5 Surprising Facts About Having Sex During Your Period​

couple red card in bedThese days period sex is the hottest bedroom taboo. Taboo? It's hardly even that anymore. What used to be a major no-no turns out to be no big deal at all for a lot of couples.

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Remember that passage in Fifty Shades of Grey where Christian yanks out Anastasia's tampon so they can make love against the bathroom sink? Me neither -- I never read the book. But the scene is making headlines because it's (GASP) not going in the movie version. Why not? The more we learn about period sex, the less scandalous it seems!

1. Many men seem to be okay with sex with women during their periods. I've got a news bulletin: Guys over 25 who are in committed relationships are over it. That's according to the couples in my circles, anyway. And you should see what the men of Reddit have to say about period sex. "You are not a man until you have blood on your sword" is one colorful comment. (There are some other hilarious one-liners too graphic to mention here, but you've got to read them.)

Okay, a few say they don't like it and think it's gross. But it's almost as if bravely "sailing the red seas" earns you a badge of manliness.

2. It doesn't have to be messy. You can use a dark towel (or a white, bleachable one) or have sex in the shower. But you could also try inserting a menstrual cup, vaginal sponge, or diaphragm. Many couples opt to skip the heaviest day but go for it on lighter days.

3. Yes, of course you can still get pregnant. Do NOT use your period as birth control! For so many reasons, you cannot assume you won't get pregnant if you have sex on your period.

4. Your risk for an STD or infection is higher. Practicing safe sex is especially important on your period. "Anything that allows for an easier passage to the body can theoretically increase your risk of infection," says Roya Rezaee, Co-Director of the Program for Sexual Health and Vulvovaginal Disorders, MacDonald Women's Hospital, Department of OB/GYN, University Hospitals Case Medical Center, and Assistant Professor in the Department of Reproductive Biology, Case Western University Medical Center. Your cervix is dilated enough for the passage of blood flow when you're on your period. And you have open blood vessels and you're sharing more body fluids. 

It's easier to pass on infections, and it's easier for someone to pass infections on to you. If you are HIV positive, have any other sexually transmitted disease, use needles, or have a partner with any of these, you should definitely not have sex on your period.

5. Sex on your period could ease your pain. "Having sex during your period may improve your symptoms," Rezaee says, "but that may not be true if you don't have an orgasm and you don't release those prostalglandins." Or it could have the reverse effect. "Some women actually have more pain when they have sex on their period," Rezaee adds. "And some women report they can only orgasm when they're on their periods." It varies widely! It all depends on you, your health, your mindset, and your partner.

What used to be a taboo has clearly become less so. It's all about whatever floats your boat, as long as you're playing safe. 

How do you feel about sex on your period?

 

Image via Maxiesgo/Shutterstock

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