A few quick questions
I was actually searching for something very specific when I typed the words “1993, blowjob survey” into the search machine, and in my defense, I can only say it was early in the morning, and I’d not thought of any more specific parameters. But still I was astonished by just how many hits... and I mean different hits, not just multiple websites, all repeating the same things... were returned.
I think we all, long ago, came to the conclusion that, without cats and sex, the internet, as we know it, would be dead. And, let’s face it, we all enjoy questionnaires. Even (or should that be “especially”) the rude ones. But it still amazed me, just how many people wanted to know the answers to a few specific questions. And how many more, secure in their online anonymity, were willing to answer them.
How old were you when you first sucked cock?
Did you like it?
Where did he cum?
Did you enjoy that?
Did you want to do it again?
How many different men have you blown since then?
And so on and so forth. A lot of surveys... not so many different questions, I noticed, as I read through them. And not so many different answers, either. But all of them happy to share their experiences. Or, and the more I read, the more the feeling grew... make their confession.
Some seemed defiant. “Yes, I do/don’t like it. So what?” Others seemed guilty: “I really didn’t think I’d enjoy it but....” Very very few felt unequivocal, and that surprised me, because if the last few years of “sex advice” writing have told us anything, it is that oral sex has either become so devalued or so boring, that it is now widely regarded as no more consequential than a goodnight kiss.
We have all heard the stories about the kids and unmarried who loudly practice sexual abstinence, but have developed a get-out clause around the blowjob, and I don’t know if those tales are apocryphal or not. But the fact they are so common suggests that someone, somewhere, agrees with Bill Clinton’s insistence that he “did not have sex with that woman.” He just fucked her face and then blew his load all over her dress. Glad we have that sorted out.
The blowjob is out in the open. Check the shelves in your local bookstore. “Oral technique” now, more or less, has its own shelf. Check the statutes. It is no longer illegal (at least in most states). It is no longer the province of cheap whores and hurried assignations (although there’s no harm in pretending). And it’s no longer even close to the line that the prime time TV and mainstream movies are unable to cross, for fear of censure.
Observers of a certain age might still be able to speak in hushed and reverent tones of the first time they ever saw a blowjob enacted outside of a porn film... in the Swedish movie I Am Curious, Yellow (1969); onstage at a David Bowie concert, when he knelt to fellate his guitarist’s guitar (1973); in Frank N Furter’s silhouetted bedroom in the Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975); in the first bedroom scene in British television’s [Bouquet of Barbed Wire] (1976).
Look again at those dates, though. Even the most recent was close to forty years ago, and if you then consider that the Lewinsky affair is now around a decade and a half in the past - well, of course attitudes have changed. That’s a long time for anyone to keep such a delicious thing secret.
But just because a secret is “out there” does not mean it is necessarily easier to explain. And that is where the guilt, the defiance and - this is the word that we are going to try and define here - the mystique still lay. Because we can joke and smirk and discuss the pros and cons all day. Still no words and, to be honest, no photographs, film or even first-hand voyeurism can capture, let alone negate, the depth of intimacy that the act entails. The deployment not only of the usual five senses (all of which are in overdrive the entire session long), but of a few more you’re not otherwise cognizant of. The intricate and so delicately balanced awareness of another person’s body and your total command over the sensations he feels. And, yes, the knowledge that you are offering a gift that a lot of guys still feel awkward about asking for. As the informal questioning of some of my friends recently revealed (see, I told you we all love questionnaires).
Does your boyfriend/husband/partner ask for a blowjob? Or does he simply live in hope, and trust that body language and your own lust will bring it to pass? Nine out of ten... well, actually three out of four... chose the latter scenario, and the odd one out didn’t answer, because she doesn’t like doing it. So she doesn’t simply ignore every entreaty he makes. She claims she’s not even aware of them.
And there’s another change. For the last couple of years, I have been writing and researching the history of blowjobs (it’s okay, this isn’t an advert... I’m nowhere close to finished) and reading through as much relevant literature as I can. Attempting to pinpoint, among other things, the moment in history when society (or, at least, the writers) finally acknowledged that giving a blowjob is not simply down to the woman wanting to pleasure her partner. She wants to pleasure herself as well. Or not, as in the case of that fourth friend.
It is a recent development. When I first started publishing erotic stories a decade ago, the biggest complaint that I heard from readers (male and female) was that “my” responses to certain stimuli ... okay, bluntly? To having a cock in my mouth... were unbelievable, because “most women don’t think like that". They don’t fantasize about sucking two or more dicks at once. They don’t orgasm simply from the taste, sensation or experience. “Most girls don’t even like doing it."
Now, you know and I know that’s not true. Believe me, if “most girls” didn’t like doing it, most girls wouldn’t do it, and blowjobs would have gone out of fashion around the same time as Noah’s flood. Maybe they didn’t talk about liking it, and there’s a mountain of societal and cultural reasons why that should have been the case.
But from the cult of the Greek demi-goddess Empousa; through the Egyptian myth of Osiris and his sister (he was cut into pieces, she brought him back to life by blowing a reed she placed between his legs); onto Cleopatra’s fabled fellating of a hundred Romans in a night; and onwards and onwards through time, women not only sought out the opportunity to wrap a tongue around a tool, they relished it as well. And no, it wasn’t simply a power play, because we all know that a guy is far more pliable when he’s hoping to get his dick sucked, than when he’s actually having or had it done.
No, it was just something that girls didn’t talk about. And our silence was construed as passive disapproval. Or as reinforcement of that age old canard, “nice girls don’t.”
Nice Girls Might
Nice girls don’t open their mouths as wide as they can go, then suck and slobber on their boyfriend’s pee-pee. Nice girls don’t eye up the bulge in a cute stranger’s pants, and wonder whether their jaw could handle it. Nice girls don’t get wet between the legs, as they coat a cock in saliva. Nice girls don’t spit and they certainly don’t swallow. And nice guys tend not to ask them to.
Which brings me, finally, to the survey I was searching for when I started this article, which turns that argument around on its head and insists that actually, nice girls do all those things and more. A 1993 French report, “Sexual Behavior In France” by A. Spira and N. Bajos, that declared the majority of women who willingly give head, tend to be educated, smart, and well-to-do.
Which is separate to another report, from around the same time (and which I can only find anecdotal reference to), which claimed that two out of three women perform oral on a regular basis, out of a sense of obligation, and that only one-third of us do it because it’s fun.
I’m not an expert on demographics - I really cannot say whether or not those two sets of statistics contradict one another or not. But somehow, I’m having trouble believing either one; the notion that “smart girls like sucking cock” immediately prejudices every college graduate who doesn’t, not to mention every high school drop-out who does. And the idea that two-thirds of women do it out of a sense of obligation will probably be laughed out of the room by any guy who has ever tried to convince his girl to do something she doesn’t want to. If he can’t even persuade her to go to the auto show with him, what hope does he have of cumming in her mouth?
But I do wonder whether there is a “certain type” who favors giving head more? And, if so, what is it?
A woman who is in tune with her own body’s requirements? There is growing scientific evidence, to match several millennium of folk belief, that both male sperm and the pre-cum that precedes it, contain natural ingredients that aren’t simply healthy, they can also help combat various physical and psychological ills.
A woman who knows what she wants and gets it? Vague, but worth considering. It would certainly make an interesting question for, say, certain politicians.
Another dim remembrance from past readings - smokers are more likely to enjoy fellatio than non-smokers. Something to do with oral fixations. True or false? And where does that leave us in an age when smoking itself is falling ever faster from fashion? Or, to turn it around, where did that leave us in the centuries before cigarettes were invented?
Other theories abound - some are distasteful, some are laughable; all have been voiced seriously by researchers and commentators over the years. “The fulfillment of a certain kind of rape/violation fantasy." “The natural feminine instinct to submit." Or, delightfully contradictorily, “a rebellion against the accepted standards of femininity." I’m putting these in inverted commas because I can’t reach the trashcan from here, and there are plenty more where they came from.
So many theories, so many attempts to answer the question. But you know what? I’m beginning to think it might simply be one of those great unanswerable conundrums, along the lines of “how heavy is a box of books?” or “how long is a piece of string?” Offhand, still sipping only my second coffee of the day, while contemplating my third cigarette, I can think of half a dozen reasons why I love sucking cock, not one of which has anything to do with education, status, wellfullness, rebellion, self-disgust or even the fact that I still chew pens and pencils, even when I’m working at my laptop.
I like the mechanics. I like the motion. I like the moaning (his and mine). I like the musk. And I like the mess. But most of all, I like the mystique.
How about you?