CONTENT WARNING: Today’s post is for mature audiences only. Topics of sexuality can make others uncomfortable or be an unintended trigger for those who have experienced trauma. My intention for today is to destigmatize & normalize healthy sexual behavior. Discretion is advised.
The other day, I was talking with a friend who was clearly sexually frustrated. She’s in a relationship but doesn’t feel like her needs are being met.
So get yourself off. What’s the problem?
(her, shocked) Um – what?!
You have a shower head, right? Go to town & you’ll feel better.
(her, still in disbelief) But I’m in a relationship! Isn’t that bad?!
No…? Why would you think taking care of yourself is wrong?
To me, it reminded me a lot of my upbringing. Sex was NEVER discussed. The only idea of “safe sex” was abstinence (which is a fucking joke). Parents, like mine, spend their lifetime keeping you apart from your significant other, only to push you into marriage expecting you’ll know what to do. God, I cringe at just typing that out. I’m glad this wasn’t the case for me but I’ve seen it happen a lot to those I love. There’s this expectation to be completely innocent until your wedding night, where you magically turn into a sexpot. Like a kinky Cinderella – bippity-boppity-boo! You’re now a porn star!
I remember trying once to ask my mom something minor. I don’t remember what but I’m sure it’s something I should’ve been taught years earlier. Her reply? “You don’t need to awaken that woman inside of you.” And we never discussed it again.
To this day, I have no fucking idea what that means.
So I did what any other 16 year old would do. I asked my friends, I watched TV, & I read Cosmo. I had some trial & error – some from me, some from others. For example, the first boy I kissed was super sloppy. It was like making out with a Saint Bernard. My chin & cheeks would be wet. I hated it so I made a mental note to not do that. Ever. The first girl I kissed darted her tongue in & out like a goddamn lizard. Ugh. It was terrible. Add that to the Never Ever List.
Being a teenager is a confusing time already. Your body is pumping with hormones & under the abstinence bullshit, there is no relief. Masturbation wasn’t brought up in my WASP-ish home either. Regardless of your decision, you’re fucked…
…see what I did there? 😉
I watched friends quickly get married & either stuck in shitty marriages or divorced because they were unsatisfied sexually with their partner. They don’t feel like they can discuss it with them, or if they have, they get the 3rd degree for voicing a need. Had they had permission to have safe sex or if masturbation was destigmatized, I’m sure they would be in a different scenario. I didn’t even touch the whole “porn isn’t evil” aspect. Baby steps, right? 😉
I did my best to reassure my friend that there is nothing wrong with getting yourself off. We’re not robots; we’re humans. We all go through stages & it’s possible her boyfriend’s sexual appetite isn’t as voracious as hers is right now. And there’s nothing wrong with that. It seemed like she understood what I was saying, & I hope you do, too.
There’s nothing wrong with loving yourself so that you can be a better lover.
This post is already super long so I’ll split it up into two parts. 🙂