Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Scratching My Head

No, I don't have lice! :~P I've got a question. There have been many debates over the reality of sex in romance novels and I've come across one thing in particular that I've been scratching my head over for years.

I'm a big believer in some sort of reality in my contemporary novels (specifically) when it comes to birth control. I like hearing about heros who grab a condom before getting it on with the heroine, but what about oral sex? Ever since the idea of AIDs and HIV came along, schools have been preaching the importance of safe sex, not just condoms, but other means. Why is it that when a hero (or heroine) goes down on the other, they never use any sort of condom or whatever? I mean, yeah sometimes reading about birth control and safety measures isn't sexy, but truly...I'd really like to know your thoughts.

Obviously I have my own thoughts on this, but has anyone else thought about this or is it just me? Maybe I'm weird, but the thought of going down on a guy w/o anything and then having him use a condom while having actual intercourse kind of defeats the purpose. You're exposed to bad things in one sense, but not the other? Hmmm...


JenB said...

It's been established that while, yes, it is risky to perform and receive oral sex, it's nowhere near as risky as actual intercourse.

There are horror stories about men (and women) getting the nasty mouth infection thrush from going down on a girl w/a yeast infection (EWWW)...and I suppose you could spread herpes that way if you had a cold sore, but I think to most people it's just considered an acceptable risk.

The only time I see authors include condoms in oral sex is when one of the characters is a prostitute or has just left a relationship with an infected person (usually HIV in m/m books) and is waiting for test results.

I like to see some mention of condoms or birth control pills in most contemps, but I'd get yanked out of the story if the H&h used a dental dam or a condom for oral. Too weird unless one of them is a hooker.

Priyanka said...

I need your help. I'm doing a thesis for my Master's program and the topic is the last 50 years of romantic novels. I've to do a content analysis of Mills and Boon, Silhouette and Avon publications. Is there any way you could help me with this? Any information you can give me on this will be really appreciated.
If you can, then please do email me at:
I shall be able to give you further parameters for my analysis then.
Thanks a ton,

Tracy said...

Hi BL - I've seen a few heroes make the hero pull away before he comes in her mouth for the whole safety reason, but you're right, it's not the norm. I can't say that I really think about it that much. But I do pay attention when they're not using a condom for intercourse.

Jill Sorenson said...

I don't think I'd want to read about protected oral sex in a romance novel. Sounds spectacularly unsexy.

Lori said...

It's a taste and texture thing, I think. I think there's just something inherently unsexy about giving oral sex to a guy in a condom, much less reading about it.

But because we don't taste (generally) during intercourse, it's not such a huge deal.

And there are still some social norms that we are unwilling to cross. Wouldn't surprise me to see it in books in another 20 years.