Ladies- Do you gasp when you get kissed?


Inquiring minds want to know. Because I have never gasped when a man has kissed me, but perhaps I’m alone in this oddity.

Now you’re probably wondering why I brought this subject up. Well, it has been over a month since I last saw this ploy used in a novel, but it has been bothering me for far longer than that. There have been numerous occurrences where I’ve seen it done since I started reading romance back when I was a teenager and it’s really starting to get to me. Who does this?

Edit- I’m speaking of gasping at a first kiss that was not welcomed.  You can gasp all you want after you’ve been going at it awhile and that would be normal.

If a guy kisses me and I don’t want him to, then he should expect some kind of severe retaliation that involves pain.  A lot of pain.

Never a gasp.

If a guy kisses me and I do want it (which these days is only my husband) then I kiss him right back. Even if he surprises me with it.

No gasps occur.

So why is it such a common trick in romance novels? Well, my guess is the author needs to find a way to get the heroine to open her mouth for a deeper kiss. Problem here is she is usually shocked by the man making such a move (this is almost always a first kiss or one that happens in the course of an argument). So is she really going to let him plunge his tongue into her mouth? Not only this, but would he really risk getting hurt to try it? If I haven’t lost all my male readers at this point, please do weigh in on this important matter.

I’m truly at a loss as to whether this gasping and plunging really happens. Once again, I could be abnormal. There have been some brave souls who’ve said as much. Good luck locating them (the bodies are well hidden, I promise). Yet I’d like to think this doesn’t happen in real life. Every time I see it in a novel, my mind rewrites the scene to go a little something like this:

Hardesto takes Sadie by the shoulders in his firm hands and pulls her close, pressing his rough lips against hers.  She  gasps in shock! Who in the hell does this guy think he is?

She tries pushing him away, but his massive, rigid body won’t budge.  He’s locking her in close to him like a panther who has caught its prey. Sadie is so stunned she can’t even remember to close her mouth.  Hardesto takes full advantage of the opening and plunges his warm, moist tongue into her velvety depths.  Surely, she won’t bit my tongue off, the brief thought passes through his mind.

That’s what you think, she mentally responds back. 

Sadie clamps her teeth down hard on his offending morsel like a shark going for the kill.  A muffled “ahhhh” escapes him.  He attempts to pull away, but his tongue is now caught between her teeth.  Blinding pain rushes through Hardesto’s mouth and he’s struggling to get away, but it’s only making matters worse.  When the blood begins to pour forth, she lets him go.  Sadie isn’t a vampire after all.  Blood is gross.

He takes two quick strides back, covering his injured mouth with his hands and gives her a wounded look.  It never occurred to him a gasp wouldn’t be an invitation for more!

She’s still angry and not done punishing him yet.  With as much force as she can muster, Sadie kicks out and gives Hardesto a good wallop to the groin.  He doubles over as his precious jewels burn in flaming heat.

Her hands are on her generous hips as she looks at him with a cold gleam in her green eyes.

“Next time, keep your bits and pieces to yourself!”

Now you see why I can’t take the “gasp and plunge” seriously.  Hope I didn’t upset any authors out there who have used this trick in their work 🙂

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~ by Suzie on June 4, 2012.

10 Responses to “Ladies- Do you gasp when you get kissed?”

  1. The gasps and heaving bosoms are a few of the reasons I don’t like most romance novels.

  2. Does gasping after a really long session of hot and heavy kissing count? I mean gasping for breath, not a gasp of shock thing. If gasping for breath counts, then I’ve had that happen several times throughout my life (and it’s still happens with my husband). I’ve never experienced the gasp of shock though.

    • No, it’s totally understandable to be gasping afterward. I’m talking about when a guy moves in for an unexpected kiss before anything else occurs.

  3. I can understand when your breath is taken away by a kiss and you wind up gasping for air. Doesn’t every woman want to be kissed like that? But the writer shouldn’t use the gasp as a ploy to get the women to open her mouth so that our hero can plunder it with his tongue. My heroines do indeed open their mouths when being kissed because they want to. If a guy attempted to kiss me and I didn’t want him to, I’d certainly open my mouth, not to gasp, but to tell him get lost.

    As for those heaving bosoms, I must confess that my own bosom has heaved when kissed strongly (by my husband of course). It’s a physical reaction to having my breath taken away, and since my bosom is placed strategically upon my chest, it’s only natural that the chest, bosom included, would heave. However, I don’t believe I have ever actually referred to a “heaving bosom” in any of my books. There are so many other ways to describe it without resorting to the old-time romance cliches.

    • Maybe I should have been more specific? I’m talking about gasping the moment a man kisses a woman without her invitation. In every case I’ve seen the man knew the woman wasn’t willing (at least at first). So gasping just doesn’t seem natural. If she wants it, her body language will imply that by melting further into the kiss, not standing there rigid. Also, when I do gasp for air, I pull back a little because otherwise it’s still not easy to breath.

      As for heaving bosoms, I admit that doesn’t bother me much with the historical romances because it seems like a natural thing to say in a setting that has an older time period. It is odd in contemporary romance, though. I don’t have much in the way of bosoms to be heaving, so it is hard to relate, but I get what you mean, Nancy.

  4. I totally agree Mistress. In my not so short life, I have probably read hundreds of romance novels, and enjoyed most of them. However, the gasping part could have easily been left off and I would have enjoyed them just as much. If I were going to gasp, it would probably have been when the hunk, the rogue, the count, the prince, or whomever my star male was, first walked into my eyesight. After that the gasp would have easily been discernable as to whether it was an insulted gasp, or a horrific gasp, but probably not a, ‘I am all excited let’s have sex gasp.’

    • It’s not just any gasp. It’s the gasp of shock at being kissed unexpectedly and then the guy plunging his tongue in her mouth that gets me. It’s a miracle she doesn’t choke! I’m calling it the “gasp and plunge” from now on, lol.

  5. You’re absolutely right! I can understand a gasp when startled, a gasp at the horrific, a gasp during an intense sexual encounter, but no gasping for kisses.

    • There are plenty of times where a gasp is understandable. I’ve used it in my writing (beyond the parody I wrote), but not at the outset of a kiss.

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