Oral Sex, African Diasporas & issues arising
By Paul Omoruyi
By Paul Omoruyi
Most sexually active people in the United States engage in oral sex. Matter-of-factly, to many, oral sex is more pleasurable than genital penetration. In America, different slangs have been coined for oral sex – Blow Job, Go-Down-South, Go-Down, Get-A-Head, 69-Position and the list goes on. For those who care about medical terminology, Cunnilingus refers to oral sex performed on females while fellatio refers to oral sex performed on males.
For the most part, majority of Africans (especially African men) shun oral sex either for religious, cultural or traditional reasons. The few that engage in it will deny it vehemently in public because they see it as a disdainful “girly-man” sexual activity. A real man should be able to give a woman the same pleasure using his sex organ, they will argue. In Nigeria for example, there are different denigrating words for describing men that perform oral sex on women.
Some years ago, a young American lady once confided that she broke up with her “African Boyfriend” because he refused to perform oral sex on her even though he wants her to perform oral sex on him. “It is not right. It is very selfish of him. When I asked him why, he said he’s a prince and it is forbidden for a Nigerian prince to do such things”, she complained.
However, many African men who are married to Westerners would tell you they have no choice performing oral sex on their partners. Some African women on the other hand who will like to have oral sex with their partner shy away from saying it because they do not want to be labeled as being “spoilt” or sexually perverted which might lead to the ruin of their relationship.
Maybe not the younger Africans; but the middle-aged and older Africans (male and female alike) in the Western World have given reasons (real or fabricated) for refusing to engage in oral sex. Many will tell you it is bad (without any scientific proof) but based on what they heard from their parents or other adults in Africa.
In recent weeks, the claim by Michael Douglas’ (America famous actor) that oral sex might be the cause of his throat cancer has shed light on the “safety” of oral sex. In a candid interview with the Guardian newspaper, the actor said that he didn't regret his years of smoking and drinking, which were thought to be the cause of his cancer when he was diagnosed three years ago. "No. Because without wanting to get too specific, this particular cancer is caused by HPV [Human Papillomavirus], which actually comes about from cunnilingus," he said.
Although it is known in some circles for years now that HPV contracted from oral sex along with smoking, could indeed bring on some types of oral cancers but not many people are informed about it, especially young people. It is believed that HPV infections usually don't cause any signs or symptoms in either sex, but some types can cause genital warts. High-risk types of HPV can cause persistent infection, which can gradually turn into cancer, and usually only cervical cancer.
According to the US Centers for Disease Control, about 79 million Americans are currently infected with the disease and HPV is so common that nearly all sexually-active men and women will get at least one type of HPV at some point in their lives.
One is tempted to think that Micheal Douglas’ public outcry on oral sex as probable cause of his cancer and the recent studies on Cunnilingus diseases vindicate the wisdom behind majority of Africans shunning oral sex. Could it be that the great ancestors of Africa knew about these diseases thousands of years ago and as such abstained from such acts?
For many African men in the Diaspora, it is a recurring relationship challenge especially for those that are married or in a relationship with none-Africans. Studies show that it is easier for an African-African partner to understandably deal with it if one partner is interested in oral sex and the other does not than for an African and a none-African relationship.
Like the American lady insinuated, many people have come to argue that reciprocity exists in sex, specifically oral sex, because if one wants to receive it, they also have to give it. So they perform oral sex simply as a condition for receiving it.
The question is: As an African, will you perform oral sex on your partner if he or she request or indicate interest in it with or without the latest revelation about oral sex? Write me and let me know your opinion on this issue. May God bless Africans and all those in the Diaspora!