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What Your Mother Never Told You

Advice From Uncle Bill & Auntie Andrea

Dear Auntie Andrea:

What is "intercrural sex"?

-- Confused

Dear Confused:

And all this time bisexuals have been saying that we aren't confused? Now I'm confused, too!

Seriously, I had never even heard the term "intercrural sex" before being asked this question. Webster's Dictionary defines the word "crural" as meaning "of the leg or thigh." Add the prefix "inter" and the result is "sex between the legs or thighs."

I have heard anecdotally from several different people that ancient Greek men participated in a form of this, in which one man would stand with his thighs pressed together, while the other man achieved sexual pleasure by rubbing his penis in between the thighs of the quasi-receptive partner. I have yet to find a solid literary reference for the use of the term "intercrural sex" for this; however, it certainly would fit the definition. I suppose the female equivalent would be knee-rides, which would also fit the literal definition.

After I asked around a bit, I found that everyone surveyed agreed that this particular form of sex should have a much shorter name, in any case.

-- Auntie Andrea

[Note to readers: This article originally appeared in issue #11. Since the topic is of perennial (not to mention perianal!) interest, I've updated it for you. -- Uncle Bill]

Dear Uncle Bill:

I have a question about anal sex -- sometimes, but not always, after getting fucked up the ass, my insides feel all rearranged, and I may even feel nauseous the next day. More than that, I sometimes feel "not right" that is partly psychological and partly physical -- it's not purely psychological -- I love getting fucked, and it's happened more than twice, so I'm assuming that my feelings and the act of getting fucked are connected. Is this common -- are there ways to avoid it aside from not getting fucked (I'm not willing to to do that)? Maybe I'm too tense, maybe the cocks and dildos are too long, or maybe I'm just weird. I dunno -- help me out, Uncle Bill. It's happened both with women with strap-ons and with men with live cocks.

-- Allen

Uncle Bill

Dear Allen:

You're not weird. What you're describing is pretty common, actually. Often, physical discomfort is due to not feeling completely relaxed at the time of intercourse. Most people find that they prefer certain positions when being anally penetrated. It's important that the penis, dildo, or other object enters and moves at a comfortable angle; otherwise, it runs into the rectal wall, which can cause discomfort, not to mention tearing and bleeding. Squatting-on-top is often the easiest position for fuckees since it offers the greatest amount of control. Generally, the more comfortable you are at the time of intercourse, the less queasiness you will feel the next day.

It's important to take things slowly, as it were. In fact, many folks need to practice self-stimulation before attempting partnered anal sex. There is no reason that anal sex should hurt the receptive partner. You wouldn't start a physical workout without warming up and stretching your muscles; likewise, you may experience less discomfort if you ease into getting fucked. Yet guys, especially, are raised to believe that they should "tough it out" and not complain when they feel pain. This is nonsense. Honesty and communication are essential ingredients in negotiating successful anal intercourse (not to mention life in general!). Don't allow yourself to be penetrated longer or faster than feels comfortable. It's important to pace yourself! Some people find it essential to take frequent breaks. And, like the U2 song goes, some days are better than others.

All the stuff you've heard about performance anxiety applies here, too -- an anxious sphincter does not want to be penetrated! Try to bring a mental list of some alternative things you can do if the anal part of your sex just isn't working. Often, just knowing that you have options is enough to relax and allow pleasurable anal penetration. A good partner will be patient and allow you to adjust gradually to the fullness. Performance anxiety cuts both ways, too -- many guys have trouble staying hard, especially in the condom-clad era. You may even want a dildo or two on hand as backup! Patience is important for both partners.

The psychological discomfort you feel could be "morning-after" guilt. Most of us are taught to feel shame regarding our buttholes. In our culture, men are not "supposed" to be receptive, and men and women alike are raised to view anal penetration as unnatural. We raise children to believe that bodily waste is "filthy." True, the anus and the rectum are the passageway for feces. Yet feces are not normally stored in the rectum except when the body is preparing for a bowel movement, and a healthy person eating enough fiber should have fairly firm stools that do not linger. If you like, there are various devices (described in the books below) you can use to rinse the rectal passageway before getting fucked; it's best to do this a couple of hours before penetration, so that the rectal walls can re-line themselves with the body's natural lubricant. But in any case, it's a bad idea to get fucked on a full stomach. This can definitely cause cramping and other problems. Ongoing discomfort could be a sign of hemorrhoids, anal fissures, or other difficulties that require medical attention.

You may wish to check out the following books: Anal Pleasure & Health by Jack Morin (Down There Press, 800-289-8423; ISBN 0-940208-20-2). Chock full of good ideas about making anal play more comfortable and safe. I also recommend Tristan Taormino's The Ultimate Guide to Anal Sex for Women (Cleis Press, 800-780-2279; ISBN 1-57344-028-0). Although directed at a female audience, most of the material in the book is applicable to men. (Cleis has me at work on the companion book for men; it should be available in Spring 2000.)

I hope this helps, and if any readers have thoughts or suggestions regarding anal sex, by all means send 'em in!

-- Uncle Bill

What your mother probably never told you was that Uncle Bill & Auntie Andrea are available to answer all your questions on sex, love, relationships, et cetera. Send them c/o Anything That Moves, 2261 Market St., #496, San Francisco, CA 94114-1600, or email We'll only use your initials or a pen name, so don't worry, your mother won't find out...

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