Ask Self Serve – When Penetration is Painful

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Question: I’ve had a lot of trouble with painful penetration so I just gave up on it.  I’ve asked every gynecologist I’ve been to if something’s wrong and my last one finally found that my hymen was still partially intact.  I’ve had sex with one man and they don’t have to use the ‘virgin’ speculum. I would like to enjoy sex that includes penetration. I only have sex with women and my partner and I have toys, but I have anxiety about penetration because I’ve always just thought it was painful and there’s nothing to be done.  Any suggestions on how to make this less of a tense situation?

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A fun, on-going project I’m working on with Self Serve

I have a really awesome job, and recently at my really awesome job, we started a question-and-answer column called Ask Self Serve. For those of you who don’t know, Self Serve is a comfortable, education-based sex shop nestled in Albuquerque’s Upper Nob Hill.

Ask Self Serve is a (hopefully) informative, funny, honest and tender sex advice segment that we publish online at as well as in The Weekly Alibi. My colleagues and I have spent a lot of time finding questions, coming up with answers compiling them into a short and sweet sex-positive nugget, for erotic information. Here is the first one!

This is the first edition of a regular feature where you can ask Self Serve staff any question via email, Facebook or writing it on a slip at the store. It’s a way for us to provide information on a variety of subjects that people may not want to ask a doctor or a friend. Some of the questions and answers will also appear in The Weekly Alibi.

If you have a question, send it to us at

Question: My friend and I enjoy oral and vaginal intercourse. However, we sometimes need a lubricant for doing vaginal, and when we return to oral the lubricant has an unpleasant taste. Do you have any flavored lubricants?

Sliquid Flavored Lubes

Answer: A roll in the hay with a friend should not leave a bad taste in your mouth (physically or metaphorically). And you are right – most lubes taste awful. The main ingredient in most water-based lubricants is glycerine. Glycerine is a sugar, and sugar plus sex can cause problems, such as increased likelihood of getting a yeast infection in those with vaginas (not the best parting gift for a friend you care about). Lubes with glycerine are also often overly sweet and will feel sticky to the touch. Unflavored lubes without glycerine can also taste bad because they have no sweeteners. Luckily we carry several flavored, water-based lubes that are glycerine free, all natural, and delicious. Strawberry Pomegranate is our most popular. Flavored lubes are ideal for all kinds of sex and are likely to keep your mouth happy while you lick and tease your partner. Silicone lubes are also a great fit for the kind of fun you’re enjoying. They are odorless and tasteless and can even be used underwater. If you’re having a nooner, watch out because you’ll probably be slippery all day. The right lube is different for everybody so a visit to Self Serve with your sexy friend might be good foreplay for your next encounter. Tell us you read this column and we’ll give you a free flavored lube packet!

Email your questions to

Questions are answered by Self Serve Staff and edited by Hunter Riley.

Always seek the advice of a qualified healthcare provider for any medical condition