Who Knew Oral Sex Has An Official Time Limit?

Several surveys reveal some pretty interesting things about going down.


Although it personally baffles me that people like this exist—half kidding, half not—I've got a few girlfriends who pretty close to loathe oral sex. I don't mean giving it (fellatio), I mean receiving it (cunnilingus). Most of them are wives too.

When I ask them "why?", the answers tend to vary. Some say it feels really awkward, almost to the point of feeling gross. Others say that they love what else their man has to offer; so much so that they'd rather bypass the oral and get to the "main" event instead. A couple of 'em have told me that cunnilingus is "alright", but their partner takes entirely too long to finish up. (Wow. Is that even a thing? What in the world?!)

Personally, I can't relate to any of this. Back in my sexually active days, not receiving oral sex would've been an automatic deal breaker. Plus, the more of it I could get, the better. But I must admit that these kinds of women do pique my curiosity. Are they an anomaly or are there others who feel the same way as they do? (Feel free to chime in with your own comments.) I don't just mean when it comes to oral sex overall, but how many ladies feel as if a timer should be set the very moment cunnilingus begins. Or even when they start blessing their man with fellatio.

It really is a bit of a rabbit hole, I must say, but I'm up for the task. If you are also an inquiring mind that would like to know, here's some of what cyberspace had to say on the issue(s).

How Long Should Oral Sex Last?

How Common Is Oral Sex?


Everything has a first time; even oral sex. When it comes to when that first time should actually happen, I'm sure it's no shocker that 4 out of 10 men don't mind it happening on the first date vs. 1 out of 10 women feeling the same way. As far as if men and women are both "generous" in this area, interestingly enough, it changes with age. Younger women are more down to perform fellatio (74 percent) while older men are more open to performing cunnilingus (69 percent), although women are twice as likely to give it than men are (SMDH).

Of the individuals who get this kind of action, do they all enjoy it? Apparently not. In another survey, while most participants agreed that oral sex is more enjoyable when it's not with a casual partner, 52 percent of men really like going down (good for you, fellas; you get an extra dose of oxytocin and DHEA when you do) while only 28 percent of women do (y'all who don't, check out "Do You Swallow? The Unexpected Health Benefits of Sperm"; however, wait until you get off of work; some of the content may be NSFW for your lunch break).

And what about married folks specifically? Another survey that I read revealed that mostly all husbands like to give oral sex while one-third of all wives could take it or leave it. 19 percent of wives said they are not able to orgasm from cunnilingus while seven percent of men said that they couldn't (interesting). 54 percent of wives said that they allow their husbands to "finish" in their mouths and 47 percent of husbands said that was an important factor although only 29 percent cared about whether she swallowed or not. In an extension of this same survey, 9.0% of women and 12.6% of men professed to perform oral sex every time, with husbands preferring to perform oral sex on their wives (get this) twice as much as they currently do. I was also happy to hear that 32 percent of wives wouldn't mind "blessing their husband" more often as well.

But out of all of the info that I checked out, you can tell by the title of this post that what blew my mind the most was the fact that oral sex seems to have a semi-official time limit. What is it? Let's go with ladies first.

How Long do Women Prefer Oral Sex to Last?


I'm pretty sure it comes as no surprise—maybe low-key disgust but certainly no surprise—that it was much harder (legions worth) to find data on cunnilingus as opposed to fellatio. Although I must say that one study that said a lot of men do it because they feel it is a way to "affair-proof" their relationship was kind of fascinating. Another cool thing about this form of oral sex is female ejaculate contains a protein known as prostatic acid phosphatase which helps to protect a man's prostate. Also, cunnilingus can't get you pregnant so, there's that win/win for anyone who doesn't want a baby—ever or yet.

But as far as how long it should last? I can't tell you how long I spent looking for actual data on the subject (again SMDH). While there are plenty of articles on technique, the time limit was extremely difficult to nail down. Quora had some semi-enlightening answers, with the average time being around 30 minutes, but that was via seven responses only. After checking out about 10-12 sites, the general consensus was a man should do the deed until his partner climaxes, however long that takes because, unlike a blow job (a lot of men said they would take a couple of minutes even if they couldn't get the whole shebang), quitting before she totally finishes qualifies as being a pretty wack experience.

I took this info to some people who I personally know. What the women who enjoy receiving oral sex told me is, so long as their partner knows what he is doing, they don't keep up with the time much at all. If he doesn't seem to have a clue, two minutes is too long. The guys? Most told me that their tongue typically gets tired after what they gauge to be 15 minutes or so. After that, they will either switch things up (initiate penetration) or get creative with their fingers, etc. in order to "buy" a little time. But does it get boring for them? No. Just a little tiresome, at times. Understood.

How Long do Men Prefer Oral Sex to Last?


Now for the fellas. So, there's this "study" that has received quite a bit of traction, right? I get it because the name alone is rather catching—The Blowjob Resume. It consists of 1100 Americans and Europeans who were asked about, well, the title of the study pretty much gives it away.

Anyway, it covered a myriad of things like how important a blow job is to people (35 percent of men said "somewhat important" while 25 percent of women felt the same way; 30 percent of men would prefer fellatio over intercourse, by the way), how many Americans swallow (29.6 never do while 23.9 always do…we do it A LOT more than Europeans do), and the fact that 72 percent of men prefer eye contact during the act while 58 percent of women would prefer to look any and everywhere but into the windows of their man's soul (that, or it's extremely taxing to multi-task in that fashion).

But again—and I promise that this will be my last time saying it—what really tripped me out was the fact that men think that a good blowjob should last…guess how long? A little under 10 minutes. And the woman giving them one? She's cool with 11 minutes.

Hmm…only a minute apart. Why is this the magic window?

The study itself said that while some were down with much longer, 10 minutes is far more realistic. When I did some of my own unofficial polling, the men in my life said that they agree with that timeframe. Actually, what most of them said was if it took more than 10 minutes, their partner could probably stand to brush up on her techniques because when it's a great performance, it will take a fraction of that time. The reason why they don't mind it going with a shorter timeframe is because while they could sleep as soundly as a baby afterwards, usually fellatio only revs their partner up; therefore, they would rather have a shorter amount of time on the receiving end, so that they can muster up enough energy for intercourse. Again, understood.

I guess when you stop to think about the fact that a man needs only five minutes of intercourse to have an orgasm while a woman requires around 25 minutes (foreplay included), these findings make sense. Again, it's just that I never even factored in that oral sex needed a clock. Shoot, I still don't.

Still, this was some interesting data to share so that y'all can sound off—or go off. Clearly, oral sex has layers just like everything else, chile. Duly noted.

Want more stories like this? Sign up for our newsletter here and check out the related reads below:

6 Oral Sex Positions That'll Elevate You Even When You're On Your Knees

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ACLU By ACLUSponsored

Over the past four years, we grew accustomed to a regular barrage of blatant, segregationist-style racism from the White House. Donald Trump tweeted that “the Squad," four Democratic Congresswomen who are Black, Latinx, and South Asian, should “go back" to the “corrupt" countries they came from; that same year, he called Elizabeth Warren “Pocahontas," mocking her belief that she might be descended from Native American ancestors.

But as outrageous as the racist comments Trump regularly spewed were, the racially unjust governmental actions his administration took and, in the case of COVID-19, didn't take, impacted millions more — especially Black and Brown people.

To begin to heal and move toward real racial justice, we must address not only the harms of the past four years, but also the harms tracing back to this country's origins. Racism has played an active role in the creation of our systems of education, health care, ownership, and employment, and virtually every other facet of life since this nation's founding.

Our history has shown us that it's not enough to take racist policies off the books if we are going to achieve true justice. Those past policies have structured our society and created deeply-rooted patterns and practices that can only be disrupted and reformed with new policies of similar strength and efficacy. In short, a systemic problem requires a systemic solution. To combat systemic racism, we must pursue systemic equality.

What is Systemic Racism?

A system is a collection of elements that are organized for a common purpose. Racism in America is a system that combines economic, political, and social components. That system specifically disempowers and disenfranchises Black people, while maintaining and expanding implicit and explicit advantages for white people, leading to better opportunities in jobs, education, and housing, and discrimination in the criminal legal system. For example, the country's voting systems empower white voters at the expense of voters of color, resulting in an unequal system of governance in which those communities have little voice and representation, even in policies that directly impact them.

Systemic Equality is a Systemic Solution

In the years ahead, the ACLU will pursue administrative and legislative campaigns targeting the Biden-Harris administration and Congress. We will leverage legal advocacy to dismantle systemic barriers, and will work with our affiliates to change policies nearer to the communities most harmed by these legacies. The goal is to build a nation where every person can achieve their highest potential, unhampered by structural and institutional racism.

To begin, in 2021, we believe the Biden administration and Congress should take the following crucial steps to advance systemic equality:

Voting Rights

The administration must issue an executive order creating a Justice Department lead staff position on voting rights violations in every U.S. Attorney office. We are seeing a flood of unlawful restrictions on voting across the country, and at every level of state and local government. This nationwide problem requires nationwide investigatory and enforcement resources. Even if it requires new training and approval protocols, a new voting rights enforcement program with the participation of all 93 U.S. Attorney offices is the best way to help ensure nationwide enforcement of voting rights laws.

These assistant U.S. attorneys should begin by ensuring that every American in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons who is eligible to vote can vote, and monitor the Census and redistricting process to fight the dilution of voting power in communities of color.

We are also calling on Congress to pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act to finally create a fair and equal national voting system, the cause for which John Lewis devoted his life.

Student Debt

Black borrowers pay more than other students for the same degrees, and graduate with an average of $7,400 more in debt than their white peers. In the years following graduation, the debt gap more than triples. Nearly half of Black borrowers will default within 12 years. In other words, for Black Americans, the American dream costs more. Last week, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, along with House Reps. Ayanna Pressley, Maxine Waters, and others, called on President Biden to cancel up to $50,000 in federal student loan debt per borrower.

We couldn't agree more. By forgiving $50,000 of student debt, President Biden can unleash pent up economic potential in Black communities, while relieving them of a burden that forestalls so many hopes and dreams. Black women in particular will benefit from this executive action, as they are proportionately the most indebted group of all Americans.

Postal Banking

In both low and high income majority-Black communities, traditional bank branches are 50 percent more likely to close than in white communities. The result is that nearly 50 percent of Black Americans are unbanked or underbanked, and many pay more than $2,000 in fees associated with subprime financial institutions. Over their lifetime, those fees can add up to as much as two years of annual income for the average Black family.

The U.S. Postal Service can and should meet this crisis by providing competitive, low-cost financial services to help advance economic equality. We call on President Biden to appoint new members to the Postal Board of Governors so that the Post Office can do the work of providing essential services to every American.

Fair Housing

Across the country, millions of people are living in communities of concentrated poverty, including 26 percent of all Black children. The Biden administration should again implement the 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule, which required localities that receive federal funds for housing to investigate and address barriers to fair housing and patterns or practices that promote bias. In 1980, the average Black person lived in a neighborhood that was 62 percent Black and 31 percent white. By 2010, the average Black person's neighborhood was 48 percent Black and 34 percent white. Reinstating the Obama-era Fair Housing Rule will combat this ongoing segregation and set us on a path to true integration.

Congress should also pass the American Housing and Economic Mobility Act, or a similar measure, to finally redress the legacy of redlining and break down the walls of segregation once and for all.

Broadband Access

To realize broadband's potential to benefit our democracy and connect us to one another, all people in the United States must have equal access and broadband must be made affordable for the most vulnerable. Yet today, 15 percent of American households with school-age children do not have subscriptions to any form of broadband, including one-quarter of Black households (an additional 23 percent of African Americans are “smartphone-only" internet users, meaning they lack traditional home broadband service but do own a smartphone, which is insufficient to attend class, do homework, or apply for a job). The Biden administration, Federal Communications Commission, and Congress must develop and implement plans to increase funding for broadband to expand universal access.

Enhanced, Refundable Child Tax Credits

The United States faces a crisis of child poverty. Seventeen percent of all American children are impoverished — a rate higher than not just peer nations like Canada and the U.K., but Mexico and Russia as well. Currently, more than 50 percent of Black and Latinx children in the U.S. do not qualify for the full benefit, compared to 23 percent of white children, and nearly one in five Black children do not receive any credit at all.

To combat this crisis, President Biden and Congress should enhance the child tax credit and make it fully refundable. If we enhance the child tax credit, we can cut child poverty by 40 percent and instantly lift over 50 percent of Black children out of poverty.


We cannot repair harms that we have not fully diagnosed. We must commit to a thorough examination of the impact of the legacy of chattel slavery on racial inequality today. In 2021, Congress must pass H.R. 40, which would establish a commission to study reparations and make recommendations for Black Americans.

The Long View

For the past century, the ACLU has fought for racial justice in legislatures and in courts, including through several landmark Supreme Court cases. While the court has not always ruled in favor of racial justice, incremental wins throughout history have helped to chip away at different forms of racism such as school segregation ( Brown v. Board), racial bias in the criminal legal system (Powell v. Alabama, i.e. the Scottsboro Boys), and marriage inequality (Loving v. Virginia). While these landmark victories initiated necessary reforms, they were only a starting point.

Systemic racism continues to pervade the lives of Black people through voter suppression, lack of financial services, housing discrimination, and other areas. More than anything, doing this work has taught the ACLU that we must fight on every front in order to overcome our country's legacies of racism. That is what our Systemic Equality agenda is all about.

In the weeks ahead, we will both expand on our views of why these campaigns are crucial to systemic equality and signal the path this country must take. We will also dive into our work to build organizing, advocacy, and legal power in the South — a region with a unique history of racial oppression and violence alongside a rich history of antiracist organizing and advocacy. We are committed to four principles throughout this campaign: reconciliation, access, prosperity, and empowerment. We hope that our actions can meet our ambition to, as Dr. King said, lead this nation to live out the true meaning of its creed.

What you can do:
Take the pledge: Systemic Equality Agenda
Sign up

Featured image by Shutterstock

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