Uphill gardening. Following Stephen Fry. Fudge packing. Bringing up the rear. Taking the back lane. Browning your sausage. Rear entry. Bottom banging. Down there. The other hole. The chocolate tunnel. The wrong hole. Sodomy. Buggery.
Yes, that’s correct, my feisty Friday friends, today we are talking about…
DUN DUN DUNNNNNNNN
WAIT! Don’t run! Just wait.
Hear me out. Have I failed you yet? Stick with me. We’ll get through this together.
I think it’s safe to say that many people find anal sex difficult to talk about. Despite the fact that it has been practiced both homo- and heterosexually for millennia, and despite its apparent rise in popularity among heterosexuals, there are still a lot of cultural taboos and misconceptions floating around about back-door banging. Before we get into the nitty gritty, I’d like to dispel a few misconceptions and hopefully help you feel a little more comfortable with talking buttsex.
1) Anal sex is only for gay men.
No, it isn’t. This is a myth that picked up a lot of steam in the ’80s and ’90s because of the AIDS crisis. Thanks to conservative political policies and lobbying groups, a lot of really harmful and inaccurate notions were tossed around with the purpose of alienating and demonizing the queer community. The truth is that many heterosexual and homosexual female couples enjoy anal sex as well. People of all sexes and genders can enjoy anal play together, and have done so, if quietly or in secret, for thousands of years.
If you don’t believe me, or the Psychology Today article I linked above, or if you’re curious about the history of anal, I’d like to point you to this extensive article, published in the Journal of Sex Research in 2010. Now that we’ve established the fact that people of all sexes and genders have been enjoying anal play for centuries, let’s also go ahead and bin the commonly-trotted-out “it’s unnatural” and “it’s sinful”, as those are both versions of patriarchal sex-policing myths used to enforce taboo culture and keep people feeling ashamed of doin’ it wrong.
So yes! If you have a functional butthole, you can probably enjoy anal, regardless of your sex, gender, or sexual orientation. Now! That’s not to say that anal play isn’t without its risks. We’ll get to the basic safety protocols of anal play a little later, but for now, let’s move on to misconception number two…
2) Anal sex is painful.
It can be, especially when it’s done carelessly, or with intent to cause pain. But with a gentle start, going nice and slow, and, I cannot emphasize this enough, USING LOTS OF LUBE, anal play doesn’t have to hurt. The trick is staying nice and relaxed; tension is not your friend if you want to take the back road tonight. Exchange massages. Take a nice hot bath. Breathe deeply, and go slowly. Did I mention that you cannot have enough lube?
Lubrication is absolutely necessary for pleasurable anal play, as the anus and rectum, unlike the vagina, do not self-lubricate. Anal play without lubrication can lead to small tears in the very delicate tissue around and inside the anus, which can put you at risk for some very un-fun consequences, ranging from hemorrhoids to bacterial infections to STI’s.
Another way to avoid unnecessary pain is to start small. Do not anticipate being able to take a cock on your first round; this is an unrealistic expectation that can lead to a very unpleasant experience, and maybe even a trip to the hospital. Anal tearing is no joke, friends. Start small. A lubed-up finger is a good first step. Then two. Then perhaps a small dildo or some graduated anal beads. Just make sure that the toys you use have a wide or grippable base, especially beads and plugs, to prevent anything from being pulled in too far. I’m sure we’d all like to avoid unnecessary embarrassing trips to the emergency room.
Once you feel comfortable with the sensation of anal penetration, and are able to self-penetrate while remaining nice and relaxed, you’re ready to move on to cocktown (said cock may come in the form of a strap-on; if this is the case, don’t use anything too girthy). Which brings me to number three…
3) The larger the object, the greater the pleasure.
Nope! See above. Everyone has limits, and the anus is not some sort of magical alternate dimension that can expand to fit objects of any size. All assholes need a little training and practice before they can take even small objects. Some people will never be able to stretch beyond your average/small-ish dildo or cock. Some people will do their best, but will just not enjoy anal, and that is perfectly okay. The answer to a poor experience with anal is NOT “Let’s try something bigger next time.” It’s the opposite. Do not overvalue size in your understanding of anal pleasure; bigger is often not better when it comes to the butt.
4) Anal is a fast-track to Orgasmville
For many, this is true, but we’ve had a lot of practice! Seasoned anal players can tell you that anal play can greatly increase pleasure and bring on orgasms you never thought possible. The tissue around the anal entryway in both sexes is packed with nerve endings. For women, pressure on the upper interior wall of the anus can be like stimulating the g-spot from the other side. For men, the prostate gland, which can also be stimulated by massaging the upper wall of the rectum, is commonly referred to as the “male g-spot.” There is definitely a lot of pleasure to be had through the back door.
BUT(T)! (heh heh)
This is not true for everyone, and this is a very important point to make, because the belief that anal penetration leads to near-instant orgasm has led many enthusiastic partners into nonconsensual and injurious actions in the heat of the moment. This is not cool. First-time anal penetration is not something you surprise your partner with in the throes of a sexual frenzy; for many, there is no better way to derail the orgasm train than a surprise poke in the tailpipe. Talk about it first. Negotiate. Take it slow. Anal pleasure, when done well, can lead to absolutely mind-blowing orgasms for both men and women, but it’s not a magic bullet.
5) But ewww…. anal sex is so dirty!
Okay yes. Anal sex requires you to get comfortable coming into contact with some poop. It can get messy. Sometimes it’s best to put a towel down, or at least have some towels and tissues handy. Because pleasurable anal play requires so much lubrication, the lube tends to get *everywhere*, so be careful not to stain your good sheets.
Let’s talk about what we can do to make it a little cleaner. First things first: Condoms. Always. Dudes, I know, barebacking it in the ass feels *amazing*. I get it. But it’s not worth the risks; the fact is that because anal tissue is more delicate and prone to tearing, it is much easier to contract infections through unprotected anal, and there have also been studies suggesting that anal cancers can be transmitted on viruses similar to the HPV (Human Papilloma Virus).
But not just condoms on cocks. Condoms on toys, condoms on fingers (or gloves, available at any pharmacy), anything that’s going up in there, either sheath it in latex or make sure it’s been well cleaned and sterilized, in the case of anal toys. NEVER use your anal toys anywhere but in your ass. Once you put a toy in your anus, it’s an anal toy for life. It never goes back in the vagina; risks of cross-contamination make this a basic safety protocol.
Using condoms for anal play also offers benefits for clean-up; by pulling the condom inside-out as you remove it from whatever it was wrapping, all the icky stuff on the outside (if there is any, sometimes it comes out clean) will now be on the inside and you won’t have to touch it. If you do touch it, it’s really not the end of the world (or even the end of the sex), just be sure to wash your hands before you touch anywhere else.
If you really want to, you can also take the additional step of giving yourself a light low-rectal enema to rinse out your rectum before venturing into the netherworld. This can help prevent excess mess, and it’s quick and easy to do, once you have a little practice. Simply get an enema bulb at your local pharmacy, fill with warm water, and while sitting on the toilet, gently squeeze the warm water up into your lower rectum. You don’t need to go above the secondary rectal sphincter, which is why you don’t need to do this lying down. Once you start feeling a little full, squeeze your sphincter nice and tight, stand up, and jump up and down and wiggle your hips around a bit. Sit down, empty out, and repeat till it comes out clean.
There are lots of other advice pieces out there on getting ready for anal, and some people have different opinions than me, so please do feel free to search around and find what works best for you. Remember: lube lube lube, take it slow, be gentle, and start small.
That concludes this week’s adventure, dear readers! I hope that you’re now feeling a little more comfortable and curious about taking the road less travelled by, my beloved kinky explorers! If you have any comments or questions, no need to be shy, go ahead and leave them in the comments.
Have a sexcellent weekend!