Is the Ass the new Vagina?

Back in the heady days of college, my first sexual experiences were awkward and inhibited. My first girlfriend was a virgin, just like I was, and that meant most of what we knew about sex we learned from awkward experimentation or the x-rated VHS tapes we rented (while extremely red-faced and embarrassed) from our local video store.

Some part of our x-rated education she took to immediately (for a virgin, she certainly learned to give great head.) Other aspects – not so much. The first time she watched an anal scene, for example, her immediate response was: “Ewwww! That’s gross.”As it turned out, she did eventually warm to anal – largely thanks to the fact that we were impoverished students who couldn’t afford condoms, and ‘you couldn’t get pregnant that way.’ Later, she even secretly developed a bit of a thrill knowing that she was doing something ‘dirty’ that none of her girlfriends would ever let their boyfriends do to them (or, at least, not that they’d admit to.)Anal sex back then was considered dirty and forbidden.

But flash forward almost fifteen years, to a bridal shower with a bunch of girls toasting to their soon not-to-be-single friend, and it appeared the opposite was the case. I was waiting for my wife at a brunch bar, and idly eavesdropping on the bridal banter. My ears perked up when one of the girls joked that the bride’s wedding night would be a bit of an anti-climax – as she’d been living with the groom for a year before the wedding and had presumably pre-consummated their marriage many times before the big day. In response, her pal joked that there was another ‘virginity’ she could give up that night – until the bride herself admitted cheekily “too late for that!”

Leaning a little closer, I listened in on what turned out to be a candid – and colorful – conversation about the ins, outs and back-ins again of anal sex.

“Birthdays and Christmas only,” joked one wife. “When I want him to do something,” joked another. “Actually,” admitted the third, “I rather like it, myself.” She then proceeded to discuss keeping it clean, what kind of lubrication to use and even her favorite position (the third wife liked anal when she was on her back. When pressed, the others admitted to only attempting it doggy style.)

In addition to an impromptu erection, the anal-themed conversation also gave me a unique peek into how things had changed over the last decade and a half.

Sodomy had gone from being a sinful secret to becoming an almost socially-acceptable topic of conversation (at least after a few mimosas.) Here were a bunch of girls discussing lubes and ‘loosening up’ as casually as they discussed nail polish and Pilates.

[…]

What I find remarkable, though, is what a complete 360 has occured. In the space of my (brief) sexual career, we’ve gone from women like my first girlfriend fretting that they’re ‘sluts’ for giving boys a backdoor entry – to anally-enthusiastic women like my wife positively dismissing girls who don’t do anal. “They’re prudes,” she says.

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