Vaginas are confusing, we know

Men see their lovers’ vaginas in a way women don’t, which is front on, from behind, from the side, with tastes and smells that few heterosexual women ever enjoy. Women experience their vaginas primarily by touch, a lot of imagination, and a top-down approach.

The vagina is largely invisible to the person who owns it. There are so many bits of wet or dry, wrinkly skin, it’s amazing anyone ever figures it out. 

Lots of women don’t know much at all about their vaginas, so next time you find yourself perplexed, you can consider yourself in good company.

As we go through life, there are many vulvovaginal or reproductive issues that women and people with vaginas will face.

Often, a partner will be there, going through these issues with her. These problems can range from annoying infections to devastating diseases. Life is not always kind.

Having a bit more information on these issues as a partner can be extremely useful, since there is so much tied up in our pelvis besides our reproductive system.

This section is for men who have sex with women or people with biological vaginas. 

Welcome! Don’t forget, if you have any questions, Aunt Vadge knows everything and she’d love to help.

FOR DADS

Anatomy

Know your anatomy

There are so many jokes about clueless guys not being able to find the clitoris, but it’s not that funny when it’s you who can’t find it, or worse, thinks you’ve found it, and it’s not it. 

Knowing your anatomy starts with naming body parts and understanding how each one functions and how it relates to the other parts. The inner labia, for example, is highly vascular and extremely sensitive, whereas the outer labia are just not cut from the same cloth at all. 

Knowing where everything is is your first job.

The best teacher of a body you have is your lover, so if you’re not sure, stop and ask for lessons. Each woman is a bit different, since her pelvic nerve bundles are packed in there somewhat higgildy piggildy compared to men’s pelvic nerve bundles, which means what feels divine to Kiara will be different to what feels divine to Rebecca.

The pelvic nerve bundles are one of the reasons why each woman is genuinely built differently to another when it comes to what gets them off. 

The pelvic nerve bundles

Think of an orderly row of street lights standing to attention down your spine and into your pelvis. Those are your pelvic nerve bundles. Now think of a tangle of 100 fairy lights thrown into her pelvis. That’s what her pelvic nerve bundles look like. It’s now your job to find the access points, the sweet spots, to the bundle – from the outside.

Like a challenge? Good. You’ve got one. She might have no idea where these sweet spots are, so you may have a choose-your-own adventure on your hands.

The arrangement of these nerve bundles is why every woman can be so different in terms of what she likes and doesn’t like in terms of touch and sex, and why generally speaking men’s sweet spots are pretty predictable. Some women orgasm intensely from anal sex, while others just have no idea what the big deal is, despite a good effort – thank you nerve bundles.

These nervous arrangements are also why finding the magic set of areas on her body that she may not even know about is so important for her to be satisfied sexually. If you manage to find them, then you have to learn how to touch them, but that’s another story. (We suggest OMGYES for you both for this undertaking.)

You may not know, but the clitoris is more like the Starship Enterprise than a cute little button. It has legs and arms that get erect, just like your penis does, but inside her body. Your job is to give her a ‘lady boner’, or sex won’t work, just like with you.

If you are paying attention, you will see that a turned-on woman’s vagina and vulva are quite different to when she is not turned on or not turned on enough.

Vag basics

The vagina and vulva are integral parts of female anatomy, each with unique structures and functions. From sexual pleasure to childbirth, this guide demystifies their roles and explains the difference between the two, complete with engaging diagrams to enhance understanding. Discover the complexities of these body parts, their contribution to sexual health, and the importance of knowing the correct terminology.

Understanding female anatomy

This comprehensive guide to female anatomy is designed to educate both learners and parents. It covers key anatomical areas such as the labia, clitoris, vagina, and more, providing the latest in anatomy news and insights. Whether you're starting your anatomical journey or looking to deepen your understanding, this guide offers valuable information on the complexities of female anatomy.

What does it feel like for a girl? A flesh comparison

This article delves into the scientific concept of homologues, explaining how male and female genitals share similar tissues, such as the labia majora being akin to the scrotum, and the clitoris to the penis. It highlights the shared base cells from which human reproductive systems are developed, offering insights into the physical connections and understanding between partners.

The vulva and vagina through ages and changes

From birth through to old age, the female body experiences significant transformations, particularly in the vulva and vagina. This article delves into the developmental stages, from the effects of hormones in the womb, through puberty, pregnancy, and into menopause, highlighting the natural changes and challenges faced at each stage. Understanding these changes is crucial for health, sexual well-being, and embracing the body's evolution over a lifetime.

Sex

Having better sex is everyone’s problem to solve, and while having a real-life lover who teaches you everything you need to know is ideal, it doesn’t always work like that.

Here are some basics to get you started:

Pain and bleeding after fingering – is it normal?

While fingering should not cause pain or bleeding, it can occur, especially with inexperience or lack of arousal. Understanding the importance of lubrication, gentle touch, and communication is key to preventing damage and enhancing pleasure. This article explores the reasons behind discomfort and offers advice on how to ensure a pain-free experience, emphasizing the significance of teaching and learning in sexual encounters.

How to perform cunnilingus on a woman

This detailed guide explores the art of cunnilingus, offering insights on preparation, communication, and techniques to enhance pleasure. From understanding female anatomy to mastering the perfect tongue movements, learn how to navigate the complexities of oral pleasure. Discover the importance of cleanliness, the power of anticipation, and the significance of feedback in creating an unforgettable experience. Whether you're a beginner or looking to refine your skills, this guide provides the tools to become an adept lover.

Fingering basics for men

Fingering, when done right, can be a source of immense pleasure for both partners. This guide delves into the anatomy of pleasure, the importance of communication and consent, and offers practical tips and techniques to become a skilled lover. From understanding the clitoris and labia to mastering the gentle art of touch, this article is your roadmap to becoming a sought-after lover, ensuring a pleasurable and respectful sexual experience.

Sleep sexing – understanding sexsomnia

Sexsomnia is a rare sleep disorder characterised by the unconscious engagement in sexual activities ranging from moaning to full intercourse, with no memory of the actions upon waking. This condition, a type of parasomnia, affects an estimated one in ten people and can lead to aggressive sexual behaviour, legal issues, and embarrassment. Understanding the underlying sleep disorders and treating them is crucial for managing sexsomnia, which occurs during stage 3 NREM sleep when the prefrontal cortex is inactive.

A healthy sexual response

The human sexual response encompasses four distinct phases: desire, excitement, orgasm, and resolution. This journey, which can be experienced alone or with a partner, begins with a spark of desire, escalates through heightened arousal, peaks at orgasm, and concludes with a calming resolution. Each phase contributes to a comprehensive sexual experience, highlighting the complexity and richness of human sexuality.

How to get better at talking about what you like sexually

Effective communication is crucial for a fulfilling sex life. This article guides you on how to express what you like and dislike in bed through clear communication, offering specific phrases to use. It emphasizes the importance of being open, kind, and attentive to your partner's cues for a better sexual relationship.

Understanding period sex

Having sex during menstruation doesn't have to be messy or taboo. This article delves into practical tips for engaging in period sex, addressing common concerns and debunking myths. From using dark-coloured towels to discussing the best time for intimacy and the importance of communication, it covers everything you need to know to navigate period sex with confidence and comfort.

How can I tell if they want to have sex with me?

Navigating the complexities of sexual consent can be challenging, especially for the inexperienced. This article delves into the nuances of saying yes, no, or maybe, emphasizing the importance of clear communication and mutual respect in sexual relationships. It highlights the significance of consent, offering guidance on how to express and respect sexual boundaries, ensuring a positive and respectful experience for both partners.

Infections

Vaginal (and penile) infections you should know about

Men can and do catch and pass on the bacteria from the women they have sex with, since vaginas are full of bacteria. Usually it’s friendly, but it can very easily not be.

Men can catch:

  • Your regular, run-of-the-mill sexually transmitted infections (chlamydia, gonorrhoea, herpes, etc.)
  • The bacteria that cause women to have fishy-smelling vaginas (bacterial vaginosis), but men get no symptoms usually
  • Yeast infections

Men with foreskins collect more bacteria and pass on more bacteria to female partners, particularly bacteria that form biofilms. These biofilms can develop in the urethra an around the head of the penis, being conveniently deposited into vagina after vagina. You may get a clear STI screening, but this does not mean you haven’t left a trail of bad vag behind you.

If you have a history of women with smelly vaginas or vaginal problems, including urinary tract infections, consider reading Killing BV: Guide for Men. If a lover has bad smells, you need to tell them, so they can go and get tested, and you can both be treated if necessary.

Don’t ever put your penis into a vagina that smells bad without a condom. It’s got bad germs, and you can catch them.

BV penis treatment for men

Men may carry bacterial vaginosis-related bacteria on their penis and urethra, potentially spreading it. Traditional antibiotics often fail, but the 'Killing BV: Penis Treatment Guide' offers a comprehensive treatment program with support, addressing the need for an effective solution.

HPV vaccine – Gardasil and Cervarix – for men and women

HPV vaccines, including Gardasil and Cervarix, offer protection against the human papillomavirus, reducing the risk of genital warts and various cancers. With different types available, they stimulate the immune system to fight future infections. The article discusses vaccine types, how they work, who should be vaccinated, and addresses safety concerns and adverse effects, providing a comprehensive overview for informed decision-making.

How to treat a male sexual partner for BV

Bacterial vaginosis (BV) isn't just a concern for women; men can carry and spread BV bacteria too. Treating a male sexual partner for BV involves understanding the role of biofilms and employing effective strategies beyond antibiotics. Our comprehensive guide offers insights into preventing the spread of BV through condom use and tackling biofilms directly with specialized treatments.

Study: men carry BV-associated bacteria on and in their penises

A 2016 study delves into the transmission of bacterial vaginosis (BV)-associated bacteria between heterosexual partners, highlighting the significant role of male genital microbiota and the impact of circumcision on these microbial communities. This research underscores the interconnectedness of sexual partners’ microbiomes and sheds light on potential pathways for BV transmission and prevention. LOGIN This is exclusive content for members only! For access to all this and more, you need Killing BV System: Penis Treatment Guide and Membership. See you back here soon!

Study: do circumcised penises mean less vaginal infections? (spoiler alert – yes)

A 2009 study examining the impact of male circumcision on female vaginal health has found that circumcised men may offer their partners reduced risks of certain vaginal infections, including bacterial vaginosis (BV) and trichomonas. The research highlights the potential role of the foreskin in harboring bacteria that could negatively affect a female partner's vaginal health, suggesting that circumcision could provide an added layer of protection against the spread of pathogens.

Pubic lice (crabs, pediculosis)

Pubic lice, also known as crabs, are wingless insects that infest pubic hair and cause severe itching. Spread mainly through sexual contact, these pests can also infest eyelashes, chest, and facial hair. Diagnosis involves ultraviolet light or microscopic examination, and treatments range from shampoos and creams to natural remedies like essential oils. It's crucial to also treat clothing and bedding to prevent re-infestation.

How and why BV is sexually transmitted

Emerging evidence suggests that BV-causing bacteria, primarily Gardnerella vaginalis, can be sexually transmitted, though it's not exclusive to sexual contact. Unlike traditional STIs, BV can affect anyone, regardless of sexual history, due to its reliance on individual immunity and microbial balance. This article explores the complex nature of BV transmission, including how it can be passed between partners and why certain individuals are more susceptible, shedding light on the importance of education and understanding in managing BV.

Study: post-BV-treatment sex life and contraceptives use matters

A study reveals the impact of sexual activities and hormonal contraceptive use on the recurrence of bacterial vaginosis (BV) post-treatment. Findings suggest that consistent partner, condom use, and the type of contraceptive can significantly affect recurrence rates, with oestrogen-containing contraceptives offering a protective effect.

Birth Control and Contraception

Reasons to think harder about contraception:

  • Be in charge of your first-born (or second, third or fifth)
  • Don’t spread bad vag around
  • Don’t catch an STI

We’ve written up an important post about how men can start being more in charge of no babies. If you are enjoying many lovers, you need to be careful where your sperm ends up. Don’t leave it to chance or up to someone you don’t really know.

Latex-free condoms

Latex-free condoms provide a variety of options for those with allergies or looking for alternatives, including brands like Lifestyles Skyn, Durex, and Trojan. These condoms, made from materials like polyisoprene and polyurethane, offer features such as extra lubrication, unique shapes, and thin designs. Female condoms, also generally latex-free, present another option for safer sex.

Choosing the best birth control for you

Choosing the right birth control involves understanding the impact on your body and lifestyle. From STI prevention to hormonal and non-hormonal methods, this guide helps you navigate the options to find what works best for you, emphasizing the importance of being in tune with your body's needs and the potential side effects of hormonal contraceptives.

What’s new in abortion rights around the world for 2018

2018 brings significant updates in abortion rights worldwide, with Ireland moving towards legalisation and the UK reconsidering criminal sanctions. However, challenges persist in the US and the Netherlands, highlighting the ongoing struggle for accessible abortion services.

Poland: free electronic prescriptions for emergency contraceptives from WoW

In response to Poland's 2017 decision to limit access to emergency contraception by requiring a doctor's prescription, Women on Web is now providing free prescriptions from a European doctor to ensure women's access to the morning after pill. This initiative supports women's rights and health by facilitating access to emergency contraception across Europe despite local restrictions.

How men can help take responsibility for no babies

This comprehensive guide delves into how men can actively participate in preventing unwanted pregnancies by understanding female ovulation cycles, the effectiveness and limitations of various birth control methods, and the significance of male contraception options. It emphasizes the importance of mutual responsibility in sexual health and fertility, debunking myths around birth control and highlighting the crucial role of communication and education in navigating reproductive choices.

How to catch an STI (the complete guide)

This article takes a satirical approach to understanding how STDs are transmitted, highlighting the importance of choosing sexual partners wisely, the role of location in infection rates, and the critical need for protection and regular STD checks. It serves as a stark reminder of the risks of unprotected sex and the importance of sexual health education.

Skins: condoms made from sheep intestine

Sheep intestine condoms, known for their natural feel akin to real skin, have gained popularity for those seeking a hormone-free birth control option. While they offer unparalleled sensitivity and are biodegradable, it's crucial to note that they do not protect against STIs. These condoms, a throwback to ancient practices, are now easily accessible online, offering a unique experience for both men and women, despite their higher cost and specific maintenance requirements.

Using the regular pill as emergency contraception

In situations of unprotected sex, the oral contraceptive pill can serve as an emergency contraceptive, similar to morning-after pills. A comprehensive list from Princeton University details the effectiveness of various brands when used within 120 hours post-intercourse. This guide covers the dosage and timing for both dedicated and regular oral contraceptives, offering a crucial option for emergency pregnancy prevention.

Understanding Hormones

Know thine enemy and become friends – hormones

Women’s hormones go in a predictable cycle of – if we take vaginal fluids as our cue – bleeding, dry, bit moister, silky smooth egg-white ovulatory phase, bit moist, wetter, bleeding again. The lowest ebb of her cycle is the bleeding and dry bit at the end of her period. The most fun part is while she is ovulating. That is, in a woman who is not on any hormonal birth control and has regular monthly cycles.

We don’t live in a perfect world – many women have irregular cycles, underlying medical concerns, and even more are on a form of hormonal birth control that dulls out everything cyclic. If you don’t live in the perfect world of a healthy menstrual cycle, it would pay to educate yourself on how your lover’s cycle may differ from the norm, which will help you to understand what to expect from her.

Hormones do not exist in a reproductive vacuum – they affect every single part of who we are and how we do things, just like men. If you take testosterone away from a man’s body, he’ll get fat and depressed. This applies, albeit differently, to women’s bodies – women need oestrogen and progesterone for their bodies and minds to work optimally.

Progesterone, for example, is a hefty natural anti-anxiety, but you have to ovulate (e.g. not be on hormonal birth control) for progesterone to be released.

The reason progesterone is only for two weeks of every month is because it’s what holds a fertilised egg in the side of the uterus when a woman gets pregnant, until the little foetus can start its own food supply chain. It is also the base hormone from which adrenaline and cortisol are made.

That’s just an example. Your lover(s) may or may not have much idea about their own hormones, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take an interest. It’s pretty interesting stuff!

Acne and PCOS

Women with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) often face acne due to hormonal imbalances, particularly high levels of androgens and low progesterone. This article delves into the causes of acne in PCOS, including the role of insulin resistance and offers dietary tips to manage these breakouts effectively.

How diet impacts oestrogen levels

Dietary choices significantly influence oestrogen levels, impacting risks for conditions like endometriosis. High intake of saturated fats and low fibre are linked to increased oestrogen, while diets rich in green vegetables, fresh fruits, and low in animal fats can help maintain healthier levels. This article delves into how foods affect oestrogen metabolism and offers practical advice for dietary adjustments to manage oestrogen levels effectively.

Hormones and the menstrual cycle

The menstrual cycle is a series of predictable hormonal fluctuations beyond just reproduction. This guide simplifies the cycle from hormones like oestrogen and progesterone to key events like menstruation and ovulation, offering insights into the changes your body goes through from puberty to menopause. Understand the signs of ovulation and the impact of your cycle on mood, physical health, and sexual well-being.

Laser hair removal for hirsutism

Laser hair removal presents a viable solution for individuals grappling with hirsutism, particularly those affected by PCOS. This method targets hair follicles without damaging the skin, requiring several sessions over a period to achieve lasting results. It's generally painless and suitable for a wide range of skin and hair types, although effectiveness varies based on these factors.

How to moisten a dry vagina

A dry vagina can be a source of discomfort and interfere with sexual activity. This article explores various solutions, including the use of lubricants during sex, daily vaginal moisturisers, and hormonal treatments like vaginal oestrogen creams and hyaluronic acid serum, to help maintain vaginal health and comfort. It provides practical advice on choosing the right products to avoid irritation and enhance your sexual experience.

What causes PCOS?

The cause of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is complex, involving factors like insulin resistance, weight, diet, lifestyle, and genetics. Understanding these can help in managing the condition more effectively, despite the medical community not having a definitive answer on the exact cause. This article delves into how insulin resistance affects the body, the impact of weight, and the role of genetics in PCOS, offering insights into managing the condition through lifestyle adjustments.

What is relative oestrogen deficiency?

Relative oestrogen deficiency is a hormonal imbalance where oestrogen levels are low compared to other hormones, leading to symptoms like irregular periods, vaginal dryness, and infertility. This condition can be influenced by diet, exercise, body weight, and other factors. Understanding its causes and management is crucial for those affected.

What are polycystic ovaries?

Polycystic ovaries are characterized by the presence of multiple cyst-like follicles on the ovaries, often associated with PCOS, affecting fertility and hormonal balance. While having some follicles is normal, more than 12 per ovary indicates a condition that can lead to symptoms like acne, irregular periods, and insulin resistance. Understanding this condition is crucial for women experiencing related symptoms.

Ask Aunt Vadge

Aunt Vadge: did I lose my virginity or is this my period? Or both?

A young woman reaches out to Aunt Vadge with concerns about bleeding following a minimal sexual encounter, questioning if it was her period or if she lost her virginity. Aunt Vadge addresses the complexities surrounding the concept of virginity and reassures her that the bleeding is most likely her period, highlighting that virginity is a nuanced and not strictly physical state.

Aunt Vadge: clitoral hood tears returning

Clitoral hood tears, often resulting from masturbation, are a delicate issue many women face. This article provides comforting advice and practical steps for healing and prevention, emphasizing the normalcy of such occurrences and the body's ability to heal. It reassures readers that with gentle care, patience, and perhaps slight adjustments in practices, these tears can heal without the need for medical intervention.

Aunt Vadge: sex mishap has split my vulva

A significant vulvar tear during sexual activity can be alarming. While vulvar tissue typically heals quickly and without scarring, a tear as large as an inch necessitates proper care. This article explores when it's critical to seek medical intervention, how to prevent infection, and the importance of proper wound care to ensure healing without disfigurement.

Aunt Vadge: I masturbated today and there was blood on my fingers – why?

Concerned about unexpected bleeding after masturbation? You're not alone. While it can be alarming, there are several benign reasons why this might happen, especially post-period. Whether it's residual menstrual blood, cervical changes, or simple friction, understanding the cause can ease your worries. However, if the issue persists, it's crucial to consult with a healthcare professional. Dive into our detailed exploration to shed light on this common concern and learn when it's time to seek medical advice. Stay informed and take charge of your reproductive health with confidence.

Aunt Vadge: I’m breastfeeding and my BV won’t go away

A 24-year-old mother from Texas shares her battle with recurrent BV since giving birth, exploring the impact of breastfeeding, hormone fluctuations, and the efficacy of boric acid and probiotics. Aunt Vadge offers comprehensive advice on distinguishing between BV and AV, the role of oestrogen in vaginal health, and a two-week treatment plan that includes vaginal probiotics and dietary changes to support lactobacilli growth and manage symptoms.

Aunt Vadge: my new girlfriend has major pain when I touch her vaginal entrance. Why?

Aunt Vadge advises on the common issue of vaginal pain in new relationships, emphasizing the importance of patience, understanding, and focusing on non-penetrative forms of pleasure. The response highlights the need for gentle exploration and the crucial role of communication and trust in overcoming discomfort, suggesting that the issue often lies not in the physical act but in the mental and emotional readiness of the partner.

Aunt Vadge: I hate the look of my labia

A woman is concerned that her vulva looks like 'roast beef', and she has vaginal odour. Aunt Vadge comes to the rescue.

Aunt Vadge: I tore my clitoral hood by mistake

A 13-year-old reader shares her distress after accidentally tearing her clitoral hood, seeking advice from Aunt Vadge. The response provides reassurance, healing tips, and guidance on when to seek further help, highlighting the importance of care and communication in such situations.

Aunt Vadge: long cuts or lines in vaginal creases – is it an STD or yeast infection?

Vaginal cuts or lines in the creases may not always signal an STD but could indicate a yeast infection. These infections are manageable with home remedies but require attention to prevent recurrence. Aunt Vadge advises on distinguishing between conditions and suggests simple, effective treatments.

Aunt Vadge: lots of yellow discharge – is it yeast?

Yellow discharge is often not associated with yeast infections, which are typically marked by white, clumpy discharge and itching. However, yellow discharge isn't normal and could indicate other health issues, such as a bacterial imbalance or a sexually transmitted infection. Seeking medical advice for proper diagnosis and treatment is crucial.

Aunt Vadge: small, red, tender lump near clitoris

A small, red, tender lump near the clitoris can be concerning, but it's often a simple pimple or ingrown hair. Aunt Vadge explains how to identify and treat these common issues safely at home, ensuring hygiene to prevent infection. There's no need for panic; with proper care, the discomfort and the lump itself will typically resolve.

Aunt Vadge: we had sex, but now my boyfriend has a red, itchy, sore penis – was it my thrush?

A reader expresses concern after her partner develops a sore, itchy rash following unprotected sex, suspecting her recent thrush infection might be the cause. Aunt Vadge explains how yeast infections can indeed be passed between partners, especially in susceptible individuals, and offers advice on treatment and prevention, including the use of anti-fungal ointments and dietary changes.