This is point of inquiry for Saturday, February 14, 2015.
Hello and welcome to a point of inquiry. A production of the Center for Inquiry. I’m your host, Lindsay Beyerstein, and my guest today is sex educator Lacey Greene. Lacey is a YouTube sensation whose channel has over a million subscribers. Check out her work on her Web site, Laci Green Dot TV. She’s the host of TV’s first original YouTube channel braless.
Valentine’s Day is coming up. We’re devoting this week’s episode to discussing truths and myths about sex and love. Lacey, welcome to the program. Hey, thanks for having me. So let’s get right down to brass tacks. What is the G spot and why is it the subject of so much controversy?
Well, we’re going to jump right into it. That’s how we do it at point of inquire. Go ahead. Like I honestly thought, you know, I honestly think it would be less confusing to refer to it as the G area or just a pleasurable area inside the vagina. Basically, what we’re talking about is area where it’s an internal critter that you refer to and vagina. All week we’re having the array of sensations from all three of those hot, but not with that special organ like people think it is. And the reason why I think some people think it doesn’t exist because they don’t have that sensitivity. They’re really very viscous person at many sexual things. So it’s not a one size fits all sort of situation.
So it’s it’s more of an anatomical neighborhood than an organ.
Yes, that’s right.
And it’s an area there are kind of interesting little obscure organs in their right glands and stuff that are embryological the sigil that might be contributing to some of the pleasurable sensations that can arise from that area.
You know, we haven’t that he did a whole ton. There’s very few studies I’ve read, like all of them care about the topic. But there are two little glands in there. For most people, it kind of depends. But they’re a little heron urethral to basically that are draining out of ducts inside the urethra. So those may also have a pleasurable effect when they’re stimulated and they’re also responsible for female ejaculation.
And so you get the reprove. It’s basically in the front wall of the vagina. And then you’ve got this kind of cloud of tissue around it that contains those glands, right? That’s right. Yes. OK. And those are those termed tissues, similar to the glands that allow men to ejaculate.
Yeah. Yeah. And the tissue is really similar from what they can tell. And the food that they produce is also similar. Just doesn’t have some it. And so these may be the same body part and they’re just differentiating in utero based on hormones and all of that good stuff.
Not all women have these little glands, right? This guy and glands.
Yeah, I think most people have them, but not everyone does. And the level of development that science there really varies. To some people is a really complex system of brands. Other people not so much. You know, they’re not even picking up on it. So it’s kind of interesting. It might be evolutionary thing where for phasing out of those plans, depending on their usefulness for reproduction and that kind of thing.
So kind bonds, you might think that they’re kind of like the analog to male nipples hearken back to when male and female bodies came from the same undifferentiated embryological blob and different parts went different ways under the influence of different hormones.
Exactly. Although I think that there is more variation with the gland because pretty much everyone has nipples. Yeah. But I think that, you know, we don’t have the exact numbers. This same saying we can’t observe them as easily as we can observe menopause. So we don’t know exactly how uncommon or common they are just yet. Tom Flynn most people have them and there are people who don’t.
It’s disconcerting. You know, you think that you’ve probably been born with the whole species component of organs and makes you wonder about the whole intelligent design thing. I mean, why would an intelligent Dedee be like this one? This one? This one’s going to have them. Other people can get that. Frohlich A bone.
Yeah. It just seems like the intelligent designer would be creating a lot of extra work for themselves. Yeah.
So you mentioned one of your videos about female ejaculation that they really cut to patterns of it, one of which is up to the skying glands and one of which is different. Can you talk a little bit about that?
Yeah. So we’re basically talking about a differentiation in the amount of fluid that’s coming out and also the consistency in type of fluid. So female ejaculation is one or two teaspoons. It’s a thicker milk here, wider substance. It looks very similar to male ejaculate. It looks like semen where it’s squirting and kind of the whole phenomenon that’s popularized huge porn genre. And, you know, a lot of fascination and speculation is not the same. It’s not that milky fluid. It’s more clear and it’s more similar to t actually it’s not. A lot of people think you’re just peeing on my partner, but in most cases.
He said Joe Mookie’s had some of those pounds of fine in here, so it ultimately comes from the kidneys and comes down to the bladder and comes out the urethra, but it’s something different.
Yeah. So the most recent videos on it, which is actually probably the most illuminating that we had today, was they had all the women tea first. So their bladders were completely empty when you’re going to have sex. And then as they’re becoming allows their bladder fill up with fluid, which is curious. I don’t know why that’s happening. What’s causing the water? So let’s just because the sexual arousal is triggering some sort of series of responses, it’s confusing. We don’t really know. But it’s not as concentrated at key, very dilute. And it also has some of the same compounds in it as the female ejaculate as well. So it may have a little bit of both in there, but it’s just a lot of water, essentially.
Interesting. So they say that’s chemically different, even though it’s coming from the same organs.
Yes. It is not concentrated. You know, when you pee, there might be. Now it’s kind of yellow. If you’re not very hydrated and it’s not the same, you know, it doesn’t have the same now or color, but it does have some of the same chemicals in it.
And with that kind of ejaculation, how much fluid are we talking about for a typical release?
Personally, it not too TMI, but I never personally done it. So I can’t give a one on one account of this that I’ve heard from people anywhere from, you know, a quarter of a cup to a cup of fluid, which is a ton of fluid.
So this couldn’t be something you could be doing without knowing it. It couldn’t just be like the sort of telltale wet spot. You are your partner. Probably know if this was going on, right?
Oh, we know you wouldn’t know it from my understanding. It’s something that you can’t really miss, having sex.
The more subtle, skived gland kind of ejaculation, is that something that you could miss if someone wasn’t watching carefully down there?
Yeah, I think that it’s more subtle and that’s something that maybe people don’t even realize that they’ve done it. It’s safe and it’s not working out necessarily, right. Yeah. My understanding as far as keep it right. So, yes, Tom Flynn may not realize that they’re doing it is overtly courting phenomenon.
What there’s so much cultural preoccupation now in porn and in pop, media and science and everywhere about the whole female ejaculation phenomenon.
Well, my theory, you know, people are really fascinated with sex, period. I think because we live in a sexually repressed culture. People are really, really drawn to talking about stuff and especially stuff that challenges their assumptions about what sex that particular I think with female ejaculation we’re looking at people be excited at the prospect of female sexual response being very similar to male sexual response. So a guy comes and squirts and ejaculate saying, wow, a woman could do that, too. That’s so sexy or interesting, you know?
Yeah, I mean, it’s a combination of factors, but it’s something visual if you’re representing it. And it makes for good copy. Good visuals.
Holy shit. Absolutely.
It’s a very tangible evidence that your partner is getting off. I think all those things are really exciting and interesting to people. But honestly, it’s just one of many different quirks that people have sexually. So it’s kind of funny to me that people get off on that.
If this is a capacity that somebody wants to try and develop on their own or with the partner. Is it something that you can cultivate or is it something that’s just kind of a thing your body does was kind of researching how this might be possible?
And my understanding is that you can’t really make yourself do it. You can try the type of simulation that are more likely to cause you much adulation. You thought, gee, area stimulation is most likely, but I think people get kind of caught up in trying to perform easy sexual tricks. And I can take away from the real experience and pleasure sex. So I have been trying to do a particular thing. Right. Right. When really it’s out of your control, that’s all. Your body can’t really relate into existence.
We know that multiple orgasms are pretty established thing for females. But you get videos about there are actually are ways that men can train themselves to have the same capacity. How does that work?
Yeah. Yeah. Men can then can do it as well as kind of challenging. Basically, what happened to the separation between ejaculation and orgasm, though? Guys are conditioned to do both at the same time. And there are some techniques that you can use to get yourself to orgasm without actually ejaculating. And usually it involves pulling off at the right time and training yourself with a number of different methods to not ejaculate or ejaculate. The biological process unfolds. Right. And you can’t really stop it at that point.
But you can have the dominoes have begun to fall.
To the point of no return when ejaculation. But before that, you know, there’s ways to experience orgasms of varying intensity before allowing yourself to ejaculate.
And there’s a muscle. Training element in there, too. I mean, women are often told that we should do our Kagle muscles to keep our pelvic floor strong for sexual pleasure and good pelvic health.
Yeah, it’s true. By the way. Yeah, right.
Things. And there’s a counterpart for men. Right. But men can do these exercises and have them control their ejaculations.
Absolutely. It’s the same sort of thing. So it’s kind of how I describe it. It’s that action when you’re kind of clenching your muscles, your pelvic muscle or the soft security when you’re stopping a.T.M is that’s the tickle. So you want to be repeating that motion and getting those muscles really strong and that can help to actually stop the ejaculation from coming up. Some people find it more effective to actually give you the tip of the penis. You know, condition itself to stop with sex going forward. You know, it kind of takes them out of them. Is that right? Yeah. Different different stuff works for different people. But by far, I think their girls are learning to really stop that stream with your muscles. It’s most effective.
In the 60s and 70s, a lot of feminist cultural critics started talking about the myth of the virginal orgasm.
How were they talking about? Yeah, well, I think they’re responding to this idea that sex, when we think of sex, most people are thinking of penis and vagina sex.
Right. And it’s a very male centric way of thinking about sex because the vast majority of women do not get on with penis in the giant. Sex might be pleasurable and feel good. Right. Only about a quarter of women to orgasm that way. So by centering our ideas of sex around penetration, it’s really centering idea the sex around male pleasure in my world. You know, sex is a lot of different things. It’s not just penis in vaginas. All the different things that people can do with their bodies that feel good and elicit orgasm. Hopefully, if they want to be certain. Yeah. And I think it’s good to push back against that because I think it’s so pervasive now. You know, it’s definitely been part of my understanding of sexuality. When I was younger and I think it contributes to the orgasm gap where women just had a really hard time getting better. Understand why they’re not having as many orgasms in size and could reshape our whole understanding of sex around pleasure and not really thinking about the clitoris, namely. And you know how sexual response varies from person to person.
I think it’s interesting. This is a value judgment that’s placed on the idea of vaginal orgasm when it’s kind of pseudoscientific when you think about it. I mean, all orgasms are the same spinal reflex, the same muscular contractions, and they come when enough sensation sums to trigger that reflex and whether it’s coming from the clitoris or the internal clitoris or whether there’s a penis involved or not, it’s all the same reflex. I don’t really understand why it is that people are putting different value judgments on different kinds of orgasms when they’re ultimately the same thing.
Yeah, that’s absolutely true. We put a lot of doubt judgments on sexual things. Period. So it’s kind of consistent with the theme of Valentine’s Day.
Some people might be thinking about going the extra mile in the whole general grooming department. And right on cue, Paltrow starts promoting something called vagina steaming. What is it?
And does it work? Okay. Or we just stand out of this vagina steaming thing. So people do as well. They’ve kind of blew my mind, too. Yeah. It’s funny when it’s held to a day right up and promoting apparently at New Age. Yeah.
And the vagina steaming is the latest trend in keeping your vagina clean. And I think that that’s another myth as well. You know, this idea that the vagina is dirty and you need to clean it out and you need to see made me do it or wash it and put soap in your car interior, you know, you want to read special equipment, deep, clean.
And once a year.
Kind of cautious here.
It’s not it’s not how it works. It’s clean.
So when I took it one level further and claimed that it cleaned all the way up into your uterus, which is.
Wow. You know, Bridget is pretty capped off by the service.
So it’s kind of interesting, you know, unless there is some magic in that scene that I am not aware of. You know, it seems unlikely.
You know, it’s interesting how people like with these emotional issues start creating magical thinking about cleaning. That can’t even happen because of this. I would think ideas about dirtiness that aren’t even physical.
Yeah. Yeah, I know. It’s it’s a psychological thing. Absolutely. Can we experience this in a lot of other ways. Like going from dirty into like you need a shower. You know, it’s it’s psychological. Absolutely. I think it’s entrenched in fear that women have their vaginas thing dirty.
There’s a law also about certain foods being being aphrodisiacs. And, you know, in our culture, we’re sort of obsessed with chocolate and raw oysters and prairie oysters. Other cultures prefer rhino penises and gray dried tiger penises and that kind of stuff.
And does any of that stuff work?
My understanding is no, it’s all a placebo. But, I mean, I’m really into chocolate. So, like, maybe there’s something there. Who knows? I don’t think it’s been studied extensively. The only thing that I’ve read is some weird foods that we probably shouldn’t be eating can trigger some kind of an inflammatory response which can make your genitals feel warm or something which is highly similar to the vagina doing thing to get some blood down.
What kind of foods should we be staying away from this Valentine’s Day season?
They’re not foods that you’re eating on a regular basis. I remember like black fly from fly like a dry fly, people would eat and it’s actually mildly poisonous.
Best not on my Valentine’s Day menu at all. Yeah. Yeah, it’s a good idea. Don’t try that. Oh, really? No insects at all.
That’s not sexy.
Now, 50 Shades of Gray is about to hit theaters. I think there’s a ton of incipient myths that are going to get started now that people are going to rush out and see the movie. Can you tell us a bit about what Sam really is and how the 50 Shades of Gray phenomenon is distorting it and creating misinformation about it?
Yeah. I mean, this is something that, you know, could be an essay by insurer media and is now consentual power fingers between people in the context of sex. And yet sex is not always politically correct. OK. MDD, a fan, is a really good example of how that happens. However, the key thing the media said is consent. Everything is really consensual, shared really openly, and they’re straightforward. And, you know, there’s a lot of different measures that people who are favorite practicing video can take so that they properly ensure that everyone is safe and comfortable, even in a context where they might be pretending here to be doing something that’s not safe and not comfortable.
And just for listeners who who don’t know, BDM is what people used to call sadomasochism. The acronym is Bondage, Domination, Sadism, Masochism, Substate Submission for wannabe asses if you want. Yes, that is power exchange role play in the bedroom. Dan Savage, the sex advice columnist, calls it Copson Roberts with your pants off.
Yes. Yeah. A lot of different elements that fall under that sentence umbrella.
The difference between videos and content will be attending.
Fifty Shades of Gray is that 50 Shades book at least. I’m curious. See if the movie will handle it more tactfully. Probably not. Very not a very good negotiation or consent. Some some exchanges are consensual. Other you know, she’s saying stop and really think, OK. Not like this would stop. And he continues, ah. And she’s clearly uncomfortable and she’s crying. Your pain is like well, like I just read in a scene and I get it. There are several of these things in the books. And the problem is that the book is not making a clear divide. So it is essentially sort of glorifying abusive relationships. But it’s really concerning to me because I want people to be like and whatever your sexuality and whatever way you like or the movies. This to me. This idea that we need to be hurting each other and that sexy normore. It’s really concerning to me, especially since, you know, it can be watched by millions of teenagers.
And the other thing about it is it seems like it’s presenting BDM as being something that’s automatically an outgrowth, outgrowth of abuse at it and something that ultimately needs to be cured.
Yeah. I don’t remember the specifics of the story, but now he’s a damaged guy. And because of that, he perpetuities, we are to be safe behaviors and aren’t on a stage of fear to try to save him and caring and then. Very, very problematic plot line because of that, because it’s sort of reinforcing a lot of myths about BSN and also reinforcing some of the more dangerous aspects that people really need to be educated on.
Aren’t the books when I see the movie posters and you see Christian Gray in the office building window in his suit, it sort of makes me want to push him out the window. But I think that’s not the not the response that the movie makers were hoping for.
No, I don’t think that they’re good. Or you caused the financial crisis. You jerk.
This is kind of funny. I don’t know. It’s a cheesy. That’s right. If me this jerk reaction were like, oh, dad, what is this? But I think it’s I can also be seen that maybe some sign of progress.
They’re talking more openly about in the shadows a sexuality. I just wish we were doing it in a healthier way.
If you do recommend some erotica, either for younger readers, it might appeal to teenagers or to people across the spectrum that people could enjoy on their own or with a partner. This Valentine’s Day, what kind of titles would you suggest for people?
You know, I don’t have many that I’ve read off the bat. I don’t really read erotica. So, I mean, that’s a pass on that one. I do have a list of people sent me, people that I cross, but they try me on a couple of my video descriptions.
I actually think for my 50 Shades description, the people suggested, OK, we’ll put a link to that on the Web site and links to the other videos that we’ve referenced in the interviews that people can learn more.
I think that they’re better on the consent front, sir. Yes. Erotica.
Have a great video. When you talk about actually going to a bondage club as part of an exercise for a sex ed class that you’re in. Can you tell us about that?
He said, when I was in college, he had the class I facilitated or credit female sexuality class at Berkeley. And you have all these field trips, they’re not mandatory for anyone freaked out. It’s nothing that anyone’s required to do. So we go together as a group.
You know, sometimes we feel safe and comfortable with to a bondage club or into a bondage club. And they do various very consentual, very respectful acts. It’s a really safe environment for people to kind of look for and have a fun night together. It was really fun with my first time in a place like that, and I feel like it opened my mind. It was really cool. I made some pretty good friends.
Did they give you the option of both tying up other people and being tied up?
Yeah, they they supervise it all because this sort of stuff could be dangerous. You don’t know what you’re doing. So it’s provided by professionals who really know what they’re doing. But, yeah, they like to partake in any of the roles that you want with help.
There’s kind of a different question, but I’ve been reading a lot lately about the growing visibility of the asexual community and the asexual movement. Can you tell us a bit more about that?
Yes. So the asexuality movement is I think it’s becoming more visible. The help of the Internet is basically a faction of people who lack sexual attraction. It’s just not part of their daily world in life. And it’s not something where I could fit in. And it’s pretty straightforward. I think there’s a lot of controversy like, oh, my God, how could anyone not want to have sex? It’s really not that hard to imagine people’s sexual desire. Libido goes up and down anyway. So it’s not hard to imagine someone who doesn’t care. It just isn’t that important to them that I don’t think it’s a big deal. But apparently we had a lot of educating to do on that front as well.
I mean, I find kind of interesting and paradoxical is the sort of the subtypes of asexuals where people are, you know, asexuals who masturbate or asexuals who are into romance but not into sex. I find those kind of combinations and permutations really fascinating about what says about sexuality and how it can vary.
Yeah, absolutely. And our community has, you know, because they’re marginalized actual group or a sexual group. They have had to create their own community.
And within that, they really come up with an extensive vocabulary to describe different types of desiring different experiences. And really, I think we ultimately can all go under the same banner of like who isn’t community. And we all had different desires and different wants and needs in terms of our romantic affinity, our personal sex lives, masturbation. It’s just all over the place. You know, it’s an example of that.
And they’re kind of qualifying it with language, which is kind of cool, which is excellent, because that means people can negotiate for exactly what they want. I mean, it would probably be really difficult if you were somebody who was a romantic asexual and you didn’t have that language to explain to some of what I want to find somebody else who’s into romance, who’s not into sex.
Yeah. Yeah, absolutely. I think it definitely makes it easier for people to communicate with each other about it. Yes, I know what they want.
A friend of mine recently came out to me using a term demi sexual and something that I’ve been reading more about, anything about that. I think it falls under the general rubric of a sexuality, but I haven’t been able to find many resources online about it.
So I’m not. Were were hurt in every little nip of language that’s come about what a means, someone who needs to feel some sort of emotional attachment to someone before they experience sexual feelings.
Yeah, that that seemed to be what the consensus was online. And I thought that was a really interesting thing to construe as the form of a sexuality.
Yeah, I actually agree because I think that a lot of people feel that way. Yeah. And maybe be obvious that we live in a culture where the ways that we talk about sex are so narrow, we’re not really talking about how people actually experience sex and sexuality. I think it’s true that the vast majority of people that I talk to have to have some sort of emotional resonance with the person that they’re W before they want to have sex with them. The point is exception to that rule and maybe the demi sexual label is referencing particular degree of emotional attachment. I agree. It’s interesting there under the asexuality banner that maybe it’s just that I’m not entirely understanding it. I have not done my reading up on sexuality.
Big themes really important in all of your sex ed hitting his consent. What are some of the biggest misconceptions about consent myths? Stumbling blocks that people are encountering when it comes time to either get consent or give consent to different things?
One is just the idea that we assume someone giving consent unless they say no. I think that’s the best one. It’s just the assumption that consent there, unless you kick and scream and fight and pull out your. Right. It’s not. That’s not how it works. And so for me as an activist and doing sex, I am really trying to change the paradigm where people are thinking the default is that there is not consent. Now that there is that right. Right. Default. If you don’t have consent until someone gives it to you explicitly and you get what you want. Right. There’s the language. The easiest way, I think, to talk about it. So I know people who know me out loud. Verbal. That’s the ideal situation because it’s the easiest.
The reason he was enthusiastic, even like, OK, I get it. Not actually, I prefer to tell you I’m really into it.
Right. So the idea of enthusiastic consent is kind of a new movement around consent and say that it’s the presence of. Yes, rather than the absence of no.
Yeah, absolutely. And I think it’s so, so important. We live in a culture where we sort of eroticize, Chief, for someone saying, no, you’re pressuring merriment, crushing. That’s usually a woman saying no. And the guy is pressuring and pressuring, pressing. And I only get to give em right because XY. You see, this said so many sexual plotlines.
This is the same culture that hates high pressure sales and every other context. I mean, people will pay more money so they don’t have to deal with high pressure sales when they buy a car here. It seems weird to me that we really don’t like being badgered in any other scenario. But we’ve eroticized badgering other people in the name of sex and romance.
So I think there’s a great point. And ultimately, you know, it’s it’s women who are usually bearing the brunt of it because it’s socialized in men to be more aggressive about it. And men are for the cheaper consumers and then we’re going to be on the receiving end. So it puts a lot of unnecessary pressure on everyone. And they think it’s people in these unintentionally compromising situations where boundaries of consent are not clear. And, you know, there’s a lot of bad stuff happens that doesn’t need to happen. People were a little bit more educated and a little bit more critical about how we exchange with each other sexually.
Do you have any tips or pointers if someone is seeking consent? I know a lot of people are afraid of sort of not being sexy, of making it bureaucratic or awkward. What are some strategies that you can use to ask consent in a way that’s clear and decisive, but also romantic and fun?
Yeah. So for me, in my life, I am kind of a goofy person. So it’s pretty easy for me to infuse humor into most situations, especially sexual situations, because you have to. Come on. It’s fun. There’s just a bit of awkwardness no matter what. I think even through hearing it, also just checking it. You know, the scene right there. Are you into this? I just want to make sure we’re on the same page. Do you like this? Communicating outloud. Communicating and breaking this tradition of just not talking to each other about sex. As we’re having it. Right. Right. And just checking in and being open and honest. And also, I think we need to be more receptive to hearing that someone’s uncomfortable and not taking it as a personal reflection on being a little bit more empathetic, backing off when that’s necessary in terms of communication more generally.
What are some strategies that you might recommend for someone who wants to try something with their partner this Valentine’s Day that’s really out of their wheelhouse, something that they haven’t tried to be their partner hasn’t tried to do that maybe, but insecure about discussing with their partner. What are some pointers that you have for discussing that sort of thing, for broaching and communicating about how you might want to explore it? Maybe not. Oh, and Valentine’s Day, but in general, right?
Yeah. I can have it any time of the year. Absolutely.
I think the most important thing is to open up the conversation in a context that’s safe and comfortable. So, you know, maybe not over dinner or when you’re in a rush or you’re really tired or something, you know, make sure it’s a time when both people can really sit down and have this important conversation and be really, really honest. Explain what you’re into, what you’re interested in trying and gauge the other person’s feelings on it. Sometimes you’re going to be open, but sometimes they’re not. And everyone’s sexual boundaries have to be respected, right? Absolutely. I think also sometimes it’s safe. People are many because we have the sexual scripts. You know, we do find meaning and that’s how sex is done. Breaking out of that for some people, especially people who maybe grew up in more sexually repressed environments, because you chew on the idea how they really feel about it. And sometimes it was said and done expressed through you like, all right, now we’re going to jump there right now. That effect. Right. Marinate. Make sure that everyone really feels comfortable.
So maybe people should be talking about this in advance of Valentine’s Day. People should turn off their radios and their discussion. So that will be enough lead time.
Yeah. Yeah. I think it should be talked about in advance because otherwise it has put such a person on the spot and maybe he made it worse depending on the couple. You know, maybe that’s their dynamic. But I think it’s better to just assume that it’s good to talk about it in advance so everyone can get comfortable first.
And I guess there’s also always this risk of making any one day, whether it’s Valentine’s Day, your anniversary or just it’s going to be the greatest thing ever tonight into some kind of performance anxiety inducing burden instead of something that’s joyful and spontaneous.
Oh, absolutely. I mean, I feel so much pressure. I’m done day. I’m just like, we’re not going to do this to play out and fight and, you know, not worry about having to have, like, meeting Valentine’s Day sex, do pressure. It just takes the joy out of it for me.
Well, let’s great advice. That’s all the time we have. Lucy, thank you so much for coming on the show.
Thanks for having me. Was a pleasure.