It’s completely dark. You can barely breathe; the pungent air is stifled and stagnant. You’re choking, gagging and you’re not sure when it will be over. Sweat drips down your face as you feel a strong hand push you down further. No, this is not some strange unthinkable torture — you’re giving a blow job.
Sure, blow jobs aren’t always that terrifying. Most of the time they are only moderately uncomfortable, and the pleasure elicited from your partner is worth it. Maybe the guy is really nice and just lets you do your thing down there, however far you want to go, without shoving your head down like some kind of sexual curb stomping. Hopefully you really like him and by sucking on his penis you are demonstrating your unselfish love.
But usually not. I find that many times, fellatio is the drive-through McDonald’s of sexual acts — cheap, crude and wildly pleasurable for some while intensely disgusting to others. Sure, it’s portable and can be eaten in the car, but so many other choices are better for you and more delicious.
So why do people give blow jobs? A man’s simple answer is, “Because it’s awesome!” But for the person who is shoving a penis down his or her throat, it is definitely not awesome. So why?
Maybe your religion dictates that you must wait until the holy, infallible bonds of marriage to have sex but you love your boyfriend and want to express this love in a physical manner, so you give him head regularly. I guess this is what I don’t understand: How are blow jobs more virginal than sex with penetration? Certainly no one is embodying purity when they have a penis in their mouth. After I’ve given a blow job, I feel way less holy and spiritual than after I’ve had amazing, mutually respectful sex. And I was raised Catholic, so I know what the constant overtone of religious guilt feels like. I have to fight off this guilt and tell myself I’m a good person practically every time I turn an assignment in late or forget to compost.
Religion aside, let’s start at the beginning. Many a blow jobber is born during the special teen years of personal growth and burgeoning sexuality. The preferred choice of young couples, blow jobs won’t get you pregnant and allow you to hold on to your V-card. I remember my first blow job: kneeling on the beige carpets in the game room of his parents’ house, I was topless and awkward. This is one of the dear memories from my youth I’ll hold onto for the rest of my life.
Sometime between this first blow job and now, I lost my virginity. I’m making a generalization here, but I would say most people giving blow jobs in college are not virgins — so, again, why give head?
Many groups of men expect at least a blow job when they bring someone home at the end of the night. For better or worse, this is part of our college culture, so anyone with a mouth may feel pressured in these situations. One partner may feel that the other will be disappointed or won’t like her if she doesn’t “put out.” So if she doesn’t want to have sex, she may feel compelled to perform other sexual acts because she feels guilty about not going all the way.
But this is completely unacceptable, especially since giving blow jobs has the potential to be really horrific. Any and all sex should be about having an intense desire for the other person, not placating them until they leave you alone.
A more confident woman might say, “I don’t go down until you do,” which is, I guess, empowerment. But giving blow jobs can be demeaning, no matter how confident and self-assured you are. I mean you’re cramming a dick in your mouth. Your mouth, from which you speak your mind and opinions, is being filled with male genitalia.
Personally, I would rather just have sex.
Morgan T. is a junior in the College of Human Ecology. She may be reached at email@example.com . After Midnight appears alternate Thursdays this semester.