After using YikYak, the anonymous college app, for a couple months as a source of entertainment, I’ve come to several conclusions, one very important one being: men need to start reading Wattpad. Every morning, various women complain that their boyfriends or previous hookups have no idea what they’re doing in bed. Similarly, several men secretly disclose on the app that they are unsure of what to do and often ask the questions: “do women actually like x?” or “what do girls actually like in bed?” The comments are always flooded with many college men who claim to know what women want, many of whom assume that women exclusively “want to give head and they don’t care about receiving.” Even worse than these men claiming to know a woman’s desires are the men who then comment that all college girls are “easy,” proceeding to proudly slut-shame on the anonymous app. My question is, if you are not a woman nor identify as one, why are you speaking for our desires?
My solution for these men, and anyone else who may be confused about how to please a woman in bed, is to read smut, specifically any story written by a woman. These stories are so crucial to learning, aside of someone specifically asking their partner what they enjoy, because they are more realistic and centered around what women crave sexually, and not just male pleasure. Too many people rely on porn for personal use or even “sexual education,” when the majority, if not all, pornography is staged and disregards real pleasure for women (not to mention that a lot of the porn industry is rooted in sex-trafficking and other problematic matters). Fortunately in books, not only are matters realistic, they are also informative on what women may crave in bed. Granted, not every story may contain an individual’s personal preferences, but there’s a plethora of erotica at the bookstore, or even free on online apps like Wattpad, that provide possibilities to spice up your relationship.
There are endless reasons why these books and stories are not only entertaining but also helpful:
1. They’re written directly by a woman, therefore providing (for the most part) an accurate guide to what women want.
If you’re too afraid, or too prideful, to directly ask your female partner what she wants, this is the second best thing. Most erotica is written by women which provides a direct insight into the female psyche since often authors write about their version of the ideal man and use the page to fantasize about a sexual encounter that they genuinely desire. This is conditional, of course. Not everyone envisions the same picture when they fathom their perfect man and how their relationship would play out, but these romance novels provide a foundation for what your woman may like from you, both in and out of the bedroom. This provides conversational points to discuss with your partner, “I’ve heard about x, y, and z. Are any of those something you would like?”
2. Female pleasure is normalized and at the forefront.
Throughout history, women have been expected to be obedient and subservient. They have also been discouraged from being sexual beings in the way that men are allowed to be. However, romance novels feature strong female leads that don’t shy away from their natural human desires, nor do they accept lovers who disregard their needs.
Growing up I always heard boys laughing with their friends about blowjobs or heard grown men on television and in the media discussing how women are here for their pleasure. Unfortunately, this seems to be a theme accepted and perpetuated by our society. It wasn’t until I began reading more adult romance novels that I even learned that women could receive pleasure or even truly enjoy sex without faking it like so many women have come to accept.
Whereas real women have been silenced for eternity about their natural desires, fictional women are not afraid to vocalize their needs. I’ve read books where the female lead is more timid, having only one partner whom she learns about sex and her body with, and I’ve read others where the leading lady has multiple partners and doesn’t shy away from self-pleasure either. Both situations are great in that they do not shame those lacking experience or those who have plenty. They show that female masturbation is okay, having multiple partners (with consent and safety!) is okay, and the opposite, too, is okay. These outlets leave shaming women in the past and instead provide a sense of comfort, praise, and liberation in the realm of women’s sexuality.
3. They note that not even ideal, fictional men can make women orgasm every time, and that’s okay.
Sexual scenes in most books often depict both parties having satisfied their needs perfectly, because why not? It’s a fantasy, after all.
Despite this ideal being shown in many novels, I have still read plenty of books in which a woman didn’t get to orgasm, and this situation is always handled perfectly. The female character doesn’t shame her partner for his lack of capabilities nor does she fake it just to make his experience pleasurable. Similarly, her lover doesn’t shame her for her incapability to reach an orgasm, which is more common than you’d think when it comes to the female population, but he also makes sure that she is nevertheless satisfied with the experience. These books highlight the various reasons women may not be able to achieve an orgasm even when things are done “perfectly,” factors like depression, medication, not being in the moment, etc., and they acknowledge that sex can be just as enjoyable without the big “O.” Sex is also a learning process with your partner, a journey where you learn each other’s likes and dislikes, what works and what doesn’t. Chapters with these elements help us remember that exactly.
4. CONSENT AND PROTECTION!!!
Romantic novels, excluding ones that discuss a character’s struggle with assault, never fail to include consent which is so important in promoting. Writing about consent normalizes the action, though it should have been the norm to begin with. Protection isn’t always used, but more often than not, characters discuss safe sex which is also a key note for the reader to remember.
5. female anatomy and its functions are actually correct.
If you’re a woman, you’ve probably heard a man talking about female anatomy, periods, or even our pleasure and immediately thought, “wtf is he talking about, and where on Earth did he learn that?” I’ve heard horror stories of how men think we use pads and tampons, or that the clitoris is supposedly five inches from where it truly is, or that we even enjoy jackhammering sex into our cervix (ouch!). If you’re a man who’s suddenly concerned and thinking “could this be me?” or even if you’re cocky enough to believe your knowledge of women is perfect, you should probably pick up a romance novel written by a woman, targeted to women just to be sure your knowledge is on the right track.
6. Aside of the sexual content, these stories highlight crucial things men should remember, like being respectful.
Women love talking about “fictional men” or “men written by women.” These men are courteous, polite, and respectful. They always take the woman’s feelings and choices into consideration without deciding things for her or making her uncomfortable. Naturally, pairings in books are bound to have conflict to make the story interesting and worth-reading, but the bottom line is that the men treat them properly with respect, which honestly is the bare minimum.
However, there are some pitfalls to Wattpad and other smut-related content:
1. Not everyone has the same taste.
If you want to try something you read about in an erotic fiction book, always be sure to get consent. You may try something and find out neither of you enjoy it, or maybe you both love it! If your partner reads books like these, which (based on the amount of women I know who do) she likely does, ask her what she reads and find her exact interests. Make sure you’re comfortable with everything you do too, don’t make yourself uncomfortable just to try and please someone else.
2. Some fictional men “are the bad boys,” but remember they’re still respectful and not downright douchebags.
You’ve probably heard the saying, “every girl loves a bad boy.” While this may be true for some, it’s not universal. Beyond that, the “bad boys” most women lust over in movies, television, and books, always have a sense of morals and treat their women with respect and loyalty. I’ve seen endless complaints on YikYak about how “nice guys finish last” or “women love bad boys, but get mad when I do x.” That’s because you’re being a flat-out jerk, Mr. OP (“original post” for those who don’t use YikYak). The main thing women admire and crave from these male characters is the respect the hold for the opposite sex.
3. Some books, especially on those featured on Wattpad and not displayed on the Barnes & Noble shelves, follow toxic relationships. DON’T TAKE ADVICE FROM THOSE BOOKS.
And you can tell exactly which books feature those toxic relationships, I don’t even need to explain it. Deep down, everyone knows what a toxic relationship looks like, even if you do not want to admit it. Don’t follow those tropes.
Thankfully to #BookTok and #SpicyTok on TikTok, I’ve seen more women vocalize their enjoyment of erotic novels and Wattpad fiction proudly. It’s also common to see a quick video praising “men written by women” as well, so join the trends and hop into a good book.