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Honey asks:

I've read that the head of men's penises are very sensitive, or the vein on the underside. But my boyfriend doesn't seem to be affected by it too much. In fact if it wasn't for the fact that he thrusts into my mouth when I go down on him, I would think he was completely unaffected. Could it be my technique or is he just really unresponsive or maybe even a little hardened by sex after indulging (with the same girl) in the past?

Sarah replies:

Are you ticklish? Or do you know people who are ticklish?

I'm really really ticklish on my knees. Touch my knees and I absolutely go crazy! My partner, however, is totally unmoved by knee contact. In fact, he's only really ticklish on his feet and elbows. My sister's tummy is her most ticklish spot.

I'm sure by this point you're wondering why I brought this up. Well, it's a pretty similar situation when it comes to sensitivity. Just like not everybody is ticklish in the same spots, not everyone is going to be sensitive in the same spots or same ways. In general, genitals do tend to be more sensitive than other parts of our bodies. This happens because there are so many more nerves tightly packed into those areas. However, even with that, not every person is going to have the exact same level of sensitivity or is going to react to stimulation the same way. Engaging in sex (no matter how many times or with how many people) is not going to "harden" us to stimulation or make us unresponsive. Occasionally, we may become a bit more attuned to a certain type of stimulation and it can become a bit easier to react to that type of stimulation. But this is by no means a permanent thing nor does it mean there's anything wrong. We find the same thing with masturbation, for example. You may find one specific way to stimulating things that just "does it" for you, so you'll tend to do that and will respond more quickly to that specific stimulus. This doesn't make you unable to respond to other stimuli, it just means it's easier with that specific one.

So there are a couple of things to consider here. First, not everybody responds the same way or to the same thing. This doesn't mean there's anything wrong with your partner or that you're "doing it wrong" per say. It just means that one type of sensation or stimulation of another area might work better. This is something to discuss with your partner. Ask him how he's feeling or if he'd like you to try something else and then respond to that. There's really no one-size-fits-all here. Next, you say your partner doesn't seem affected. What response are you expecting? Often, we may expect a partner to respond in a certain way and are then are disappointed when they don't give that exact response. It's certainly possible that your partner is totally enjoying what's going on, but you may just not be picking up on that. If your partner is not telling you verbally what he's feeling, then you're left to evaluate his nonverbal signals. When it comes to communication, nonverbal signs are some of the most difficult to translate for people. They're really ambiguous! So your partner may be enjoying what's going on, he just may not be communicating it to you (or you may be misunderstanding it) in the most effective way. Again, the answer here is to talk with your partner about it. Ask him how he's feeling.

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Question:

I will be a junior in high school next year, and because I've been lucky to stumble on a lot of really great sex-positive resources, I've learned I have a pretty strong interest in sexuality--as in, studying it/doing something in it as a career. However, getting information about this field is much more difficult than, say, engineering or law. What are jobs within this field, what are areas in college/majors you'd advise, and what are some ways I can get involved now, as a minor? My areas of interest are not really in the medical field--I'm more interested in counseling, giving advice, activism, and education

Also, do you have any advice for telling people about my interest? Right now the only person who knows is my boyfriend, because it's really difficult for me to trust most other people to not equivocate wanting to study sexuality with being obsessed with having sex. Esp my parents, who are politically liberal in every way except in their parenting. They ask me what I want to do with my life really often, and it's kinda stressful to not be able to talk to them.

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