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» Got Questions? Get Answers. » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Sexual Ethics and Politics » Oral sex ethics

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Author Topic: Oral sex ethics
breath
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I was planning on having oral sex and after talking to a friend, she said that i dont have to go bare , trimming would be fine. so I only trimmed my pubic hair (i'm a female) and then the date-cum-hook up went down on me. later on, i asked some friends and all of them prefer to shave or wax so that their pubic area is completely bare.

i feel self -conscious that maybe I came across as not refined or elegant or classy, since I didn't wax or shave my pubic hair. He was also trimmed on the top and I believe his balls were shaved.


Any thoughts?

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Heather
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Not quite sure what you're asking here (or how this is about ethics?).

There's no one way of grooming or not grooming the genitals that's "refined, elegant or classy." These are very personal opinions, some which some people will have only about themselves, some about themselves and others, some about no one at all. Some people will also thin that value judgments like that don't make any sense when it comes to something like body hair, too.

If you're going to try and "match" how you groom (or not) to how a potential partner does (or doesn't), or what they like, you're going to drive yourself up a tree. Not only will you be unlikely to predict those things, but trying to present your body based on everyone's different personal preferences is going to wind up feeling pretty dizzying, since there's nothing close to any kind of universal taste or consensus with this.

Want to fill me in on why how this is an ethical issue for you? Ethics are basically things which are concerns about morality: about doing right or wrong (or neither) in terms of behaviour. Personally, those are way bigger issues than how someone cuts their hair or doesn't, unless, say they're doing so in a way which does or can do themselves or someone else harm.

[ 06-05-2011, 12:58 PM: Message edited by: Heather ]

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breath
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I think this precisely the reason why I didn't want to do anything (ie. shave /wax) etc but I am beginning to realize that if I do try to groom a certain part of body a given way it is or will be because it feels good to me and not to /for someone else or to feed into some pop culture perceptions.

It is also so unfortunate that atleast in my social unbringing, i was socially conditioned to dislike or feel embarassed about my genitals.

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Heather
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Maybe let's approach this a different way: what kind of grooming (if any) do you think YOU would feel most comfortable with, and would leave you feeling most comfortable about your own genitals and potentially sharing them with any partners you choose, without knowing what, if any, preferences they have around pubic hair?

Let's set aside what a friend would say you need to do, since it's really not appropriate for someone to tell someone else what is or isn't fine for THEM when it comes to choices like haircuts, above or below. [Smile]

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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breath
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[Smile]

I think that for me, confidence is important and I can relax fully if I know that my vagina pubic area is clean. I would definately keep it trimmed and would like to try out waxing/shaving/ something else as I think it helps increases the pleasure for me. I would probably also keep some kind of baby wipe or something in my purse /handy just for again more confidence/no regrets.

In this above case, I wasn't sure and didn't really care how hygienic I was. I only trimmed without much thought. in the moment, i just relaxed and focused on the pleasure. In retrospect, I wonder if I was dirty or smelly or could have been more cleaner. The partner didn't say anything so it can't be that bad lol, but this is for me, not for anyone else..

Deep breaths...

[ 06-05-2011, 02:27 PM: Message edited by: breath ]

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Heather
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Clean isn't related to hair.

In other words, a vulva or vagina with pubic hair is no more or less clean than one without.

But if you *feel* more clean -- in other words, how you feel about it doesn't have to be related to facts -- and that increases pleasure or confidence for you, when doing a certain kind of grooming, and that makes you feel better than if you don't, then whatever that grooming choice in might be the right one for you.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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breath
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Thanks! On a slightly different note, now- I feel kind of embarrased about not showering in evening beforehand before this 'date' and not really taking time to ensure that my vaginal area was freshly-clean. I feel embarrassed that I didn't clean the sweat and etc that may have accumulated there during the day. =( I guess I know better now these things now.

Has anyone else felt this?

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Djuna
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Well, I'm not an owner of a vulva, so if you were asking about that specifically, then I wouldn't know. But for sure, I've felt uncomfortable about having sex after not showering - what I've found, though, is beyond the really important hygiene like handwashing (which I'm meticulous on), my partners have generally been less squicked by it than I thought. A lot of the time they've said they prefer my "natural scent", and that's true for what I've heard from other couples' experiences, too. So after that, I'm much more comfortable having sex smelling however I do.

A lot of the time we're conditioned to think that our own bodies' natural scents are "dirty", but really, when we're all sweaty, that can mean we smell really awesome. There's a difference between sweat and dirt, for sure. [Smile]

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“In a strange room, before you are emptied for sleep, what are you. And when you are filled with sleep you never were. I don’t know what I am. I don’t know if I am or not... how often have I lain beneath rain on a strange roof, thinking of home.”

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breath
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Wait you are saying that you wash your hands before oral sex?

I wonder how it changes when the person is a hook-up and not someone you are in a relationship with.

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Djuna
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Well, I was meaning that I wash my hands really regularly anyway. As for doing it right before oral sex, I would if they were dirty, but it's a question of what the people involved are comfortable with. If I feel like my or my partner's hands aren't clean, I'd prefer if they were clean before we started doing stuff, but that's me, a hygiene nerd. [Smile]

For what it's worth, some of the partners I was talking about were hookups, and some were a little more relationshippy. My main point is that we're often taught that our body's natural smell is "dirty", and that we need to clean off that natural smell. While I do think that showering is awesome, and I do it most every day, a body that's been lived in all day does not smell gross, it just smells different to a body fresh from the shower. Both smell awesome. It's like when you wake up next to someone who isn't squicked by your morning breath at all - it's a revelation. [Smile]

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“In a strange room, before you are emptied for sleep, what are you. And when you are filled with sleep you never were. I don’t know what I am. I don’t know if I am or not... how often have I lain beneath rain on a strange roof, thinking of home.”

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