Cleaning up after sex - to dunk or not to dunk?

This morning, my 2 year old wandered into our bedroom while we were still sleeping. I was woken to the sound of her attempting (unsuccessfully) to lift a glass of water from my partner’s bedside table. As she poured it down her pyjamas, I was reminded of one of my favourite of all time - Do you dunk your penis? Written in 2013 and with over 1,000 responses and counting, this post is the gift that keeps on giving.

The original poster (OP) decided to tell the world that her partner placed a dedicated ‘penis beaker’ of clean water beside the bed, so that he could dunk his penis in it to clean it while she was in the bathroom. She wanted to know if this was ‘normal’ behaviour.

According to the people of Mumsnet, it is not normal. The post led to many concerns about the water being accidentally drunk by children or pets:

“I'd worry one of my children would drink from it, the dog bowl was never off limits so I doubt the willy cup would be.”

“There's no way we could do penis dunking, the cat would drink the water!”

Others felt that the penis beaker might kill the mood:

“That must be sexy. You do it then spring apart, you rush to the bathroom and he plunges his knob into a bucket.”

“Does your partner say things like 'I'm feeling fruity tonight darling. FILL UP THE PENIS BEAKER!'?”

While a few were confused by the physics of the method:

“OP I have to ask, do you have a specific depth of water in the penis beaker? I mean, with displacement, the water would overflow.”

Many posters gave helpful alternatives for genital cleaning:

“My partner often just ambles in and flops his knob in the sink WHILE I am doing my sex wee”

“I clean my partner with my mouth - all part of the service”

So how should you clean up after sex? Does it make a difference whether you’ve had oral, anal or vaginal sex? And are there different rules for penises and vaginas? I asked our Clinical Director, Paula Baraitser, for some advice.

“It’s really up to you. There’s no sexual health reason to jump out of bed and wash yourself. Cleaning your genital area won’t make you more or less likely to get an STI, so just do what you feel comfortable with.”

No need for the perils of the penis beaker, then. How about general genital hygiene?

“Avoid using soaps, deodorants or any scented washes on your vagina, as these can upset your natural balance of bacteria and pH levels.

You should also avoid ‘douching’ - when you flush the inside of your vagina with water - as this can disrupt the healthy bacteria that help to keep your vagina clean and free of infections like thrush or bacterial vaginosis (BV). There is no evidence that douching protects against STIs or other infections.

If you have a penis, clean it whenever you have a shower or bath by gently pulling back the foreskin and washing with plain, warm water.”

Thanks Paula. My question for the Mumsnet OP was how her partner manoeuvred himself to get his penis into the glass a) without spilling it and b) without more hassle than just getting up and going to the bathroom. Whatever works for you...

Last updated at: 02 February 2024
Published on: 12 August 2022