Savage Love

Dan's latest attack in the Savage Love vs. Rick Santorum battle.

Rick Santorum

By Dan Savage

I am fifty and a lesbian. I have had a pretty active sex life for the last thirty years, including a couple of long-term relationships. For the last three years, I've been with a woman I love very much. We have amazing sexual chemistry — by far the best I have experienced.

For the last two years, I have noticed that my clitoris is getting bigger. Not trans-man-takes-testosterone big, but substantially bigger than it has ever been. I thought it was due to a big increase in sexual excitement, but it soon became clear that the enlargement was a permanent thing. It gets much more erect than it used to and often throbs or twitches after I come.

No one's complaining. I am enjoying the heightened sexual arousal, and my girlfriend (who is very GGG) is thrilled. But why/how is this happening? Could it get even bigger? And why now? I hit menopause seven years ago, so it's not some weird hormone surge. Could our sexual connection have caused this all by itself? I don't really want to ask my gynecologist, though I did notice her checking out my equipment with wide eyes at my last checkup.

Stiffie Needs A Zipcode

"I always like to hear from people who are satisfied with their sex lives and relationships," says author, sex researcher, vulva-puppeteer, and archrival sex-advice columnist Debby Herbenick, and I have to agree. Most of our mail comes from people who are unhappy with their sex lives and/or dissatisfied with their relationships. It's always nice to hear from folks who are having fun.

What's not so nice is that we sometimes have to tell happy-and-satisfied folks that something may be seriously wrong.

"I would strongly encourage her to ask her gynecologist about her enlarged clitoris," says Herbenick. "She should be very clear about the fact that it has increased in size. She should let her know when she first noticed this and roughly how much she thinks it's increased in size."

If your gynecologist isn't comfortable talking with you about your clit — if she just stands there gaping at it — get a new gynecologist. Because your megaclit could be a symptom of something very, very serious.

"You need your doctor to examine your clit and rule out various medical conditions that could cause hormonal problems," says Herbenick. "Sometimes these are benign health conditions; unfortunately, sometimes they include vulvar cancers, ovarian cancers, and adrenal cancers that, for example, may present with symptoms including an enlarged clitoris."

Some women believe their clitorises "grew" after menopause, but that's not usually the case. When estrogen levels drop during menopause, other parts of the vulva — such as the labia — can become flatter or less prominent, which can in turn make the clitoris appear bigger. "However, she's been in menopause for a long time," says Herbenick, "and it sounds like the clitoral change happened well into menopause." And amazing sex does not supersize clits: "High levels of arousal usually result in only a temporary swelling of the clitoris," says Herbenick.

So make another appointment to see your doctor, SNAZ, "and keep asking questions until she's sure that medical conditions, such as cancers, have been ruled out," urges Herbenick.

And, again, if your gynecologist doesn't want to discuss it or was too stupid to spot what could be a symptom of common lady-parts cancers (!), time to get a new gynecologist.

 

My husband is beautiful, awesome, etc. Unfortunately, his dick is small. It wasn't so bad our first few years together; he knows how to work what he's got. But then I had a baby, and I tore. A few days later, my stitches tore. My six-week checkup turned out to be a poke in the stomach to confirm that my uterus was back in place, and when I asked why I couldn't get restitched, the doctor told me, "Vaginas are very forgiving." But a year later, Kegels aren't helping and both of us are having trouble getting off.

He enjoys anal sex, but it's not really fulfilling for me. I want to get a vaginoplasty to fit him, but I'll have to wait till we've saved up enough money to pay for it. Please, Dan, tell me how to have hotter sex with a small dick and a shredded kitty.

Unforgiving

"Many women who have had multiple or traumatic births — and it sounds like she had a good deal of tearing — have some degree of prolapse," says Herbenick. (A uterine prolapse, says the Wiki, "occurs when the female pelvic organs fall from their normal position, into or through the vagina.")

"If she did have prolapse," says Herbenick, "she may be a candidate for anterior or posterior vaginal-wall repair, which is quite similar to vaginal 'rejuvenation' surgeries, and then insurance may cover the surgery.

"Some people will wildly disagree with me and say that women shouldn't have surgery 'to please their man,' but I don't see that here," Herbenick adds. "I see two people who are married and want better sex, and she may have experienced some physical changes that have affected that. And there are ways to fix it."

Debby Herbenick is the associate director of the Center for Sexual Health Promotion at Indiana University and the author of Because It Feels Good: A Woman's Guide to Sexual Pleasure and Satisfaction, a book that I strongly recommend even though Debby once attacked me with a vulva puppet in a room full of people.

 

I live in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Grange, a local restaurant, has a cocktail called "GGGinger." Is it possible for a cocktail to be GGG? And how does it feel to have inspired one?

Curious Cocktail Connection

A cocktail can't be GGG, CCC, but a couple of cocktails — enough to take the edge off inhibitions, not so much to make consent unpossible — can induce GGG. And, I'm saddened to report, the GGGinger's Gs refer to three of the gin-based cocktail's ingredients — ginger beer, candied ginger, and ginger syrup — and not to the Savage Love meme "good, giving, and game." Still, Grange co-owner Brandon Johns is confident that his GGGingers have inspired GGG behavior all over Ann Arbor.

"It's been our most popular drink since we opened," says Johns, "so it must be doing something right. We also do pitchers of them, and when a couple shares one of those — let's just say that something good is bound to come of that."

And in other, more successful Savage Love memes…

Former U.S. senator and current presidential candidolt Rick Santorum "opened up" to Roll Call last week about his "longtime Google problem," a.k.a. "the frothy mixture of lube and fecal matter that is sometimes the by-product of anal sex" and always the number-one search result when you Google the former senator's last name.

"It's one guy," Santorum told Roll Call. "You know who it is… It's unfortunate that we have someone who obviously has some issues."

I do have issues — I have lots of issues — but I take particular issue with politicians who compare loving, stable same-sex relationships to "man on dog" sex, as Santorum has done, or who would ban same-sex marriage and adoptions by same-sex couples, as Santorum has promised to do if he gets elected president. But the lowercase s santorum campaign wasn't "one guy." A lot of people were involved — from the Savage Love reader who first suggested that we redefine your name to all the folks who've written about it over the years (thanks, Roll Call!) — just like a lot of people were involved in turning Rick Santorum out of office in 2006, an election he lost by an eighteen-point santorumslide.

The website that's still giving Rick Santorum fits — www.spreadingsantorum.com — hasn't been updated since 2004. But we're going to be relaunching the site in the next few weeks. Stay tuned!

Find the Savage Lovecast (my weekly podcast) every Tuesday at thestranger.com/savage.

mail@savagelove.net

Commentarium (33 Comments)

Feb 23 11 - 2:20am
jr

Dan: Your Santorum campaign is pure fucking genius! Love it.

Feb 23 11 - 7:22am
DL

Never has an asshole deserved such a re-definition. Very well chosen description as well...
If he wants to be elected president, he's in deep santorum...

Feb 27 11 - 9:33pm
Publius

"What successful societies *have* recognized homosexual marriages? "

Well, I'm not sure I'd declare victory yet. This is a new phenomenon. The countries you cite accepted homosexual marriages very recently:

Canada - 2003
Sweden - 2009
Norway - 2009
Netherlands - 2001
Belgium - 2003
Spain - 2005
Iceland - Nope, "registered partnerships" only, specifically not marriages.
Argentina - 2010

We'll see how it works out, nn, but I wouldn't be moon walking just yet.

Feb 27 11 - 9:48pm
nn

I answered your question in a straightforward manner, troll. What *exactly* do you think the married gays are going to do to destroy our society?

Feb 28 11 - 11:56am
Publius

Sorry, nn, but I won't be referred to in that manner. If you'd like to have a discussion in an adult manner, that would be great. Otherwise, you're off the list.

Mar 01 11 - 5:42pm
ANON

Go to hell, Publius.

Feb 23 11 - 11:17am
Publius

Wow. Name calling. Genius. Second graders love it.

Feb 23 11 - 1:38pm
ADD

Boohoo. It's not name calling, it's just naming.

Feb 24 11 - 11:28am
Publius

It's just juvenile. Pinheads mistake it for wit.

Feb 24 11 - 12:15pm
Kevin

I doubt many mistake it for wit. We see it as a clever way to hamper someone's rabidly bigoted agenda. When bigoted people with power/influence have an agenda to impose repressive laws on everyone, you have to "strike" at them (non-violently) however you can. Name calling is juvenile. But effectively hampering someone like Santorum? I call that awesome.

Speaking of juvenile name-calling...Santorum started it! He essentially called gay men "dog-fuckers". Are you straight? Like oral sex? Some consider oral sex unnatural, and would have it outlawed. Would you be pleased to have a politician call you a dog-sucker?

Feb 24 11 - 3:23pm
Publius

Assuming you're correct about Santorum - I'd like to see the citations - the way you counter bigotry is with crass name-calling? My guess is that within the gay and gay-friendly community, this is looked at as very witty. From the outside, disgusting and vulgar. One step forward, two steps back.

Feb 24 11 - 4:31pm
Kel

Citations? Here you go...

"In every society, the definition of marriage has not ever to my knowledge included homosexuality. That's not to pick on homosexuality. It's not, you know, man on child, man on dog, or whatever the case may be."

"If the Supreme Court says that you have the right to consensual sex within your home, then you have the right to bigamy, you have the right to polygamy, you have the right to incest, you have the right to adultery. You have the right to anything."

Feb 24 11 - 4:39pm
Kevin

It's one way to counter a bigot with power. Education and exposure are a better way, but someone with power, and looking for more power, who's in a bubble that you can't reach? Then you counter with whatever tools are at your disposal.

I'm straight, and gay-friendly. I don't call it witty. I think it's clever. And somewhat funny that an approach like this worked. But not essentially witty. I think a person would have to be immature to find it witty, and immature cuts across all lines...straight, gay, liberal, homophobic, etc.

It's not a "clean" step forward, but it's better than letting bigots run rampant.

Feb 26 11 - 9:07pm
Publius

@Kel - Words in quotation marks are not citations. Incidentally, what successful societies *have* recognized homosexual marriages? Do you suggest we imprison, for example, evangelicals who refuse to perform homosexual marriages?

Feb 26 11 - 10:29pm
nn

What successful societies *have* recognized homosexual marriages?

Canada
Sweden
Norway
Netherlands
Belgium
Spain
Iceland
Argentina

Feb 23 11 - 11:39am
kopen schoenen

In your honest opinion? Sure we know about zappos...but who else?

Feb 23 11 - 11:51am
jcruel

Unforgiving just shredded her genitals to have a baby, why doesn't her husband have the surgery?

Feb 23 11 - 12:16pm
aerotdronry

hi, good site very much appreciatted

Feb 23 11 - 1:28pm
CarlyQ

Dan, fantastic advice as usual!!

Feb 23 11 - 4:00pm
PA voter

I was one of the many who helped kick Santorum out of the U.S. Senate. We did it because he was a total embarrassment to the citizens with his crazy stands on social issues. I only hope that he's a tiny bug that the Republican Party won't even take seriously and just flicks away. What a total jerk.

Feb 23 11 - 4:20pm
nope

@jeruel
Honey, if there was a surgery that effectively made a man's dick larger, you wouldn't have to tell them to get it.

Feb 23 11 - 5:36pm
GBH

I didn't know anything about the Santorum/santorum thing, but Stephen Colbert talked about it on Monday's show and it certainly got my attention -Dan Savage, you and the all the others who organised this are brilliant!

Feb 24 11 - 12:51am
custom hockey jerseys

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Feb 24 11 - 2:23pm
Ann

Ha! Attacked by a vulva puppet! Ha!

Feb 25 11 - 1:50pm
Someone

@jcruel You want Unforgivings husband to have vaginal-wall repair surgery? Did you flunk out of kindergarten?

Feb 25 11 - 3:12pm
Liassagsdeapy

спасибо большое было очень интересно прочитать

Feb 25 11 - 3:37pm
New GHD IV Red Lust

Thanks, finicky document.

Feb 26 11 - 12:25am
Balasisceri

f
f

Feb 26 11 - 2:18am
E

My professor talked about SpreadingSantorum in a lecture. (It was a about manipulating search engines, Google bombs, etc.) Anyway, it has educational value! Yay higher learning!

Feb 26 11 - 7:50pm
LB

I was lucky enough to take a class taught by Debbie Herbenick while attending Indiana University. She is smart and positive, and very warm and friendly in person! Glad to see her featured in one of my favorite advice columns. And Dan, great job, especially tearing down a creep like Santorum!

Feb 28 11 - 5:33pm
Montana

I can't tell you enough how much I love that Rick Santorum has to deal with this!

Mar 21 11 - 10:59am
jicilaaUP

thanks in the service of this exacting tips 147896325

Mar 22 11 - 3:29am
MikeWhqp

Just saying hello, hope this was the right section and that I will enjoy it here

Cheers
Mike