Why are we still arguing about the g-spot?
Despite being “discovered” in 1940 by Ernst Gräfenberg, after whom it was later named, scientific evidence as to the actual existence of the g-spot still remains sketchy, over 70 years down the line. While some women sing the praises of this elusive erogenous zone, others remain convinced it is merely a myth, and that no such thing exists.
The g-spot is supposedly a cluster of nerve endings on the front wall of the area between the vaginal opening and the urethra that, when stimulated, can lead to powerful orgasms and potential female ejaculation. Indeed, searching “g-spot” online leads to a wealth of sites that claim to teach you how to find your g-spot, leaving many women who don’t believe they have one perhaps fearing there is something wrong, or that there is something lacking from their sex life.
Cosmetic surgeons have even capitalised on the g-spot “myth”, offering g-spot augmentation surgery for those who think having a g-spot could vastly improve their sex lives. The controversial ‘g-shot’ was invented by Dr David Matlock, a cosmetic gynaecologist based in Beverly Hills. It involves injecting hyaluronic acid, that is, cosmetic filler, into a woman’s vagina, plumping up the area of the front wall where the sensitive tissue forming the g-spot is said to be. The interest in the treatment prompted a variety of medical professionals to speak out about their concerns that the side effects of such an injection could be dangerous, leading perhaps to scarring or even loss of libido over time.
The biggest concern is, of course, offering a treatment on a part of the body that may or may not even exist. A 2009 study by King’s College London, published in The Journal of Sexual Medicine, claimed that there was absolutely no evidence for the existence of the g-spot. The survey interviewed 1,804 female twins aged between 22 and 83 about the presence or absence of a g-spot. Fifty-six per cent of respondents claimed to have one, but identical twins were no more likely to share the characteristic than non-identical ones, suggesting the existence of such an area is subjective.
This in some way supports a study done the previous year, which claimed to find evidence that the g-spot definitely exists, but suggested that not all women actually have one. Conducted at the University of L’Aquila in Italy, ultrasound scans showed anatomical differences between women who claimed to experience vaginal orgasms and women who said they weren’t able to. The scans showed a patch of thicker tissue in the area where the g-spot is said to be in women who said they had vaginal orgasms. However, some skeptics of the study said that while the findings could be related to the g-spot, the scientists may just have identified part of the clitoris, which is highly variable in size between different women.
The fact that so little research has been done into female sexual pleasure, and that ultrasonic and anatomical studies have proved inconclusive is probably why doctors, gynaecologists and medical researchers are still wholly divided on the subject. Doctors who have been researching female sexuality for years still can’t decide among themselves whether or not the g-spot is ‘a thing’, suggesting it does just seem down to how much pleasure each individual woman gets from being touched or stimulated in different parts of their vagina.
Leila Frodsham is a consultant gynaecologist with a special interest in psychosexual medicine, and is adamant that such a spot doesn’t exist. “There is something that exists in men, the prostate, which is why men find anal sex stimulating,” she says. “But there is no such equivalent thing in women.” She believes the g-spot myth has been perpetuated by the fact that about 5-10 per cent of the clitoris is seen on the vulva, but the other 90 per cent encircles the vagina, meaning women find penetrative contact very stimulating. “The g-spot is supposed to be at the neck of the bladder,” she adds, “But anatomically there is nothing there. A study was done on cadavers by gynaecologists, and they never found any evidence.”
Elisabeth Lloyd, on the other hand, Professor of Biology at the University of Indiana, says yes, it does exist. “I believe that around a quarter of women have a sensitive concentration of nerves in the embryological equivalent, that is, the homologue, of the prostate gland in the male, which is sometimes called the ‘g-spot’,” she says. According to her, this would arise because the male and female share the same body plan in the womb for the first two months of development. After two months, hormones start to differentiate the male foetus into an actual male, but meanwhile, the female has shared all of the same features, including the genital tubercle and embryonic prostate gland.
So why are some women so sure of its existence when others are not? In Elisabeth’s view, the concentration of nerves is not under natural selection and therefore has no consistency in appearance in the population. For some women it is pronounced and for others it is not. “We are still not sure for certain partly because not enough careful research has been done on it,” she says. “The fact we’re still not sure doesn’t necessarily mean that some women are just particularly sensitive at certain places in their vagain. The special spot, as a remnant of the embryonic prostate gland may exist in some women.”
For Leila, though, it is simply the case that every person has different areas of their body that they find stimulating. “Sometimes my work involves scanning perineums, the area between the anus and the vulva,” she says. “Of course, everyone is slightly different, it’s not unusual to have some thickening of the tissue that separates planes between the vagina and the bladder. Only 30 per cent of women are orgasmic vaginally alone — does that mean they have g-spots? Well there isn’t anything anatomically there to indicate it.”
Either way, there still isn’t really enough evidence to prove it exists — but equally the testimonials of those women who do believe they have a g-spot shouldn’t be ignored either. In short, women should simply carry on enjoying what works for them as, clearly, it doesn’t matter if you have a g-spot or not. The four women below describe why they think the g-spot does or doesn’t exist, and how it feels for them when they touch or are touched where it is supposed to be.
I think by naming something you almost bring it into existence. I do believe that there exists an elusive place inside my vagina that feels really good when it’s touched. For me it exists kind of deep, on the front wall of my vagina. When it’s touched, it feels sort of electric. I think I first found mine with a boyfriend and a vibrator. But for me the most satisfying thing is that everything has to be reaching so deeply into you to even get to it, so everything is being satisfied, touched, in a way, at the same time. Also because it happens so rarely, it feels almost virginal and new each time. I wouldn’t orgasm from it alone, but from everything else being stimulated at the same time. If I’m having sex with a man and he’s thrusting into me and somehow his penis is at the perfect angle and his crotch is also rubbing my clit, all that at the same time leads to a brilliant orgasm. I think it takes a lot of work to find, I also think that everyone is different. Some people might never find it, people might have it but it not feel any different to anywhere else, other people might actually find it too intense. I don’t think it’s a specific thing necessarily, I think we all have certain bits that make us feel differently. On top of my g-spot, I also am convinced I have H, I, J and K spots but no one has bothered naming those yet.
I don’t think I have a g-spot. I’ve tried looking, mainly after reading articles in women’s magazines. I believe that the walls of the vagina are variable in terms of sensation and feel, but the idea of the g-spot is a concept that’s not actually reflected in anatomy. When I touch where it’s supposed to be (and I followed the Cosmo instructions to the letter) I just feel the wall of my vagina, it feels no different to anywhere else in terms of sensation. In terms of touch, I can’t feel anything particularly unique in terms of roughness or a raised area. I only orgasm from clitoral stimulation. I don’t think there’s a possibility I haven’t found it, I’m pretty clued up on my own anatomy, and human anatomy in general. What annoys me about the g-spot is all the mystery and hyperbole that surrounds it. Surely all you have to do is dissect someone to prove whether it’s there or not. I wish that the conversation around female sexuality was broader than matters of anatomy such as g-spot versus clitoris. It’s reductive and phallocentric and ultimately not very satisfying.
I definitely have a g-spot, it’s about 4-5cm from the entrance of the vagina, on the anterior wall. I didn’t discover it until I was about 40, and actually it was my husband who found it. I struggle to describe the feeling, but it is less tangible than the feeling when the clitoris is touched. It kind of creates a feeling in the brain, similar to that which you get when imagining things that turn you on. I don’t generally orgasm from my g-spot alone, but my orgasms are much more intense (again, in a way that’s hard to describe) when it has been stimulated. I do think it is a specific thing, because the rest of my vagina isn’t actually that sensitive at all.
The g-spot totally exists, for me. I can have multiple orgasms, and from sex rather than clitoral stimulation. The thing with the g-spot is you can only feel it when aroused, so it’s not like the clit that’s just always there. It appears when it wants to. If (while aroused) you squat down and put your finger inside your vagina and curve it towards you belly, you may find a raised, textured area. Bingo, that’s your g-spot. Actually, I think the reason my g-spot is so sensitive is that I don’t seem to feel anything from clitoral stimulation, so I always move a sexual partner towards the g-spot instead. That said, I know for a fact that the g-spot isn’t a universal thing. For some women I know, full on sex will never give them an orgasm. Having a g-spot is amazing though. It means I can come at the same time as my partner and I feel closer to him because I can come while he’s inside. If I have a really intense orgasm from my g-spot then I ejaculate. This is usually after the third or fourth orgasm in a row and it’s amazing when I do – it’s the best thing ever.