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Blowjobs: An act of submission?

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I had a comment recently from a reader in which she talks about how her boyfriend has stopped going down on her. Despite this she still performs blowjobs on him whenever they meet. The issue, however, is that she is now left disappointed and resentful towards him. Which got me thinking about blowjobs in general (or the technical term: fellatio), and what the act of going down on someone can mean in terms of sexual equality.

Despite having sex from an early age, it was quite some time before I gained any significant experience in giving head. As a teenager, I was reluctant to put a guy’s penis in my mouth, and the idea of it was so estranged to me, when my classmates gossiped about “who blew whom” over the weekend, I was shocked and somewhat disgusted. I judged my friends for giving guys blowjobs with no promise of cunnilingus (eating pussy) in return. I couldn’t understand why they would act so selflessly, why they would put their reputations on the line for no benefit to themselves.      

For me, oral sex has always been way more intimate than intercourse. Having someone’s genitals in your face, seeing them up-close and personal like that is really different than fumbling around in the dark, naked, trying to stick one body part into another. You are literally waving your most private parts in front of their face. Any of your unique imperfections are on full-display and magnified, and that’s a very big step to take as a person; to reveal your inner-most world to someone else.

Of course, as I’ve grown older, and the more I’ve done it, the less of a big deal it is. But as a teenager, I think it’s quite a big step to take. Not only the incredibly intimate nature of it, but the act of “going down” itself, of getting on your knees before a man in front of you, bore heavy social connotations for me as a young woman. 

I’ll be the first to admit I’m incredibly biased. I was raised by a feminist mother who was not particularly sexual. Despite constantly hearing about her disgust of the male body growing up, and how sex for women is generally an act of submission, I still managed to embrace a more subversive and active sex life. Still, perhaps her opinions regarding “sex as submission” wore off on me, for I saw blow jobs as the ultimate in male dominance.

As a teenager in high school, where judgement looms at every corner and bullying is commonplace, I never wanted to come across as vulnerable or weak. Whether it’s because of my strong personality, or my feminist outlook on the world (or just plain common sense), I could not see giving blowjobs out at random as a good idea. And because of this, I judged my friends and looked down on them, and I took a strong stance against oral sex in response. I flat out refused it.

It’s kind of silly looking back on it now, but I feel like that attitude served me well at the time. 

In my late teens and early twenties, I remember hearing about blowjob parties. Real or urban myth? I will never know.

But allegedly, teenagers as young as 13 would get together to give guys head. I thought: “WTF?! At 13!? That’s too young for that kind of orgy behaviour.” Ironic that I was judging age-appropriateness considering I was 14-years-old the first time I had sex.

Despite the fact that I personally think oral sex is more intimate than intercourse, many would argue against me. Unlike penetration, you don’t run the risk of unplanned pregnancies. You do, however, still run the risk of contracting STIs orally, which can be equally life altering.

It wasn’t until I was in a relationship with someone who was particularly into oral sex that it really became an enjoyable activity for me. Part of that process of converting me into a believer was him reciprocating the act every step of the way. If both partners are performing oral sex on each other, then I feel like it cancels out the inherent submissiveness of the act itself. This is also a great strategy in getting your partner to try things they otherwise wouldn’t: do it to them first!

It wasn’t until my research into fetish subcultures during my graduate studies that I came to understand the power of the feminine sex. In particular S&M cultures, you have the all-powerful role of the dominatrix. Her skin-tight latex suit, her whip, and her stiletto heels all serve to subvert the traditional role of woman as sexually submissive. The dominatrix uses these tools to inflict pain and suffering on her subjects, as a result she is celebrated as the ultimate source of power over men. Men are slaves to her whims. (It is said that the stiletto heel is used for inserting into men’s rectums). 

Between these two enlightening events in my life, I came to appreciate the pleasure oral sex can add to a sexual encounter. As I’ve become more confident through age, wisdom and experience – even the most casual sexual encounters I’ve had included me going down on someone else.

But the lesson I want to bestow on you today is this: Sex, no matter what form it should take, should be equally beneficial to both parties. If it pleases you to give oral sex to your partner without any in return, then so be it. So long as you’re getting yours one way or another and the dynamic between the two of you is focused on pleasing each other, who is anyone – including I – to argue?  

 

You might also like:

How to Have Sex and Not Be Labeled a Slut

Why wasn’t I told?! Learning how to masturbate and what it could mean for gender equality

What to do when the condom breaks or falls off?

How to have sex and not be labeled a slut

What it’s like to lose your virginity at 14

 

6 Comments

  1. Alva Alva

    Hi, i dont know i if you’ll reply but.. I got a boyfriend we’ve been together for 6 months now. I really really love him. We’ve had sex , and I’ve gone down on him and he’s gone down on me. He used to come often Before but now the past month it doesn’t look like anything I do pleases him. When I send him nudes and stuff he always send me videos of he coming and he tells me how amazing I am etc.. he comes during sex but not during other things. Does this mean I’m bad at it? Or is he just bored of me so you have any tips? Btw we’re both 13 turning 14 this year..

    • Hi Alva. Thanks for your message.

      It sounds like you’re a lot more experienced than I was at your age! If I wasn’t 19 years older I’d be asking you for advice!

      First I want to make sure that you’re using condoms each and every time you have sex? Planned Parenthood is under heavy fire at the moment, so it’s now more important than ever that you get access to birth control and condoms while you still can! Unwanted pregnancies and STDs suck in general, but they suck even more at 13. You definitely don’t want to be in that situation. I understand what it’s like to be sexually active at an unacceptable (ahem, illegal) age, and I can tell you, society as a whole is not cool with it, so the more you can protect yourself from the consequences of sex, the better.

      Now in terms of your boyfriend, blow jobs and boredom…There are some things you should know.

      Tastes change – Regardless of age, people’s sexual interests change over time. Personally, I used to enjoy oral sex, but the discomfort it causes me now outweighs the enjoyment I get (they tend to give me yeast infections so I don’t partake in oral anymore).
      You don’t need any tips. You are perfect just the way you are. If he is getting “bored” then the guy is straight up mental and you should dump him. Seriously, what 13 year old dude is anything but thrilled to be having sex and getting blow jobs from his girlfriend? If I were you I wouldn’t spend one second worrying about whether you’re pleasing him or not. (You should be more concerned with your pleasure… https://thatbrooke.com/why-wasnt-i-told-learning-how-to-masturbate-and-what-it-could-mean-for-gender-equality/)

      You’re too young to be worried about pleasing your guy. Yes sex is about mutual pleasure, and no I’m not saying “you’re too young” to be doing what you’re already doing (that would be hypocritical of me). But you are too young to be focused on this. When I was your age, I gave zero fucks about whether or not I was good at sex. Because here’s the thing…sex doesn’t require any talent. It’s not a skill. Anyone who tells you otherwise is straight up wrong.

      As a woman, you’ll have a lifetime of judgement and ridicule ahead of you from everything from your looks to your body to your behaviour, even who you have sex with. Many stupid and moronic people still believe that women exist to serve and please men. I don’t mean to sound cynical, but try not to get sucked into thinking this way. You’re better than that and you’re better than him. Put your pussy on a pedestal where it belongs and focus on your pleasure, it’s the most important thing.

      -BR

  2. Alva Alva

    Hi, i dont know i if you’ll reply but.. I got a boyfriend we’ve been together for 6 months now. I really really love him. We’ve had sex , and I’ve gone down on him and he’s gone down on me. He used to come often Before but now the past month it doesn’t look like anything I do pleases him. When I send him nudes and stuff he always send me videos of he coming and he tells me how amazing I am etc.. he comes during sex but not during other things. Does this mean I’m bad at it? Or is he just bored of me so you have any tips? Btw we’re both 13 turning 14 this year.. Like he always says he’s enjoying it but when he doesn’t come I tend to think differently

    • Alva Alva

      Sorry for some reason it duplicated 😬

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