We Need To Normalize Female Masturbation, Now.
My Early Experience With Masturbation
Growing up as a teenager I thought that everyone masturbated. I definitely did. I was about 12 or 13 the first time I ever felt drawn to exploring my own sexual pleasure. And after I figured out what an orgasm was, and how to achieve it, I became a bit of an addict. I would masturbate in the morning or when I got home from school, making sure my door was closed and locked so I wouldn’t get a surprise visitor. I thought I had hit the jackpot, I mean what is better than an orgasm? Nothing as far as I was concerned.
It wasn’t until I was older, about 19, that I started to openly talk about masturbation with my friends. In my early teens my friends and I didn’t talk about self pleasure. Sure, we had boyfriends and some of us were having sex, but we never talked about masturbation. On the other hand, I remember hearing boys at school talking about porn and masturbation. For them it seemed like a normal topic of discussion but for us that discussion always seemed forbidden
When I was in college and I finally felt comfortable to talk about masturbation, I was surprised to hear that most of my friends had never masturbated themselves. In fact, only a couple of the women I knew had experience in pleasuring themselves. I began to wonder why. Why do men masturbate more than women? Is it because they enjoy sexual pleasure more? Or is it because they are socialized to think that masturbation was okay, while women are not? This article will go into my findings on these questions and why it is so important to normalize female masturbation.
The Taboo Of Female Masturbation
In order to understand why female masturbation is so taboo in our culture we must take a closer look at how female sexuality is both condemned and capitalized on. At a very young age many girls are told to be modest, to not wear revealing clothes, and to protect their biggest virtue (their virginity). However, at the same time the female body and sexuality is used to sell everything from cars to movies to fast food. This strange dichotomy put girls and women in a confusing place. Are we supposed to be virgins or whores? Are we supposed to be ashamed of our sexuality or use it as a form of power? This confusion leads to a disconnect between women and their own sexualities, and in turn labels female masturbation as wrong.
While men’s sexualities are allowed and even catered to in our society, women are often told that their bodies are shameful. I was lucky enough to grow up with a mother that never shamed my body. She taught me to explore my own sexuality, and sex was never a forbidden topic in the house. I believe that my progressive and supportive upbringing is partly why I felt so connected to my body and my sexuality at a young age. I am grateful, but at the same time I feel a deep sadness that this is not the norm for many girls. The truth is that masturbation is a normal and important part of self discovery for people of all genders!
Why We Must Normalize Female Masturbation
Bringing awareness and acceptance to female masturbation will not only help women feel more comfortable in their own bodies, it will also let them enjoy the benefits self pleasure has to offer. Some of the benefits of masturbation include:
- Knowing what feels good to you sexually
- Connecting with your body
- Orgasm health benefits
1: When I was in college and talking to my friends about masturbation, it was originally because they told me they didn’t enjoy sex. They said they couldn’t achieve an orgasm, but also that they didn’t even know what they liked in bed. Masturbation is the first step in understanding what feels good and what doesn’t. I truly believe that in order to be able to tell partners what you like in sex, you need to first understand your own body and what you find pleasurable.
2: Beyond understanding what you like when it comes to sex, self pleasure is a beautiful way to connect to your own body. It is a way to feel pleasure that is not associated with someone else’s pleasure, just your own. This can be an extremely empowering experience, especially if you have experienced some sort of sexual coercion or trauma. Reclaiming your own body and sexuality for yourself can be very healing.
3: Believe it or not but there are numerous health benefits to orgasms. That’s right, they feel amazing and they are good for you! Orgasms have been shown to:
- Improve mood
- Relieve stress
- Boost immunity
- Strengthen bonds between partners
As you can see, orgasms can improve both your quality of life and relationships. If you are interested in learning more about how orgasms can benefit your health check out this article.
The Bottom Line
There are many societal beliefs and norms that I do not agree with, and the shamefulness of female masturbation is on the top of that list. I refuse to perpetuate the idea that women’s bodies are bad and that our sexualities are disgraceful. Our bodies are beautiful, and they were not made to be policed or exploited. If you have ever or are currently struggling with exploring your own sexual pleasure please remember: It is okay to feel pleasure, to revel in it, and to even chase after it.