There’s an unspoken conversation on campus — and it’s about oral sex. People never speak openly about the truth behind their sexual endeavours, let alone share their discomforts. Insecurity around sex is a large yet censored topic rising from underneath UBC’s student population, and it’s been a journey for me to overcome.
From talking to friends of mine, there seems to be a pattern of concern over our vaginas and female oral sex. Social media, current cultural norms and the close proximity of young males in often hyper-masculine environments here at UBC perpetuates a feeling of confidence that the males seem to exert over their members. They are guys; they know their equipment, acknowledge masturbation and openly reference their genitalia throughout the day.
Girls, from what I can see on the other hand, appear to always keep these conversations behind closed doors. When I had my first boyfriend, I did not want oral sex. I didn’t understand why it would be pleasurable nor why he would want to. I felt confused and really rejected any advance at this type of sex. I was more than willing to return the favour though, which led me to think — what is the real difference?
The pattern of insecurity surrounding specifically oral sex is linked to porn and media images. Many girls feel that their bodies aren’t these waxed, tiny and tight areas of erotic pleasure. We are more likely to feel the need to give and not be selfish when it comes to sex. The concern of having a partner you may or may not have invested emotional feelings into judging these areas can cause insecurity. And thus, we are particularly insecure when a partner goes down on us for the first, second or multiple times that it happens.
Over time, I eventually learned to get over these insecurities. Though there is no specific method of doing so, I grew up mentally and physically. Sex is natural and mutual, and consent permits acts of selfishness in an understood and respected way. When I came to university and had partners whom I knew I wasn’t going to stay with forever, this influenced my behaviour to become more open — literally and figuratively. Though this may be a cynical way to look at relationships and sex in university culture, the realization that you can get over insecurities because everyone is different and everyone is perfect in their own little ways can help.
You are the worst critic of yourself. There are flaws anyone may hate about themselves but no one else notices. The realization that sex is natural and you’re an equal member to the act should empower people to let go of concern or superficial worry and discover a new pleasure.