Why do I feel like I have to go to the bathroom when I have sex?

Dear Alice,

Why do I feel like I have to go to the bathroom when I have sex?

Dear Reader,

There are many different types of sex that can lead a person to feel like s/he needs to take a bathroom break. Some types of sex may actually make a person feel like s/he had an accident in the bed. Others can actually increase that “gotta go!” feeling. Here’s an overview:

G-Spot orgasm: This highly intense form of orgasm happens when a particular area of the vagina is sufficiently stimulated. The G-spot, typically located against the part of the vaginal wall closest to the stomach, can result in an intense orgasm with highly pleasurable cervical contractions. These cervical contractions release fluid collected on the inner part of the cervix. The fluid is slightly different than the more common vaginal lubrication: It is more watery and may feel somewhat like urine, but is usually odorless. Because of the accompanying orgasm, this fluid is often released with much gusto. A woman can feel like she is peeing both because of the volume of liquid and because of the internal feeling of release that may accompany the spasms. Emptying your bladder before sex can usually help reassure yourself that you are not urinating.

Anal sex: Anal intercourse can make a person feel the urge to empty his or her bowels. In fact, it is generally useful to do so before having anal sex, both for comfort and for cleanliness. The anus is comprised of a magical set of muscles and sphincters, with a higher concentration of nerve endings than any other part of the body (with the exception of the genitals). Whether or not you involve your anus in your sexual play, it responds when you get turned on. Anal tissues, much like genitals, become engorged with blood when you are aroused and the anal canal may become moist.

This relaxing of that internal sphincter may give the initial sensation of needing to use the bathroom, because it is a sensation associated with pooping. However, this is where knowing you already went # 2 can be comforting. But what if you can’t go before? Or what if you are concerned about remnants of feces in your colon after a bowel movement? You can gently flush the area with a slender ear syringe first. Fill the ear syringe with warm water and lubricate the tip. Insert into your anus and gently squeeze the bulb a few times. This uses much less water than an enema or douche and you’re much more likely to fully release feces and all of the water.

As a side note, anal penetration should always involve lots of lube. It should neither hurt nor cause bleeding. If it does, stop immediately. Pain could be an indicator that you are moving too fast — the muscles need time to relax. Whether using fingers, a toy, or penis, insert just far enough that you feel pressure, stopping just before you feel pain. That pain comes from the internal sphincter, which relaxes in order to pass stools but is otherwise contracted (to prevent you from passing stools when you don’t want to). It is an involuntary contraction, but gentle, steady pressure will tire the muscle eventually and allow further penetration.

Full bladder: Other explanations for the urge to urinate could be pressure on the bladder externally from certain sexual positions or vaginal penetration at certain angles, which could also put pressure on the bladder. Some people like to have sex with a fuller bladder because it can enhance an orgasm, especially for women. The trick here is to have it be full enough to enhance the orgasm without creating discomfort. It may take some trial and error to get the right balance. If you are tyring to avoid this full-bladder feeling, completely emptying it right before sex could help reassure you that an accident won’t happen while you’re getting it on. Of course, if it does, know that urine is sterile.

Check out the related Q&As for even more information on sex and nature’s call!

Last updated Jul 15, 2015
Originally published Oct 22, 1999

Submit a new comment


This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

The answer you entered for the CAPTCHA was not correct.