March 22, 2018

The “C” Word ~ No, Not Cancer!

Barbara Musser, Sexy AFter Cancer, Sexy Saturdays, breast cancer, breast cancer and sexuality, breast cancer and sexual health, breast cancer and intimacy, sex and cancer



The “C” word stands for a lot of things ~ cancer, communication and in the realm of intimacy and sexuality, it stands for cunt, cunnilingus and clitoris, to name a few. This and the next post will focus on the clitoris, which deserves attention and enlightenment.  Once breast cancer is in our life story, the impact on our intimate and sexual lives is profound and many women grieve the changes to their sex life. Many think that there’s little point in attempting to be sexual, especially if sex wasn’t all that great before diagnosis and treatment. This is the reason for my work, research and teaching. I aim to provide the ingredients for a happy and healthy intimate and sexual life after diagnosis.

The clitoris can be part of our intimate and sex play and doesn’t seem to be as affected by treatments as other areas of our genitals. This is great news! And there isn’t much information available about this. There is so much to know about this amazing body part, and my purpose is to educate, inspire and shed light on some new possibilities for pleasure. I hope that after reading this you will include the clitoris in your personal pleasure plan.

There is an art exhibition going on currently in New York called “Cliteracy”, and the artist is Sophia Wallace. It’s a mixed media project designed to “expose the irony of society’s obsession and ignorance of female sexuality.  Cliteracy, 100 Natural Laws (2012) includes a monumental wall of texts which challenge phallocentric biases in science, law, philosophy, politics and the art world. Wallace’s focus on the clitoris and female pleasure serves to question and counteract the history of misinformation regarding women’s bodies and the concomitant oppression therein.”

Here are some inspiring clitoral facts and thoughts. Let’s begin with a statement from the artist Sophia Wallace: “The clitoris is not a button, it’s an iceberg.” Some of these ideas also come from my colleague Pamela Madsen who is also a sex educator.

  • If you want to address the clitoris, labia and vagina together, vulva is the all-encompassing term. Not Volvo, vulva, even though it may have many miles on its odometer. J
  • 50-75% of women who have orgasms need to have their clitoris touched (clitoral stimulation). Experiencing orgasms through clitoral stimulation is a great way to experience pleasure if your vaginal tissue has any atrophy.
  • The clitoris is only partially visible to the eye. The entire clitoris is close to four inches in length (similar to the average non-erect penis), but three fourths of its is hidden from view within a female’s body. It’s buried treasure. Think of all the pleasure potential in the entire region. Have you explored it?
  • The clitoris grows throughout a woman’s life. It can become 2.5 times larger after menopause than it was when the woman was a teenager. This is great news for those of us who have experienced instant menopause as a result of breast cancer treatments. This is not to say that pleasure depends on the size of the clitoris; however it contains 8,000 nerve endings, which are deliciously sensitive. By the way, this is twice the number of nerve endings in the glans of a penis. Lucky us!

More to come in the next blog… in the meantime please feel free to ask any questions you have or share any facts you may know. We are all teachers for each other.

© 2014 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
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This blog is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

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