It’s Masturbation May and masturbation advice and musings are all over my social media feed. It’s making me recall, with fondness, the time I masturbated to orgasm in front of an audience of around 50 people. It was for a class, and this time I was the demo bottom, not the teacher. My friend was teaching an erotic embarrassment and humiliation class for a kink audience, and I volunteered. The problem was, he couldn’t embarrass me. The masturbation was a final Hail Mary on his part, hoping that, finally, would break me. But it didn’t work.
You see, I just don’t find masturbation embarrassing or humiliating. I remember being a teenager playing truth or dare and having people whisper and giggle about touching themselves. I also remember, even then, being baffled that this was a source of shame, and being surprised that I was the only girl in the room that would openly admit to it.
Knowing your own body is one of the most powerful tools you have to claim your sexual pleasure. I say this every time I teach a sex ed class or work with private clients. You need to know what you like in order to tell a partner. Sure, there’s more to it than that, but it’s an important starting point.
But that’s easier said than done, because we live in a world where threatening to ban dildos and speaking out against masturbation (and many other forms of sex) gains political points. So either the people cheering these comments on simply don’t masturbate, or, more likely, people feel so much shame about it that they publicly support those comments, even though it contradicts what they actually do in private. We’ve seen this before, especially in politics. It’s a great example of shame in action.
I talked about this over lunch with a friend the other day. One of those friends that I don’t see often but we keep up with each other on social media. She was telling me how proud she was of the work that I’ve been doing and that felt really amazing to hear. We talked about how hard it can be, in the face of everything that’s going on in the world, to remember that work around sexuality is vitally important. I told her that some days, when I go to post about my latest class or most recent article, I see the terrible things that are happening in the world and decide that’s a day I should just read, listen, and signal boost other voices.
But we talked about shame, and how many people suffer from it. And how much of a better world it would be if we could all simply live our lives in ways that made us feel happy and fulfilled. If we could all use our bodies for their maximum pleasure potential.
That’s why I keep doing this work, even when it’s hard. Because the only way to change the world is one person at a time. And I do believe that helping people feel more comfortable in their skin effects the way they exist in the word, and that these changes make the world a better place.
So I present to you, without shame, some of my favorite toys for masturbation:
I own an awful lot of sex toys, but only two toys hold pride of place on my nightstand. The Lelo Siri and the Magic Wand Original. The Magic Wand is a classic for a reason, and it certainly gets the job done.
The Siri is nice when I want something more mellow, or if I want more of a tease.
I enjoy having the option of something soft with variable settings, and something intense that will make me orgasm in under two minutes.
If you’d like help overcoming shame or finding more pleasure, get in touch. And if you’re doing work like this, keep doing it. And know that it makes a difference.
P.S. Never heard of Masturbation Month? For folks that don’t know the history, Good Vibrations founded International Masturbation Month in 1995 in the wake of the controversy surrounding the firing of former Clinton administration Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders, who evoked conservative wrath when she stated that discussion of masturbation might have a place in sex education curricula.
Speaking of Good Vibrations, I’m delighted to announce that I’m now one of their affiliates, so if you follow one of the links to their site, I’ll get a commission on anything you buy. Not only are they a marvelous company to support, but this helps me make a living as a sex educator. Thanks!