When did you learn about self-pleasure? Did your parents talk to you about masturbation?
As my Mom can attest, I’ve always had a hand on my vulva. When I was little, starting at maybe two or three, it was called “my feeling good stuff”. I do not remember a time when I wasn’t connected to my touching my vulva as being pleasurable. My Mom did not shame me regarding my early self love, but it was something just for me so I could only do “my feeling good stuff” in private spaces. It’s the same idea that I am now teaching my children.
When I connected “feeling good stuff” to orgasm/masturbation, I don’t really know. By the time I was 10 or 11 I have a very clear memory of reading one of my Mom’s magazines that contained a story from a woman who was talking about her difficulties talking to her own daughter about masturbation. That her daughter had learned about it somewhere else, talked to Mom about how “gross” it was and how the Mother was at a loss for how to explain that it was pleasurable. That sometimes it helped stress. That masturbation was a good thing and not gross.
My memory of this is so clear I know were I was sitting and I can see the words on the page. (this is astounding, my memory is horrible) What I remember the most though, is thinking to myself “what is wrong with her? That’s a stupid thing to not be able to talk about”.
So really, props to my Mom. She is amazing, and why I am the way I am.
What is your comfort level with talking about it now?
Obviously, I’m very comfortable talking about my sex life with myself. More comfortable than I am talking about my sex life with V. So I want to fill this space with my period of shame.
Culture got me for a while in my teens. What I was taught about sex was very positive, very factual. Every teen goes though a period of not being comfortable talking with their parents, but even then my Mom and I were very close. Even with that astoundingly great start, the negativity that surrounded masturbation, especially for a girl, got me. I was deeply ashamed of my sexuality, my masturbation habits, my attraction to other girls. I also survived sexual violence and had to navigate the intensity of shame that brings.
It’s impossible to completely divorce my survivor status from my sexual life, but what made me feel the most ashamed of my love of self pleasure was the distain expressed by my peers and in the media I consumed. It wasn’t until I started blogging in 2001 that I was able to talk openly about my pursuits of pleasure and work through my shame.
Do you use sex toys?
Yes, Yes, Oh goodness YES. Not every time. If I am masturbating to help fall asleep or for a self-quickie, I use digital manipulation. Since I have been perfecting my masturbation technique for almost my entire life, I can bring myself to orgasm incredibly quickly. Actually, I can now orgasm from working my pubococcygeus muscle (PC/doing kegels) alone.
I was strictly clitoral stimulation until I bought a Tantus Charmer, which gave me my first self created internal/g-spot orgasm. Those were fun and I experimented with *literally* thousands of toys over my career as a sex toy store buyer. Then I got a Njoy Pure Wand, and it changed my orgasmic life. I’d not been able to squirt via masturbation before and I was high on pleasure for hours after the first time I used it. Here is my post about it on PSG.
How is your sexual relationship with yourself?
Grand. Better than it has ever been. Changes in my sexual response after childbirth has been an enjoyable project of experimentation, I’m discovering that I continue to have bigger, better orgasms constantly. My partnered sex life is also better than I ever dreamed it could be. I’m incredibly excited to see how my sex life with myself continues to evolve.