Anna Brody | Contributing Writer | Wednesday, 11 May 2016

horny during period

Why Do I Get More Horny When I am On My Period?

The Debrief: Is it our hormones? Or is it the allure of doing it on a non-white towel that turns us on?

I will be the first to admit that I get horny when I am on my period. You do too, right?

At first glance, riding the crimson wave/menstruating/opting for the red biro/shedding the lining of your uterus isn’t the most obvious time to be shagging. There’s blood coming out of us, our hormones are all over the place and it’s nigh-on impossible to get pregnant so, evolutionary-wise, how come some of us get so bloody horny on our period? Pun intended.

Personally, the horniness creeps up on me when I least expect it – ie after I’ve spent a week feeling fat, crying, getting spots, crying more and sleeping for 12 hours a day (yes, it’s a stereotype but I have no shame in admitting I need Minstrels before expelling eggs from my ovaries). Every month, there’s that sinking feeling that can only come from when you’re getting it on and realise you’ve got to break the ‘moment’ to flush a tampon down the loo when all you want to do is hump something/everything.

To make sure it wasn’t just me, I got drunk with some mates and started a round of ‘I have never’ – except it was ‘I have’ – and less a game, more me asking them whether they got more horny on their period.

‘Oh my god, I get so horny,’ said Grace, who’s in a long-term (pro-period-sex) relationship. ‘For some reason, I’m way more sensitive down there when I’m on it. We just put a towel down and go for it. I definitely need to get laid way more in those 4-7 days!’

A single friend, Kerry, who works in finance, also says she has no problem one-night-standing when on her period. This admittedly, made me gasp a bit because – and yes, I hate myself for saying – omg, what if they’re like not into that or something? ‘Fuck them,’ she responded, succinctly. Presumably both meanings can be applied here. ‘When I’m on my period I need roughly one shag every other night and if I’m not getting that then I’m wanking as much as I possibly can.’ She’s quite straightforward and doesn’t mince her words, which reinvigorated me to the extent I shouted ‘IT’S A THING.’ (Remember, I was drunk.)

But why? Why do we love ‘GET A TOWEL NO NOT THE WHITE ONE THE OTHER ONE’ sessions so much?

Well, scientists are too busy finding cures for ebola to prioritise figuring out why women get hornier when they’re on their period, so they haven’t yet found a concrete reason. In fact, the most popular theory is that progestrone and oestrogen – commonly linked to desire – is thought to spike when you’re ovulating rather than bleeding, dropping off before your period starts. On the other hand, if you want to add a bit of spice to your morning, try ringing around various medical press offices and asking to speak to an expert on Period Sex

‘We just put a towel down and go for it. I definitely need to get laid way more in those 4-7 days!’

‘As a specialist in psychosexual medicine, I am not aware of any research showing a correlation between menstruation and arousal generally,’ says Dr Sandy Goldbeck-Wood, member of the Institute of Psychosexual Medicine, tells me. ‘In fact, a few studies tend to suggest the opposite – that there’s greater arousal in days 1-14 of the cycle – but of course, that’s not to say individual women might experience this.’

Like, for example, me. Determined to find at least some evidence that there’s a link, I dug around and managed to find a few studies tucked away in the archives – one of them conducted by Dr Paula Englander-Golden (who is the director of training at Say It Straight which found evidence to suggest that women actually do get randier when on the rag (excuse the expression).

‘We found that the peak in sexual arousal occurs close to ovulation, the second peak occurs for two days premenstrually when progesterone is low and the third peak occurs around day four of the period,’ she explains. Another study, by Dr. Shere Hite, a professor of gender and culture, found that 56 per cent of women experienced heightened arousal when on their period – but Dr Englander Golden warns that these reports can sometimes be biased.

‘Self reports of sexual arousal seem to be affected by women’s awareness of the purpose of the study. When women were unaware what was being studied – their reports of sexual arousal – then the effects were different,’ she told us. In other words, we gals say we’re hornier when we know the study is testing to see if we’re hornier. So eager to please. Dr Englander-Golden’s study still stands, however, because the women who reported a third peak of horniness during day four of their period were unaware of the study’s intention. And why day four?

Read More: Our Definitive Guide On Having Sex During Your Period

Well, it follows that how horny you get when on the blob is directly related to how uncomfortable you get during your monthly ‘appointment’ (finding period synonyms is hard, guys). Jenna, who’s in a long-term relationship, agrees: ‘I’ll have sex on my period but only if I don’t feel too disgusting - it’s hard to feel sexy when you’re bloated, emotional and worried about smelling weird.’

A different friend also called Jenna, said on the night we got drunk: ‘That’s the main reason period sex doesn’t appeal to me – I get all my symptoms while on my period, rather than before.’ After speaking to Dr Englander-Golden, I asked Jenna when she’s most likely to have a shag during her period and she agreed, ‘One of the later days. By the time I’ve been on my period for a few days it’s lighter, and I feel a lot better, so am more likely to get turned on.’

‘By the time I’ve been on my period for a few days it’s lighter, and I feel a lot better, so am more likely to get turned on’

If you don’t really suffer from symptoms during your period – all my crying and grossness happens the week before, as does Grace’s and Kerry’s – then, of course, you’ll feel sexier. Sure, you’re bleeding but you’ve finally stopped feeling bloated, emotional and crampy. Which leads to loads of sex.

On the other hand, there are girls out there who just feel rubbish during their period, and totally not into it. ‘My boyfriend is always pestering me for sex when I’m on my period, as if he thinks I’m embarrassed or something,’ says Anna, another friend. ‘But it’s not that. I just really don’t want to have sex. I want to watch Game of Thrones and have an early night!'

Regardless of what evidence you find to prove the link between being horny whilst being on your period, it’s never going to prove anything either way because, as Dr Goldbeck-Wood told me, wisely – you can’t actually generalise about what makes a woman horny: ‘Arousal is very personal, over and above the basic biological prerequisites. Fantasy and other psychological factors can play a significant role, in ways you couldn’t generalise about,’ she says.

Science-speak for ‘Whatever turns you on, babe.’

 

Like this? Then you might also be interested in:

Playground Sex Myths That Are Actually True

What The Weird Stuff You Say During Sex Really Means

Ben Wa Balls: Everything You've Ever Wanted To Know 

 

Picture: Lukasz Wierzbowski 

Tags: Sex, Sex O\'Clock, Periods