Archive for the ‘Sex’ Category

Sex And OCD

In Dating, Health and Body, Mental Health, Sex on April 20, 2011 at 7:09 pm

Redefining fun, one move at a time.

Hi Yenta,

I have been with my boyfriend for nearly a year now, and it is better than I ever imagined a relationship could be. We live together, we have a cat, and we are both very happy. The problem is this: my OCD makes any type of sex impossible.

We are plenty intimate – we mostly pleasure each other by mutual masturbation – but I can’t even bear to be completely naked with him when we do this for fear of fluids. He is very patient and understanding, but I worry about how long that will last.

He wants to spend the rest of his life with me, but there is a very real possibility that it will be a very long time – if ever – before I am able to have sex, and I am afraid that he will eventually start to resent me for it. Is it possible to have a lasting romantic relationship without sex?

Thanks for your help!

-Keepin’ It Dry

Dear KID,

When you say “my OCD,” it sounds like, “my puppy,” or “ my favorite cat.”  If your OCD is held and coddled, it will snuggle you and remain with you.  I don’t know where you are in your healing process, but I encourage you to challenge your OCD threshold.

That is to say, how far can your disorder go until it runs your life?  Phobias are real, OCD is real, anxiety is real: but human beings have an even realer capacity for healing.  With proper time, care and attention one can reverse, or at least lessen these types of discomforts.

If you have not already tried, perhaps begin first by thinking outside the therapy box, and later, outside the sexual box.   Ie, instead of Psychiatry, dabble in the other healing arts for answers to your questions.  To every thing there is a season, and to every ailment, there is a root. Working with an acupuncturist, a cognitive behavioral therapist, sex therapist, massage therapist,  sexual surrogate, shaman or even a regular psychologist or clinical social worker could begin to address your fears of fluids from a new angle.  Other ideas: doctor-monitored herbal remedies, yoga, meditation, and/or drastic changes in diet.

On the flip side, you could also take another route.  That is the route of acceptance.  This means accepting you will never sleep with your man in the traditionally anticipated way.  You worry about him, and I worry about you.  Are you selling yourself short sexually by so quickly giving your OCD free rein in the bedroom?

If not, maybe this is your threshold.  Maybe this sex, at all, is your triumph in which case I congratulate you.  And the truth is that yes, sexless relationships are possible.  Especially in your case, where you are actually having sex, just not intercourse.  A lifetime commitment to mutual masturbation has happened before and can be a phenomenal way to explore the less-known regions of sexuality and sexual pleasure.

Click here for details on enhancing sex without intercourse.  Everything from new forms of touch and activity, to using other senses and forms, like talking, smelling, etc as means of enhancing your bedroom delights.

Other reads:

Sex Without Intercourse by Gerda Mundinger, a book of anecdotes from real people on how they enjoyed each other without “doing it.”

Let Me Count The Ways: Sex Without Intercourse by Marty Klein, Ph.D. and Riki Robbins, Ph.D.

I am all for you committing to and celebrating a non-intercourse-having existence, as long as that celebration is not a way of quitting and selling yourself and your partner short before reaching towards healing your phobias.  Our bodies are limitless in the knowledge and secrets they hold, you might need to grin and bare it and begin (again) the arduous process of exploring the underside of your OCD.

Merissa Nathan GersonCreate Your Badge

yenta yenta yenta

Going Down With A Dental Dam

In Dating, Health and Body, Sex on October 24, 2010 at 8:15 pm


After a 5-year relationship I recently got back out on the dating market.  I try to be a good lover and as far as I’m concerned that means going down on the women I sleep with. That being said I am concerned about the threat of contracting STD’s this way.  What can I do to protect myself?


Santa Fe, NM

Photo © Betsssssy from

Dear Bryan,

I adore this question.  Why?  Because you are the ideal American lover: you love pleasuring your women and are conscientious about health in the process, a wise New Mexican, indeed.  The bottom line: unprotected oral sex does put you at risk for STD’s and yes, there are ways to protect yourself.

Via oral genital contact you are widely at risk for contracting trichomaniasis, genital warts, gonorrhea (which can cause throat cancer when contracted in the mouth) and a mouthful of other diseases.  HPV and HIV are also both contractable by mouth, and are more so a risk if you or your partner has open wounds or if she is on her period.  Try not to go down on anyone if you have cold sores, bleeding gums, or even if you just brushed your teeth.  These conditions leave your mouth more vulnerable to disease.

What to do to protect, both front and back nether regions?  Use a dental dam.  Originally a square section of latex used as a dental fluid barrier device, the dental dam has evolved as a means of preventing STD’s during oral sex.  Buy at, online or in person at  Toys In Babeland, at local sex shops, the dentist, etc.  If you don’t want to buy one, you can make one with a condom (click here for instructions).  Allergic to latex?  Click here. Also, saran wrap, the NON-MICROWAVABLE kind, is an option.  This, however, unlike the other two latex options, is not a proven defense against HIV.

According to Scarleteen: Sex Ed For the Real World in a post titled “Ode to Saran Wrap:”

Saran wrap is the greatest thing ever. For just $3 one could safely lick 200 square feet of woman (or man or any combination of the two) without worry of bad tastes, pubes, or STDs.

HOWEVER, there are a few things to be mentioned:

1- LUBE, if you do not somehow lube the other side of the saran wrap dental dam it will crumple up into a little ball, but lube tastes bad so don’t get it on the side that you plan to lick. The easiest way to do this is to lube the area to be covered and then put the saran wrap on top of it.

2-SIZE, I have no idea how a condom cut open is supposed to even begin to be big enough to serve as a dental dam. Rip off a HUGE 1.5 to 2-foot section of saran wrap, stick the top of it to their body (lower stomach, lower back, whatever is handy) so that it doesn’t go anywhere (don’t put lube on this part either, otherwise it doesn’t stick)and smooth the rest of it down over their genitals and anus. There should be extra left over, things shift around, you may need it.

3-ADJUST, and readjust. As aforementioned, things shift around, so keep readjusting and holding, if possible, the edges of the saran wrap so that they stay covering that which you do no want in your mouth (get the other person to do this for you if possible, tell them you need to concentrate, and they’re not doing anything with their hands anyway).

Saran Wrap Dental Dam FAQ

Q. Doesn’t a dental dam get in the way?

A. NO. Absolutely not, not even a little, I swear.

Q. Really?

A. Yes, really. If you adequately lube the one side it will slip around and conform to every imaginable shape to fit every crevice you could possibly want to lick

Q. But what if I want to use my hands too and the dental dam really is inhibiting me?

A. Put on a glove, lube it so it doesn’t stick to the saran wrap, and reach under the dental dam.

Also, as gleaned from the advice of a Jerusalem lesbian Tzaddik:

The transition to safe sexual practice can be awkward, it is up to you to make it sexy.  In the process just be careful that a dental dam doesn’t slip.  It is all about the positioning and how you hold it.  Hold it with one hand, spread over the area, and then give the person head.  But I found that if I let go of the dam, I would get really into it and it would slip really easily.”

At that point, just a note, you are exposed to everything you had been protecting against.  It only takes a little contact to put you at risk for a lifetime of disease, so, if you haven’t been tested and aren’t certain of monogamy, practice before you plunge.

A final word on STD testing:

“When it comes to sex that’s the place where people tend to lie the most.  Not maliciously, but so much shame is often involved around sex, it’s often easier to lie about it and not tell the truth.  Even if in a relationship and I totally trust the person, I am going to err on the side of caution.

Even with a trustworthy person, people lie about things.  I am not going to put myself at risk based on the possibility that they may be telling the truth, I am going presume they are lying just to be safe.  Not only that, but sometimes a test is taken too soon, symptoms don’t show, etc.  Even a negative test can later show up positive.”

The moral of the story?  Saran wrap, a dental dam or a carefully crafted condom, some lube, a lover, your mouth, a long night and everyone is safe, happy and satisfied.  And remember, all of the above also applies to rim jobs.  Happy trails.

Ask yenta anything. Click here.

Merissa Nathan GersonCreate Your Badge

She Comes All Day Long

In Dating, Health and Body, Sex on June 27, 2010 at 2:28 pm

What's this crazy pleasure all about!? Photo courtesy of Victor Jeffreys II,

Hey Yenta,

My girlfriend comes so much.  I never know when it is enough.  I am happy she enjoys herself, but it feels like I could make her keep going for days.  How do I know when she is satisfied if she has nearly ten orgasms each time we get it on?

-Gifted in Bed?

Dear GIB,

Ah, yes, the secret age-old dilemma of the multiple-orgasming partner.  Men have, on rare occasion, come to me asking this same question with concern.  Why?  Because we focus so much on the possibility that a woman can’t come, that it seems almost baffling when she comes so hard and so long.

Multiple orgasms aren’t always what they seem.  Often they are a retriggering of a plateau of pleasure in quick succession, so that the orgasm, already brought into being, is retriggered again and again.  For some this is amazing, and for others just one mind-blowing orgasm does the trick.  Whatever floats her boat.

I can actually see how this could be frustrating for a lover, on a number of levels.  With one full-blown amazing orgasm, you know when she is satisfied.  With this many, on and on and on, one wonders what the driving force is, and what an orgasm means at all.  Right?  Because we thought it was meant to be one precious pop.

The limit to this kind of lovemaking does not exist.  It is a good test for you to work on lovemaking being a two-way street.  When her pleasure stops being your pleasure, at the 7th or 8th plateau, you can gently cease and desist.  There is no law that you must keep her pleasure in constant motion.  If the issue is more a wondering about satisfaction, maybe worry about this less and focus more on closely watching and witnessing your partner’s body virtually melt.  This is a gift to bear witness to, so focus less on the goal, and more on the ride.

If, however, you feel she is coming hard and leaving you out, be honest.  Talk about the orgasms, work to better understand her pleasure and voice your own.  At the very least you may gain an understanding of what is happening inside of her.  At most, you increase the connection between the two of you which makes that intense pleasure translate more towards you.

There is always the option of slowing down.  There are millions of ways of inducing orgasms, particularly for a woman like this, so work on that, bringing her to climax with a new rhythm or angle.  Work with her body to see its pleasure lengths and limits.  In the end “satisfaction” is complex.  She is clearly getting off, but to know how it makes her feel, you need to talk.  Communication is the number one ingredient for better and better sex.

For help with your own multiple orgasms, women click hereMen click here.

Also try How to Have An Orgasm….As Often As You Want by Rachel Swift

and Orgasms: How to Have Them, Give Them, and Keep Them Coming by Lou Paget.

Ask Yenta Anything!

E-mail a question to merissag[at]gmail[dot]com directly, or using to ask anonymously.

Merissa Nathan Gerson is a fan of
Ask Your Yenta

Rectal Surprise

In Dating, Mental Health, Sex on June 14, 2010 at 9:06 pm

This intense pleasure zone ironically threatens the perceived manhood of some of the manliest of men. Photo courtesy of Victor Jeffreys II,

Dear Yenta,

My boyfriend likes surprises. I bought him a t-shirt that he had commented about for his birthday, and after he opened it and told me how much he loved it, he made a comment about his lack of surprise at the gift. Since there were no more holidays coming up, I decided to surprise him in the bedroom, hoping to satisfy his need for that wow feeling.

I lotion-ed him up, lathered him down, and then shoved a small vibrator in his ass, to his surprise. Needless to say, he did not like my surprise. It has been three weeks since my attempt at surprise and even though I have apologized several hundred times, he won’t strip down below shorts. I have a non-existent sex life now, and even worse, every time I start to get a little frisky in the bedroom, he turns bright red and tells me that he isn’t in the mood. How do I get my lover back?


Dear A-Hole,

I started by asking two men what they think.

They answered:

“Why needless to say he wouldn’t like it?  Some men really like surprises, anal surprises and toy surprises to be specific.”

“Stick a vibrator in your own ass, you’ll get your lover right back.”

“Needless to say, the vibrator is for you, not him.  Lather up, lotion down and stick it in your own ass.”

Sticking something in a man’s ass without warning may very well provoke a retreat into his shell.  There are all kinds of men.  There are men who like being penetrated, men who were raised to be the penetrator and ride a bull.  There are men who like things in the rear, and men who fear the pleasure they find in that area.

Without talking to him, you never know the cause of his repulsion.  Chances are, though, that he might not even be able to talk about it.  My guess is that there is complex shame around what occurred between you, so tread lightly.

Apologies will do nothing.  You need to show your understanding through action, make him feel safe, let him take the reigns.  Give your boyfriend back a sense of power.  Let him make some decisions.  Show him, through your behavior, that you will not push his limits unless asked.  This is partially about a loss of trust.

He may have liked it and have a fear that enjoying pleasure in the ass (which makes sense because there are some amazing nerve endings in there for men) implies he is somehow gay.  This is common male homophobic confusion.

Or, your boyfriend may have a history of sexual abuse and you may have just triggered memories of his body being violated and/or penetrated.  We think male rape victims don’t exist, but they do, they abound, and we women, so often used to being on that side of the fence, need to be sensitive to that possibility in our lovers.  For information on myths and facts of male rape, click here or visit  Also, try reading this City Paper article.

Whether a survivor of abuse or not, to treat him like one might help win his trust back.  Try reading these tips, “Recovering From Rape: Healing Your Sexuality” as barebone guidelines for rebuilding intimacy after trauma.

He could have power issues, gender role issues, abuse issues, butt issues, trust issues, an allergy to plastic.  Whatever it is, if you like him, you need to earn his trust back.  If you are gung-ho on the anal, he may need some proof that this sexual practice isn’t so crazy.  Some men grew up in the sexual boondocks.  Try helping him, if that feels right.  Click here for assistance.

Ask Yenta!  E-mail a question to merissag[at]gmail[dot]com directly, or using to ask anonymously.

Merissa Nathan Gerson is a fan of
Ask Your Yenta

Haunted By Ex’s Penis

In Breakups/Divorce, Health and Body, Sex on June 10, 2010 at 5:03 pm

Find a replacement, but be sure he is as good, if not better, than the old. Photo courtesy of Victor Jeffreys II,

Dear Yenta,

When I have sex, I think about my ex-husband’s penis. My new lover is amazing, wonderfully caring, and very talented in bed (which my ex-husband lacked), but every time we are intimate, I see my ex-husband’s face.  I’ve come so close to calling out his name but caught myself every time. I am very upfront and honest with my new lover, but this is one thing I just don’t think he would understand. I miss my ex, I won’t lie, but at the same time, I am much happier without him. How do I get him out of my bedroom?!

-Mentally Cheating

Dear MC,

There are two things that you can do.  One: Leave this man and mend your heart, do the work to get over your ex, and then resume dating him or someone else.  Two.  Deal with it within the relationship.

Thinking about your ex-husband is normal, especially if you were with him for a long time and that time included having sex with him.  But thinking about your ex while in bed with the new guy, that’s another story.  It indicates an inability to be present with the man in front of you, replacing his face with the face of another.

You can look at this as an opportunity to learn.  When your husband’s face or memory comes to mind, stop for a minute, look around, and check in with yourself.  What, exactly, are you longing for that you are not experiencing then and there?  Could there be a lack of intimacy and trust with this new man, making you long for the old?

Also, is this new dude up to par?  This regression into old memories could be a sign that the new lover is not good enough for you.  After a bad or ended relationship we often choose sub-par lovers in fear of never loving again.  Set your standards high enough and follow suit.

Either leave him, or nurture the relationship with the lover.  If, though, he is just a “lover” then who cares?  Maybe he is just a filler for the old, in which case this haunting is a sign from deep inside of you reminding you that you haven’t let go of yesterday.  Choose.  Then or now, and if now is the choice, then work hard at making your present reality and your present relationship one that sates you.  Build the trust, expose the edges, and begin again.

My guess though, is that you need to dump the lover and cry by a river somewhere or something to purge the ex from your body.  Do what it takes to address and mend the hurt parts so you can love and trust again, ie, be present and satisfied with the man in front of you.
For help read these simple steps for Recovering From A Failed Relationship.

Ask Yenta!  E-mail a question to merissag[at]gmail[dot]com directly, or using to ask anonymously.

Merissa Nathan Gerson is a fan of
Ask Your Yenta

Grabs Her Boobs In Public

In Dating, Drama, Sex on May 15, 2010 at 6:49 am

Keep those filthy paws off her silky drawers. Photo courtesy of Victor Jeffreys II,

Dear Yenta,

When I am with my girlfriend at parties, I like to sometimes grab her breasts in public and she seems to like it too.  Some woman came up to me tonight and told me this was wrong.  What?  Who is she to tell me what to do with my girlfriend?  Is it wrong, really?


Copping a Feel and Liking it


Well, I guess there are different standards for each woman.  Some women don’t mind if you grab them in public, and others do.  Some men don’t mind having people witness their sexual affection for their woman’s parts, and others do.  It comes down to a matter of personal preference.

Is it “wrong” to grab her boobs in public?  That is really for her to determine.  My only caution is this: some women have a hard time saying no, even when it feels wrong.  Some women like pleasing men and will let go of their own dignity to do so.  Some women don’t know that they can expect a man not to grab her breasts in public.

And then, some women get off on it.  I personally abhor witnessing people grope on each other in ways that provoke the imaginings of what happens behind closed doors, but that is just me.  I prefer a PG display of PDA, and am generally irritated when I see things, like, for example, tonight when I watched a woman loop her hand tightly in the inner part of her man’s groin, rubbing one hand brusquely across his penis.  No.  When I reached for another potato chip on the BBQ buffet, I didn’t expect to see that.

But my discomfort is my problem.  Grope away if you really think your woman friend feels respected, despite you being inside of her shirt in front of strangers.  The only way, though, to really know if she is down for some staged feeling up is to ask her when you aren’t already mid-act.  Talk about this in private, perhaps sober and in daylight, to be sure you aren’t accidentally pushing your lover into a space of shame and discomfort.

Ask Yenta!  E-mail a question to merissag[at]gmail[dot]com directly, or using to ask anonymously.

Merissa Nathan Gerson is a fan of
Ask Your Yenta

Advice From Your Moms

In Dating, Marriage, Sex on May 9, 2010 at 7:08 pm

We love our mothers because, among other things, they made us cool. Photo courtesy of Victor Jeffreys II,

In honor of Mother’s Day I anonymously interviewed a handful of America’s finest matriarchs. Before we begin, a humble shout out to the mothers we have lost whose advice on these topics would have no doubt assisted women everywhere in living on their wilder side, including but not limited to the fabulous Kathy Blane, Sherry Millard, and the many others who shaped the better of our generation. You are missed. 

Without further ado, The Wisdom of Your Moms

Advice to a virgin: 

It might not be great the first time. 

Lubricate yourself. 

Go for it! 

Hold on to it, it’s not going anywhere. 

Get birth control – you never know when children will happen. 

Advice to a woman who can’t come: 

This is if there isn’t some medical or other serious reason she can’t: 


Have a drink.

Get a sex toy online so you don’t have to deal with any hassle. And then just teach yourself how to do it. 

Bedroom advice for men: 

Slow down, take your time, listen.  

This is not a race to the finish. 

Secret sexual knowledge: 

Be sexy. 

Be open to try new things. 

Know what your guy wants. 

How do you know what he wants? 

Men don’t verbalize normally, but they do try to lead the way and you just have to trust and go for it. 

How do you know if there is more to him as a lover than what he says he wants? 

Show him.  

Push his limits. 

Be totally open. 

Follow the moment. 

Advice to a woman with many lovers: 


Get rid of most of them. Pare it down and simplify your life. 

Advice to a woman with a cheating partner: 

Get rid of him – unless you have a child. And even then, I don’t think I could deal with it, but some people can. 

Advice for finding a husband: 

Don’t try to find it – they will come to you.I was asked by four men for their hand in marriage but it wasn’t something that I wanted to do. The fifth was the man I married. Sometimes women scare men away because they so need to get married. 

There’s a difference between declarative intention, ie, I will find a good man, and needy desperation to transform a lover into a husband. 

Guys take their own time. The more you push, the more they move away from you. 

Demand to be treated with respect. 

No man is going to want you if you don’t have self-respect. If you expect respect, you will get respect. 

Don’t give it away for free. 

Pursue your interests and have a good time. 

Advice to a newlywed: 

You have to stop thinking about yourself. Even in this age of equality, it’s compromise. You have to go 60/40 in a marriage to make it work. 

The real thing is, you have to compromise, but you also have to be yourself. Deal with who you are and the other things will fall into place. 

Be sure that before you get married, you know who you are marrying. People don’t change. A lot of women expect that marriage will transform their husband into a new and better person. What you got dating him, you will get after the wedding. After marriage he will still be him, so be sure you like that person. 

The party is over. The work is here. 

There is always a downside after the performance of a wedding, relax, you will get through it. 

Sometimes women are so focused on the wedding that they forget there is a marriage that happens after it. Marriage does happen. 

Talk to your spouse.Enjoy it now, it’s never going to be as simple as it is at that moment. It will get better, richer and more complex, but never as simple and wonderful as those first few months. 

Advice on good living: 

Just be happy.  

Don’t have crazy expectations and don’t push people. 

Don’t wear yourself out.   

Shore some of the responsibility, let others be there for you. 

Don’t try to do everything. 

Do everything. 

And finally, to my own mom, the invincible: I love you. 

Happy Mother’s Day from Your 28-Year-Old Yenta!!! 

Ask Yenta!  E-mail a question to merissag[at]gmail[dot]com directly, or using to ask anonymously.

Merissa Nathan Gerson is a fan of
Ask Your Yenta

Sexual Surrogate to Treat Premature Ejaculation

In Health and Body, Mental Health, Sex on May 8, 2010 at 2:03 am

To Ms. Yenta,

I have a sexual question and it has taken me time to even consider asking this question but here it goes.  I have had a long term sexual problem (Premature Ejaculation) which I have not been able to cure.  I have tried the silly Kegel exercises and they cause me pain and frustration.  I recently have heard about sexual surrogates.  Surrogates being sex therapists who actually engage in sex with the patient in order to help their patients with their problems.  I’m wondering if you know anything about surrogates and if they are a good choice or just new age hookers?

*Thank you*

-from Stephen J

Honey, you'll be removing those goggles and uncrossing those legs soon enough. Photo courtesy of Victor Jeffreys II,

Dear Stephen,

Thank you for your brave honesty!  For you, I learned about sex surrogates.  I am now a HUGE fan of this concept.  For those of you not aware of sexual surrogacy, it is a medical route to sexual assistance.  Ie, you go see a doctor who then helps you with your sexual self in a “triad” with a third person, the sexual surrogate.  This person actually assists you manually in learning how to be more intimate and sexually adept.

Prostitutes far and near often speak of their job as a sex worker as one of a sex therapist.  Depending on the hooker and depending on the John, this is a place for acting things out emotionally via sex, off the grid.  This work, for the happy hooker, can be really transformative.

The difference, however, between a prostitute and a sexual surrogate is the medicalization and legalization of the practice.  One woman touching you and teaching you is usually illegal, whereas the other is sanctioned by a doctor with whom she works in conjunction.  For more on legit sexual surrogates, see IPSA, The International Professional Surrogates Association.

In his pulp novel, Counsel For The Damned, author Neil Montefiore Fleishman writes about how the first five hours of marriage make or break every union.  He has a theory stating that men are either born lovers, or aren’t, and that this shows in those few hours past the threshold.  Sexual surrogacy is a fabulous challenge to the notion that a man can’t learn to be a phenomenal lover.  Think about Footloose. If Kevin Bacon can teach that chump to dance, then anyone can learn to make love like a pro.

Sexual assistance is a practice we have often lost in our sexually repressed society.  We too easily forget how much is tied into a sexual release, emotionally, physically, spiritually, and so on.  More often than not, men are left without education surrounding the complexity of their own sexuality.  (For a granola take on healing male sexuality, click here.)  Free porn and abundant Victoria’s Secret catalogs have nothing to do with teaching people how to connect with other bodies subjectively.  Sex can be transcendent, uniting, complex, incredible, and so on and so forth, and many other cultures recognize this fact and train their young.

The brilliant Zora Neale Hurston wrote about this in Tell My Horse, how young women in one town were schooled by an elder on the art and importance of love making.  Shamanic healers have often been summoned for this work, to manually teach about how to sexually express oneself.  I don’t think there is anything shameful about sexual surrogates. If anything, I think using them is a wise choice.

Once at a classic Naropa party in Boulder, a man told me that the best way to overcome issues with sex is to masturbate in front of a close friend while they watch.  He also told me about doctors and schools where spiritual leaders manually bring people to orgasm to help release the energy, as well as to teach its redirection.  There are retreats all over (like this one), and gurus across the globe (like this guy) who can help teach you about sex from new angles, ie, tantra, kundalini, etc.  YouTube alone has tons of teaching videos on sex and healing.

For you, Stephen, I think sexual surrogacy is a medically sound way to treat your problem because it addresses both the physical and the emotional components of premature ejaculation.  With the “triad” of a doctor and a surrogate, you should, at the very least, learn a lot about your own body, which is great.  At best, you will learn to control your timing and attain new skills to better give and receive pleasure in the bedroom.  Not a bad bargain.

For a better idea of what it’s like, read this great article from  Follow the dude’s cue, and perhaps use the International Professional Surrogates Association to be sure your helper isn’t scamming you for cash.  Good Luck!

Book ideas:

The Illustrated Manual Of Sex Therapy Second Edition by Helen Singer Kaplan

Sacred Sexual Healing: The Shaman Method of Sex Magic by Baba Dez Nichols and Kamala Devi, or these manuals from

Ask Yenta!  E-mail a question to merissag[at]gmail[dot]com directly, or using to ask anonymously.

Merissa Nathan Gerson is a fan of
Ask Your Yenta

Do All Women Just Want To Be Ravaged?

In Health and Body, Mental Health, Sex on May 5, 2010 at 7:38 pm

There is a devil inside every woman. The question is, how to engage it without traumatizing her.

Help me Yenta!!!

This is a fairly general question but, WHAT DO WOMEN WANT IN BED!!!!!!!!!!!

I was reading about a book online called “Just f*#% her!”  Its basic concept is that women, even the sweet ones, just want to be ravaged, and screwed silly till they’re

Lifeless next to you.

IS IT TRUE?  I NEED TO KNOW!!!!!!!!!!!!


Dear K,

Lifeless = dead.  So no, chances are women do not want you to kill them.   I am assuming you are referring to this document, “Just F*&#ing F*#$ me, already,” from The Best of Craigslist.

To answer your question I gathered four experienced women who happen to be farmers.  Farmers are in touch with themselves, the earth and as a solid byproduct, their sexuality.  We read the manifesto you are referring to and then discussed it.  Here, for the answer to your questions, are their replies:

Farmer 1: Men think they should know everything.

Farmer 2: Like how to please a woman.

Farmer 1: And they don’t think they should ask because that makes them seem inexperienced.

Farmer 3: And that’s the thing that makes them inexperienced.

Farmer 2: An experienced man knows to ask.

A mechanic told me that women get their cars fixed better than men.  Why?  Because most women walk in and say, “There was a clicking and humming on the left side of the car.”  Most men, however, come in saying something like, “My carborator is broken,” when really it is the exhaust or the brake pads.  The difference: the man wanted to fake like he knew, and ended up with a bad result.

Farmer 1: It’s not even a question, women want all different things.  It is going to change every day, you just have to talk to her.

Farmer 2: Yeah, ask.  Ask her.

Farmer 3: Yeah, that’s the best sex advice ever, just talk.

Farmer 2: You have to be a little bit ballsy, and if you ask, it pays off.

Farmer 1: If you don’t ask then it is either bad, or you don’t ever see that person again because they weren’t satisfied.

Farmer 4: I would say that women are the same way.  We wonder, “I wonder if he likes it with teeth,” but are often too afraid to ask.

Farmer 3: And that’s what makes a bad blow job, not seeing what he likes.

So nugget number one: ASK.  Always. If she likes it rough, so be it, but the only way to not ride the line of raping and murdering your lover is to communicate with her so that you understand the nuance and difference between “it hurts so good” and “you just mauled the woman you love to death.”

Farmer 2: Yeah, rough sex requires a high level of trust because usually the man is physically more powerful than you… and then suddenly you are like, oh shit.

Farmer 1: It depends on the woman and how long you have been dating her.

Farmer 2: It turns from fun to scary pretty quick.  And you can’t always communicate that in the moment.

Farmer 4: Just ask, even if you are in the middle of it.

Aha.  Yes, communication and rules can be set up before the act so that freedom reigns.  For more read “When Is Rough Too Rough?.”   On setting safe rules for rough play in the bedroom read “Doing It Rough, Safe,” or “He Ignores My Safe Word.”

I once had a friend who was annoyed about catering to women, “What am I supposed to do,” he asked, “treat every woman I sleep with like she is the survivor of rape and incest?”  The answer: Yes.  How do you treat a survivor?  With respect, listening to her cues.  That shouldn’t be so hard.  Every woman you sleep with is a potential survivor of abuse.  Does that mean she wants to be cuddled and coddled?  Maybe.  And maybe not.

One man I knew in college was so sensitive that he treated his girlfriend with extreme care. Years later she took me aside and complained, angrily, about how he was so tender all the time, that he wouldn’t listen to her actual wants and needs.  She liked it rough and he liked treating her like a fragile delicate flower.

Farmer 1: An ideal lover is someone capable of both being able to communicate and ask, while still being masculine, being a leader.

Farmer 3: I am really turned on when a man takes control.

Farmer 4: Take charge can mean, “does this feel good?”  It can be as simple as taking charge through questions.

We concurred that a good lover is like a good dance partner.  He takes charge, but it is a symbiotic relationship.  Ie, for him to take charge, you have to give the reigns.  It is mythical power, a structure in place for the sake of leading towards a goal.

Farmer Yenta: They are leading you, but you are still fueling that dance.

Farmer 1: It is about creating a safe space for expression.

A few other things that came up: a real loathing of obligatory sexual exchange.  Ie, when a man gives to receive.  Penises are charged with meaning for women everywhere, and depending on the nature of the sexual exchange, to want to service that body part needs to come about organically.  If there is any sense of force or obligation, a woman often begrudgingly and sadly delivers.

Farmer 1: Give because you want to give, never expect anything in return.  If you go down, do it because you love it, not because you want more of it.  Giving to receive ends in resentment.

Farmer 3: Yeah, just don’t give at all if you don’t enjoy it.

And a word on expression.  The craigslist article reads: “It’s OK for you to make noise. Otherwise, we feel like we are f*#$ing a ninja.”

Farmer 4: I looooove when men make noise.

Farmer 3: It’s men’s excitement that drives to much of it.  Their passion for you – that has to come out.  If they are excited to rip my clothes off, then I get turned on.

Top farmer sex read:  The Guide To Getting It On! by Paul Joannides

Finally, our favorite nugget from this “book” you read online:

“Ohmyf*#!ingg-d, please learn to respect the clit. It’s different for every woman, so ask what she likes. Do not, I repeat, do not just wiggle your fingers around her pussy like you’re trying to tickle her. Do not drum your fingertips against her vulva like you are impatiently waiting at the Sears Tire Center for your receipt. Do not push the clit like it is a doorbell at some house that you need to get inside of. Start by using all four fingers with firm yet gentle pressure against the outside of her pussy. Do not charge in with a single finger and start jabbing at things. And if you really don’t know what to do, ask her. Just ask. “How do you like it?”. It’s a simple question, and most women will answer straight out. If she’s being all coy, ask “Do you like pressure? Is it sensitive?” The clitoris is a varied item, indeed. Treat each one as though you have never encountered one before. Forget everything that your last partner liked.”


Ask Yenta!  E-mail a question to merissag[at]gmail[dot]com directly, or using to ask anonymously.

Merissa Nathan Gerson is a fan of
Ask Your Yenta

Should I Tell Him I Have HPV?

In Dating, Health and Body, Sex on April 29, 2010 at 9:56 pm

Dear Yenta,

I went to get my PAP and check on my sexual health status.  I was told the doctor would screen for HPV but that at my age (late 30’s) it was to act as a screening for cervical cancer. I was told it might appear only later to disappear and that in my age bracket it wasn’t really anything to be concerned with, just that I would have to come back next year rather than in two years (I guess they only do an every other year exam now).  I went and did my AIDS test, and had abstained for a 8 weeks to make sure I was “all clear” when they did the exam.  I began a new relationship soon after, and felt great to report that I was healthy. A few weeks into the relationship my results came in saying my HPV test was positive, but not to be alarmed. The meds that are available are for twenty somethings…so I was not prescribed anything.  Now the problem is when I started to research HPV I found that I may have passed on to my lover – because one only needs to have CONTACT even with a condom on.

There was also mention that he could already be carrying it and not know as men can’t really be diagnosed with it. Of course fear struck that I might have passed along unwittingly….and reading more about it is anxiety laden.  Why didn’t my doctor tell me it was transmitable?  Does it matter? Do I tell him what’s up, wait for the results of next year? I know honesty is essential but will it matter if he knows? I feel like it’s my business and that since he wouldn’t know if he was a already a carrier or is one now, and it doesn’t effect his health than why bring it up?

Hoping To Soon Be HPV Free

Don't leave your man in the dark. He has a right to know what's happening down under. Photo courtesy of Victor Jeffreys II,


Oye.  I am so sorry for your troubles.  First off, yes, your doctor should have told you more about how contagious HPV really is.  Second, as much as I hate this fact, sexual health and education are also an individual’s responsibility.  When diagnosed with a disease, especially one down below, it is always good to research the wazoo out of it, just to be sure you protect yourself and others.

For information on your STD, click here.  For STD testing, click here.

That being said, I also understand shutting down when the internet spouts terrifying data and statistics.  What this all boils down to is the fact that you are at present a sexually active adult with a “lover.”  This means that this “lover” may take other lovers, and, unwittingly, spread HPV like wildfire.  While yes, our own health is our own business, when we bed another we are inviting them into our physical storm.

Ie, by sleeping with this man you exposed your health to his health and mixed accordingly.  Now your HPV is his potential HPV and his potential HPV is your HPV, etc., etc.  Even if you don’t transmit a disease every time you fornicate, you are ALWAYS taking that risk, condom or no condom.  Diseases are mean and they jump ship fast.

The way I look at it:  if you are mature enough to have sexual intercourse, then you are also mature enough to have a conversation about the realities laced therein.  Talk to your lover and ask him about his history, now is a good time as any, and tell him about your HPV.  At the very least, you are preventing the proliferation of a mean little disease.  At best, you are owning your body, your actions, and your sexual relationship and rising to the occasion like a proper fierce woman.

Click here for tips on telling your partner about your STD and/or  clickhere.

Merissa Nathan Gerson is a fan of
Ask Your Yenta