Author and sex-worker Violet Rose has a famous quote (you may have seen it floating around Tumblr) in which she says, “It is illegal for women to go topless in most cities, yet you can buy a magazine of a woman without her top on at any 7-Eleven store. So, you can sell breasts, but you cannot wear breasts, in America.”
It’s likely that this quote could be applied to any aspect of a woman’s body—her legs, her butt, and in this case, her orgasm. That’s right. The orgasm. It wasn’t until fairly recently (I’m talking 2014, people) that science began devoting some of its time to the vaginal and clitoral orgasm. But it’s not like that’s when the o-face entered the main stream. Cis-gender women’s orgasms have been captured on screen for years, either in steamy PG-13 movies or entire pornos devoted to long-distance squirting. So why, if we’re so enamored by the climax as entertainment, are we just now getting around to acknowledging it as a real, bodily process? Why can you have an orgasm on screen but you can’t learn about it in school?
That’s a rhetorical question.
Even still, many of the studies devoted to the orgasm have been devoted to disproving it. The clitoris just can’t catch a break! As of late, squirting has been in the hot seat. Is it pee? Is it normal? Is it a sport?
Here are five things you may not have known about squirting.
1. It’s completely normal, though not everyone does it.
Let’s banish the idea that just because your friends don’t do it, you shouldn’t be doing it. Forget what your mother told you. The reality is, we don’t really know how many women squirt. Studies vary from 6- 60% of women reporting squirting. So chances are none of your friends wet the bed in the name of pleasure, and chances are most of them do. Which is to say, if you’re a squirter, you’re either the heart of the ocean or a vital member of an orgasm army. Congratulations!
2. It’s not ejaculation.
When you think ejaculation, you’re probably thinking about the penis and its resemblance to the Super-Soaker when aroused. You can thank cis-gender male-centric sex-ed for that. Squirting might look a lot like penile ejaculation, which might cause you mix up squirting and vaginal ejaculation. Valid mistake. I forgive you.
So what’s the difference? Let’s start with location. Female-ejaculation comes from what are called your Skene’s glands, located on the wall of the vagina, around the lower end of the urethra. When aroused, these glands emit a white or clear and often thick liquid, which helps with lubrication and signify that things are quite possibly working out well for you. Squirting is expelled from the urethra, and while female ejaculate is usually no more than two teaspoons, squirting can range from two to four cups!
3. It’s also not (really) pee.
Here’s my issue with calling squirting pee: When we do that, we are immediately invalidating it as a reaction to pleasure and instead associating it with something that is usually not considered a sexual activity which just furthers the idea that the female-bodied orgasm isn’t real.
So yeah, squirting is really similar to pee. It has similar components to pee, it comes out of the same place, and it is produced in the bladder. In one study, scientists asked women to empty their bladders before sex and watched, as women were aroused, their bladders filled up with this mystery fluid. But it’s not yellow, it doesn’t smell, and it is created as a direct reaction to sex or pleasure, unlike urine.
4. It’s not necessarily a signifier of if you’ve had an orgasm.
All orgasms look different. Don’t let anyone tell you that yours is any less than theirs, even if it’s a little less…wet. Some folks believe people can learn to squirt, while others believe it’s just something some people can’t do. Some ways to encourage possible squirting would be to make sure you’re in as calm of a setting and position as possible. Try receiving oral sex beforehand to promote relaxation or encourage G-spot stimulation. If you’re still not squirting then hey, at least you just had really good sex.
5. Squirting in porn is largely fake, so don’t use it as a model for your own orgasm.
Most squirting porn sites enhance their actresses’ orgasms – either by filling the vagina up with water beforehand or encouraging them to actually urinate upon climax – so if you’re not shooting four-feet in front of you, don’t fret. Your orgasm is yours to have, not someone else’s to judge.
If you’re going to walk away from this article with one piece of knowledge it should be this: Whatever your body does during orgasm is normal. Whether you’re silent, waking up the neighbors, or causing a flash flood, unless you’re feeling pain or discomfort, your body is doing exactly what it should be doing to get off. Your orgasm is a snowflake, and you should do nothing but praise it.
Cover image courtesy of Shutterstock.