French kissing

(1) Dear Alice,

Hey, okay, well I french kissed this guy and I didn't use my tongue. Are girls supposed to use their tongues? If so, which way does it go??


(2) Dear Alice,

I would like to know how to french kiss.

(3) Dear Alice,

I have never really frenched a guy!! I have kissed like open mouth but not french. I was reading an article the other day in a mag (embarrassing moments) and this girl forgot to swallow her spit and when they pulled away it was like a big line of spit forming from both of their mouths. I was wondering if they were inexperienced or if they just forgot to swallow. I also have another question. My friend is going out with this guy and he always clanks teeth and bites her tongue and I'm hoping I won't be like that. How can you prevent it? Thank you so much.

Need help!!! (and fast)


Dear Confused, Reader #2, and Need help!!! (and fast),

In a french kiss, both people use their tongues. How you use your tongue is up to you, but it does require a certain amount of finesse. Generally, if you build up to a french kiss, it will feel more natural than if you go for the gusto right away. Perhaps you’d like to start with a few pecks on the cheek, neck, and lips, and then lead up to a more intimate, open-mouthed kiss.

Above all, you definitely don't want to simply stick your tongue in the other person's mouth and then let it hang loose. Instead, use your tongue to gently explore the other kisser's mouth and to play with her/his tongue. Take short breaks to "come up for air" and to swallow your own saliva. Also, you can try to avoid clanking teeth. This tends to happen when both people fail to turn or tilt their heads slightly to one side, or when your mouths are open a little too much. If your teeth bump, you and your partner can just laugh about it and keep on going — no big deal! After a few french kisses, you'll start to figure out how to avoid bumps. You might even find you enjoy a light nibble on your lips or tongue, but let your partner know if you’d like him/her to go easy with the chompers!

Kissing should be enjoyable for both people involved. Don't be afraid to speak up if something isn't pleasurable or if it hurts. For example, imaging in the heat of the moment you realize that your partner has latched onto your lip like a hook in a fish’s mouth. You could say: "Oooh, that kind of hurts — could you try being gentler with my lips? I want to make sure they stay smooth and soft for you!” Being nice about it can alleviate any awkward moments. Plus, you can even take that as an opportunity to ask what your kissing partner likes and doesn't like about the way you kiss.

Ultimately, kissing is not a science. Figuring out what you and your partner like is a process, and you’ll learn a whole lot along the way. Kissing preferences might even change with time, the situation, and your partner. And don’t forget, the more you kiss, the better a kisser you’ll become!

Last updated Jul 14, 2015
Originally published Sep 04, 1998

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