10:03 pm - 01/12/2010

stupid question about urethra/clitoris? just HAD to make sure :'(

I'd never thought about looking into my vagina until maybe several months ago (never occurred to me to check it out - I pee from it, I wash it in the shower, that's pretty much there's all to it). Anyway I did the Charlotte from Sex in the City thing and got a mirror, spread my legs, and checked out the situation. The thing is, after looking at countless images of the vagina anatomy, I can't find my clitoris and clitoral hood! It sounds crazy, but could it be possible that I'm MISSING a clitoris? I don't have anything that looks like it, just a urethra that seems to be HELLA sticking out. Ugh, I'm sorry if my ignorance is giving anyone a headache. At first I thought that I just had a long clitoris that stuck out, but pee comes out of it, so it MUST be my urethra. There's no "hood" covering it, and it doesn't look like a little round thingy. When I open up my vulva, I see the opening orifice of the vagina (where the penis would be inserted) and just a urethra above it. It really sticks out like no other urethra I've seen. please help!
lilium_vitiate 13th-Jan-2010 06:08 am (UTC)
You should check out the Everyday Vulvas on the Everyday Bodies Project, located here. I'm sure you'll see vulvas that look just like yours!
supdude89 13th-Jan-2010 06:11 am (UTC)
thank you so much! I will try to check them out when my parents are sleeping, I would die if they walked behind my back and saw what i was looking at.

I can't thank you enough for not being condescending/making me feel stupid, as dumb as my question is! lol gracias.
mydocuments 13th-Jan-2010 06:11 am (UTC)
Your clitoris is going to be up at the top of your vulva, directly beneath your mons pubis (the fleshy, fatty pad right over your pubic bone.) If you spread your labia majora and minora, it should be located at the top, where the labia meet in a V.

You may not be able to see your clitoris without pulling back the clitoral hood, but it's there, barring any totally unforeseen variations in female anatomy.
mydocuments 13th-Jan-2010 06:12 am (UTC)
Seconding the Everyday Bodies project, by the way. It's really helpful in seeing all of the variations that can occur in vulvas.
supdude89 13th-Jan-2010 06:14 am (UTC)
thank you so much! :') is it possible to FEEL the clitoral area when it's being touched, yet not have it seen to the naked eye? Cuz honestly I can't see any hint of the clitoris at all, no fatty pad or anything :O i'll look again and examine. lol
mydocuments 13th-Jan-2010 06:18 am (UTC)
You should definitely be able to palpate it, as the area is very sensitive. If it helps, here's a good, general diagram of the typical anatomy, that might help you get your landmarks or bearings.

If you still can't identify it, feel free to ask your OBGYN to kind of guide you through your vulvar anatomy at your next appointment. They shouldn't mind. =)
supdude89 13th-Jan-2010 06:35 am (UTC)
yes, I checked out the diagram you sent, but I don't know if I'm being ridiculous or what, but I don't see a baby clitoris and a baby donut hole urethra - just this 1-inch pod long thingy that pokes out out (urethra I think? ugh idk)and then the hole. I'm convinced somethin in my hooha is prolapsed :O? I looked up prolapsed urethra and it's like a swollen circular donut, whereas mine is just like, a long-ass oval.

& thank you for the excellent advice about asking the OBGYN, I've never been to one. I swear, this whole issue has gotten me so worried I need to schedule an appointment IMMEDIATELY. lol I've already planned it for Friday! will def. take your advice and ask!
mydocuments 13th-Jan-2010 06:42 am (UTC)
Let your OBGYN know that it's your first time. Hopefully they will be extra helpful and explain things, to make sure you're at ease. Good luck!!
queensugar 13th-Jan-2010 06:56 am (UTC)
Another good resource is this "photographic guide to the pussy" on The-Clitoris.com. If you click through the pages, the writer discusses a lot of the variation. On the clitoris page (and on many of the other pages), there are quite a few examples of:

+ Vulvas that have such long and/or well-fleshed clitoral hoods that the clitoris itself is completely covered, and the hood itself doesn't even look like a "hood"

+ Vulvas where the way that the outer labia join obscures the clitoris, the hood, or both

+ Vulvas where the clitoris and hood are just small and smooth enough that they aren't immediately obvious, and probably are only visible upon manual manipulation
fireaphid 13th-Jan-2010 06:13 am (UTC)
I think that you've probably mis-identified your clitoris as your urethra. . . it's hard to see where urine comes out of from the perspective of peeing, and often the two are close together, so I doubt you're the first person to have trouble locating the clitoris (or urethra for that matter). Also 90% of those anatomical drawings look nothing like a real body! Have you seen the-clitoris.com's take on it? It's NSFW, but they basically label pictures of real people, and it's much more helpful than comparing cartoons to yourself: http://www.the-clitoris.com/n_html/qa_1/qa1_4.htm (good pictures to find the clitoris) and http://www.the-clitoris.com/n_html/locating_the_vagina.htm (good pictures to find the urethra). Happy hunting!
supdude89 13th-Jan-2010 06:17 am (UTC)
thank you so much! is it possible for the clitoris to be somehow *connected* right above the urethra? like, imagine just one structure and then the opening for the pee and maybe my clitoris is right above it? and then below it is my vaginal orifice? LOL idk, idk!!
fireaphid 13th-Jan-2010 06:24 am (UTC)
Yes, that is definitely possible, although I think there's usually a bit of space in between. Maybe TMI, but in terms of embryonic development, the part of clitoris that's visible is analogous to the head of the penis, and the male urethra does normally go right through there, so it's possible for the female urethra to be just under the clitoris, even if that's a bit less common (just like some males are born with the urethra not going straight through the glans of the penis; it exits early). There's definitely some natural variation, especially compared to those cartoons!
supdude89 13th-Jan-2010 06:39 am (UTC)
thanks so much, I feel a bit more at ease. I just feel that I would be be 100% confident in how my situation looks if my urethra/clitoris/whatever didn't stick out so oddly! everything int he diagrams ad pics look all neat and tucked in.
queensugar 13th-Jan-2010 06:50 am (UTC)
Don't worry, there's nothing inherently "un-neat" about vulvas where some parts stick out... it's just another part of the very extensive variation of the vulva, as you'll see on our Everyday Bodies Project when you get a chance to check it out. :)
queensugar 13th-Jan-2010 06:42 am (UTC)
I agree that what you're seeing and thinking of the "urethra" may very well be the clitoris.

The urethra itself is generally sort of... hard to see. Varies by individual body, of course, and some people's are more evident, but it's somewhat unlikely to be the structure you notice first... on many bodies, mine included, it's actually covered by the flesh of the inner labia and thus impossible to see unless they are pulled apart by hand.

However, what I can tell you is that on my body (and lots of others!) the nature of the anatomy between the urethra and the clitoris, combined with the angle of which I'm usually peeing from and the pressure of the urine stream, means that during urination, it appears very much that the urine stream is coming out of the clitoris... it sort of spurts upwards and then streams down from where the inner labia meet, just below the clitoris. This process is not visible from the position I pee from... it just looks like it's coming from the urethra... but that's where it is.

I definitely recommend the links from The-Clitoris.com posted above; they're pretty detailed. :)

When you were looking, did you use your hand to pull the labia apart, and/or pull up on your vulva?

One thing I find useful for getting a good, clear look at the vulva is to use two fingers, spread in a "V" over the top of my vulva, to pull my outer labia apart and pull all the skin there upwards.

When you do that, look at your inner labia, and trace their path upwards. Where the inner labia meet is the clitoris.

It may not be super-obvious in its non-aroused state (the clitoris engorges with blood and becomes erect during sexual arousal), but I would bet very good money that it's right where it's supposed to be. :)

Another good exercise to pinpoint the urethra more exactly is, next time you're urinating, do the "V" thing to pull your inner labia apart, and slightly upwards (be careful, this can cause the urine stream to direct upwards). You should be able to get a clearer visual of exactly where the urine is coming from.
queensugar 13th-Jan-2010 07:01 am (UTC)
Oh! And also from The-Clitoris.com, there's another good labelled vulva gallery here:

http://www.the-clitoris.com/y/vulva/m_vulva.htm

Our Everyday Bodies Project is great too, but the above comes with some more description of each vulva so that you can get maybe a better idea of what you're seeing in some of the pics.
supdude89 13th-Jan-2010 07:11 am (UTC)
:') omg thank you so much!!! When I peed a while ago, I actually did do that thing where you do the "v" thing and pull apart to see where the pee is coming from - you're probably totally right about where the pee is coming from, it is pretty hard to tell.

I've looked at your links and everyone's links to all the pictures and etc and that helped me HEAPS. *phew* so much appreciated! I'm almost sure what is what now (idk if anyone wants to know, but I'm pretty sure the sticking out part was just the hood of my clitoris and it's pretty friggen' long :O) and I'm a lot more relieved! thank you thank you thank you :')

love THIS community, I learned so much in like, half an hour! lol
queensugar 13th-Jan-2010 07:20 am (UTC)
That's what we're here for. :) I'm glad we could help.

Hoods come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. Some people barely have any hood; others have hoods that cover the clitoris completely, and sometimes even a good chunk of the top of the inner labia as well.

The next thing you can try is (gently) trying to retract the hood. This can take some experimentation with body positioning, pressure and finger-motion to achieve, depending on your body -- the hood can be fairly tight against the clitoris and reluctant to retract, or not -- but you may be able to get a better visual of your clitoris.

Either way, don't fret... vulvas don't come with a user manual. You have a lifetime to figure it out, if you want to, and patient exploration can often uncover amazing things.

Hell, I'm 28 and have been doing all kinds of vulvar-vaginal exploration for 15 years, and only just this last year my husband and I discovered something new in my vagina! You'll always be learning stuff about your body as you go along.
jade488 13th-Jan-2010 07:48 am (UTC)
The clit is made of erectile tissue, much like a male's penis, so if you're looking to find your clit in the mirror, you may want to do it while you're aroused, so its easier to find :)
sand_woman 13th-Jan-2010 08:19 am (UTC)
This is EXACTLY what happened to me when I first looked. I remember going to ask my mum if I'd been born without one or something. In the end, I did find it. I read the comments and looks like you're getting there which is great :) but I had to comment because it was so like my experience.
nickelshoe 13th-Jan-2010 08:44 am (UTC)
I like this little tutorial: http://www.plannedparenthood.org/teen-talk/watch/am-normal-behind-fig-leaf-26794.htm

It's got illustrations of a few different styles of vulvas, and you can highlight which part you want to look at. It even has one with a clitoris that you can't find. Mine is pretty much invisible, too. I know I have one, because it functions just fine. Just can't really see it when I'm poking around.
foldingwit Joined urethra and clit4th-Feb-2013 07:07 pm (UTC)
Mine are joined, perhaps yours are too. I don't think there are many of us out there. The medical professionals I've shown/talked to have been very surprised and haven't been very helpful in my quest to find out what may have caused it. If anyone ends up on this thread with any information about that, I'd be pleased to hear from you.
Brody Rodgers this may help.18th-Sep-2013 05:25 am (UTC)
I was in the same position as you (: but I looked very closely at a different pic and this sounds stupid, but I realized the uretha can be like right right above your Vagina (where the dick goes inside). I thought I had no clit cause I looked at other pics making me think my clit was the uretha, mine looks like that thing you described, but I realized all this time my *uretha* is my clit and my uretha is right about the vagina. This might not apply to you haha.

P.S if you feel around the vagina hole you will feel a noble thinggy right above it, that could be your uretha, I thought it was apart of the skin around the vagina hole, but nooo (^_^)

I hoped I helped you and/or others.

Xoxo

Edited at 2013-09-18 05:31 am (UTC)
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