by Dan Savage
on Wed, Jul 18, 2012 at 5:42 PM
I recently got into a relationship with a guy who I'm crazy for, and who has a thing for pee. While it doesn't turn me on, it definitely turns him on and that more than makes up for it. The issue here is, I am prone to bladder infections and I'm afraid his kink will make my problem much worse.
I'm going to interrupt the LW here. I skim "Savage Love" emails as they pour in, searching for column- and/or SLLOTD-worthy questions, and I nearly hit the delete button at this point. She's dating a guy who's into pee and she's prone to bladder infections? That's not a problem. People with bladder infections are encouraged to drink a lot of fluids and urinate often. If her boyfriend likes to get peed on, and she's so into her boyfriend that she actually enjoys his kink*, then... she's been drinking a lot of fluids and peeing frequently. Which means her boyfriend and his kink aren't problematic. They're therapeutic. Then I read on...
One of his favourite things is making me hold my pee in for long periods of time, which is less than desirable when an infection is almost always lurking. Do you have any tips on how we could get around this, or how I can amp up my system while doing this with him to prevent the infections from getting worse?
My Vagina Sucks
Your boyfriend isn't into piss, MVS, he's into domination and control. And bossing your bladder around— inflicting this particular kind of eroticized discomfort on you—is "one of his favorite" ways of expressing his dominance over you. And that's a problem. Take it away, WebMD:
Usually, germs get into your system through your urethra, the tube that carries urine from your bladder to the outside of your body. The germs that usually cause these infections live in your large intestine and are found in your stool. If these germs get inside your urethra, they can travel up into your bladder and kidneys and cause an infection. Women tend to get more bladder infections than men. This is probably because women have shorter urethras, so it is easier for the germs to move up to their bladders. Having sex can make it easier for germs to get into your urethra.
Bladder infections are treated with antibiotics and sufferers are encouraged to "drink lots of water and other fluids," "urinate often," and to fully empty their bladders "each time." WebMD offers a list of prevention tips for for those who suffer from frequent bladder infections and it warns against exactly what you're doing for the boyfriend: "Urinate often. Do not try to hold it."
So, yeah, your boyfriend's kink—which is more about dominance than piss—could be a problem. Holding it in on his orders may be erotic for you both, MVS, but there's nothing erotic about the discomfort of a bladder infection. (And I don't need to tell you that, right?) Asking you to risk a painful bladder infection to satisfy his kink seems selfish, MVS, and most impartial third parties would urge you to rule hold-it-in play out of bounds. Because asking a partner to risk a bladder infection for your sexual pleasure is too much to ask, right?
Sex is a common cause of UTIs in women because sexual intercourse introduces bacteria into a woman's urinary tract. During sex, the urethra comes into contact with the bacteria from the genital area and anus, allowing them to enter the urethra, the bladder, and possibly eventually the kidneys, and result in an infection. In fact, almost 80 percent of premenopausal women with a UTI have had sex within the previous 24 hours.
Plain ol' vaginal intercourse ups your risk for bladder infections—all that grinding on and around the urethra can introduce bacteria that make their way up to bladder. Flushing out any bacteria that might've made their way into the urethra is why women who are prone to bladder infections are encouraged to urinate immediately after sex.
I realize that vaginal intercourse isn't piss play and vice-versa, of course, but I don't think you need stop doing this thing you both enjoy because it might lead to a bladder infection anymore you should stop having vaginal intercourse because it might lead to a bladder infection. And you didn't ask if you should stop doing this thing you both enjoy. You asked if there was a way to do this without upping your risk of a bladder infection. And there may be: when he wants to do this kind of piss play—when you both do—you should drink, drink, drink, then pee, pee, pee. Flush out your system. Then once your urethra free of any stray bacteria, start drinking again—water, beer, whatever—and then your boyfriend can order you to hold it. It'll require you to be thoughtful about when you do this kind of play—you'll both have to plan ahead (no more spontaneous hold-it-in sessions)—but that's a concession he should be willing to make for your physical safety and to alleviate your anxiety.
* Like I said to Prudie in a SLLOTD last week: "You'll meet two kinds of people at BDSM clubs, fetish shops, and lurking on Fetlife. You'll meet people who were always kinky and you'll meet people who fell in love with someone who was kinky, didn't dump their kinky partners after they disclosed, and somehow grew to love their kinky partner's kinks just as much as they loved their kinky partners." MVS is a good example of the latter.