Bottoming TikTok: Meet the creators providing sex education about anal sex

Anal intercourse, particularly whenever you’re bottoming, can really feel like a sport of Russian roulette.

Truly, the identical might be stated for all types of intercourse. Our guard is down and actually, we’re at our most weak: we’re bare, turned on, wanting to please, and there is a threat that no matter we’re doing simply will not work. However for a backside — the particular person within the receptive function throughout anal intercourse — the stakes really feel increased, with plenty of us left feeling like we’re groping round at the hours of darkness (each actually and figuratively).

How painful is it going to be? Ought to I not eat earlier than? For a way lengthy? What if I’ve an ‘accident’? These are the questions bottoms have requested themselves (or googled on the sly) at one level. Many people have needed to depend on trial and error over time to determine greatest follow — that’s, till now. TikTok has turn into the hub for bottoms desirous to study extra about anal intercourse, the best way to get pleasure from it, and most significantly, the best way to practise it safely. However this begs a good greater query: why have been we by no means taught about it?

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Within the UK, the reply lies inside the decades-long erasure of LGBTQ folks from faculty curricula, and most notably the implementation of Part 28 in 1988. The laws, enacted by Margaret Thatcher’s authorities to “prohibit the promotion of homosexuality” by native councils, banned the optimistic depiction of LGBTQ identities and relationships in lecture rooms, libraries, and extracurricular golf equipment for 15 years till it was repealed in 2003. Nonetheless Lisa Hallgarten, head of coverage and affairs at Brook, a charity specialising within the sexual well being and wellbeing of younger folks within the UK, says the issue didn’t finish there.

“Part 28 not solely created a whole silencing on the time however for years afterwards,” she explains. Hallgarten argues the laws’s legacy has left as we speak’s academics nonetheless feeling anxious to speak about LGBTQ intercourse. “They are much extra snug speaking about heteronormative types of intercourse as a result of it is centered on copy,” she says. “They are not educated to speak about pleasure or every other type of intercourse completely different {couples} might need.”

“I’m a homosexual man and a butt physician, and there’s this big lack of anal intercourse training on the market.”

Dr Carlton Thomas made his first TikTok about bottoming in the summertime of 2020. Because the coronavirus pandemic escalated around the globe, TikTok was busy taking on the lives of his teenage kids at house in San Diego. A gastroenterologist for 17 years, the 49-year-old noticed a possibility amongst the Megan Thee Stallion dance routines and banana bread recipes (keep in mind these?) to share his experience. “I am a homosexual man and a butt physician, and there is this big lack of anal intercourse training on the market,” he says. “Who higher to show it than somebody with skilled and private expertise of how issues work?”

Since then, he’s amassed almost 250,000 followers on Gen Z’s favorite platform by masking a variety of anal sex-related subjects — from recommendation on the best way to keep away from bleeding, douching (his hottest video, a information to utilizing store-bought enemas, has 1.6 million views), kegel workouts, ideas for max pleasure in addition to details about HIV prevention. 

Citing the absence of homosexual intercourse training from his personal childhood because the motivation behind beginning the account, Thomas tells me that all through medical faculty and his gastrointestinal physician coaching, anal intercourse was by no means talked about. “I had plenty of questions, so I did my very own analysis to get the solutions,” he says. The success of his movies, which recurrently obtain tens of hundreds of likes, confirms that others around the globe have been trying to find these solutions too. “Folks need to know the best way to do anal intercourse proper, the best way to do it effectively, and the best way to do it safely,” he explains.

However Thomas is not the one face of TikTok’s backside positivity motion. Alex Corridor, a 29-year-old graphic designer, was dwelling in New York when he got here up with the concept of The Backside’s Digest, a cooking channel sharing “bottom-friendly” recipes impressed by the Texan and Cajun delicacies he was introduced up on. The rising price of meat within the metropolis paired with Corridor’s rising sensitivity to dairy led him to a principally plant-based weight loss program, which he says gives an a variety of benefits for bottoming. “What we eat is such an enormous a part of how our intercourse goes to go,” he tells me. 

Now dwelling in Texas and working the account along with his husband Mike, Corridor has spent years looking out far and broad for the very best (or ought to I say cleanest) bottoming gas. “What I did discover could be so apparent…a salad. I hate salad!” he exclaims. “Intercourse and meals are two of life’s nice pleasures and our neighborhood actually deprives themselves of 1 to benefit from the different, and we should not.” Whether or not it is alfredo pasta, mac and cheese, or meatballs, Corridor’s consolation meals recipes are excessive in fiber and low in FODMAP (quick for fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols — basically sugars that may trigger intestinal misery), which makes them excellent for bottoms wanting to keep away from bloating, diarrhea, and constipation. 


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Daniel O’Shaughnessy, nutritionist and creator of Bare Vitamin: An LGBTQ+ Information to Weight loss program and Life-style, notes that the proper bottoming weight loss program varies by particular person. “As a normal rule a backside wants fiber in relation to anal intercourse,” he says. He advises rising fiber consumption slowly to keep away from extra wind and to keep away from insoluble fibers (which might be excessive in FODMAP, assume cauliflower, legumes, and a few complete grains) not less than 24 hours earlier than the large second. O’Shaughnessy’s different suggestions for bottoming vitamin embrace fermented meals (comparable to kimchi and kombucha) for improved intestine well being, avoiding dairy merchandise, and chewing meals correctly for digestion.

Corridor checks his bottom-friendly recipes himself, then runs them previous a gaggle of 10 drag queens. 24 hours later, the queens report again about whether or not they felt bloated, and in the event that they did backside, the way it went. “So many individuals have had heartache looking for data like this so it’s essential these recipes really work,” he provides.

Other than the occasional troll, the response to each accounts has been overwhelmingly optimistic. Thomas’ followers recurrently credit score him with revolutionising their intercourse lives in his feedback, however he says the true influence of his movies might be present in his DMs. Homosexual males dwelling in international locations the place homosexuality is illegitimate — and generally the place it is punishable by loss of life, like in Saudi Arabia and Iran — message him “not less than as soon as per week” for recommendation.

The underside neighborhood on TikTok is not solely for homosexual males, both. For Corridor, cis and trans ladies make up nearly half of his following. However every time our society talks about intercourse, it’s heterosexual, penis-in-vagina intercourse that has all the time been the default: it’s obligatory to show in colleges, we examine it within the recommendation columns of magazines and web sites, it is what we examine in erotic novels, and watch (or awkwardly keep away from watching when accompanied by household) in our favorite TV exhibits and movies. The one illustration we actually see of anal intercourse onscreen is when it is relegated to low-cost homophobic jokes.

Fortunately, the tide seems to be turning. TikTok’s bottoming hashtag has over 10.4 million views and is brimming with sincere experiences and recommendation from bottoms all around the world. Accounts like Thomas’ and The Backside’s Digest are normalising these as soon as shame-ridden conversations whereas offering an training to bottoms who cannot discover data in additional standard locations. 

However these creators, for all their laborious work, are going through censorship from TikTok itself. Whereas the platform bans movies that includes nudity and sexually specific content material, creators throughout the sector are having their content material eliminated and their attain suppressed for even mentioning the phrase ‘intercourse’ of their TikToks, regardless of the platform’s neighborhood tips stating that instructional content material is an exception to the foundations. Thomas says he needs to be selective with what he posts, typically resorting to codewords and innuendos in his movies to keep away from being censored.


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This censorship is problematic, says Hallgarten from Brook, particularly for the folks whose solely entry to details about intercourse is thru social media. She’s curious concerning the standards TikTok makes use of for judging and eradicating movies, and whether or not knowledgeable organisations have been concerned within the course of. “The best way they strategy intercourse must be extra nuanced and there needs to be a transparent set of values that underpin the choices being made,” she says. With regards to intercourse ed movies that have not been faraway from the platform, Hallgarten urges customers to verify how the data they see on TikTok compares to that of trusted sources like Brook. If COVID-19 has taught us something it is that misinformation on social media is rife. Hallgarten suggests platforms might simply add a field to movies that includes intercourse content material directing customers to knowledgeable organisations, like TikTok and different platforms have (finally) performed with mentions of the coronavirus.

A spokesperson for TikTok stated that customers can attraction the platform’s selections to take away their content material or droop their accounts in the event that they imagine no violation of the neighborhood tips has occurred. Additionally they famous that TikTok’s content material moderation follow is detailed within the quarterly enforcement stories it publishes. However whereas these stories gloat statistics, for instance that 90 p.c of movies flagged for “grownup nudity and sexual exercise” are eliminated inside 24 hours of being posted, they fail to elucidate how instructional movies about intercourse are distinguished from the possibly dangerous movies that are banned.

Data on anal intercourse shouldn’t be lowered to folklore. Bottoms need to really feel empowered to take management of the intercourse they’ve, and a significant a part of that’s making certain they’re effectively outfitted to get pleasure from anal intercourse safely. For too lengthy we have been relegated to the shadows and made to really feel like we’re harbouring a grimy little secret — however because of TikTok creators, change is lastly on the horizon.

Bottoming dos and don’ts

With the assistance of some trusted well being organisations together with the UK’s Nationwide Well being Service (NHS), Brook, the San Francisco AIDS Basis and intercourse training charity Fumble, we have compiled an inventory of bottoming dos and don’ts to get began.


All the time ensure that your prime is carrying a condom. The liner of your anus could be very delicate and might be broken simply, which will increase the danger of STI transmission.

Your anus is not self-lubricating, so utilizing lube is important for anal play. Attempt to use water-based merchandise as oil-based lube can break down condoms, and keep away from desensitising lubes — they might stop you from noticing ache.

That is to keep away from transferring micro organism out of your anus to your vagina, which might result in a urinary tract an infection. 

That is fairly self-explanatory, however getting examined recurrently for STIs is all the time advisable.

Purely for ease of cleanup for those who do have an accident.

If it is your first time bottoming (or first time shortly), use a lubricated anal intercourse toy (slowly) beforehand to get used to the sensation. Foreplay is essential to calm down the muscle groups in your anus.

  • Bear in mind, you are in management

    Be sure to talk to whoever you are having intercourse with if one thing does not really feel proper or if you wish to cease. Consent might be given and withdrawn at any time.

Do not

Bottoming can really feel uncomfortable (particularly for those who’re a beginner), however that is what foreplay is for. Ache ought to by no means be one thing you are anticipated to place up with, and tears on the anus (often known as anal fissures) take time to heal. 

Feeling relaxed is vital. By regulating your respiratory, you are serving to your anus to calm down. Take deep, sluggish breaths to begin with.

Keep away from doing this the place you’ll be able to, however if you cannot, ensure that to wash the toy totally earlier than and after use.

A typical assumption is that poo sits straight within your anal sphincter, however that is false. Poo is saved in your colon and it’s whenever you’re on the bathroom that it travels by the rectum (the place the enjoyable occurs) and out of your sphincter. So long as you have not too long ago been to the bathroom, it is not possible that you’re going to really ‘poo’ in your associate.

Should you’re too fearful about it to get pleasure from your self, persist with different types of intercourse (like oral) till you have gotten snug with the truth that shit does certainly, occur. Anal douching is widespread within the bottoming neighborhood to wash the rectum earlier than intercourse, but it surely has its personal execs and cons. 

This text was first revealed in 2021 and republished in 2023.

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