Biggest Sex Myths – Exposed! What Really Happens Between the Sheets?

MYTH #1: You can’t get pregnant if you do it standing up. FACT: Sperm are Olympic-class swimmers with a single-mission mentality – find the egg and fertilize it.

The myth's underlying assumption – that it’s harder for sperm to swim against gravity, making it more difficult for you to get pregnant – is wrong,” says Aletha Akers, M.D., MPH, assistant professor of gynecology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. “Sperm can swim in any direction, and they swim pretty darn fast.”

MYTH #2: You can’t get pregnant if he pulls out. FACT: You’d think that if a guy doesn’t ejaculate inside you, there would be no sperm to hook up with the egg. Wrong.

Men produce a tiny bit of liquid called “pre-ejaculate” that’s teeming with sperm. They can release it any time during sex without even realizing it.

Even if your partner pulls out right before ejaculation, he’s probably already deposited sperm, Akers warns.

MYTH #3: Douching is the best way to keep clean down there.
FACT: About 20-40% of women douche – and half do so weekly. 
But the best way to keep your nether region clean is to leave it alone, gynecologists say.

“People think it’s like cleaning any other part of your body, but your vagina has its own self-cleaning mechanism,” Akers explains. “It produces its own fluids that help to wash things out while also keeping the right bacteria around in the right proportions.”
Homemade or store-bought douches (usually solutions of water, vinegar, baking soda or iodine) upset the vagina’s natural bacteria balance and increase the risk for yeast and other vaginal infections.

Because douching can push bacteria from the vagina higher into the reproductive organs, it may also contribute to pelvic inflammatory disease, a major cause of infertility.

MYTH #4: You can get herpes only if you have sex when your partner has an outbreak.
FACT: Transmission risk is highest during an outbreak, but because carriers can always shed herpes virus, they can also infect their partners at any time during unprotected sex, says Ashlyn Savage, M.D., assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 11% of men and 23% of women have genital herpes; 56% of men and 60% of women have oral herpes, which can spread to the genitals through oral sex.
To prevent its spread, avoid sex during outbreaks and always use condoms for intercourse and dental dams for oral sex. 

Won’t condoms protect during an outbreak too? Not always.

“Herpes is a skin infection, not something transmitted by bodily fluids like HIV or gonorrhea,” Savage says. “If either partner has an open sore outside the area covered by a condom, they could transmit herpes even with a condom.”

MYTH #5: If you’re aroused, you shouldn’t need lubricant.
FACT: Needing more lubrication than your body produces doesn't mean you're not aroused.
“A lot of people equate wetness with how turned on they are, but that’s not necessarily an accurate barometer,” says Anne Semans, co-author of Good Vibrations Guide To Sex (Pleis Press).

Your monthly cycle, pregnancy, illness, menopause, medications (such as antihistamines and decongestants) can affect lubrication, no matter how much water you drink.

And if you’re using condoms – including lubricated ones – you’ll need extra lube.

Latex doesn’t slide well even if you are naturally lubricated, Savage says.

MYTH #6: You can become addicted to your vibrator.
FACT: Even if you climax faster and more easily with battery-powered assistance, a vibrator won’t ruin your ability to achieve orgasm with your partner, sexperts say.

“We can still have orgasms if we take the time, but we’re so used to the quick response we get from the vibrator that we get impatient and give up,” says Ellen Barnard, a sex educator/counselor and co-founder of A Woman’s Touch in Madison, Wisconsin (

Still, if you’re worried, Semans has advice: “Put your vibrator away for a few months and you’ll find that your response to fingers or a tongue comes back.” Or you can introduce your partner to the vibrator, especially if you’re self-conscious about how long it takes you to climax without one.

“Most women feel OK with their partner’s hand on their clitoris,” Semans says. “So putting a fingertip vibrator on his finger just adds a little extra buzz.”

MYTH #7: Bigger is better.
FACT: Some women have definite size preferences, says Carol Queen, Ph.D., staff sexologist at the online sex toy boutique Good Vibrations (
But a huge package doesn’t automatically translate into mind-boggling sex. In fact, women complain more often that their partner is too big, not too small, sexperts say.

“There’s more to erotic pleasure than size,” Queen says. “It’s about how a guy uses his hands or mouth or how sexy a woman feels before she gets to the bedroom.”

If you want something bigger, your partner can wear rings or sleeves that add length and girth.

And do Kegel exercises, Barnard says. They’ll tighten your pelvic floor muscles and let you “adapt to whatever size partner you have.”

MYTH #8: All women can experience orgasm just through vaginal penetration.
FACT: Only about 20-30% of women experience orgasm through intercourse alone, so don’t be shy about reaching down and giving yourself a hand or a buzz. “Putting your hand on your clitoris during sex really ups the chances that you’ll have an orgasm,” Queen says.

MYTH #9: There’s no such thing as the G-spot.
FACT: Like the lost city of Atlantis, this pleasure zone’s exact location sparks great debate. There’s no consensus on where to find it.

Some sex researchers say it’s the glandular tissue around the urethra (found behind your pubic bone, about two inches inside your vagina). Others believe it’s farther back, in a triangular area on the back of the bladder wall – called the trigone or T Zone – where three nerves come together. For more on the G-spot, click here.

Pinpointing the G-spot’s location may not be crucial, though, because your body has many sensitive nerves down there.

What stimulates one spot is likely to arouse surrounding areas.

“It’s pretty much all going to be working together,” Queen says.


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