Talking about masturbation is important, here’s how to do it
It’s been decades since Dr Elders resigned, and indeed we have made strides as a society not only to normalize talking about sex, but to also celebrate the pleasure of women. It is a concept now regularly represented in the lyrics of movies and songs, supported by investment dollars in femtech products, and supported by all sextoys available for all people who want to buy them.
And yet, despite the earlier stigma against sex and the relaxation of pleasure, many still struggle to talk about it. self-pleasure. Dr Elders says it’s so important to keep the conversation going, to bring up masturbation and “to talk openly about it.” But euh, How? ‘Or’ What exactly are we discussing the subject with everyone around us? According to the sex therapist Jess O’Reilly, PhD, host of @SexWithDrJess podcast, a great overall strategy is to start by talking broadly about pleasure, so that sexual pleasure becomes just one side of a larger conversation.
“Make room for expressions of pleasure involving other activities in your life: eating, drinking, cooking, dancing, hiking, exercising, playing sports, painting or whatever else you do.” with your body, ”says Dr. O’Reilly. “We tend to stifle expressions of pleasure. When we eat, we are told to do so in silence. We are told to shut our mouths. We refuse. mmmsand ahhhs. I think food is a great place to start opening up to verbal and non-verbal expressions of pleasure. By breaking down these walls of non-sexual pleasure, normalization and openness to masturbation will naturally become easier.
But this is only a general way. Below, get some insightful best practice advice on how to talk about masturbation with everyone in your life, from friends and partner, to roommates and kids.
How to talk about masturbation with your peers
If you are feeling shy, Internet communities can help you find your voice. There is a brotherhood in sex toys comments section, secret Facebook groups for women’s sexual health, and do not miss sex educators on Instagram which can give you a safe space to talk about masturbation.
“If I’ve learned one thing running a sex toy company, it’s that people want to talk about sex,” says Alexandra Fine, sex therapist, CEO and co-founder of Lady products, and Good + Good Changer. “Our online community, including our Facebook group Instagram and Dame Labs, is full of people looking to connect about sex. The Dame team sometimes asks questions, but people also go out of their way to engage. with each other. a common experience. “
“Try to approach the conversation in a relaxed tone, as you would any other topic, as they will be more likely to open up if they feel you are ready to listen.” —Alexandra Fine, CEO of Dame Products
You can, of course, also connect IRL with peers. Just keep an open mind to the different perspectives, assumptions, feelings, and values about masturbation. “Some people are tense, while others are open books, and some need to laugh through it,” says Fine. “Meeting people where they are helps create space for more open conversations. Remember that people also tend to match the energy of the person they are talking to; if you’re nervous, so will they. Try to bring up the conversation. with a relaxed tone, just like you would on any other topic, as they’ll be more likely to open up if they feel you’re ready to listen.
How to talk about masturbation with your partner
“When you talk to your partners about personal pleasure, ask questions and be open to different perspectives,” says Dr. O’Reilly. “You can ask them what they like or just strike up a conversation about the messages you have received about the pleasure of growing up.”
What if you are nervous about communicating your need for sneak in a little time for me for self-pleasure in quarantine, now consider the perfect time to open this discussion with your SO Try to start the conversation by reducing the importance of your partner and refocusing on your personal desires.
“Be open with your partner about when and why you masturbate and how it’s not a substitution for them.” —Sadie Allison, PhD, sex therapist
“A common thing I hear is that partners can sometimes feel threatened when their partner chooses to masturbate rather than have [partnered] sex ”, says Sadie Allison, PhD, sex therapist and founder of GoLove CBD Lubricant. “It’s important to be open with each other and to explain how different the two acts are. Masturbation is not on the replacement of a partner, but it offers tangible benefits that are worth discussing. Be open with your partner about when and why you masturbate and why it is not a substitution for them. “
How To Talk About Masturbation With Roommates
Dr Allison points out that sometimes having a roommate, especially one you don’t know particularly well, can make masturbation difficult because you may not feel able to fully relax, even in your own home. To navigate this issue, first assess the situation holistically, taking into account your roommate and your lifestyle.
“If you have really separate spaces, you might not need to bring it up at all,” says Dr. Allison. “That said, there may come a time when it makes sense to discuss that masturbation is such an important part of your health routine – much like showering or having breakfast – and finding a way to make sure you are able to use the space as needed. “
So if you have doors that won’t lock, thin walls, or even share the same room, talking about masturbation from a healthy habit point of view can help defuse any issues you have to be. open about it.
How to talk about masturbation with your children
As Dr Elders has preached for decades, healthy and responsible sex education at a young age is an important foundation for healthy sexuality in life – and masturbation is absolutely a component of that. “We are sexual beings from birth until death,” says Dr Elders. “We all want to be healthy and we want our sex lives to be healthy.” It starts by allowing young children to understand that touching is not a shame but something to be practiced within certain limits.
“If you’re talking to young children about personal pleasure, you might start by saying it’s perfectly okay to touch yourself,” says Dr. O’Reilly. “Recognize that it can be good, and also draw boundaries between the activities you engage in in public and in private. [For instance,] “Scrubbing like this may be good, but just like we go to the bathroom with the door closed, it’s also a private activity that you can take to your room.”“
As long as we keep talking about self-pleasure, we can build a good foundation for positive sexuality, self-esteem, and of course, good health. So if you’re still spending some time alone, feel free to celebrate Masturbation Month … vocally with everyone you know and tactile with the vibrator of your choice.