I’m sneaking into this gap in the guest posts, to address something that bugs me: Why does it always hurt, the first time a woman has sex in a romance novel?
I know that for a lot of women it is an uncomfortable experience, for one reason or another, but losing your virginity isn’t inherently uncomfortable. But in all virgin-romances there’s this moment – whether she’s into the sex or not, as soon as he’s “fully sheathed” it suddenly stops feeling good, and goes on being painful until he moves in just the right way.
I have two problems with this:
1) The first time I had sex was transcendental. Nothing had ever felt that good. Sex has been a lot more interesting since that chaste, naive thing, but almost never so completely good, so completely transporting, so completely free of anything but sensation and wonder. And I was 16, so it’s not like I was experienced, or even understood my own body or all the mechanics of sex;
and 2) When sex is uncomfortable, the man moving around all up in there rarely makes it less so.
Of course, sex is a highly subjective thing, so that could just be me. But as it’s highly subjective, I wish more female characters got to have more varied experiences. (And I’m not even touching on the Unalterable Truth that sex is always, always amazing for men.)
Why always this moment of discomfort? Is it to mark the transition from virgin to not-virgin? The pang innocence makes on its way out of the body? Is it because sex should never, ever be a purely pleasurable thing, and we must first pay the price for it?
Also – do you have any idea how hard it was not to put the ‘ph’ into that heading?
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