9 Things We Used To Believe About Sex

Photographed by Alexandra Gavillet.
Growing up, people get a lot of mixed messages about sex. Whether they hear about it from friends, siblings, teachers, parents, the media, or a combination of sources, it's easy to get the facts wrong. And unfortunately, it's all too common to be told the wrong info about sex right off the bat.

When we polled our readers about their sexual educations, nearly 20% of them said they learned something in sex ed that they later found out wasn't true — like, "It's easy for partners to 'get stuck,'" which, for the record, is very, very, false. Needless to say, we didn't grow into the well-adjusted adults we are today without having to leave behind some misconceptions about sex.

And since we know we're not alone, we asked women to tell us about the inaccurate things they once believed about sex. Some of these misconceptions came from a lack of understanding, while others were based on fears and anxieties about sex. Either way, we'd like to take this opportunity to move on from all of the falsehoods we once believed — and that might mean laughing at them, facepalming, or just simply forgetting them. Ahead, nine people share what they once believed about sex.

The gap between what we learned in sex ed and what we're learning through sexual experience is big — way too big. So, we're helping to connect those dots by talking about the realities of sex, from how it's done to how to make sure it's consensual, safe, healthy, and pleasurable all at once. Check out more, here.

More from Sex & Relationships


R29 Original Series