Thursday 27 October 2016

I have religious worries about sex

Published 22/02/2016 | 02:30

QAllow me to start by saying how beneficial your column is, even in these supposedly permissive times, and so many thanks.

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Can you please answer my two queries: Is oral sex between consenting adults against the rules of the Catholic Church, and what is your view on it. Also is anal sex between two consenting adults against the rules of the Catholic Church and what is your view on it.

Please do your utmost to answer these questions for me. They are the cause of great distress between myself and my partner.

AYou sign your letter 'Kerry reader' and reading between the lines I find it quite poignant. Instead of enjoying a loving sexual relationship you find yourself worried by what the Catholic Church has ruled regarding how you have sex. Some people would say that you are being over-conscientious but that is your prerogative. I am not a spokesperson for the Catholic Church and so cannot answer for them. I suggest that you consult a priest to get the Church's teaching, although it is likely that if you were to ask a number of different priests you would get a number of differing answers, depending on the personality and openness of the particular priest .

So that leaves me to give you my views, firstly on oral sex. This is a subject that is often discussed in sex therapy as people have quite strong views on it. I have always maintained that there is usually more pleasure in receiving rather than giving, and so it should be a two-way thing. Hygiene is hugely important and so a quick shower or wash of the genital area is absolutely necessary before you begin. A couple should be able to tell each other what they like, and not expect the partner to know what is good and not good for them - the vocal part of oral sex is every bit as important as the physical! Many women are fearful that the man will ejaculate in her mouth while she is giving oral sex, and this is something that has to be discussed beforehand and she has a perfect right to say no if she doesn't want him to do this. A lot of men do not actually reach this level of arousal through oral sex, but it is important that the boundaries are drawn as to what is and is not allowed.

Anal sex arouses strong feelings - some people see no harm in it while others find it totally distasteful. You should never ever do something that you don't want to do while having sex, no matter what it is, and this applies very firmly to anal sex. If a couple are having anal sex then once again hygiene is of paramount importance and vaginal intercourse should never be had immediately afterwards as bacteria may be transmitted to the vagina.

I hope this helps to ease your distress - nobody should be distressed by sex, it is supposed to be a pleasurable act between two people and if they love each other then it becomes even more pleasurable.

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