Sex & Relationships

Queefing: How to Get Down With Sexual Embarrassment

Queefing startles some and shames others.

Photo Credit: Shutterstock

The term queefing refers to the expulsion of trapped air from the vagina that occurs during sex—and unfortunately, it sounds an awful lot like farting.

But as Dr. Susan Block reminds us, “Queefing is very often a sign that the sex you’re having is really hot. It usually happens when you’re pumping away,” adding, “It’s a sign of loss of control. Most women don’t want to do it, it just kind of happens.”

But sometimes, the idea of rapid thrusting and hot sex isn’t enough to counteract the penis-shrinking power of the queef. Queefing, while perfectly harmless, startles some and shames others. Not even doctors get the full scoop on the situation during training. “We don’t devote any education to this in residency, but I tell patients it’s a very normal thing,” Mary Jane Minkin, a clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Yale Medical School, told Women’s Health.

But if you really want to avoid queefing during sex, there are ways. Switching up positions can help. Porn star Casey Calver told Cosmopolitan that missionary, spooning or cowgirl are good positions to keep queefs at bay. “Doggy-style and the pile driver are more likely to result in queefs.”

Block says, “The positions where the male is doing the driving are probably more likely to make it happen.”

There’s also the idea of going slow, grinding rather than thrusting, or placing a finger in the vagina when changing positions. “This will let the air out more subtly before it can come out as a queef,” Cosmopolitan reports.

But what if those physical solutions simply don’t do the trick? What if you’re just a queefer and your partner can’t get into that? As Block explains, “You can’t help if you’re turned off by certain things about a person that you discover when you have sex with them.”

If a woman finds herself in this situation, it’s probably best to explain what’s going on. No one wants a fart-themed surprise sneaking up on her. And the approach in delivering that information is important.

“When you’re dealing with something unfamiliar that comes up with sex, if your partner is embarrassed, is humiliated, is self conscious, then you’re going to think it’s a bad thing,” says Block.

There are women who get shy, embarrassed by the auditory abilities of the vagina. And then there are women who take a more brazen approach, the ones who recover more quickly, the ones who Richard Pryor once joked are more likely to respond with something like, "It’s talking to you, Daddy." When it comes to matters of sex, confidence is often contagious and humor appreciated.

Block suggests we try to reframe the way we think about the queef. “I have talked to many [male] clients where it was an issue, and then it wasn’t an issue, because they didn’t know what it was.” She added, “It’s about loss of pussy control. Get turned on by that.”

It’s not a bad goal to turn what isn’t a natural turn-on into one.

Not everyone is so shy about queefing. Some people are downright enthusiastic about it. How else can we explain things like queef fetish forums, queef championships and queef-themed pornography? In her 2013 song, "Queef," Awkwafina incorporates the proud line, “You need to embrace your queefing. You can’t be scared of it anymore. It’s gonna save the world.”

Block revealed, “I think most people are not turned on by it. But some people are. I actually get clients who ask me how to get their wives and girlfriends to do it. Or if they’re single, they ask how they can find a woman who can do it on command.”

Block says, “You know, some guys are turned off by female ejaculation. It’s a little bit like that. You’ve just got to let that pussy go where it’s going to go when it really opens up,” she added. “Queefing is what happens when a pussy isn’t just a container for male sexuality, for male energy. There’s this idea of that 'quiet vagina,' the vagina that doesn’t squirt, that doesn’t make noise, that’s just there for your cock. Well, no. This vagina expresses itself.”

Of course, if that doesn’t work for you, you can always try turning up the music.  

Carrie Weisman is a writer focusing on sex, relationships and culture. 

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