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Sex Toys Online

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Sex

July 1st, 2010

Sex: Fact and Fiction

What’s the average penis size? How fast is premature ejaculation? Exactly where is the G-spot? Grab a ruler and a stopwatch as the experts sort sex myths from the facts.

By Rob Baedeker
WebMD Feature
Reviewed by Louise Chang. MD

If there were a roll call for the founding fathers of sex myths for men, a couple of no-brainers would surely make the list: porn legend John Holmes, whose yule-log-size penis still casts a shadow over anxiety-prone males. Ditto NBA-great Wilt Chamberlain, whose claim of having slept with 20,000 women makes Don Juan look monastic.

And then there’s purveyor-of-sex-myths Walt Disney.

“I think Walt Disney creates a lot of mythology,” says Seth Prosterman, PhD, a clinical sexologist and licensed marriage and family therapist practicing in San Francisco. “In Disney movies, people fall in love and walk into the sunset, and you get this myth that intimacy is a given once you fall in love, and sexuality is natural and follows that.”

In reality, says Prosterman, “Sex is something that we learn throughout a lifetime.”

If sexuality is a continuing education, a lot of us are scrambling to make up course credits. And in a realm that’s clouded by ego, myth and advertising that preys on anxieties, getting the facts about sex can be difficult. What is the average size of the male penis? How long do most men last during intercourse? Can men have multiple orgasms? Does the G-spot exist, and if so, how do I find it?

(Need to talk to the guys about something? Check out the Men’s Health: Man-to-Man message board for straight talk.)

Penis Size: The Hard Facts

“Drastically enlarge the penis length and width to sizes previously thought impossible!” reads a website for the Penis Enlargement Patch. (One envisions a lab-coated mad scientist pouring chemicals on his own penis, then shouting “Eureka!” and phoning the Guinness Book.) Almost anyone with an email account has been deluged by spam for such miracle-growth patches and pills, and the endurance of sex myths may explain the pervasiveness of such ads.

“We equate masculinity and power with penis size,” says Ira Sharlip, MD, clinical professor of urology at the University of California at San Francisco and president of the International Society for Sexual Medicine. “Of course, there’s really no relationship.” Still, Sharlip says, “all” of his patients want to increase their penis size.

The idea that bigger is better is “not just total mythology,” says Seth Prosterman, who has counseled couples since 1984 and notes that some of the women he’s worked with do prefer a bigger penis — aesthetically or “fit-wise.” But, he adds, “For the vast majority of partners, penis size doesn’t matter.”

So what, exactly, constitutes a big penis? Let’s whip out some data:

The average penis size is between five and six inches. That’s for an erect penis.
The flaccid male organ averages around three and a half inches.

Sex Fact: We Are Not Our Penises

If you had an anxiety hiccup before you read the “erect” qualifier, consider it a metaphor for the danger of jumping to conclusions about penis size — or about the primacy of the penis altogether.

“The idea that the penis is the most important part of your body underlies so many of men’s sexual problems,” says Cory Silverberg, a sexual health educator and founding member of Come As You Are, an education-based sex store in Toronto. “One of the biggest sex myths for men is the notion that we are our penises, and that’s all that counts in terms of sex.”

“It’s a myth that using the penis is the main way to pleasure a woman,” says Ian Kerner, PhD, a sex and relationships counselor in New York City whose book She Comes First offers a guide to “female orgasms and producing them through inspired oral techniques.” In his book, Kerner cites a study that reports women reaching orgasm about 25% of the time with intercourse, compared with 81% of the time during oral sex.

OK, OK, Size Isn’t Important. But How Can I Increase My Penis Size?

Despite the facts, the din of penis-enlargement marketing only seems to grow louder. (“Realize total and absolute power and domination in bed with your partner, with your new-found penis size and sexual performance” screams the ad for the Penis Enlargement Patch.) Men keep chasing after the mythical, mammoth-sized member.

Silverberg says male clients at his store, and in his counseling work, constantly ask him about penis pumps, whose powers of elongation, he says, are a “myth,” although he adds that some men who’ve used them report satisfaction, a phenomenon he explains this way: “I think spending more time paying attention to our genitals will probably increase our sexual health.”

Just the Facts on the G-Spot

If sex myths have such power over men’s thinking about their own anatomy, they have even more sway when it comes to female partners’ bodies — especially the much-debated G-spot.

Named after a German doctor, Ernst Gräfenberg, who first wrote about an erogenous zone in the anterior vaginal wall, the G-spot was popularized by a 1982 book called … The G-spot. This region behind the pubic bone is often credited as the trigger for a vaginal (vs. clitoral) orgasm, and even a catalyst for female ejaculation.

At the same time, the G-spot is commonly derided as perpetuating the myth ensconced by Sigmund Freud — namely, that the clitoral orgasm is a “lesser” form of climax than the vaginal orgasm, which requires penile penetration. As Ian Kerner summarizes, “In Freud’s view, there were no two ways about it: If a woman couldn’t be satisfied by penetrative sex, something must be wrong with her.”

The G-spot’s existence is still debated, and whether it’s fact or fiction depends on whom you ask.

“The G-spot exists,” says Seth Prosterman. “It’s a source of powerful orgasm for a percentage of women.”

“I don’t think the G-spot exists,” says Ira Sharlip. “As urologists, we operate in that area [where the G-spot should be] and there just isn’t anything there — there’s no anatomical structure that’s there.”

Prosterman and others point out the importance of thinking of the G-spot in context — that it may be an extension of the clitoral anatomy, which extends back into the vaginal canal. Kerner writes that the G-spot may be “nothing more than the roots of the clitoris crisscrossing the urethral sponge.”

Helen O’Connell, MD, head of the neurourology and continence unit at the Royal Melbourne Hospital Department of Urology in Australia, says, “The G-spot has a lot in common with Freud’s idea of vaginal orgasms. It is a sexual concept, this time anatomical, that results in confusion and has resulted in the misconception that female sexuality is extremely complex.”

In the end, whether this debated locus of pleasure is fact or fiction may not matter that much. O’Connell, who is also co-author of a 2005 Journal of Urology study on the anatomy of the clitoris, says that focusing on the G-spot to the exclusion of the rest of a woman’s body is “a bit like stimulating a guy’s testicles without touching the penis and expecting an orgasm to occur just because love is present.” She says focusing on the inside of the vagina to the exclusion of the clitoris is “unlikely to bring about orgasm. It is best to think of the clitoris, urethra, and vagina as one unit because they are intimately related.”

How Long, Part 2: How Premature Is Premature Ejaculation?

The possibilities for exploring a woman’s erogenous zones may be tremendously exciting — which leads to another source of sex myth and male anxiety: How long can I last? And how long should I be able to last?

Premature ejaculation is “the most common form of sexual dysfunction in younger men” according to Ira Sharlip, and its prevalence is around 20% to 30% in men of all ages.

The medical method of determining premature ejaculation is called “intravaginal ejaculatory latency time” (IELT), a stopwatch-timed duration measured from the beginning of vaginal penetration until ejaculation occurs. However, Sharlip adds, this quantitative measure doesn’t tell the whole story: “There are men who ejaculate within a minute but say that they don’t have premature ejaculation. And then on other end of spectrum, there are patients who are able to last for 20 minutes, and they say they do have premature ejaculation.”

In other words, the definition of “premature” may be largely in the eye (or mind) of the beholder, and depends on a man’s sexual satisfaction and his perception of his ability to control when ejaculation occurs.

If you just can’t wait for the numbers, though, a 2005 study in the Journal of Sexual Medicine found “a median IELT of 5.4 minutes.”

Ian Kerner says a common cutoff time used to define premature ejaculation is two minutes, but he adds that many of the men he works with “are not guys who can last a few minutes; they’re having orgasms during foreplay, or immediately upon penetrating. They have a hard time lasting past 30 seconds.”

But a quick trigger is normal, says Kerner. “Men were wired to ejaculate quickly — and stressful situations make them ejaculate even more quickly. It’s been important to the human race. If guys took an hour to ejaculate, we’d be a much smaller planet.”

Sex therapists and physicians offer a number of techniques that can help men manage their anxiety and prolong their time to ejaculation. Several drugs — like some antidepressants (used for off-label treatment) and topical sprays — have been shown to extend time to ejaculation.

And, contrary to the common perception that distraction or decreasing stimulation is the answer (slow down, think about baseball), some say that giving in to sensation can help address the issue as well. “The way to learn [to last longer] is by getting used to intense stimulation,” says Prosterman, “to increase the frequency of intercourse, and feel every sensation of being inside your partner and enjoy it.”

Come Again? The Mythical Multiple Orgasm for Men
While multiple male orgasm is possible anywhere two or more men are gathered and talking, actual male multiple orgasm is another story. Unlike the more established phenomenon of female multiple orgasm, men’s claims of successive climaxes can stray into the realm of sex myth. At the very least, male multiple orgasm is difficult to verify and may depend on the definition of orgasm.

Prosterman says that the book The Multi-Orgasmic Man popularized “an Eastern meditative process that involves wrapping the PC [pubococcygeus] muscle around the prostate. There’s a valve on the prostate that switches on and off before urination and ejaculation. The PC muscle stops this valve from opening, allowing an orgasm without ejaculation. The idea is to keep doing that five or six times in a row.

“Out of hundreds of guys I know who’ve tried this,” says Prosterman, “I know only one who’s been able to do it.”

Is this man Mr. Lucky, or just prone to poetic license?

A 1989 study in the Archives of Sexual Behavior recorded the testimony of 21 other men who claimed to be multi-orgasmic, but Ira Sharlip says “that doesn’t happen,” referring to the phenomenon of “multiple orgasms in succession over a short period of time — like minutes.” And there’s no such thing as separating ejaculation and orgasm, he says.

Orgasm or Orgasm-esque?

What may be at issue here is the definition of orgasm — which, according to a 2001 Clinical Psychology Review article, has been strikingly inconsistent. “Many definitions of orgasm “depict orgasm quantitatively as a ‘peak’ state that may not differentiate orgasm adequately from a high state of sexual arousal,” the study’s authors wrote.

In other words, those men who report multiple orgasms may be able to achieve orgasm-esque states before they hit the point of ejaculatory no-return. And many men report that strengthening the PC muscles through Kegel exercises allows them to edge closer to this “point of inevitability” without cresting the mountaintop of ejaculation and descending into the gentle valley of the flaccid and the “refractory” period, where the penis is temporarily unresponsive to sexual stimulation.

This refractory period — commonly 30 minutes or more — is an unfortunate reality. While you’re “waiting,” spending that time caressing, kissing, massaging, and nuzzling isn’t so bad. If you are trying to have a second round because your partner wants it, keep sex toys in mind.

And if that recovery period isn’t super quick, you can still enjoy multiple orgasms — you may just need to cancel your afternoon appointments.

Sex Fact: It’s Not Always about the Numbers

In the end, there seems to be a recurring theme in moving beyond sex myths: Don’t get too hung up on the numbers.

So often the key to sexual satisfaction is not about penis size, stamina records, or a technical isolation of the G-spot. Rather, it’s about understanding yourself and your partner’s desires and recognizing that, unlike those Disney characters, real people aren’t born with a perfect, divinely granted understanding of sex.

As O’Connell remarks on the perils of over-privileging of the G-spot, “It is best for partners to explore the precise areas that turn someone on and how a partner likes to be given pleasure. That applies to both men and women, and the idea that there is any consistent ‘magic spot’ in either sex is just tyrannical.”

Via WebMD

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Call Girl: Tiger Woods “Not Normal” John

July 1st, 2010

We knew Tiger Woods was a horndog. We didn’t know he was a super freak in the sack until now. That is, if we take Loredana Jolie’s word for it. The call-girl, former Playboy bunny, and aspiring author provided intimate and nasty details of Tiger’s unconventional sex life to the New York Post on Thursday. Tiger’s not your average athlete. It turns out he’s not your average sex fiend either.

“Tiger’s sexual fantasies were not normal,” Jolie tells the rag.

The call girl, who also goes by Loredana Ferriolo, worked for notorious Hollywood madam Michelle Braun for several years. In December, Braun told Post rival the Daily News, “One of [Tiger's] favorites was Loredana Jolie.”

“He would engage in sex from 9 p.m. until the sun came up the next morning,” Jolie says. “He wasn’t a healthy guy.”

The call girl claims she was with Tiger for several “sessions” in 2006 and 2007. She is currently shopping a tell-all to publishers.

Madame Michelle Braun backs up Jolie’s claims. “He could go for days,” she told the Daily News. “He’d pay a flat rate for an evening, but an evening would usually be extended. The girls would talk about his stamina.”

Jolie is talking about more than that.

“He likes role-playing,” she says. “He likes to be the guy in control and wearing a suit while there are girls performing girl-on-girl and guys entertaining guys.”

Say what?

Jolie elaborates, “I mean [the guys] would dance for each other like girls would do for a man.”

Madame Braun tells the Post, “The girls would tell me what went on with Tiger and I never heard of any men.”

Braun says Woods would drop $30,000 to $40,000 a weekend on her girls and would pay in cold hard cash.

Via: PopEater

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How To Get Him To Propose

June 23rd, 2010

Waiting For A Marriage Proposal? Advice You Need

Waiting for him to propose marriage? How to deal when you’re waiting to get engaged.

Cathy Torkelson, 34, had a good job as a legal consultant, a loving boyfriend and supportive friends and family. She was a good girlfriend in what appeared to be a solid year-and-a-half-long relationship. Yet, internally, Cathy was anxious, irritable, moody and unable to concentrate. The cause? A persistent question: why hasn’t he proposed?

Torkelson’s questioning became “all-consuming,” and eventually turned a normally independent, rational woman into a nervous wreck.

“I got in a depressive state where all I wanted to do was crawl into a ball and cry,” she explains. Her boyfriend was committed, attentive and she knew he loved her, but because he hadn’t asked her to marry him, she doubted her self-worth. “It made me feel like there had to be something wrong with me.”
Sounds crazy, right? But despite all the gender-role changes over the past decades, men asking women for their hand in marriage is a tradition that has remained strong. And for a woman who wants her man to get down on one knee, waiting for that one little question is stressful and nerve-wracking. But can waiting for a proposal actually drive you crazy?

“It creates feelings of helplessness and passivity, which we know are correlated with episodes of depression,” explains psychiatrist Dr. Renée Bibeault, a specialist in women’s mental health in Kirkland, WA. “Anything that inspires feelings of not being in control of your own life, particularly with something that has enormous impact on you such as marriage, takes an enormous toll emotionally.

Statistics show that 2.2-2.4 million women get married each year, but there are no studies counting how many are waiting to be asked to the altar. With women marrying later in life (the average age is 27 for women; 29 for men), and more couples cohabitating before marriage, it’s no wonder women are having a hard time knowing when—or if—a proposal is imminent.

How Long Should You Wait?
Torkelson thought her engagement was a sure thing. Three or four months into dating, Torkelson’s boyfriend told her she was the woman he wanted to marry. Confident in the relationship, she moved in with him after a year, expecting that he would propose within six months. But each holiday came and went without a ring. Although she believed he was the one, given her age and desire to have children, she couldn’t wait forever. How long should she wait?

The longer the better, according to a study on the correlation between courtship and marriage longevity.
The average time for a couple to date before they get engaged is just over 19 months, according to Dr. Ted Huston, a psychologist at the University of Texas in Austin (and corroborated by a poll on ProjectWedding.com). Over the course of 14 years, he studied the courtship and marriages of 168 couples and identified three patterns of dating: fast and passionate, slow and rocky, and in between. “The more boring and deliberate the courtship, the better the prospects for a long marriage,” Dr. Huston said in an article in the Los Angeles Times.

But that timeline may not work for some women eyeing the clock. Torkelson didn’t want to be almost 40 and trying to conceive. What’s worse is that her boyfriend was seven years her junior. “He didn’t see what the big rush was because he can have babies for the rest of his life.”

“Men under 32 need a lot more time to propose,” says April Beyer, CEO and Founder of the matchmaking firm Beyer & Co, which specializes in getting men ready for—and to—the altar. Earning power tends to be weaker in their 20s, Beyer points out, and men may wait to get engaged until they feel financially secure enough to be the provider for a family.

Nicolette Schumacher, 26, a successful software sales associate in San Francisco, began dating her boyfriend in 2007 and moved in with him in early 2009. She believed her guy had kept from popping the question because he was struggling to give up the single life. Though her boyfriend was 36, “it’s hard to let go of the ‘cool bachelor that lives in the city’ persona,” she said. Not wanting a timeline, he told Schumacher that he’d like to marry her and have children with the ultra-ambiguous “when we’re ready.”

Beyer warns that “if you’ve been dating more than 12 months, and you think you’ve been seeing all the right signs for six months and he hasn’t proposed, your signals might be off.” She advises women to discuss their desire to get married, but this is hardly a revelation. Both Torkelson and Schumacher had done so, as had 76 percent of ProjectWedding’s survey respondents reporting they still did not know when their man would propose. Only 3 percent of respondents had never discussed the topic.

Should You Use An Ultimatum?
So if a woman has broached the subject, but the guy isn’t making any fast moves, is it ever appropriate to give a guy a take-it-or-leave-it? “It is appropriate if the ultimatum is coming from an authentic place,” says Beyer. “Because if you’re not really ready to leave him, it’s going to come across as a threat.”

That’s how Robert (who didn’t want to be identified by his full name) felt. The 40-year-old photographer had been dating his girlfriend for two years when she sprang an ultimatum on him. “She said, ‘I’m going to have kids in the next two years whether it’s with you or not.’”

That conversation marked the beginning of the end for the otherwise-happy Bay Area couple, with Robert feeling like his girlfriend was more interested in being a mom than being with him. “I felt like she was being pushy, and I don’t take well to being told what to do.”

Beyer’s seen similar moves by other women also lead to breakups, when in reality a lot of times, the girlfriends are just looking for validation: “It’s not about the ring—it’s about wanting someone to say ‘you’re the best I have.’” In Robert’s girlfriend’s case, however, it might not have been how she asked; it might just have been her. Robert eventually admitted to me, if not to his ex, that their relationship, ultimately, “wasn’t the right fit.”

Schumacher, meanwhile, has given an ultimatum—to herself. “I’m going to live with him for a year. If, after two years of dating and one year of living together, he still doesn’t know if he wants to marry me, then I’m going to move on. It’s not something I’m threatening him with—it’s my own timeline.”

Beyer cautions women not to move too quickly or make rash decisions because he may just be taking his time to do it right. “I’ve seen girls go nuts to the point of breakup; all the while he’s shopping for a ring or saving up for a ring.”

Proposing To The Guy
The other option, of course, is that the woman can take matters into her own hands.

Larissa Eisenstein, a writer and self-described commitment-phobe, was in an on-again/off-again relationship for 10 years before she finally felt ready to settle down and make an honest man of her boyfriend. “I felt like I scared him off of it,” she said of the subject of marriage, “so I felt that I should be the one to propose the ultimate commitment.”

She discussed her unconventional plans with her friends (one of whom tried to talk her out of it), planned an elaborate proposal, and went shopping for the perfect ring—for him.
But that wasn’t an option for Torkelson, who believed her boyfriend was the type of person who would propose when he felt ready. Plus, she wasn’t even sure he would say yes. Schumacher, meanwhile, considered herself old-fashioned and wasn’t interested in the role-reversal. And of 200 respondents on the ProjectWedding.com survey on courtships, only one woman said she did the proposing herself.

Beyer advises women never to propose to men because “if you want a long-term relationship with a strong partner, you want it to be his idea, too.”

Dr. Bibeault, on the other hand, says that “there’s no reason that a woman couldn’t propose to a man unless each party felt that traditional gender roles were very important to them. But if her goal is only to feel valued and loved, you have to ask if there is another way she can achieve that without a proposal.” That option might be to wait it out.

“Talk to your friends, talk to your mother, talk to everybody but him,” advises Beyer.

Don’t Let the Waiting Game Bring You Down
Of course, anyone experiencing serious symptoms of depression while playing the waiting game should seek medical assistance. “Medications will help even if she isn’t overtly depressed,” Dr. Biebeault says, “because they can address isolated symptoms—such as having trouble sleeping—so she can be better rested and better able to cope.”

Eventually, waiting and talking worked for Torkelson, who got the commitment and validation she was looking for last August—sans medication. But it only happened after her boyfriend’s best friend intervened, making him realize that he was about to lose the woman he wanted to marry if he didn’t step up to the plate. Their upcoming wedding is scheduled for July 2010.

And Larissa Eisenstein’s boyfriend beat her to the punch by asking her to marry him on the same day she was going to propose to him. She’s grateful for one advantage the traditional method offers her: “In the end, even though I felt comfortable asking him, there is a stigma associated with asking a guy, and he took that burden off of me.”

Via: YourTango

www.pleasurebunny.co.uk

What Men Think: 5 Ways Guys Get Over Breakups

June 23rd, 2010

Study shows men struggle to get over breakups more than women. What 5 guys think about breaking up.

While ladies may be more likely to face a tube of cookie dough and wail in their work cubicles after a breakup, new research suggests that a man’s health actually suffers more after a relationship sours. Why? Scientists speculate men aren’t as intimate with their friends as women, and therefore don’t have the support system needed when a relationship tanks.

As published in the June issue of the Journal of Health and Social Behavior, Robin Simon, Professor of Sociology at Wake Forest University in North Carolina, analyzed the emotions of 1000 young men and women after a split and found that men are more reactive when a relationship dwindles. For example, a newly single guy may mask his discomfort watching football with a steely exterior, but beneath the surface he may quell the pain with substance abuse, she says. Meanwhile, women huddle together, cry, overanalyze, cry some more, do some more analyzing, but, at the end of the day, do a better job of dealing with the issue.

Professor Simon also speculates a crumbling relationship dents the male ego and causes men to question their self-worth. Meanwhile, the opposite is true for ladies. Simon says a woman’s self-image is damaged more by being perpetually single than in a relationship that may be less than perfect.

We talked to five choice men to find out what they think about this study and to hear how they cope after breaking up. Here’s what they had to say:

1. It’s not a surprise that dudes are more likely to drown relationship pain in booze. While I disagree with parts of the methodology, sample and suppositions of the study, that fellas are more likely to get hammered when they hurt is evident. I guess that alcohol and drugs help remove whatever emotional inhibition nature or nurture has put in front of us regarding communicating feelings. I know some very tough dudes who manage to squeeze in a good cry periodically when they’re drinking but never let their sober guard down.

- Tom Miller, Tomfoolery blogger, @tomfoolerytm

2. When my girlfriend brought up the idea of breaking up—I was devastated. I was a wreck, so I took action and did all I could—lots of pleading—to convince her that we shouldn’t part ways. Clearly, it worked—now she’s my wife.

- Kevin Osgood, YourTango video producer

3. Dealing with a breakup used to be the usual method: finding a rebound as quickly as possible, to not appear to be upset. Guy friends just don’t want to hear your tales of woe, so you’d better get over it or else they stop wanting to hang out. So, it was all about postponing the actual dealing with it indefinitely, which just makes it messier because you’ve dragged someone else [the rebound] into your jam. That’s a problem I only recognized as I got older and had been someone else’s rebound. My ever-growing base of female friends have ensured a much smoother transition back into the dating pool in recent years. They’re going to ask, you’re going to delve, you might as well get it over with and unburden yourself. Plus, as a writer, it’s easier to unleash my emotions on the world than it may be for the average male.

- Brian Fairbanks, writer/blogger, @BrianFair

4. My immediate reaction to a breakup is anger. I need to vent, generally to my younger brother, who never takes my side. It’s good to have someone tell me to shut up when I’m hurting, but then I morph into silent man mode and can keep hurt bottled up for months.

- Royal Young, freelance writer, @royalyoung

5. I’ve had three really tough breakups. My first real experience with a breakup was in fifth grade. Amy Solomon dumped me at a dance party (Aaron [best friend and co-founder of HowAboutWe.com] and I used to organize them back in the day), and I did a 10-minute wall sit (an exercise that leads to extreme pain in the thighs). All the boys thought it was hilarious and I got lots of props for not getting sappy. Then in 12th grade, the love of my life broke up with me. I remember saying, “I think I might throw up,” and I really felt that way. The last time I got broken up with, I cried some and my girlfriend said, “Oh, you really did love me!” We laughed and pretty soon I felt fine.

- Brian Schechter, co-founder of HowAboutWe, @HowAboutWe

For those of us who’ve wondered if men hurt as much as we do after a split, there we have it.

Tell us, readers, how do you cope after a breakup? And follow us on Twitter while you’re at it!

Via: YourTango

www.pleasurebunny.co.uk

When Your Guy Has Trouble Getting ‘In the Mood’

June 23rd, 2010

The male libido is always in overdrive, right? Wrong — one out of five men actually have a low sex drive.

Men. High sex drive. Panting sexual animals. We know what they want. And we know when they want it: right now.

Even doctors tend to see men as “sexual automatons,” hardwired always to want sex, says pioneering sex researcher Irwin Goldstein, MD, director of sexual medicine at San Diego’s Alvarado Hospital and editor in chief of The Journal of Sexual Medicine. “But that is not the case at all,” Goldstein tells WebMD Magazine. “Many, many men — about one in five –have such low sexual desire they’d rather do almost anything else than have sex.”

One in five men doesn’t want sex? How can that be true? And why haven’t we heard about it? Actually, many women have — the ones hearing the phrase “Not tonight, dear.” Goldstein says most people think that is a rare occurrence. “But in fact, almost 30% of women say they have more interest in sex than their partner has.”

The causes of low sex drive
So what’s behind low sexual desire? Aging plays a role, though many older men have a robust interest in sex, Goldstein points out. Like most other human traits, the sex drive varies. Most men are in the normal range; some are extraordinarily driven toward addiction-like sexual behavior. At the other end of the scale are men with very low sexual interest. These are men who suffer from hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD).

“There are always men on both sides of the normal curve,” Goldstein says. “And a certain percentage — perhaps up to a quarter — will be considered to have HSDD for a whole host of reasons.” These include:

Psychological issues. Stress and anxiety from the strain of daily life, relationship or family problems, depression, and mental disorders are among the many factors that can affect sexual desire.

Medical problems. Diseases such as diabetes; conditions such as obesity, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol; and HIV drugs, some hair-loss remedies, and other medications can negatively affect sexual desire.

Hormonal causes. “Testosterone is the hormone of desire, arguably for women as well as for men,” Goldstein says. Low testosterone levels usually mean low sexual desire. Levels dip as men age; other causes include chronic disease, medications, and other drug use. Other hormones can play a role, too, such as low levels of thyroid hormone or, rarely, high levels of prolactin, a hormone produced in a gland at the base of the brain.

Low dopamine levels. Sexual desire obviously involves the brain — and the brain’s chemical messaging system is intimately linked to sexual desire. One of those messengers is dopamine. Doctors have noted that Parkinson’s disease patients treated with dopamine-stimulating drugs had increased sexual desire. Goldstein says these drugs help some men with HSDD.

Each cause of low sexual desire has its own treatment. When the root cause is psychological, sex therapy can offer men specific techniques and strategies for regaining their enjoyment of sex. “It is not psychotherapy; it is psychology counseling focused on sexual issues,” Goldstein explains.

In cases where the problem is low testosterone, men can take testosterone supplements if they have measurably low levels. About 25% of men go for weekly testosterone shots, Goldstein says, but most opt for skin patches or gel formulations applied directly to the skin of the chest, shoulders, or abdomen.

When Goldstein suspects low dopamine levels are at the heart of a man’s low sexual desire, he might prescribe dopamine-increasing drugs, though this treatment is not currently approved by the FDA and has risks.

However, a new drug now in clinical trials — for women — does increase dopamine levels while decreasing a specific kind of serotonin in the brain. Early clinical studies suggest the drug could help women with low sexual desire. Goldstein thinks this new treatment has promise. And if it’s approved for women, he says, it will likely be tested in men.

In the end, the choice for men who’ve lost their desire for sex is not between being a panting sexual animal and being a eunuch. Instead, the real choice is whether these men are ready to regain a vital source of intimacy with their partners — and a key part of a healthy life for themselves.

Via: WebMD

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Top 3 Myths About What Women Want

June 23rd, 2010

Myth No. 1

Women want to talk

It’s a known fact that women like to talk — a lot. In fact, research even points to how a woman uses 20,000 words a day compared to a man’s 7,000. Although you might think such info means women want to wrestle you into hour-long conversations, the truth is they just want you to listen to them talk. See, it’s much more important to her that you hear her out instead of warble back uninterested remarks.
So, instead of whining about how you don’t feel like chatting about your day, all you have to do is open your ears and hand her the invisible mic.

Myth No. 2

Women want macho men

When you and your woman are at a club and some random guy hits on her, you might think that she wants you to stand up to the plate and rustle the offender up a bit until you and the guy get Tasered by security. However, that just makes you look possessive and crazy, which makes her feel embarrassed. Yes, women want manly men who know their way under the hood of a car and can manage a household budget, but they aren’t impressed by a flashy show of macho behavior — so leave the bar brawls to Brody Jenner, please.

Myth No. 3

Women want to hear about your feelings

Many women have said they want men who will open up about their feelings. So we welcomed the metrosexual trend, which was not only about men packing on the moisturizer but also about lowering the fortress on their sensitive sides. That’s fine and well, but don’t open your emotional floodgates just for the sake of it or if it’s not your style. When women whine about wanting a man who expresses his feelings, they’re really saying that they want a man who’ll talk about his thoughts and opinions. That makes her feel more included in your world and helps her get to know you. It doesn’t mean she expects any badly written poetry or crying sessions either.

Via: AskMen

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Beware Of Your Man’s Vacation To The Dominican Republic

May 20th, 2010

A few years ago a big secret was revealed: American men would flock to Brazil for secret sex getaways. But now that this is known, the Dominican Republic has replaced Brazil as the sex tourism capital, according to Keith Murphy, who wrote “Fool’s Paradise” for Essence. Men, especially black men, are traveling to the D.R. to have sex with (and exploit) beautiful women, who are willing to do anything to support themselves and families. There are three main reasons the D.R. is ripe for sex tourism. One, prostitution is legal. Two, the peso is so weak compared to the dollar that a man of meager means in the U.S. can feel like a big spender there. And three, travel to the Dominican Republic is relatively inexpensive—an all-inclusive stay on the popular Boca Chica Beach and round-trip airfare can cost as little as $600. And some pay-for-play can run only $20. Several online companies specialize in adult vacation packages. DR Nights, an online sex tour company, has a $2,500 package that includes deluxe hotel accommodations, a 24-hour companion for three nights, and three more companions for two hours every day. But what might be cheap initially could end up costing a life later. Many in the Dominican Republic sex trade act as if HIV/AIDS doesn’t exist, and even more disturbing, one of the men Murphy interviewed said he can tell whether a woman is infected. Then, there’s the potential to bring the virus or another STD home to a girlfriend or wife.

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Previewing Sex Toys … of the Future!

May 20th, 2010

Advancements in sexual technology move so quickly that it can often be daunting to stay, uh, abreast of the latest developments. But fear not, adventurous masturbators!

Asylum recently sent Anthony Layser to the Adult Entertainment Expo in Las Vegas to investigate the latest in sex toys …

Check out sex toys of the future right here!

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10 Embarrassing sexual health questions answered

May 20th, 2010

Are you normal ‘down there’?

Whether it’s painful periods or zero interest in sex, there’s a lot going on “down there” that we don’t feel comfortable chatting about. The scarier and more embarrassing our concerns, the more probable the need that we should consult our doctors! SheKnows took some of your most pressing questions to the experts — and some of their answers may surprise you!

Q:
I have been experiencing a very embarrassing vaginal odor and itch for quite some time now. It seems like I have tried everything from washing repeatedly with soap to douching and just can’t seem to make it go away. Please help!

A:
Many women experience this problem; you are not alone, reassures Dr. Machelle M. Seibel, Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Massachusetts. It could be that your vaginal pH is off. The healthy vagina maintains a pH of approximately 4.5. The body accomplishes this through a delicate ecosystem that is extremely effective in reducing odor, itch, discomfort and sometimes even infection. Many factors, like frequent sex, menstruation, contraceptives even douching can increase vaginal pH. Try RepHresh Vaginal Gel. It is the only over-the-counter product clinically proven to maintain a healthy vaginal pH for 3 days per application and works to eliminate feminine odor and relieve feminine discomfort.

Q:
Is it normal to have never had an orgasm?

A:
A woman confessed to me that she was afraid to ask her doctor a question that she had been hiding from her husband for years, shares Dr. Tammy Nelson, a psychotherapist and author. She pretended with her girlfriends, that she could relate when they talked about their sex lives. But inside, she couldn’t understand what all the fuss was – about orgasms! She “wasn’t sure,” but she “didn’t think she’d ever had one.” I assured her that if she didn’t think she’d had one, then she probably hadn’t. And that it made sense that she was afraid to ask her gyno about orgasms. She said, “How do you ask your doc if you’ve ever had an orgasm before? I’m a grown woman. I’m 34. Surely everyone has had one by this time. There must be something wrong with me.”

Actually, a large percentage of women have never had an orgasm. And studies show that almost 80 percent of women fake orgasms. This actually prevents any discussion between partners about how to make an orgasm happen. On average it takes anywhere from 7 to 20 minutes for a woman to have an orgasm of direct clitoral stimulation. If a woman has never had an orgasm, she might not know this, and her partner might not either. And, if she’s afraid to talk to her doctor about her concerns, it makes it difficult to determine whether the lack of orgasm is due to a lack of education and information or if something physical is preventing a woman from experiencing full genital stimulation.

Q:
Are my labia normal-sized?

A:
These questions fall under the “Am I normal?” category which many women are afraid to ask their doctor, relates Dr. Nelson. The answer to these questions is usually yes, you are normal. Most women have normal vulvas, and normal labia, and normal vaginas. Although there can be sexually transmitted disease and trauma to the genitals that may make the labia and vulva somewhat misshapen, it is highly unusual, and women should know that the average vagina and vulva is not symmetrical.

Q:
I have frequent yeast infections and I don’t know why. I know there are medications to get rid of them but is there anything on the market to prevent them before they even start?

A:
Yes! RepHresh Pro-B is clinically shown to provide healthy probiotic lactobacillus that works with your body to balance yeast and bacteria, says Dr. Seibel. With one capsule taken daily, you can take control and help maintain vaginal flora in a normal range.

Q:
My partner wants me to have an orgasm every time, and I just don’t want to, so I fake it. I hear that’s bad to do. What should I do?

A:
Faking orgasms is a bone of controversy, says Katherine Forsythe, MSW, a sex education specialist. Some experts say never do it. I say go ahead, as long as you allow yourself real orgasms with your partner on a regular basis, and the decision to pretend is based on your needs, not fulfilling a requirement from your partner. The argument against faking it suggests that you are trying too hard to please, and you are not being pleasured at your pace on your time frame. This, in turn, can become a pressure-filled habit and makes you wonder if you have lost the ability to orgasm. Then, a vicious circle ensues: you pretend, you doubt yourself; you doubt yourself and you can’t come. My feeling on the whole thing is this: if you make the conscious choice not to reach orgasm (too tired, distracted, low arousal, etc), and you enjoy the drama of writhing around and pretending, and it pleases you as well as your partner, go ahead. I have clients who tell me that sometimes the drama of faking it is so much fun that they can’t remember if they really “came” or not. If you can masturbate to orgasm, you’ve still got it. Or, if you can orgasm from time to time with your partner, you still have it. As we age, orgasm takes longer for some people. The best bet is to be honest with your partner, if pretending is detracting from your enjoyment. Explain that you may not orgasm all the time, and you are happy with that. The pleasuring is the point, and pleasuring can happen without orgasm.

Q:
Is spotting normal if I am sexually active?

A:
Spotting is not a normal consequence of sexual activity, and whether or not you are sexually active, let your gynecologist or other female-health clinician know, says Lauri J. Romanzi, MD, PC FACOG, a Clinical Associate Professor of Gynecology at Weill Cornell Medical Center. Spotting may be due to ovulation, birth control side effects, slight hormonal irregularities, peri-menopause, infection, polyps, fibroids, cancer, or other uterine, cervical, hormonal or ovarian conditions. The majority of the time it is nothing to worry about, but since you can’t figure it out on your own, a visit to or phone conversation with your doctor is always the smart thing to do.

Q:
What are things that I can do to relieve UTI symptoms and prevent them from occurring in the first place?

A:
If you are experiencing symptoms associated with a urinary tract infection (UTI) such as frequent urination, urgency or lower abdominal pain, you can relieve symptoms with an over- the-counter remedy like AZO STANDARD Maximum Strength, says Dr. Romanzi. It can offer relief in approximately 20 minutes. You can then use an AZO Test Strips to confirm if you have a UTI. This allows you to inform your doctor over the phone and potentially get an antibiotic faster to treat the infection.

For prevention, drink adequate amounts of water, always wipe from front to back, and use a dietary supplement that contains PACran, such as AZO Cranberry. This blocks the attachment of harmful bacteria to the bladder wall. Some women suffer recurrent bladder infections after menopause, and may benefit from low-dose vaginal estrogen therapy in the form of suppository, cream or vaginal ring. If bladder infections continue to recur despite these efforts, discuss antibiotic prophylaxis with your doctor. Antibiotic prophylaxis involves single dose antibiotic take at or after a typical precipitating activity, most commonly sex, in order to prevent infection from developing, so that you can avoid the cycle of recurrent infections.

Q:
Can my doctor tell if I’ve had an abortion, an STD or a miscarriage?

A:
No, says Dr. Romanzi. Not unless you have excessive scarring as a result. Since these things can affect your mental and physical health, it’s important to let your doctor know about all your past medical problems and procedures. If you come in with an infertility problem or pelvic pain — either of which can be related to miscarriage, an STD or complications from an abortion, your doctor will be better able to diagnose and treat you if she knows about your health history.

Q:
Does bacterial vaginosis have to be sexually transmitted?

A:
There’s a broad spectrum of bacterial infections that women can get, and they’re extremely common, and doctors are taught in med school that it’s always sexually transmitted (30 percent of prostitutes have vaginosis, by the way). So it’s scary and embarrassing when you get one. “My doctor admitted that she’s heard a couple of patients (myself included) who convinced her that there may be some exceptions to the “somebody’s cheating” explanation for infections, says reader Dana, a marketing executive.

Q:
Is it normal to have a lot of pain during my period?

A:
“Painful periods, nausea and ‘killer cramps’ for days are not all part of ‘being a woman.’ Says Tamer Seckin, MD. An estimated 10 million United States women and adolescent girls, do not experience relief from a couple of ibuprofen and a day or two to feel normal again. In addition to ‘killer cramps,’ these women may experience painful intercourse, irregular bleeding, increased gas and bloating and infertility.

When all other causes are excluded, 90 percent of the time, it’s probably endometriosis. Unfortunately, endometriosis is the most prevalent; most misdiagnosed, mismanaged, and mishandled disease–and one of the top three causes of female infertility. Thousands of women end up with unnecessary hysterectomies. Women and girls often try to ‘manage’ the pain of endometriosis for years with painkillers and other medications, but these only mask symptoms of the disease. Yet every stage of endometriosis is treatable and, with the correct surgical techniques, even curable.

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