Let's celebrate self pleasure

Meg Howe discusses why masturbation should be normalised and celebrated in today's society.

Meg Howe
7th October 2020
Image: Dainis Graveris (unsplash)

Masturbation! That’s right, you read correctly. The word masturbation. A four syllable word that is not said often enough. Mind you, when it is, it definitely gets met with a few rather strange looks.

But in the ever changing society of 2020, how can we start to change the way we think about self-pleasure? The looming second lockdown does make us re-evaluate the future of sexual pleasure. As we're unable to meet new people, and establish new relationships, in the conventional way, we must begin to open up a discourse that celebrates and acknowledges self-pleasure as a social norm, and not the taboo topic that many see it as today!

Image: Goop (Pinterest)

Sex is a normal part of life and a normal part of a relationship. Sex is something that we explore and experiment with (in a safe and consensual environment, of course), and we use this experimentation to find out what we like and dislike – just like with food! However, there are some things that we cannot learn without exploring yourseld first. Simiarly, living in a climate that means we cannot meet people the ‘normal’ way, we are unable to find out what we enjoy through sexual experimentation with other people. And this only leaves us with one way to get to know our bodies, masturbation...

Both in and out of pandemic life, a great way to experiment and find out what you enjoy is through self-pleasure. This can be fun: you can experiment with your boundaries; find new kinks, without worrying about being embarrassed in front of a new (or long-term) sexual partner; and just do things that make you feel good, without worrying about the reaction of anyone else.

As stated by ScienceAlert, when you orgasm, your brain releases a surge of dopamine

The feelings of fulfilment and enjoyment we get from sex can also be replicated through masturbation. Sexual fulfilment and reaching climax is actually for both your mental and physical health, believe it or not! As stated by ScienceAlert, when you orgasm, your brain releases a surge of dopamine - the hormone responsible for feeling emotions such as pleasure, desire and motivation. So, not only is masturbation a way to get to know our mind and bodies, it's actually scientifically proven that it's good for your health, too! We should celebrate the fact that through self-pleasure we are able to make ourselves feel happy, less stressed and motivated; if motivation is what you need, you now know a way to get it! Overall, feeling this way is great for our mental health; and could even be considered the practice of self-care!

Finally, we should celebrate self-pleasure because, quite frankly, it is the safest form of sex! As long as you are keeping on top of your own general hygiene, as well as making sure any toys you use are clean, then you are not at risk. Compare to other forms of sex, self-pleasure does not carry the risk of catching an STI or passing one on to your partner(s). We should feel proud that there is a form of sexual pleasure that does not put ourselves or others at health risks!

It is clear to say that any form of self-pleasure should be celebrated and seen as a normal and healthy part of our sexual experiences. We should celebrate masturbation in the changing climate; as well as when sex and relationships resume as ‘normal’ (whatever that may be)!

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AUTHOR: Meg Howe
Passionate History student and Educator

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