NSFW Lesbosexy Sunday May Or May Not Be Having Sex At Work

Welcome to NSFW Sunday!

+ Activist, author and founder of the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom Susan Wright spoke to the Rumpus about what’s considered sexually deviant at each cultural moment, stigma around kinky sex, consent and more:

“There’s not a single person out there whose life hasn’t been touched by the issue of consent. When do you consent, when are you coerced, pressured, or manipulated into doing things you don’t want to do sexually? We all need sex education about consent, and safe sex is what it comes down to. Perhaps the kink community is ahead of the curve because we do such complicated, interested games, that we have to understand each other and need to have a way to follow the rules in order to do this—because millions of people are doing this millions of times. That is important for everyone to hear because we aren’t hearing it from anyone else.”

+ Food- and animal-based words dominate pet names around the world. Why not start calling your activity partner a little cabbage?:

“”Chou” (cabbage) is the French equivalent of “sweetheart”. “Chou” conveys the idea of being small and round and is used to describe French puff pastry, often enjoyed as “chou a la creme”. “Chou” is said to resemble a baby’s or child’s head too. Over the years, many French children have been told that boys were born in cabbages and girls in roses. You can double it too – “chouchou” is a standard translation for “darling”.”

Sharam Diniz via GQ Portugal April 2013 via fuckyeahmostlymodels

Sharam Diniz via GQ Portugal April 2013 via fuckyeahmostlymodels

+ Betty Dodson gives advice to someone who doesn’t think she’s ever had an orgasm:

“Chances are good you are having orgasms but due to your exaggerated idea of what that will feel like you cannot identify what’s actually happening to your body. Check out these links. Squirting is NOT the same as having orgasm. Stop watching porn or listening to what other people say. Instead pay attention to what’s happening in your body without any expectations! There is a huge range of orgasms. They are not all a Big O. Some are sweet and many are fun but not earth shattering. If your body wasn’t responding with an orgasm, you wouldn’t have continued masturbating.”

+ Sometimes sex hurts (unintentionally). Position, lube, going slow, thinking about sex differently and talking to your gynaecologist might all help:

“Painful sex, whether as a result of a lack of lubrication, or stemming from more serious health problems, injury or surgery, is quite common. A study released by the University of Chicago in 1999 reported that 21 percent of women between the age of 20 and 29 experienced pain with intercourse. In fact, women of all ages, as well as men, may experience sexual pain at some point in their lives. But when it goes on too long, what suffers most is our relationships.”

+ Business Insider recently conducted a survey on sex at work. Among other findings, 84% of respondents said people at the same company should be allowed to have sex; 92% said they shouldn’t have to tell HR about it and, of people who have slept with their colleagues, 17% do so frequently.

+ Tracy Clark-Flory rounds up the best of Tumblr porn, including Art or Porn, Stuff in My Vagina and Indifferent Cats in Amateur Porn.

Chloe Marshall via curvy is the new black

Chloe Marshall via curvy is the new black

+ There are 9 ways to describe making out that aren’t “making out.”

+ There are lots of household-object takes on BDSM toys. Wooden spoons, pastry brushes, chip clips, pet collars and more are all possibilities.

via curves in color

Dilyara Larina via curves in color

+ People are still embarrassed about their sexual histories, according to a new study from Ohio University:

“Men and women appeared to be less hesitant to admit to activities that might be associated with the opposite sex, as long as they didn’t involve sexual behavior. When it came to intercourse, men and women appeared to be intent on answering along stereotypical expectations, Fisher said.

Fisher said the findings should raise flags with researchers who use surveys to study sexuality. “It is possible that people are more motivated to hide sexual behavior that is not in keeping with gender norms than other types of behavior,” Fisher wrote.”


All of the photographs on NSFW Sundays are taken from various tumblrs and do not belong to us. All are linked and credited to the best of our abilities in hopes of attracting more traffic to the tumblrs and photographers who have blessed us with this imagery. The inclusion of a photograph here should not be interpreted as an assertion of the model’s gender identity or sexual orientation. If there is a photo included here that belongs to you and you want it removed, please email bren [at] autostraddle dot com and it will be removed promptly, no questions asked.


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Ryan Yates

Ryan Yates was the NSFW Editor (2013–2018) and Literary Editor for Autostraddle.com, with bylines in Nylon, Refinery29, The Toast, Bitch, The Daily Beast, Jezebel, and elsewhere. They live in Los Angeles and also on twitter and instagram.

Ryan has written 1142 articles for us.

24 Comments

  1. I really sort of hate when painful sex is brought up, because there’s so much ignorance and societal expectations and THOSE are what mess with relationships.
    Someone very, very close to me has been married for twenty-five years and she HATES the sex. It’s painful. And she thinks that she has to give her husband sex or he’ll leave her. It’s a miserable existence, I’m sure.
    In these studies, it’s mostly all about one kind of sex: penetrative. And the thing is, as we lesbians know, there are many, many other ways to have sex without involving a penis or phallic object, or penetration in general. Just because you don’t find penetration enjoyable doesn’t mean there’s something wrong with you, maybe you just plain don’t like it. I’ve stopped caring, really, why I don’t want penises or phallic objects or penetration as a part of my sexual encounters. Is it a physical issue? Only caused by my PTSD? I don’t know. Probably? I don’t really care. Because, again, I still have a sex life, and it’s pretty great.
    Dan Savage says all the time in his sex column that if you don’t like penetration, because A LOT of women don’t and just don’t really talk about it, EXPLORE. Tongues are great. Oral SEX is still SEX. And anyway, sex is about so much more than getting off. In the end, it doesn’t matter WHY you don’t like it. You don’t need fixing. You just get the brilliant and beautiful opportunity to explore, find better ways to orgasm, and learn your body and what it likes.
    Just struck a nerve, I guess.

    • Agreed. Really it’s whatever floats your boat and finding a compatible person who floats it, unless of course you like to float it yourself, or not at all (ie: asexual/demisexual persuasion comes to mind as well). Also, to add on to this, there’s also a point when people get older and can no longer do certain things, or they have certain disabilities, etc. You have to get creative, find what works for you and or the people you have sex with (or don’t have sex with) and go from there. Hopefully someone is understanding toward what ever you choose, but that isn’t always the case due to said societal expectations. Consent, understanding, patience and communication is a wonderful thing when everyone is on the same page.

    • I understand what you mean, but I think in this case it’s about a slightly different scenario than not liking penetration because it hurts (and in which case, I totally agree, why on earth force or train yourself to do something sexually that you don’t enjoy?). In my case, I try to find as much advice as I can on the subject (because my flurry of gynecologists have been at the most apologetic and at the least insulting) because my problem is (in a sexual context, not an exam or a menstrual-product situation), I like penetration. I really, really like it. And sometimes it likes me back. But then, unpredictably, bam, it hurts abominably.

      Because I know penetration is something I genuinely want to explore and that sometimes works fine for my body, I really want to remedy the problem, or at least understand what the red flags are so I know when my body is not into it. I’m not trying to fix myself, just help myself enjoy something and avoid injury.

    • This is a hard topic for me, too. I was raised hearing that penetrative penis-in-vagina sex was the end-all be-all of sex. I knew from the time I started exploring my own body and becoming aware of my own sexuality that I didn’t want or like being penetrated, not even by a tampon. I know tampons aren’t supposed to be enjoyable to use, but they were very, very painful for me and got me started on a really unhealthy path that, unfortunately, I only left about a year ago.

      I spent over 10 years of my life trying really hard to make myself learn to like penetration because I assumed that I had to end up with a man, but no man would never love me if I didn’t want to let him stick his dick in me. I put myself through an insane amount of physical and psychological pain over this because no one ever bothered to teach me that, one, not all women want or like penetration and that’s completely okay, and two, I’m not actually obligated to end up with a man.

      Earlier this year I was diagnosed with a yeast infection for the first time. This shocked me because the symptoms my gyno picked up on were things that I always thought were normal. I’ve always been on the dry side, my vagina has always looked more red than pink any time I ever looked at it, it has always been extremely easily irritated by any type of friction or contact, and even inserting a small well-lubricated tampon was extremely painful. But since I’ve had these symptoms ever since I can remember, I never thought to ask whether they were really “normal.” I just assumed sex was either very painful for all women, or that I just hadn’t learned how to “do it right” yet so I just had to keep trying.

      Obviously that’s a very unhealthy way to think about sex, but it’s not that surprising considering how terrible my sex ed was. I learned infinitely more from the internet than I ever learned in school about my own body. Still, even online you usually see lots of threads offering women advice about how to enjoy penetration and “fix” whatever problems they’re having. In my own experience, removing the source of the pain (like a yeast infection that may have been there for years) doesn’t magically make you desire penetration if you never really wanted it in the first place. So none of these threads ever offered me any advice that really helped because they were written by and for women who wanted pain-free penetration.

      I don’t know which comes first – painful penetration or lack of desire for it – but I don’t think it matters. Whether you want penetration or not, if it hurts you need to take care of yourself and get it checked out. If you DO have a medical problem, get it treated so you can be healthy – NOT so you can be a good penis receptacle. All women deserve to have the option of pain-free penetration whether they ever want to try it or not.

      • Oh my god. Yes.
        I remember finding out how sex worked and announcing that I just wasn’t going to get married, then, or get married under the condition that my husband wasn’t allowed to do that. My mom told me that I’d do it, because you’re supposed to want to please your husband.
        I started my period while living with my post-menopausal grandmother, who came from a time pre-tampons, so it was easy for me to shy away from them until I was locked in a bathroom by my foster mom and foster sisters and told I couldn’t come out until I could get it up. It hurt like HELL. Even just thinking about it makes my stomach hurt. So painful. My foster mom, my mother, my sisters, they all said after that point that I just had to have sex first, and after that, I’d be able to handle tampons.
        So yeah, like you, I don’t know which came first. There was also sexual trauma so I don’t know if that helped (it DEFINITELY caused my aversion to even having phallic things near me). But honestly, it REALLY doesn’t affect my life except for dealing with ignorant people. I’ve learned to be very communicative with people I’m sleeping with and I don’t really let penises/dildos/strapons/other penetrative toys in my bed. Do I sometimes feel like I’m missing out? Sure, but I think that’s societal. My sex is fabulous without it, and several studies show the best sex isn’t even penetrative. I consider my sex life a little radical.
        I think a lot of women have a lot of shame surrounding it, and that’s just sad. Hmmmm.

        • I have never been able to use tampons because of the pain. Honestly thought until now I was the only one.

          This discussion actually changed my view of myself, something I have been thinking about myself for a very long time. Does not happen very often. Thank you, Autostraddle.

        • “I consider my sex life a little radical.”
          Thank you for saying that actually. This is a thing I struggle with because of physical pain and trauma. So I can’t do penetration and I don’t really want to try and change that because I’ve reached a point where it doesn’t even appeal. But I’ve always felt… defective because of it. Maybe this makes me a big cliche, but framing it in a more empowering way actually helps. So thanks for your insightful comments on the subject.

    • I’m one of those people for whom painful sex became a bit of a problem; in my case I used lube and it was okay some of the time – then I changed medication for other reasons and was fine again. (Unfortunately, the new one seems to have ruined my ability to orgasm – but this bothers my partner more than me.)

      I also had problems with being touched (which occasionally crop but and I wait for them to go) that I had to work on – if I’d just accepted it I would miss out on some of the stuff I really like now.

      On the other hand, if you (general you, not you specifically) don’t want to – for whatever reason – I agree that you shouldn’t have to subscribe to the “standard” sex. In some ways, I suppose it depends on whether its becoming a problem for you and your relationship then perhaps trying to change something, whether it be your bodily response (e.g., treatment for vagimus) or the way you have sex.

  2. I encourage anyone experiencing painful intercourse that makes them unhappy (who hasn’t already found a helpful professional) to talk to a physical therapist specializing in pelvic floor dysfunction (if possible by proximity or insurance). I saw one recently for an unrelated thing, but she had all this information in her office on different types of painful intercourse/vaginismus that you normally don’t see in a gyno’s office. I commented on how nice it was to see that, and she said that it was a thing that gets less attention/research than it should.

    • The phrase “sucking face” always conjures up images of octopus tentacles latching on to my face with those suction cup things. And as I say that, I’m reminded that my brain is a weird place to live.

  3. “If your body wasn’t responding with an orgasm, you wouldn’t have continued masturbating.”

    Sorry, WHAT? No. Untrue. Don’t sit there and tell me that my years and years of angst about my very real inability to orgasm, followed by my amazingly cathartic triumph when I finally did have one, were all just silly things I imagined and never actually a big deal at all because I was totally orgasming and just too dumb to realize it. No. Some women just can’t orgasm sometimes, and the inability to orgasm doesn’t mean the inability to experience sexual pleasure.

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