Donate Now
We've Moved! Check out our new boards.
  New Poll  
my profile | directory login | search | faq | forum home

  next oldest topic   next newest topic
» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Sexual Ethics and Politics » 'Penetration'

 - UBBFriend: Email this page to someone!    
Author Topic: 'Penetration'
Saffron Raymie
Scarleteen Volunteer
Member # 49582

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Saffron Raymie     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I was talking with my friend about the use of the word 'penetration' when referring to intercourse, and he said he'd never use it. The reason he gave was that it sounded like something 'breaking through' something when that isn't what happens in sex.

Would anyone like to share their ideas on this too?

'Obtain the virgin's consent before you marry her' - Prophet Mohammad (pbuh)

Posts: 1285 | From: England | Registered: Oct 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Heather     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
To me, the issue is multifaceted:

1) It implies, to me, that a vagina or other orifice isn't active, but passive. That only whatever other kind of body part or object is entering those orifices is. Not only is that simply not true -- vaginas, anuses and mouths have and are surrounded by active muscles, lots of them, for starters, all engaged when someone with one of those orifices is actively participating in sex which involves them -- it also implies a power dynamic, too, that can be true, but it's always.

2) To me, penetration is a word best used to describe a sexual assault or attack, where, in earnest, one person is pushing into someone else's body and the other person is NOT choosing to participate. In other words, those situations truly are usually one-way situations, rather than shared activity.

3) I think the word is reflective of old ways of thinking about gender dynamics and some kinds of sex that are full of things we either know, now, aren't true, or know now are problematic or have changed. I think the use of the term with things like consensual intercourse between equals, for pleasure, kind of can really keep people stuck or enable what we know are false or negative paradigms.

[ 05-31-2011, 12:12 PM: Message edited by: Heather ]

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

Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator

  New Poll   Close Topic   Feature Topic   Move Topic   Delete Topic next oldest topic   next newest topic
 - Printer-friendly view of this topic
Hop To:

Contact Us | Get the Whole Story! Go Home to SCARLETEEN: Sex Ed for the Real World | Privacy Statement

Copyright 1998, 2014 Heather Corinna/Scarleteen Providing comprehensive sex education online to teens and young adults worldwide since 1998

Information on this site is provided for educational purposes. It is not meant to and cannot substitute for advice or care provided by an in-person medical professional. The information contained herein is not meant to be used to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease, or for prescribing any medication. You should always consult your own healthcare provider if you have a health problem or medical condition.

Powered by UBB.classic™ 6.7.3