If I had a nickel for the number of times someone has approached me on the street, grabbed me by the shoulders, and shouted, "FRANK! WHY ARE STRAIGHT MEN SO FIXATED ON ANAL SEX!?!" I wouldn't have any nickels. Primarily because people don't ever recognize me on the street, and also because that's a strange question to lead with. But the point still stands that there's a male obsession with the butt hole that women, especially women who aren't into anal stimulation, don't understand. Here's why guys are so into it.
1. It feels completely different than vaginal sex. It's like this: What if you found out your partner had a second penis that they never used for sex, and you knew that this penis would give you a different sensation during intercourse? Wouldn't you want to try that? Except your partner says he doesn't want to do it that way because it's gross because he uses that penis to poop. All right, when I put it like that, it doesn't sound very appealing. Maybe this is a better way to phrase it...
2. It's like the pumpkin spice latte of sex: a novelty treat! Hear me out. People go ape-shit for pumpkin spice lattes when they come out, because they're a novelty. You wouldn't care about them as much if they were part of the regular menu. Sure, you'd still drink them, but you wouldn't be crashing through Starbuck's windows screaming for them. Anal sex is like that. It's not something that's "on the menu" all the time, so when it's available, guys really want to put their penis in that pumpkin spice latte. I mean, butt. I don't know what we're talking about anymore.
3. It's considered taboo without being weird. Anal sex is kind of like when your straight-laced mom cuts loose and has two margaritas on vacation. It's not that big of a deal; you're not putting on leather gimp suits or whipping each other during sex. But it feels naughty. It's just raunchy enough without being out of hand. Also, now you'll always think of your mom drinking margaritas during anal sex.
4. Not everyone has been there, kind of like Mount Everest. No, it doesn't matter how many people you've slept with, but you probably didn't have butt sex with all of those people. So it's just nice to think that if your vagina is the club, your butt is the VIP area. Which doesn't make much sense, I know. It's not like people are holding annual meetings or belong to a secret club because they've been to your ass. It's just nice knowing that, if we ever had to compare notes, we've got a bit of an edge.
5. It's like eating escargot or caviar: a status symbol. You know how caviar is gross and rich people eat it just because it's expensive? Sometimes guys just want to do it just because it's elitist and not for any other reason. I don't know if everyone necessarily wants to eat escargot or caviar as much as they want to be able to tell other people they ate escargot or caviar. Some guys don't even love the idea of anal sex, but it's worth the extra cleanup to be able to say they've done it.
This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.