Here's The Truth About The 7 Most Common Misconceptions Malaysians Have About Sex

From whether pineapple really makes semen sweeter to pregnancy during periods, jom find out the truth!

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Through her role as a Sex Positive Advocate, 32-year-old Jasmine Rajah has made it her mission to educate Malaysians and change their mindsets about sex

Jasmine King, Sex Positive Advocate and Founder of Jasexplains

Image via Jasmine King (Provided to SAYS)

Better known as Jasmine King, the Penampang native runs Jasexplains, a safe, sex positive, and educational platform that empowers individuals to make informed choices on their bodies, sexualities, and rights. She also runs a podcast, I Wish Someone Told Me, which features raw, unfiltered conversations with fellow Asians on their sexual journeys or work in sexual wellness.

In addition, she both participates in and runs various ad-hoc educational programmes and events, as part of her journey to spread awareness on issues like sex, pleasure, gender identity, self worth, confidence, appreciation of all bodies, sexual experiences, values, and more.

In a nutshell, her aim is to normalise and localise conversations about sex to the Malaysian experience.

As part of her work, Jasmine also answers the various questions Malaysians have about sexual health

Her followers are mostly within the late 20s to early 40s age range. According to Jasmine, many of them have grown up exposed to fear-based or abstinence-based sex education, which has impacted them greatly, and sometimes not in the most positive way.

One of the consequences of this is having all kinds of misconceptions about sex. And this is something that Jasmine actively tries to address.

Speaking to SAYS, Jasmine shared the top seven most common misconceptions Malaysians have about sex, based on the questions she usually receives from her followers.

Here's the truth behind those misconceptions:

Myth #1: You can't get pregnant if you're on your period

"If you had sex without using any contraception during or after your period, the chances of getting pregnant is low but still possible. Pregnancy can happen anytime during your menstrual cycle, particularly during the times when you are at your most fertile. So, there is no specific 'safe' time of the month where you can have unprotected sex without the risk of pregnancy.

"You can also get pregnant during your first period or the first time you have sex.

"A menstrual cycle begins from the first day you had your period to the first day of your next period. During the cycle, you go through the ovulation phase which is when you are most fertile and most likely to get pregnant," said Jasmine.

Myth #2: When it comes to sexually transmitted diseases, you only have to worry about HIV/AIDS

"There are a few other sexually transmitted infections and diseases to be aware of, HIV is just one of them. Some common infections include chlamydia, gonorrhoea, and syphilis. All of which are preventable and treatable with a week-long use of antibiotics.

"However, diseases such as HIV/AIDS and herpes for example, do not have a cure, but they do have medication to stop the virus from replicating and prevent further damage. Nonetheless, it's important to remember that when you're doing your STD testing and screening, ensure that you're not limiting yourself to HIV/AIDS testing only.

"But even with HIV/AIDS, it's not a death sentence anymore like 30+ years ago. Today, you have medications like PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) and PEP (post-exposure prophylaxis) to control its spread.

"Also, your sexual diagnosis does not define your worth. Just because you have an STI or STD, it doesn't mean you're dirty or unworthy. You are still very important and very much loved. It's also important to note that HIV is not a disease that is specific to one particular community, anyone can get it regardless of gender. That's another stigma we need to break," Jasmine explained.

Myth #3: Women find pleasure in penetrative sex, and if they don't enjoy it or can't have an orgasm from it, there's something wrong with them

"OMGYES, which is a website that does research and provides resources about women's pleasure, surveyed 1,055 US women between the ages of 18 and 94 on their pleasure patterns.

"Results showed that 36.6% of women said they required clitoral stimulation to orgasm, versus the 18.4% who said that vaginal penetration alone was enough to reach orgasm. Approximately two-thirds reported preferring direct clitoral stimulation, and 5% wanted their partner to avoid stimulating their clitoris completely.

"This survey showed that penetration alone may not necessarily be enough for women to reach orgasm. Contrary to what is shown in porn, women rarely get an orgasm from penetration alone. So, while they may find pleasure in penetrative sex, not having an orgasm from it does not mean there is something wrong with them.

"Also, not many women enjoy penetrative sex either, maybe because they feel discomfort or pain due to a variety of reasons such as trauma, vaginismus, vaginal dryness, endometriosis, pelvic floor dysfunction, and other reasons.

"If anyone faces any pain during sex, it's important to visit a doctor for a checkup. Penetrative sex isn't supposed to hurt," Jasmine shared.

Myth #4: You need to have a big penis and be able to last long in order to please your partner

"That's not true, and based on the same OMGYES study mentioned earlier, it's pretty clear that penetration alone is not enough stimulation for pleasure and orgasms.

"There's a saying, 'Make penetration a side dish, not the main course'. This means that one can always try to explore things other than penetration and still have a fulfilling and pleasurable sexual experience. Best part is, you can even start it way before heading to the bedroom. Making the mind excited is just as important and powerful as getting the body excited!

"As for lasting longer in bed, one study shows that it takes an average of five to seven minutes for people with penises to reach orgasm and ejaculate, sometimes even shorter. And on the flip side, lasting way too long may result in partners getting bored, numb or tired, which isn't a desired outcome either.

"At the end of the day, sex isn't dependent on penis size or how long you last — you can't change what you can't change, especially your size. Instead, you can channel that energy by learning about what turns both you and your partner on, listening to their needs, and exploring what that means together.

"So, perfect your skill, know your body, and have fun. This will help you build that confidence in the bedroom. If you're genuinely concerned about potentially suffering from premature ejaculation, seeing a doctor and getting a proper diagnosis will help," Jasmine detailed.

Myth #5: You don't need a partner if you have sex toys

"While toys are great, they aren't our competition, they're an assistant. When you or your partner gets tired, you know the toys can help you have an orgasm or make you feel good.

"However, I don't think you can ever replace real human connection with a toy. Toys can't cuddle you or kiss you, nor can they give you that emotional support when you need it. So, it's not the same. Though, using toys can be drama-free, which is a bonus," Jasmine clarified.

Myth #6: Eating a lot of pineapple makes your semen taste sweeter

"The phrase 'you are what you eat' is very true, but eating a lot of pineapples or blueberries in one sitting before sex isn't going to instantly make your semen taste sweeter.

"However, if you continuously eat sugary liquid or food, that may heighten the fructose and glucose content or the pH of the semen, thus cutting its bitter taste. This is also true for acidic fruits like kiwi or lemon," Jasmine said.

Myth #7: After marriage, you will automatically know how to have sex and will enjoy it

"This is not necessarily true. Wanting to remain chaste until marriage is a value that many hold dear and stand by, however, to automatically assume you'd know how to have sex or enjoy it after marriage would be incorrect.

"Marriage doesn't automatically make the fear or insecurity go away, you need lots of practice and knowledge about what you and your partner like. It's a never-ending education and must be shared by both parties equally. One partner can't do all the heavy lifting alone!" Jasmine emphasised.

Follow Jasexplains for more informative content on sex positivity, and to stay updated on Jasmine's future events and programmes

Look out for more #sexualhealth stories and tips this month!

From contraceptives to vibrators, and intimacy to abstinence, no topic is off limits. Join us in normalising conversations surrounding sexual health.

Image via SAYS

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