An article I wrote with the intention of handing out printed copies to schoolchildren ages 10-18.
Why Do We Keep Having PIV??
PIV (penis in vagina) intercourse is considered to be the definition of “normal” sex by doctors, psychologists, TV, and most men. But should putting the penis in the vagina be considered the only way to have sex, or even a normal way?
Let’s examine some myths:
*Having PIV is the only way to get pregnant. Not true. Sperm can swim up the vagina from the outside. Pregnancy is often caused this way.
*PIV is the most enjoyable type of sex. This is bullshit. It is enjoyable for most men, not most women. Everyone’s different, but most women like having their clitoris stimulated instead. The vagina has few nerves inside, so the pleasure a woman feels during PIV usually comes from stimulating the clitoris, too. Why not stimulate the clitoris with the penis? Both partners get pleasure. Most women do not enjoy PIV as much as clitoral stimulation; some hate PIV. Saying “PIV is pleasurable” is very opinionated, like saying “ice cream tastes good”, or “red is the best color”.
*The vagina is a hole, it’s meant to be penetrated. Nostrils and ears are holes. Should they be penetrated as well? How about the anus? Belly button? Throat? Urethra? Some holes are not meant to be penetrated. Sadly, many men view a woman as a hole-filled object to stick things into.
*The vagina can spit out babies, so it can take objects inside it as well. No. Just because a hole on the body can spit an object out doesn’t mean it is meant to take objects inside of it. You can poop; does that mean anal sex is the only normal or enjoyable type of sex? You can spit; does that mean deep throating is enjoyable? What about using an open wound? That’s a hole, too. Some holes on the body are not meant to be filled with objects.
*PIV is the most common form of sex in movies, books, history, TV, and our society, so it’s the most normal one. Just because something is common or has always existed in history doesn’t make it good or normal. Being racist was common a few hundred years ago. Does that make being racist right or normal? Men are in charge of most of the media, including the movie, book, and music industries. Their opinions are more represented. Men usually enjoy PIV much more than women, who sometimes hate it. PIV is portrayed as the main way to have sex in books and movies because men enjoy it. Women’s enjoyment is either ignored, or movies show a higher percentage of women liking PIV than do in real life.
*Most women have PIV, and they don’t complain, so they must enjoy it. How do you know you really enjoy something if society and the media- movies, books, and TV- are constantly trying to make you like it? Some women fool themselves into thinking they like PIV because friends, the TV, doctors, psychologists, and of course, husbands, make them think there’s something wrong with them physically or psychologically if they don’t. Does this mean women like PIV? If they need to drastically change their attitude or body to like it, they obviously don’t really like it!
*The penis is shaped like a long stick because it’s meant to go inside the vagina. The fist is shaped like a long stick. Is the fist meant to go down the throat? Is the penis supposed to go up the anus? The fist up the vagina? Not all penises are big and long. Some barely poke out at all. Some are smaller than the average labia and clitoris (there are many big labia and clitorises, like there are small penises). There are different sizes and shapes among both male and female genitals. The idea that penises need to be big is socially constructed. Boys who have penises society considers too small are taken to the doctor to help it grow. Women with big clitorises and labia might get surgery to “fix” the “problem”. Girls are told to sit with their legs together, which causes the genitals to be squeezed smaller. Boys are told to touch and pay attention to their penises, and this attention and physical contact helps them grow more than they would otherwise. Society considers big penises and small clitorises/tight vaginas ideal, but this spells out certain disaster for boys and girls who practice PIV- bigness crossed with tightness leads to pain for the female!
*If you don’t like PIV, you’re prude, repressed, or anti-sex. PIV is not the only way to have sex, and should not even be considered the normal sexual act, so you are not anti-sex if you don’t like it. You may like other activities, like having your clitoris kissed or stroked, or touched with the penis, or rubbing up against your partner. Not liking sex AT ALL isn’t a bad thing, either. Not everyone likes sex just as not everyone likes chocolate, sushi, classical music. Calling women who don’t like PIV (or other sex acts) prude is a tactic men use to trick you into sex or PIV.
What do I do if my boyfriend/husband wants to have PIV and I don’t want to? What if he pressures me into having it?
Just Say No! If you don’t want to do something, you don’t have to do it, or feel bad about refusing to do it. If he pressures you into it, he is being a pest and needs to be told to stop. If he accuses you of not loving him or else you’d give him PIV, he’s wrong. Not wanting to do things you aren’t comfortable with doesn’t mean you don’t love him. If he loved you, he wouldn’t try to guilt you into having PIV (or any other type of sex).
My husband/boyfriend/partner and I started having PIV and I asked him to stop and he didn’t. Is this wrong?
If he kept going once you told him to stop, it’s rape, pure and simple. “Wait, I’m almost finished” is not acceptable. If you are being hurt now, or want to stop now, he needs to stop now. If he waits a bit until he’s “finished” once you’ve said to stop, it means he thinks his enjoyment is more important than your safety. That’s rape. You need to send him to a counselor, report him, or end the relationship. It’s that serious.
Some men say once they start they can’t stop because it’s a “natural urge”. If that’s true, how come when parents are in bed and their child walks in, they always stop? Or when they are in bed and the phone rings? Or if a stranger enters the house? Men always stop then. If a child entering the room, a phone ringing, or a stranger breaking in are enough to get him to stop this “natural urge”, you asking to stop should be just as important.
Can I still have PIV if I want to?
Of course! It’s a free country. Not all women hate PIV; some don’t mind it; some even enjoy it. Most women who enjoy it enjoy clitoris stimulation more. But everyone’s an individual and we all get pleasure in different ways. Some people get an orgasm from being kissed on the ear; others get one from being penetrated; some like being cut with objects. That’s their right, and they should feel free to do what they enjoy.
Pleasure isn’t the only important thing: we need to know PIV carries risks other sexual practices are less likely to. PIV is more likely to cause pregnancy than other acts, like oral sex. It can lead to higher rates of cervical cancer or disease in women, since they are the ones receiving fluids.
You should certainly feel free to have PIV if you want. It’s your right to choose from a variety of sexual acts. The important thing is that you understand the risks some acts carry, just as you should understand the risks of riding a bike or driving a car or drinking alcohol.
Why do I feel weird for not liking PIV?
You may feel weird because society tells you it’s normal to enjoy it. Movies and songs only use the word “sex” to refer to PIV, as if clitoral stimulation or other acts don’t count as “real” sex. Sex practices women like are called “foreplay”, as if they aren’t as important.
Many women use tons of lubricant or even take medicine to make PIV enjoyable or less painful (some girls actually get pain from PIV). If women get pain from PIV they might be labeled “too tight” and urged to visit doctors so they can get “fixed”. They get diagnosed with made-up conditions like “vaginismus”, even though women’s vaginas may not be designed to be penetrated. Psychologists ask women who hate PIV if they were sexually abused as children or have diseases making PIV difficult. It’s not about helping women be safe and happy; it’s about taking a “broken” woman who doesn’t enjoy PIV and “fixing” her for her husband or boyfriend.
Doctors assume PIV is normal and anyone who can’t do it or doesn’t enjoy it needs to be fixed. This is proof of the bias in our society, a bias in favor of men and their enjoyment, and against women and their right not to be harmed.
What about his enjoyment?
What about it? You have no obligation to perform uncomfortable or painful acts to give someone else pleasure, especially sexual ones. He can stimulate his penis by rubbing against your clitoris or other places. (Since semen outside the vagina can cause pregnancy, use protection). Losing enjoyment doesn’t feel as bad as having pain, so it’s better he loses enjoyment than you be hurt. If PIV doesn’t hurt but isn’t enjoyable either, you still shouldn’t be pressured into doing it. In fact, even if you enjoy it you shouldn’t be obligated to do it. It is wrong for your boyfriend/husband to expect you to please him. You don’t use other people for pleasure. It’s wrong and evil.
But doesn’t PIV give him more pleasure than just rubbing?
So? You’re still not under obligation to please another person by doing something you don’t want to do. What if choking him gave him more pleasure than PIV? Are you obligated to choke him? What if choking him while he uses drugs give him even more pleasure than just choking him? Should you buy him drugs, too? What if kicking people gives him pleasure because he’s a sadist- should you let him kick you in the stomach? No.
If PIV is not enjoyable to a large number of women, why do so many lesbians use dildos or other types of fake penises?
Lots of lesbians do not use such things. Dildos and penis-shaped objects were invented because society likes to think women need males to be sexually happy. Many lesbians have discovered the magic of the clitoris instead. Some lesbians who buy dildos do it because they are fooled, like heterosexuals, into thinking penetration is the most pleasurable thing for a woman. Of course, some lesbians, like some heterosexuals, do like being penetrated. But it’s very rude for society to assume all of them like it, or to assume that a woman needs a man or a man-shaped object to be happy.
My partner didn’t pressure me into having PIV, I chose to myself. But I felt uncomfortable afterward. Why?
It may be because you didn’t really want to after all. Society can coerce you, like a sexual predator, into sexual acts. Society often acts like a rapist. It tells women they must have PIV, or else. Often, a girl thinks she’s choosing PIV, but it turns out she’s been pushed into it by society teaching her it’s normal, and it feels like she was raped. She was raped by society, if not her boyfriend.
If the PIV was painful, you may also be angry at the idea that men are capable of hurting women sexually, but not the other way around. It feels like crap- like nature made you inferior because you are hurt-able and not him. But suppose you slammed your clitoris and labia up against his testicles…wouldn’t that hurt him? It’s not true, then, that women can’t hurt men sexually. But society would never call such an act “normal sex” because the male would be getting injured. Yet they call PIV “normal sex”, even though it injures females. And since PIV is not necessary for pregnancy, the reproductive argument for calling PIV “normal” is a total joke too.
But isn’t PIV the natural way to have sex? Isn’t it instinctive or something?
No. Not all animals have PIV, and not all humans do. In societies or eras in which sex is not discussed, young men don’t even know how to have PIV- they have to be taught to put their penises in women’s vaginas. If it were a natural instinct why would they need to be taught to do it? Some men say it’s natural to fool women into thinking it’s something they’re supposed to do, or make excuses after they rape someone.
It feels weird not having PIV. It’s like we didn’t go “all the way” or something.
This feeling is due to cultural conditioning- society pushes you to think PIV is “real” sex. PIV is just one type of sex. If society considered anal sex “real” sex, or sex in which one partner chokes the other, or sex where the penis tore through the cervix into the uterus, you might have had similar feelings about those acts. You don’t need to have PIV to say you’ve “had sex.” If you enjoy PIV, go ahead and have it, but learn about the bad consequences, and make sure your desire to do it wasn’t influenced by other people or the media. It’s good to add a variety of sexual acts to your pool of choices, as long as you make sure you are being true to your own heart and not doing anything you’re uncomfortable with.
Please share this pamphlet with other girls and women and don’t be afraid to discuss PIV with friends, if they don’t mind discussing such matters. More women need to hear these things, especially since many think they’re the only ones who don’t like PIV. Men have no right to use your body for sex- PIV or other acts- and you need to know how to refuse.
PIV carries dangers, including pregnancy, risk of cervical cancer, pain, tearing, dryness, soreness, and psychological feelings of being invaded (especially if the male is the active partner). You are free to have it, but you should always understand the risks first, that society often covers up.
Don’t let pressures from society, the media, and from boyfriends influence your decision, and make sure to think the choice to have PIV over.
You own your body, not others!