While drafting a steamy short story today, I become strangely caught up and indecisive about whether I was using the slang term ‘cum’ correctly. Should I replace with ‘climax’ or ‘orgasm’ for the verb, ‘semen’ or ‘ejaculate’ for the noun?
In my search for answers, I came across this clever article, which made me smile and clarified the ‘proper’ use of ‘cum’ and ‘come’.
Come is excellent for use in ‘polite’ circumstances: journalism, novels, etc
‘For example, there you are, having sweet vanilla sex with your shy, classically handsome crush, listening to vintage Taylor Swift while the pie in the oven gets a little burnt, though it’s still definitely edible. He comes, there is come.’
and, or course, for all those delicious double entendres and sexual puns.
Cum is the more blunt, vulgar alternative (commonly used in men’s magazine articles, romance novels, etc)
‘The standoffish but mysteriously attractive guy from the party wants to have his way with you. His pillows are made of leather. Crazy. “I’m gonna cum,” he grunts.’
Quotes above by Katy Waldman
Verbally, misunderstandings can be unavoidable, but in writing the use of ‘cum’ is handy to make the sexual meaning clear if the sentence is ambiguous – and not intended to be.
I was surprised when further research found the use of cum as a noun meaning “semen or other product of orgasm” has been around for a while and is on record from the 1920s. Cum is found commonly as a verb and noun, by 1973, apparently a variant of the sexual sense of come that originated in pornographic writing, perhaps first in the noun sense. This “experience sexual orgasm” slang meaning of come (perhaps originally come off) is attested from 1650, in “Walking In A Meadowe Greene,” in a folio of “loose songs” collected by Bishop Percy:
They lay soe close together, they made me much to wonder;
I knew not which was wether, until I saw her under.
Then off he came, and blusht for shame soe soon that he had endit;
Yet still she lies, and to him cryes, “one more and none can mend it.”
I think this neatly sums it up….
“…whereas the sophisticated daintily sip come out of an appropriate receptacle (pinky raised), boorish philistines guzzle cum straight out of the bottle. In other words, cum is not wrong, but it certainly feels dirtier—which may be exactly the effect you’re aiming for.”
Thank you Google, I found my answer and had a few giggles along the way 🙂