Some things are just flat-out too embarrassing to ask the gyno. Like, for example, whether it's OK to have sex when you're surfing the crimson wave. Hello?! Ew... Well, we've got the answers for you in this excerpt from our new book, SheKnows Presents: The Best Sex of Your Life, coming to stores in spring 2010. And now for the big question: Is it OK to have sex during your period? If so, how does it work?
It's Okay to Do It during That Time of the Month
People check in with us on this issue all the time and our immediate reaction to this question is always "Why are you asking us instead of your partner?" This is something that should be discussed with your lover as each person's sexual preferences and needs are different. If you're comfortable with the idea of having sex or messing around during your period, then ask your partner what his opinion is, or the next time you're on your period and he tries to make a move, just let him know and see how he responds. If he doesn't seem to care, you'll have your answer.
However, it's important to keep in mind that first and foremost, the option of having sex during your period has an awful lot to do with how you personally feel about it. Are you the type who experiences
Ironically, sex can potentially alleviate some of the discomfort that menstruation presents for a woman. Sex promotes blood flow which has the potential to minimize headaches and even relax cramping, and that's not saying anything about the obvious tension release! Thanks to endorphins released when you get down, sex can also be a great kick-start to feeling re-energized during a downswing of your mood. This can also be a time where the surge of hormones can create a heightened sense of libido, which can certainly benefit sexual activity.
Sex MYTH: You Can't Get Pregnant on Your Period
Wrong! You can get pregnant anytime: Before your period, on your period, and after your period. Sperm can stay in the vagina for up to seven days, so even if you're shedding the last egg, the sperm might still be in there when you release the next one. So, unless you want to get pregnant — and maybe you do —i t's important to use protection or hormonal birth control.
Also, we should let you know that period-sex really isn't all that different than sex any other time. Sure it can be a little messier — and wetter — then usual, but sometimes that just adds to the kink! So, even if you're not sure that you're comfortable with sex during this time of the month, an attempt couldn't hurt. If it's not for you, then at least you know. But if it does work then you can enjoy a whole new experience going forward.
What If My Guy Doesn't Like It?
Now, if it's your guy who would rather avoid the dirty lovin' at this time of month, well, that's a whole other situation. For many guys, a woman's time of month is a turn off. This is mainly a mental reaction because physically things aren't all that different. If this is something you want to try, but your partner is hesitant because of the blood, why not turn off the lights? If all goes according to plan, once you two are turned on and ready to go, his focus will likely be on how things feel versus how they may look. If your partner prefers a little less clean up (not to mention the obvious protection from risk), you two can always choose to use a condom. Also, get yourself a large towel to spread over the bed sheets and off you go!
So, if you are into the idea of having sex while you have your period and you and your partner have both moved beyond any hesitations, then we can take things to the next level: oral sex. You'll find that even men who don't take issue with period sex, draw the line with oral sex during that time of the month. But again, everything regarding intimacy and comfort level is based on personal choice.
However, what many men don't consider when it comes to period sex is that flow levels vary throughout your time. Sure there will be heavier days where you can expect a little more fluid but there are also lighter days which might be a good time to venture into making an attempt.
Oral sex during your period can stay focused on the clitoris, which is mainly away from the flow and won't be quite as shocking to your man. If you are on your back there is also less potential for mess. Your partner can also use oral dams (like a condom for their mouths during oral sex) at this time of month. In return, if you are not comfortable with giving him oral sex after he's gotten messy, put a condom on him (a fresh one) before going down.
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