I am a 21-year-old woman. Some of my earliest sexual experiences, as well as my first orgasms, were as a teenager with other girls. I grew out of that phase and went on to date guys, although I still find women attractive. Sex with my current guy has always felt great but I was never able to orgasm. Then we went to a Halloween party and, as a gag, decided to dress up in identical French maid costumes. He looked great and I found myself turned on all night seeing him dressed that way. When we got home, we attacked each other and I had my first orgasm since being with girls as a teenager. The next time we had sex there were no costumes and no orgasm. So now I’m wondering, if I can only have an orgasm with a guy while he’s dressed as a woman, could I be gay?
Maid To Pleasure
As a straight gal who has always had a soft spot for the girly boys of the ’70s glam rock era, I don’t necessarily think finding your guy hot in a dress makes you gay. And no one would feel a homosexual panic for being attracted to a woman because she was wearing a man’s shirt, as Helen Boyd writes in her book My Husband Betty: Love, Sex and Life With a Crossdresser, an absolutely riveting, thoughtful and super smart exploration not just of her life with a husband who likes to dress up like a woman, but of what makes us girls and boys and everything in between. Boyd knows your pain. She has struggled with her situation for years feeling like a freak about it. "I wondered if I was the most deeply repressed lesbian who’d ever lived," she tells me. "But a few experiments later – and I realize I just like boys who look like girls. I couldn’t possibly tell anyone why."
That may not be your case, says Boyd, but if it is, you’re a heterosexual crossdresser’s wet dream.
"There are hundreds of crossdressers who are desperate for a woman who would not only be willing to indulge them, but one who actually enjoyed it herself," says Boyd.
And while it may be true that, given how young you are, you may be gay and giving in to the tremendous pressure so many gay people feel to be straight, it could also be that you are a straight (or bisexual) woman who finds traditionally girly stuff attractive. "As I like to say," says Boyd, "thigh-high black stockings are hot – no matter who’s wearing them, as long as they’ve got the legs for them!"
Sometimes the sexual attraction is about the clothes: "French maid outfits turn a lot of people on – whether they’re wearing one themselves or looking at someone in that gear."
Or maybe, suggests Boyd, it’s not sex with women that only turns you on, but "the idea of breaking the ‘lesbian taboo’ or of feminizing a male. Maybe it’s about feeling more ‘equal’ with your partner in terms of who does the seducing and who gets seduced." Or maybe it’s the role-playing aspect that turns you on. The other possibility is that you are a "transsensual" or a "trans-am" (short for trans-amorous), both terms, Boyd tells me, for the growing number of women who are recognizing a sexual preference for cross-gendered folks. Then again, she says, at 21, there’s no need to rush out and find yourself a label. Sexuality is a journey. I say enjoy and explore. And I strongly suggest you use Boyd’s book as one of your tour guides.
For more info, go to Boyd’s website at www.myhusbandbetty.com.
I was with a group of friends the other night and somehow the discussion got around to the expression "popping a girl’s cherry." None of us knew where that expression comes from or what it means exactly. Do you know? Then we started talking about the hymen and trying to figure out whether it had any physiological purpose. Does it?
Questioning The Popping
According to Jane Mills’ Sexwords, the expression "popping the cherry" may have evolved from the fact that in the 16th century, "cherry" was a term of endearment for a woman. This likely came from the French word "chérie," which means beloved (it’s also where we get the word cherish). Later the term "cherry pie" became an affectionate term for an attractive woman. Back in the charmingly sexist 1950s, men interpreted this to mean that women were actually like a sweet cherry, ripe for the picking, and cherry became a euphemism for the hymen and female virginity.
As for the hymen itself, according to my friend and hymen expert Laurel Fowlie, the word comes from the Greek god of weddings, Hymenaios (Latin: Hymenaeus). He was one of the Erote, the ever-youthful winged gods of love, says Fowlie.
"Many people are under the impression that the hymen is located within the vagina," adds Fowlie. But it’s actually part of the vulva, the external genital organs."
Some say the hymen helps keep germs and junk out of the vagina while it is still developing but, other than that, it doesn’t do much but cause grief to those who live with religious or cultural beliefs that a hymen must be intact in order to prove a woman’s virginity (which is ridiculous given that sex is hardly the only way to "pop a cherry," and, according to Fowlie, some girls are even born without a hymen).
"It is difficult to place an adaptive purpose on the hymen," says Fowlie. Evolution takes a bit of a "if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it" approach to things, so even if something no longer serves a purpose, our bodies keep it around, like an appendix, say. Humans aren’t the only ones lugging around this troublesome membrane: Horses, whales, moles, mole-rats, hyenas, lemurs, and perhaps others, all have hymens, says Fowlie. Interestingly, our closest cousins – monkeys and apes – do not.
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