Sex is a complicated matter, and it's a major aspect of the human condition. We were born to have sex, but despite having it be part of our instinctual wiring, many of us really don't understand much about sex. Or, rather, we may have been misinformed, misled, or otherwise mis-educated about it.
Though this is an act almost everyone will end up doing at least once in their lives, there's a lot about sex people really don't get. Here are some of the most common misconceptions, and the truth behind them.
The fact that people don't understand STD transmission is terrifying, and potentially lethal. Sadly, educators don't seem to care enough to actually school kids on the topic, so a lot of people still won't understand it until it's too late.
Here's something that people don't understand about sex and STD transmission - you don't need to have sex in order to get them. Many people have been infected with diseases like HIV, herpes, and syphilis via oral sex, analingus, and certain fetish acts.
Condoms are currently the only form of birth control that can protect against STD transmission, and it's still possible to get certain diseases while using a condom. HPV, for example, is often transmitted even with a condom.
Moreover, people also don't realize that a lot of STDs aside from HIV also are asymptomatic. STD screening tests also might not be able to pick up certain viruses for as long as six months.
The only way to make sure you're clean is to get tested, and the best way to prevent STD transmission is to use a condom and make sure your partner is regularly tested.
Sex's Impact on the Human Vagina
A very, very common myth is that women who have too much sex will have loose vaginas or the dreaded "roast beef" look.
This is bullshit and something people don't understand about sex.
How a woman's labias look has absolutely no bearing on how many sex partners you have. It's the way you're born. Some are "innies" and others are "outies."
Moreover, the "looseness" of a woman's vagina is often predetermined by birth, or at most, caused by childbirth. Even when you've given birth to multiple children, the looseness down there is typically negligible. Once people stop thinking that having sex physically "ruins" women, life for everyone will be a lot better.
A common myth perpetuated by religious groups is that homosexuality, bisexuality, and transexuality are "unnatural." The fact is that being gay is as natural as it gets, and has been around since before humans were even walking on the planet.
Penguins, seagulls, monkeys, fish, and even spiders have all been witnessed to have same sex partnerships. Saying that it's "not natural" is just not true.
Did you know that a lot of men who have been found guilty of raping women didn't realize they raped someone? Consent is supposed to be an "emphatic yes" according to the law.
Consent is not silence. It's not giving in and saying yes after 50 no's. It's not implied by body language. It's explict - a yes, and an emphatic yes, at that.
Moreover, there are many people, both men and women, who don't understand that consent also can be revoked if one partner lies about birth control. This is because the person who agreed to sex, agreed to it with birth control in place.
If you lie about birth control, wear a partner down over sex, or just "go for it" despite silence, you technically sexually assaulted someone or raped them.
Many men in particular don't understand consent because of the many social undercurrents in movies, books, and media that insinuate that forcing yourself on a girl is the easiest way to win her heart. Sadly, until that trope dies out, that's what we'll continue to teach kids.
Orgasm Vs. Ejaculation
Yes, it's possible to orgasm without ejaculating. Yes, this is something most people don't understand about sex. Men can have "ghost orgasms" if they ejaculated till their semen ran empty. It's rare, but it does happen.
But, it's not just a male thing - women regularly orgasm without ejaculating. Female ejaculation, also known as squirting, is actually a lot rarer than a standard orgasm.
So yes, if your guy says that he came, don't assume he didn't because he didn't ejaculate. It's possible to have mental orgasms, "drygasms" and other forms of climax that don't involve fluid.
How to be Good At It
If you ask veterans of bedroom romps, they'll tell you that finding seriously good sexual partners is pretty rare. In fact, many people never really have seriously good lays. Sadly, the art of being good in bed is something that is grossly misunderstood.
The vast majority of a person's bedroom skills boils down to a little knowledge of anatomy, a little enthusiasm, and of course, communication. People want passion, and they want someone who focuses on their partner's pleasure. It's really not that hard to figure out.
At the bare minimum, physical talents like knowing how to massage your partner's G-spot, prostate, or frenulum can go a long way. Of course, the connection and communication you establish with your partner often is what makes you the most memorable.
Emotions After Sex
It's surprising how few people understand the emotional impact of sexual release.
Most people have heard about someone who has cried after sex, gotten irritable, or just been grouchy after sex. Assuming that this isn't because of something awful that was done to that person, this could be a hormonal mixup that scientists call postcoital dysphoria.
Postcoital dysphoria has nothing to do with the partner; rather, it's a sudden burst of negative emotions that can happen when your hormones get so rushed that your body can't handle it.
Similarly, it's important to note that sex also increases other emotion-altering hormones - primarily those associated with romantic bonding, love, and happiness. These hormones are called copulins, and yes, they do aid in bonding couples together.
That being said, having regular sex with a partner doesn't necessarily mean they'll fall in love with you thanks to copulins. Sometimes, things just don't click.
Sex as Validation
A lot of men and women feel like having sex validates them - and to a point, it does. Society tends to look fondly at people who are somewhat sexually active.
But the fact is that it's not a smart source of validation. All it's saying is that you had sex. People have sex with people they don't find attractive all the time, for a variety of reasons.
Studies also show that people who have a lot of meaningless sex tend to be more depressed, mentally ill, and insecure. So, there's that.
Studies repeatedly show that people grossly overestimate how much sex everyone around them is having - and it's also having an effect on people. Thinking we don't get much action can trick us into feeling insecure or unattractive.
Believe it or not, most surveys show that the typical person will have sex around once to twice per week when they are coupled up.
Sex as an Obligation
Lastly, another common thing that people have noticed is that there are a lot of men who believe that a woman needs to be obligated to have sex under certain conditions. Sometimes, it's just the fact that the guy exists and is "nice." Other times, it's because the dude bought her dinner.
No. Not cool.
No one is obligated to give you sex, ever. Why is this still something people don't understand about sex? Saying that they are removes their right to choose what happens to their own body, and makes you a pseudo-rapist. If you didn't want to have sex with someone, would you still go through with it because they sad they were entitled to it? Of course not.
This is a serious double standard that's perpetuated by Nice Guy mentality, and it's toxic. Don't be that person.