The British Channel 4 series: “The Truth About Female Desire” was a fascinating and wide ranging exploration of female sexuality with a firm grounding in science. Whether you saw the programmes or not I hope you will be interested in the reviews. This second part first explains again how the programme was run. It then covers the programme parts that investigated: the variable shape of the female vulva; how women respond to porn films; fantasies about having sex with another woman; and how seeing sexual activity can turn women on even when they don’t realise it.
For the programme, eight women volunteered to be ‘sex guinea pigs’ and assist scientists trying to discover more about how women’s sex organs work. They were invited to an hotel where they stayed together for the duration of the series of experiments.
To emphasise the different shapes and sizes of the vulva, they were given soft moulding material to make a caste of their own vulva.
When completed they were asked to look at all the castes. It was amazing how variable the shapes were. They were then asked to pick their own caste. It turned out that most girls did recognised their’s own caste, but perhaps surprisingly not all of them did.
Another interesting experiment featured denial of arousal. The arousal of a man is obvious since an erection is very visible (though there are many men who do get an erection easily – these men may become highly aroused without it showing). For women the visible signs are less obvious. But not only that, it turns out that many women are not aware of how aroused their vagina is becoming. Is this because they are subconsciously denying that they are aroused or that, biologically, it is not important that they consciously know when they get aroused?
To demonstrate this, each girl was wired up to a probe that could detect arousal in the vagina. They were given a simple lever to operate when they thought they were being turned on. To provide the stimulation two porn films were shown with a relaxing sequence between. One featured a romantic scene with a man and woman kissing and cuddling under a gazebo and in the second an older man was giving a young girl oral sex. All the girls except one said they preferred the romantic film but according to the probe they had actual become equally aroused by both films. The women were quite surprised by this result.
The next programme in the series featured the girls discussed what erotic films turned them on. Most of them agreed that they found watching women being intimate together a turn on and some of them fantasised about what it would be like to have a sexual experience with another woman.
One of the women was a lesbian and has a steady girlfriend and another is very happily married with four children and had never thought about having a female partner. The rest of the girls had had varying experiences with other women. One of the girls had had a relationship with another girl for sometime but it had not worked out and she had decided that she definitely preferred men.
It has been found that many heterosexual women like watching two women being intimate in erotic films. In contrast most straight men prefer watching straight men in erotic film or women having sex together but not men having sex together; gay men prefer watching gay men together.
The women were then asked to watch a film of monkeys having sex. Most of the women hoped/expected they would not be turned on by this. Surprisingly it turned out that their bodies did find the film sexually stimulating, though, mostly, their minds did not.
These various observations support the idea that womens bodies are built to respond to a wide variety of stimuli to prepare them for intercourse.
The remaining part of the review will cover the last parts of the series which investigated how women react to men (their looks, the way they sound and move and smell) and how the way women choose a perfect partner/mate depends on their own psychology.