toy (which is a comic that reviews sex toys). This particular post basically just gives tips for the ol' yoni-yodeling, the dive into pearlville, the eating of the muffin, or as I like to say, eatin' the lady junk out.

I respect quality in this department and have a special love for this activity, a very, very special love. Unless your cunning linguist has been misinformed and is just trying to stick his/her tongue in and out of your hole like it's a tiny, easily tiring dildo, it's hard to not make this at least somewhat pleasurable for the lady. I mean, you've got a vulva/clit area with lots of nerve ending, and you've got a self-lubing, warm, softish object (assuming teeth aren't in the mix) rubbing against the lady bits, so there's gonna be arousal.

As with the brother activity, fellatio, it's gonna take some learning, experimenting, and paying attention to your partner to bring her/him to orgasm, but it's a journey worth taking - on both sides of this transaction. It probably also takes a little bit of a particular kind of courage from the receiver to decide not to worry about any displeasure that might come to your partner, given that their face is so dangerously intimate with your general nether regions. Different people have different levels of uncomfortable-ness with this, but remember that arousal and orgasm can easily be suppressed by stress, worry, or any type of mental distraction. Masters and Johnson's groundbreaking book Human Sexual Inadequacy was pretty clear about that, so try to eliminate those silly ol' worries the best you can.

Anyway, I talk a lot in this blog about using your hands or your vibrator in partnered sexual situation to get yours. I'm very much behind the idea of women taking their orgasms into their own hands, but for a minute, let's just lie back and celebrate a situation where we ladies can give that responsibility to our partner's mouths. Hallelujah.



House of Cards Episode 1 - The SSL Review

As I've said before, I'm kind of a TV follower. Plus I just like TV, so despite my somewhat irrational dislike of Kevin Spacey, I finally started watching House of Cards.

So..quite early in the episode we hear a woman making the sounds, I do say the sounds!, of sexual release. That, as luck would have it, is an SSL review-able moment, so here I am, SSL reviewing it.

The camera pans into the bedroom and a dude is on top of a woman jackhammering (it was definitely jackhammering) with her legs up in the air. She is coming with the sounds of a porn star and then they finish up and get some wine, I think.

Anyway, it was a classic media representation where we, the audience, see a quick scene of sex...sex that involves a woman orgasming as a man pounds into her. There is no noticeable sense that the clitoris is being stimulated, certainly not with anyone's hands, nor a vibrator, and normally (as in the case with this scene) the clear in-out movements don't leave one with the sense that she's cumming due to some hard-core self-directed clit grinding. No, the sense is that she's getting fucked into that screaming, moaning 'gasm.

Despite the fact that no less than 70% (and I'd argue even more) of women readily admit on surveys to never having orgasmed from intercourse, it absolutely boggles my mind that these images of women getting banged into ecstasy are so pervasive. These images are so simple, so a part of our mind's visualization of sex, yet so incredibly unrealistic for the vast majority of women. If that ain't bullshit, I don't know what is.

I think this scene was created not out of meanness or anti-orgasm equality sentiments (that's a thing - I call it) but simply out of laziness and general widespread ignorance about the terrible state of our media's representations of female orgasm. The creators just didn't think much about it and probably just did it that way because it was the way they imagined how that sex might go. Media images feed more media images...

Despite this terrible sex scene and Kevin Spacey's smug permacharacter, the show is growing on me, and I have to give thanks to SSL's composer, Nathaniel Blume for urging us to watch. It gets a no vulva rating from me though.


Wanna Watch Science, Sex and the Ladies?!

Hello all of you out there who may or may not read this blog somewhat regularly! I need some help. Well, I hope you will benefit too, but here's the deal. I have spent the last 10 years working on a movie about the female orgasm. It is finally finished, and frankly I'm damn proud of the thing. It says things that I think people need to hear, and it's a pretty fun ride too. Anyway, this whole getting people to hear/see the movie thing isn't just going to happen on it's own. That's where you come in.

We are doing all the normal entering festivals kinds of things, but we also have a different strategy. We have a crazy idea that if we send it out into the world for small groups of people to see, then it will spark conversation ,which will convince another group of people to see it, which will spark more conversation and so on. Point is, I'm hoping to create a little buzz about the movie, get some honest reviews, and ultimately get eyes on it, so below is what we're proposing. If anything sounds interesting, please, please, please make my day and email me at anc at ancmovies dott com. Seriously, you would make my day, week - month even. For real.

1 Host a get together to watch Science, Sex and the Ladies. Here's the things you need to know.

  • It doesn't need to be fancy; just you, a few friends, some fun, and the movie
  • We will provide you with the movie. We can send a DVD or you can access our online streaming version - your choice.
  • You gotta take a picture of the group-movie-watching-festivities and send it back to us so that we can post it on the movie's site and show all those other folks out there what they're missing out on (if there is a problem with your party's comfort level in taking pictures, we can figure something more creative out to document it)
  • If anyone at your party wants to use the movie and host another get together with some different people, we'd love it - just let us know and send a pic
2 Review this movie

  • Good, bad, or ugly. We don't care what you say as long as you say something
  • We don't care where you write about it as long as other people can see it...your blog, your college newspaper, a big huge famous magazine. It's all good by us.
  • We'll provide you with an online screener and a press kit
3 Come at me with some other awesome creative idea, bro!

  • Know someone else who'd be interested in 1 or 2 up there? By all means, send this post off to them.
  • Wanna tweet this shit or post it on FB? Do it! (Those are the only social media sites I really know)
  • Have a larger venue or larger group in some far away city (that means somewhere other than Indianapolis) that would like to screen this movie? We're all in - as long as no one has to pay to see it. We'll help, support, whatever is needed of us. 
  • Anything else. Seriously. We're all ears. 
Well, that's that. Thanks for listening. Also, if you are new to the blog and don't know anything about this movie I speak of, check out one or both trailers on the right of this page. If you have been reading this blog, then you definitely have an idea about the tone of this movie. SSL Blog is very much related to and expanding on subjects in SSL the movie, so if you like the blog, I think you'll enjoy the movie.

Thanks all. (* update - I just want to put a reminder at the end of this blog too that you can just email me - my name is Trisha, BTW - at anc at ancmovies dott com if you're interested in any of this. I would be so excited to hear from you. Truly.)

A talking year book pic? Yeah, that's in SSL.

A nice 40's family...just at the start of the post WWII Sexual Revolution

Of course the movie talks a little about Romance Novels

SSL's got all kinds of surprises - including people holding cardboard ice cream cones!

A cave women might masturbate with rocks in this movie. I promise it makes sense in context.

Just a little scene about adolescent female desire


The Lesbian Addendum

During some drinks with a lovely friend and fabulous supporter of Science, Sex and the Ladies (both blog and movie), we decided that I must write a blog called the Lesbian Addendum. You see, SSL largely focuses on heterosexual activity. (If you are wondering why, see an answer below from our press kit or check out a more in depth post I made about it.)

We figured there were some things that needed to be said for the lesbian experience on the subject, and these things were...well, just some dirty little sayings/advice that we came up with at the table. It came about because there's one of these little sayings in the movie, but sitting there with some beer and potato tacos (they were pretty good) we knew there needed to be more...the Lesbian Addendum. So, here they are. Enjoy.

Get her off before you strap on!
Before a finger bang, give the clit a rang!
Tongue on the clit? You'll love it!
Gettin' off ain't no riddle - just give your own pearl a diddle!
Woman on woman? Yeah - more clit for lov-an!

Pretty genius stuff, I know. Oh, and as promised above - press kit answer for why so much focus on heterosexual acts...
The hetero focus of Science, Sex and the Ladies was a conscious decision, and there are a few reasons. Firstly, the cultural obsession with male-focused, hetero, vaginal intercourse as the end all be all of human sexuality is at the root of our society’s deep misunderstanding of female orgasm and ultimately female sexuality. A focused dismantling of that sexual worldview is essential in creating any real change. Thus, keeping that focus was a priority, and there simply was not time to discuss every aspect of every related subject. Frankly there could have been a whole other documentary made from the subjects that had to be cut, including LGBT issues.

Secondly, as a piece of activism, it was important that this movie appeal to and change the perspective for non-feminists, non-sex activists, people who don't think deeply about LGBT activism, people who don't think of themselves as sex-positive or particularly progressive. These are the majority of Americans. These are the lives the movie needed to focus on, and ultimately these are the people that have to change in order to shift our culture.

Thirdly, no matter where one falls on the spectrum or how one defines him/herself, we were all raised within the same basic hetero, male-centric, intercourse focused media, education and popular lore. Although LGBT issues are not specifically discussed, the filmmakers believe that any amount of widening or challenging of that narrow sexually worldview is beneficial to us all.


True Detective - The SSL Review

So, True Detective. I wasn't watching it, but then some of my friends were and the whole season finale thing was happening, so since me and Charlie are like big time tv followers, we watched the whole thing in 2 days. To be real honest, I liked it at first, but then I thought it kinda fell off towards the end. It was alright.

More importantly though, it can be SSL reviewed. I'm just going to review the whole first season here. Strangely for an HBO series, there was really only a couple gratuitous sex scenes in the whole thing, and not every one had a depiction of female sexual release, so there's not that much to review actually. And...actually the reviews are pretty easy. To make a long story short, clits are never touched but orgasms do seem to happen when vag is penetrated...reinforcing the already ubiquitous and incorrect cultural assumption that ladies get a good 'gasm from a penis rubbing the inside of their vaginas (I think the plural is actually vaginae, but I think that's a stupid word).

Season 1 Episode 6 - So there was some intercourse with the lady on top sitting upright on a man laying flat on his back. She is holding her breasts or caressing his upper body as she bobs up and down. No clit touching at all - not with a hand and clearly it's not up against his body, but she comes simultaneously with him somehow - I guess because porn magic?

Season 1 Episode 6 - There is also a quick standing doggy style against a kitchen counter banging. Clearly no clit stimulation here either. She makes sounds that seem to insinuate she's orgasming during the time that he is, and she seems all satisfied when it's done so this seems like a bogus ladygasm depiction also. However, I'm not gonna judge this one. It's too complicated. It's kind of a weird revenge fuck, so we might be expected to assume she's faking her pleasure anyway. (Oh - women in this show are ridiculous btw).

Season 1 Episode 3 - There was a sex scene (with no intercourse) here, and there wasn't any actual depiction of an orgasm. She was certainly enjoying the kissing and such that we saw. When the scene ended it seemed like maybe he was going down on her. It ended with her lying on her back, eyes closed, and seemingly enjoying something, and the shot prior had him above her moving down her body while pulling off her underwear. So, I'm just putting it down as an honorable mention, cause I have a soft spot for the ol' cunnilingus.

So that's the deal. This, like so many other TV shows and movies, contributes to that silliness of thinking ladies can just be pounded into an orgasm. It's so a part of our media, so part of our understanding of how sex should work, that it feels like it should be real. Truth is, even if there are orgasms that happens from the vaginal wall being stimulated with a dick or a dildo, it hasn't been identified by the scientific community as of yet, and it's not like people haven't tried...so why the hell is it the only way women orgasm on screen. Bullshit, ya'll.

Alright, alright, alright. - Only 1 vulva for this TV show (and only because it seemed like at least one woman got her clit sucked on, and that deserves something).



Cockle Bread!

Well, I was chillin' with some friends tonight watching the new Cosmos - cause why not, I guess. We were also about to watch the final episode of True Detective, but HBO Go apparently crashed while people were trying to watch it. All fine and good by me because I hadn't watched any of the prior episodes anyway. (Update: I'm watching the first episode now in case you were wondering if I'd ever see it). So while we were all waiting around to see if the show would load up, my always smart and interesting friend Stephanie said she heard about something called cockle bread.

It seems this cockle bread was from the 17th century in England. Ladies would make the dough, then press their lower lady parts up against it to make an impression and then bake it. This would then be given to the object of their affection as a sort of love charm.

Why is this relevant to this blog, to the depiction or discussion of female sexual release in our culture? I don't know, but it has to do with vulvas, it's a little interesting, and I needed something to write. So, enjoy the little tidbit of lady-junk history, and have a great start to your week.


Random Hite Report #6

Hello! Today you get more RANDOM HITE REPORT! As you may or may not know, this is where I take one random page and one page only out of this super important book from the 70's, and transcribe it for you here on the blog. It's women answering detailed questions about their sex and love lives, and it's incredibly interesting and insightful. Enjoy your taste. 

The following is from the chapter "Older Women" in the subsection "Other women were interested in sex, but were having difficulty finding partners they liked" 

Pg. 512 The Hite Report Dell. 1976.

maybe more women (??) but I have some fear of loving a person who might have a long-term illness --- senility, etc. I've coped with that enough."  
 "I feel that I could give two sets of answers to those questions --- one concerning a perfect marriage and one concerning sex relations in widowhood. I seem to be able to interest only married men and that means clandestine relationships. I have not achieved and orgasm with any of my partners (although I do in masturbation). The more promiscuous I become (I had several short-term relationships since widowhood) the more I believe I want what I had for so many years; the love, attention, and affection of one man. However, life is enjoyable, especially with men, but my ego gets in the way with married men, as I want to be the only person on the totem pole!"    
"I would also like to have seen questions asked on ethics --- what moral imperative have we laid on ourselves, and which seem valid? Like male intellectuals taught me it was immoral to tease, so I didn't neck or anything unless I went to bed with someone---a good and bad thing that worked more to men's advantage than mine, I feel now. Because marriage is so difficult, I will never complicate it by having anything to do with a married man, but people all around me are adulterizing. Sometimes I feel, 'the hell with their marriage, I need somebody to love too!'"    
"At fifty, I have come not to look or hope for an ideal. I think I have poor judgement in men, and besides, no man has seriously approached  me in years. Well, none that I would consider. I want to do a lot of things, and I have to get them done before it's too late. Men take up a lot of time---at least the men I choose. I am tired of helping them get their PhDs, write their books, learn to love, raise their children, and learn to let women achieve. I cannot bring myself to have a homosexual relationship---I just don't feel that way. I can stand it without sex and I don't want any relationship now except friendship, which I find vital. I need to talk,


Dallas Buyers Club - The SSL Review

It's Oscar Night, and since the latest Snow-pocalypse here in Indy didn't turn out to be so bad, we'll be headed over to our annual Oscar Night fest with our trusty Oscar friends. We will eat, we will talk shit, we will laugh, we will tear up slightly, we may even be surprised that some actor who has died this year was even still alive in the first place. It will be fun had by all, and to go along with this theme, I will be SSL reviewing the last of the SSL-review-eligible Oscar Nominated Best Pictures, Dallas Buyers Club

Okay, actually I just looked at the list again, and I realized that The Wolf of Wall Street may in fact be eligible. I mean, there was a whole lot of doin' it in that movie, but I'm not sure that there was ever the indication that a female orgasm was happening in any of the scenes, and I'm pretty sure there wasn't a discussion about female orgasm or anything about female masturbation, so honestly, I'll have to watch it again later to make sure. 

Either way, there was still a fairly significant amount of Best Picture nominations that could be and were SSL reviewed. I'm not exactly sure what that means, but it's interesting. 12 Years a Slave and Philomena were both quite favorably SSL reviewed. One said clitoris and another rubbed that very thing realistically into an orgasm. Her was a little less favorably reviewed, given its porny wails of lady ecstasy, and I'm afraid Dallas Buyers Club will also be not so favorable. The movie was good. The ladygasm, however, was unrealistic.

I'll make this quick and try not to spoil anything for those who haven't seen it. Long story short, a man who has previously been shown to partake in sex (the P in V boy girl kind) quite often, has been unable to do so for a pretty long period of time given the fact that he has AIDS. Surrounded by a lot of gay men with AIDS (this was the 80's), he is pleasantly surprised to become aware of a woman who has AIDS. This is all happening in 2 adjoining motel rooms that double as an office with lots of people coming in and out. Dude sees the woman in the next room, asks if she's actually got AIDS, and the next cut is all the people in the motel/office, hearing the tell tale sounds of two people fucking, including her porn screams. A quick shot shows Dude standing in a shower stall. She is straddling him, with her weight seemingly supported by him and her back against the wall getting, well, banged is the best way to put it. They both clearly finish up amazing orgasms at the same time. 

So, she is getting a penis pushed in and out of her vag. Neither he nor she is using any hands on her clit or anywhere near it, and she’s vocalizing like a porn star, like she’s coming as hard as anyone could come. It’s pretty bogus. I will say that there is a possibility that his pelvis is banging against her clit with each thrust, but honestly, a tap on the clit every so often is not the kind of steady pressure and stimulation that is pretty universally understood to be needed for both penises and clits to get there.  Plus, she’s up in the air, and would have very little control over the movement of her pelvis, which does not seem conducive for a person’s (male or female’s) ability to orgasm. 

I went into a lot of detail there, but the basic idea seen by the viewer is this; a woman is banged up against a wall and has a super hot, sexy, intense orgasm just from the banging. It’s what we see in porn, what we read in romance novels, what we see in TV shows and movies. It is what our media understands female orgasm to be, and yet it is a ridiculously unlikely way for a woman to orgasm.

So, since this scene just added to the pile of other things that helps women and men completely misunderstand how a woman might orgasm, and builds on the idea that it is common and particularly sexy to orgasm in this easy, hands free, getting banged kind of way. I give this movie a 0 vulvas. None at all. Sorry McConaughey.