One of my first clients was a woman in her 70’s who, after talking to me, wanted to know where things were down there. She had been raised in a strict Catholic setting, and although she had been married and borne a child, she had divorced several years later, and had never really thought about her nether parts since then.
So I offered to take her on a tour of her own female parts. I am still surprised that so many women have never taken the time to look at or explore this area of themselves. Many of us were shamed as children, and told that it was ‘dirty’, or we had to cover that part up. But really, its about time we reclaimed our own sovereignty around our genitals!
If you take a mirror and get comfy in a private space, it can be an enlightening experience to see what we look like. It really is one of the most amazing parts of the body. We hear the words thrown around these days, clitoris, G-spot, vulva, perineal sponge, cervix. So where are these exotic places?
First of all, as you look at yourself between your legs, where all the pubic hair is (or was, if you remove it), the whole area is called the vulva. You can cup your hand over the whole thing with your fingers pointing towards the back. The palm of your hand will cover the mons or mound over the pubic bone, and your fingers will likely reach back to where the vaginal opening is.
As you curve your finger into the vaginal opening, you might feel a slightly ridged, firm area, just behind your urethral opening (where you pee). If you bear down with your pelvic floor muscles, this ridged area might move slightly further towards the vaginal opening, you might even be able to see it. This it the female prostate, or G-spot, aka, the urethral sponge. Just like in the male, the female prostatic tissue produces fluid that may be released during arousal as female ejaculate. The prostate gland surrounds the urethra, just like in the male, but in females, the prostatic tissue is spread out more and surrounds the urethra near the external opening. In the male, of course, the prostate gland surrounds the urethra, but up near the bladder.
As you explore this area, you will see a tiny opening, which is the urethral opening, just forward of the vaginal opening. As you drag your fingers up towards your pubic bone, you will find the clitoral head, usually tucked inside the ‘hood’. It feels like a round button, and becomes more prominent as you become aroused. The clitoris actually has a shaft, like the penis, which extends up from the head, and you can feel it if you roll your finger back and forth sideways just above the head. It also extends down the sides of your vulva, along the pubic bones, as the legs of the clitoris. You may find that pressure deep into the sides of your vulva, can feel really good as well, that’s because this area is part of the clitoris.
Now, if you go back to the vaginal opening, and insert your thumb half an inch to an inch inside and press towards the back, you will be in the area of the perineal sponge, which is also erectile tissue. Externally, the area between the vaginal opening and the anal opening is called the perineum (where an episiotomy is done usually). If you have had stitches or a tear here in childbirth, the area can be tender. This is due to scar tissue formation. (Something we can work on in coaching). Behind the perineum, is the anus, which is also a very sensitive pleasure area, as there are many nerve endings here too. If you have never explored the ‘back door’, I recommend feeling and massaging this area yourself. Have a shower, get some oil, or nice lube, and feel around, you might be surprised!
If you prefer to stick with the vagina for now, there is lots to explore in there too. To reach deeper inside, you may need a tool. There are many tools available, and some of them are shaped like an S, to give you leverage to move it around inside. Always go slowly and gently, as many women have to re-learn what it feels like to be touched inside with awareness. I find that everyone has their own unique spots on the vaginal wall that feel good, and maybe some that feel painful (again, usually scar tissue). If you do make it to the very back, you may be able to feel your cervix, which is the opening of the uterus. Sometimes our cervix is not directly at the end of the vagina, and may be off to the side slightly. This is one reason, the doctor sometimes has trouble getting in the right position to do a PAP smear. When a woman is aroused, she may find it pleasurable to touch, rub, or push against the cervix. It is possible to orgasm from stimulating this area, and most women find it feels different than either a clitoral orgasm or a G-spot one. Variety is good though right?
So, that is the end of the tour for today, there are so many cool things to see and learn about our genital area. If you have never explored, I invite you to try! And if you have, maybe explore at different times of the month, or in different states of arousal, to become more familiar with your own body. Knowledge is power! Have fun, and let me know how it goes!