We’re bringing you this Q&A from the Sex Files in our September/October 2019 print issue, featuring advice from sexologist Dr. Carol Queen.
I’ve been reading online about “muffing”—a sex act in which the body cavities where the testes descend from are penetrated—but I’m not sure I understand how it works. Can you give me a primer? –Getting Handsy
Muffing is a hand-sex variant in which you stimulate the inguinal canals. You can look up “inguinal canals,” but be warned that you’ll initially find a lot of anatomy pix illustrated with cocks and balls, and language like “male” and “male body.” Now, you can do this kind of stimulation to a cis fella! But if you want to explore this with a trans girlfriend, you might want to check out the terrific publication Fucking Trans Women by Mira Bellwether rather than reading Wiki pages. Our friends at The Center for Sexual Pleasure and Health have been inspired by her work and riffed on it at thecsph.org/wotw-muffing/.
OK, back to the anatomy. The inguinal canals are passages in the abdominal wall, and if you feel around the lower pelvis, to either side and behind where the scrotal sac attaches to the body wall (or where it would if someone was assigned male at birth, even if they do not present as male any more), the lower ends of the inguinal canal will manifest themselves as holes beneath the skin—you’re seeking dents or depressions that are sensitive to the touch. These are the routes down which the testicles descended, except in the small percentage of kids where they didn’t descend. (If that’s the case, be gentle when poking around—there might be a testicle up there.) Some people regularly engage in “tucking,” which involves popping the testicles back up in there and putting super-tight panties on so there is no testicular bulge. If you are interested in muffing such a person, you can cut to the chase and say, “Show me where your inguinal canals are,” because they’ll already know.
These can be stroked through the skin for starters; then, if the person wants to explore the experience of inguinal penetration with you, add pressure and slide your finger in as far as it will go. There’s a specific nerve pathway there you’ll be stimulating, so the sensation is likely to feel good to the person you’re muffing. As with any bodily touch, though, not everyone likes every sensation. Take their cue about how firmly to press and how far up the canal to go. Those who tuck and/or already play with muffing will have already stretched these canals somewhat. If they’re just getting started, stretching can occur, but it might take a while. Seriously, bodies are so cool.
Top photo via The Gender Spectrum Collection by Zackary Drucker
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Carol Queen’s latest book (written with Shar Rednour) is The Sex & Pleasure Book: Good Vibrations Guide to Great Sex for Everyone. This article originally appeared in the September/October 2019 print edition of BUST Magazine. Subscribe today!
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