A while back, Social Minefield tackled the issue of losing your virginity. But as many readers pointed out, not all deflowerings involve a dick — herewith, some tips for your first time with a lady.
To get the skinny on girl-on-girl action, I turned to a few experts — the awesome staff of Autostraddle, speaker and performer Roman Rimer, and an old friend who prefers to remain anonymous but had a lot to say about ladies and v-cards. For the purposes of this post, I'll call her S. Here's their advice for making your first time with a woman safe, fun, and hot.
Communicate, and don't make assumptions.
Everybody I talked to agreed that, as in so many situations, open lines of communication are essential. Says S:
There is a common perception that because two people are of the same sex, then what feels good to them is going to feel good to their partner. While on a very general level that is true, every person is different in terms of what works for them. So, don't assume your partner wants what you want. The best advice I can give is to pay attention to what is working for your partner, whether it be an aural or physical indication.
Be open about what you want, what you like and don't like, what you're willing to try, etc. Everyone has a different relationship to their bodies and different things turn them on. So you can talk about it first or maybe go slowly and see what works and what doesn't.
He also adds another important note on safety:
Be open about your status with STIs, this will clear the air and will encourage you to be safe and trusting. If someone does have an STI you can then talk about it and figure out how to proceed.
And on gender identity:
As far as hooking up with transpeople or gender non-conforming [GNC] folks, again communication is key. Try not to make assumptions. It's better off to ask first what's ok and what's not, like with any other hookup. There may be language and words used that folks are not ok with, so it's really important to listen to them and if you're not sure of something, ask. Everyone in the world is sensitive about their bodies, but there can be an added pressure if you're trans, genderqueer, intersex, GNC, etc. Respect the person's gender identity and pronoun (which is a given). Also everyone has sex differently so it's a case by case basis. Just like with cisgender folks, there may be body parts that some people don't like to have touched. It really depends on the person.
The first time can be stressful for anybody, but Rimer has a couple of relaxation tips:
If you're someone who worries remember the other person may very well also be worried, too, so realize you're not in this alone and also sometimes it's good to talk out loud about things you might be afraid of, just top clear the air. Often times things may appear worse in your head than they are in reality, and the person you're with may have the same fear(s) as well.
A friend suggested that if you're nervous about your first time to fantasize about want you want to do at first, so then when it happens you'll have more of an idea of what you want, and what you want to work with.
Autostraddle also advises first-timers not to get caught up in top vs. bottom:
Worried that you're not sure if you're a ‘top' or a ‘bottom'? Good news! It's your first time! You might figure out that you are one, the other, or neither, or both. All of those things are fine. Switching it up is fine. If it's not and you view yourself taking on a certain role (butch/femme, top/bottom/switch), that's something y'all will likely discuss way before the panties drop.
Now that we've gotten the brain stuff out of the way, let's get physical!
First, wash your hands.
Prepare for the evening with short nails and freshly-washed hands. Do that every time. Generally washing your hands is a good idea.
This is key advice for anyone who's going to finger a lady. Especially the nail grooming — nobody likes a scratched vagina.
Next, consider the clit.
Autostraddle advises, "When in doubt, start softly and build up. You are not trying to rub her clit off her body, so faster & harder is not always better. Unless it is, in which case, she should tell you." And Rimer adds, "Clit-play is awesome."
But remember the other parts!
For instance, boobs. Says Autostraddle, "Don't paw her breasts off! You might want to, but this will not be your only opportunity to touch someone's breasts besides your own. Relax. Look, she has arms and legs and a neck, too. So many parts!"
Anticipation - one of the greatest tools in your toolbelt. Don't just go for the usual body parts; for example, a kiss or a touch the side of the stomach or the bellybutton could create unexpected pleasure. Also, don't just routinely work your way south (i.e. - start with kissing, go down to the stomach, go back to kissing, go to the legs, back to the stomach, etc.).
It's not a contest.
Autostraddle reminds would-be lady-lovers to offer compliments, not comparisons:
You're beautiful, take your clothes off. DO NOT DO NOT FOR THE LOVE OF JESUS compare body parts. Compliments are great! But resist the urge to add an assessment of your own parts onto your compliment regarding her parts. 'Your [part] is so much more [way of being] than mine! Waaah.' = NO.
Also, there's no finish line:
Try not to be too goal-oriented. Lots of people don't come the first time. If neither of you do, there's gonna be a moment when you feel like you're done anyhow, like the encounter is over, and that might feel weird, but it's not weird, it happens. Just laugh and maybe stay naked and kiss and talk. Cuddle! Lesbians love to cuddle.
Fingering is not the be-all and end-all.
Penetration is not the only lesbian sex act. Sticking your hand down her pants and up her canal might be your first instinct, or maybe it's what you've seen on The L Word, but that is only one of many magical ways girls fuck other girls. You will discover 365 ways to basically dry hump (you can keep your underwear on for this, it can be easier, but take off your shirt, because that's more fun). There's good ol' fashioned muff diving (be safe!) and everybody's favorite lesbian pastime, SCISSORING.
Dildos and strap-ons are also fun, if you're into that. It really varies and everyone likes different things, so I would suggest just start slowly and work your way up.
Whatever you end up doing, Autostraddle points out that "if it feels like sex, it is sex! We've done both — men and women — and thanks to centuries of patriarchal rule, straight sex is very cut-and-dry in terms of what 'counts.' But don't get bogged down with defining queer sex — it can be whatever you want it to be!"
Oh, and be prepared — Autostraddle reminds us, "Lesbians bleed too. We're just like everyone else! We bleed real blood!" Fuchsia sheets, everyone!
A few resources.
If you seek inspiration of the pornographic variety, Autostraddle recommends "Crash Pad Series, Juicy Pink Box, Good Dyke Porn, and basically anything Jiz Lee is involved in."
And for tips on safe sex for lesbians, take a look at this Autostraddle post.
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