IT is not much of a taboo topic anymore, and more and more couples are seemingly exploring the phenomenon of anal sex.
But are their explorations medically safe? Deviant? Or is it just a matter of how cautious you are?
“Status quo wants to maintain what is considered to be the proper or right action, and culture is maintaining the status quo,” he said, adding that publicly many people maintain the status quo but privately they do otherwise.
He said sexual acts are governed by our cultural and religious norms, so no matter what somebody says that is scientifically informed, if a belief is strong then people will do it.
He also explained that though anal penetration or anal sex has always been associated with male homosexuality, having anal sex doesn’t mean you’re homosexual.
“There is this one guy who I know who’s been married for many years but enjoys having anal sex with his wife more than vaginal sex and she’s growing accustomed to it, but he’s not a homosexual,” Dr McGill said.
The sex therapist stated that there are a number of couples who come in and contemplate anal sex because the men complain that they no longer enjoy sex as a result of numerous vaginal births.
“So a woman who wants her partner or husband to be sexually satisfied or a couple who’s fairly liberal may consider this [anal sex] as an alternative use,” he said.
He said while the primary purpose of the anus is to expel faecal matter, and at the beginning anal sex is painful, and there may be risks involved for the receiver and the penetrator, pleasure can be had and all people need is a little counselling.
“There are nerve endings in the rectum that some people find very pleasurable. So you’d recognise that this is not the primary purpose, but that there are benefits or pleasure once you take the necessary precautions to ensure that the person receiving is not harmed in any way and the person giving does not pick up infections,” the sex therapist said.
He added: “Sex is more than science; it has to do with feelings and a lot of the time feelings are irrational, so you have to take this into consideration when making decisions. If a couple is doing it and there’s no resistance from either party I am not going to discourage them. If a couple comes to me and one partner does not want to have anal sex, I’d be willing to explore the topic with them so that they can make decisions about their sexual activity. I’m not going to come out and say that this is right or wrong. It can be right or wrong depending on whom you’re doing it with. I want to stand on the fence in a neutral position and help people to sort out their lives in terms of what’s right for them or wrong for them.”
He said that there are many variables that should, however, be considered if you are going to have anal sex.
These include being free of sexually transmitted diseases, being screened for HIV, and taking into consideration if one partner is having multisexual relations.
Meanwhile, Dr Charles Rockhead, obstetrician-gynaecologist, said from a medical standpoint he cannot dictate to people or legislate sexual activity to individuals; rather he can only advise them as to the safest route.
“What I can do if they ask me about it is to help to prevent the complications or creating any damage. My view as a scientist and a physician is to prevent complications in a patient. If a man makes up his mind and says he wants to have anal sex with his wife, I can’t stop him. I can’t tell him don’t do it. That’s not my job. My job is to tell him how to prevent complications,” he said.
“If they ask me about it I’m not there to counsel them against it. I’m there to say if you do it, this should occur — that is, proper lubrication, proper sheathing. Complications may include anal fissures, anal tears, and further complications if you have a rectal injury or tear. Also to try to avoid double dipping — anal and then straight vaginal as it cannot be healthy for the female.”