sex_myths.jpgLast week, we told you about five assumptions women make (but shouldn’t) about sex and men, and how these seemingly minor misunderstandings can do damage to a relationship.

Now we're clearing up five more misconceptions women often have about sex. Read on to learn what they are and, if you’re one of the women who’s fallen for these falsehoods, how to fill the gaps in your sexual education.


Myth #1: It’s all about the penis.
Is it true? No.

This myth is actually made up of two parts, or sub-myths, if you will: (1) that it’s all about size, and (2) that the penis is the only erogenous zone a woman needs to pay attention to during sex. Both of those get a resounding buzzer in the truth department—that’s a no, and no!

Just like “every cloud has a silver lining,” "size isn’t everything" is one of those expressions everyone knows intellectually but most people secretly don’t believe in. But that doesn’t make it any less true. For some women, yes, a bigger penis may be more aesthetically pleasing or may be a better “fit,” as this article on WebMD.com shares, but this isn’t true for everyone—it isn’t even true for the majority of us.

Think of things this way: According to this article on AllExperts.com, which cites both the World Health Organization (WHO) and Family Health International as sources, men of African descent have slightly wider, longer penises (thus fostering another commonly believed but not necessarily true expression: “once you go black, you never go back”); Caucasian men have about medium-sized ones; and Asian men have a slightly narrower and shorter size. (Note, though, that the WHO’s specified condom sizes per region aren’t altogether too disparate in length: 5.3 cm for Africa, 5.2 cm for Europe, and 4.9 cm for Asia.) Not to be crude, but if size was all that mattered for women’s enjoyment of sex, globalization should have seen a drop in Asian population globally—instead, we account for at least 4 of the approximately 7 billion people in the world.

So if your sweetie isn’t exactly well-hung, relax—and more importantly, tell him to relax. It’s normal. And it won’t prevent you from experiencing pleasure while making love with him. It’s all too likely that his attention to your needs will more than be enough to make you forget about questions of centimeters or inches, and if you aren’t reaching completion, this is more a sign that you and he may need to experiment a bit more rather than meaning you should look for someone with bigger southern real estate.

And on the point of pleasure, neither is the penis everything when it comes to pleasuring your man. Just because it’s the most obvious erogenous zone doesn’t mean you can’t spread your love around—explore your lover’s body and find out which spots are most sensitive. The nipples, earlobes, mouth, and inner thighs are a good place to start, among others, as this article on WomanKnows.com points out.


Myth #2: Intercourse should be enough to make a woman climax.
Is it true? Not necessarily.


Studies have shown that only about 30 percent of women reach orgasm through sex alone. So if you’re in that minority, that’s great, but the rest of us will need a little extra stimulation and a little more foreplay than that. If you find that repeated penetration doesn’t quite do it for you all on its own, introduce your guy to your two new best friends: your G-spot and your clitoris. Don’t know where they are? Find out! Tracey Cox offers some down-to-earth instructions on getting to know yourself in her iVillage.com article. A surprising number of women are unaware of just how they’re built. Don’t be one of these. And for some extra enjoyment, you may want to discover yourself with your lover there to help—just call it a bit of exploratory fondling.


Myth #3: If you’re happy together, you’ll have great sex.
Is it true? No.


This is a non sequitur. Though it may be all hearts and roses everywhere else in your relationship, it doesn’t necessarily follow that you’ll have a satisfying sex life right away. There are several elements to successful bonding in the boudoir. One is sex drive. As this slideshow from WebMD.com points out, there are several factors that can lower your sex drive, and relationship problems account for only one of them.

Another factor is knowledge of your lover’s body, likes and dislikes, and so forth. It may be that you simply haven’t experimented enough to learn each other’s pleasure points, in which case, you shouldn’t be afraid to be adventurous! Don’t be afraid to get down and dirty with a guy you really care about; it’s not perverted to want to try new things, and it’s not like your sex life is anyone’s business but yours and your partner’s. So if you’ve only ever done it missionary, change it up! Cosmo.ph’s Cosmo Sutra section offers a variety of different positions to try, each coming with a passion intensity rating, instructions, illustrations, reasons why you’ll love it, and a tip to maximize those Os!


Myth #4: If you’re not enjoying sex, something’s wrong with your relationship.
Is it true? No.


This is the flip side of the assumption above about happy couples being happy in bed. As mentioned, sex drive is a big factor, which is influenced by your surroundings and the way you live your life. So you may find out that it’s not a change in partners that’s needed, but a change in lifestyle.

Also, you can use hitting a sexual rough patch as an opportunity to strengthen your relationship through experimentation and compromise. Don’t allow lack of enjoyment in the bedroom to destroy the lines of communication between you. In fact, talk it through, toss suggestions between yourselves. This is just one of the hitches that may come up in a relationship, like money problems or impossible in-laws. And like those hitches, you’ll need to talk it through and work it out so you can both get to that happy place where the stars explode behind your eyes.


Myth #5: Sex should be spontaneous and last hours.
Is it true? No.


This is another two-part myth. As this article on iVillage.com points out, many couples find that desire—the all-of-a-sudden-I-want-to-jump-your-bones kind, anyway—wanes over time, sometimes as soon as nine months after you first become lovers. Does this spell the end of your relationship? No, definitely not. As the article points out, “it doesn’t mean you’ll never fancy each other again; it just means that you need to keep reminding your body and brain how much you enjoy sex.”

Don’t expect marathon love-making sessions to be the norm either. As Dr. Laura Berman points out in her article on sex myths, studies have shown that by consensus, the ideal length of intercourse is 7 to 13 minutes. Still, that doesn’t mean you have to stop at one O; you can always take a rest, and start all over again!

Relationships, and all the elements that add to them, require work to be long-lasting. Sex is just one of those things you may sometimes need to give a little push in the right direction. This can mean taking the occasional weekend getaway, surprising your lover with an intimate dinner for two, or venturing into some experimentation in the bedroom.

Your sex life will often follow the pattern of the rest of your relationship. When you’re just starting out, everything is new and exciting, and you delight in finding out what makes your partner happy. You also tend to push the limits more. Then you hit your stride several months in, the thrill of the chaser-and-chased game begins to ebb, and things start to get comfortable between you—more warm than hot, but that speaks for tempers as much as it does the sex life. Later, you may find things becoming a little routine, and you may need to invest a little more effort in keeping things fresh, both in terms of your romance and sex life. This doesn’t mean there’s something wrong—just that it’s not always going to be easy between you, so don’t expect things to be all starbursts and moonbeams all the time unless you're willing to invest time and effort to make it happen.


(Photo © iStockPhoto.com/Lev Olkha)

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