Published in the University of New Mexico’s student newspaper, the Daily Lobo, on Jan. 29, 2010.
Your sphincter is smarter than you think.
That’s what I learned after going to Self Serve Sexuality Resource Center and buying anal sexpert Tristan Taormino’s two educational, erotic DVDs, “The Ultimate Guide to Anal Sex for Women,” and “The Ultimate Guide to Anal Sex for Men,” available as a visual counterpart to her book, The Ultimate Guide to Anal Sex for Women.
The National Survey of Family Growth interviewed over 12,000 men and women from ages 15 to 44. Their results showed that 34.7 percent of women and 40 percent of men had engaged in anal sex at least once. I would imagine those numbers have increased, since the survey was conducted in 2002.
Many people think anal sex hurts, it damages your butt and that it’s messy, but these notions are more fiction than fact.
Anal sex should not hurt if it’s done right. Taormino’s advice on making it feel good is simple and straight forward — start small and slow.
“If it hurts, that’s your body’s way of saying ‘Let’s stop,’” Taormino said in an interview. “And if it hurts it means you’re not doing it right. Maybe you’re not using lube, or not warming up, or not starting small, or you’re not in the mood for it.”
Many people also think that women and men can’t orgasm when they’re having butt sex, which is a myth. According to Taormino and other women an anal orgasm is different from a vaginal orgasm and can be more intense.
As for the mess, there are steps you can take to keep it clean. Taormino said one should always have a bowel movement before having anal. One should also wet a finger with soap and water to gently clean the opening of the anus.
Taormino also mentions giving yourself an enema before having anal sex. An enema is a procedure where you flush your anal canal with water to loosen stool and produce a bowel movement. Enema kits can be found at most drugstores. But even with these steps, there might still be a little mess. Taormino said to just wipe it away and get over it.
Damage during anal sex can happen, but normally only occurs when people don’t know what they’re doing. Going too fast, being under the influence of drugs or alcohol and not using enough lube can tear anal tissue. However, your anus is rich with nerve endings and elastic skin — just like the vagina.
Some good ways to get into anal sex without overdoing it are to start off with a finger or small toy, but not a huge dildo or a penis.
Starting with one finger and lots of lube is a good idea, she said. Water or silicone based lubes are the best, but remember spit and lotion don’t work. Once you’re comfortable, you can work up from there. As you use bigger sizes of toys or other devices, use more lube.
One lesson you don’t want to learn the hard way is to have someone hurt you with their fingernail, so always cut them. Also, don’t insert your finger from the tip, use the pad of your finger to start.
After watching the “The Ultimate Guide to Anal Sex for Women” DVD, I observed that massaging the area before inserting anything helps relax the muscles, as does taking slow deep breaths if you’re the one being fondled.
Anal sex is different for men and women, whether you’re in hetero or homosexual relationships. Heterosexual men are often shy about anal because they think if they enjoy the act it might mean they are gay or bisexual.
Now, for my take on it. The anus, just like the vagina and penis, feels good when stimulated correctly, which should be reason enough to enjoy the sensations. But men get the added bonus of feeling prostate pleasure.
The prostate gland is located a couple inches into the body between the penis and the rectum, just underneath the bladder. The prostate gland is what makes and produces prostatic fluid, or what gives ejaculate its texture and smell, and it can feel very pleasurable to have it massaged during anal sex.
Women who want to have anal sex with their male partner can use a variety of toys such as butt plugs, dildos and strap-ons. But the same rules apply; start slow, communicate and use lots of lube.
The men in Taormino’s video said they liked more subtle motions in anal sex such as light massaging as opposed to a constant in and out motion, but it is different for everyone