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 revaluate the future of sexual pleasure, as we are not able to meet new people and establish new relationships. Therefore, all forms of self-pleasure should be celebrated and acknowledged as a social norm!
Sex is a normal part of life and a relationship. It’s something that we explore and experiment with (in a safe and consensual environment, of course), we find out what we like and dislike through trying – just like with food! However, living in a climate that means we cannot meet people the ‘normal’ way, we are unable to find out what we enjoy this way.
In the time of a pandemic or not, a great way to experiment and find out what you enjoy is through self-pleasure. This can be fun and you could experiment with your boundaries, and find new kinks, without worrying about being embarrassed in front of a new (or long-term) sexual partner.
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 self-pleasure. Sexual fulfilment and reaching climax is actually good for 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. 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 made into a normal and health part of our sexual experiences. We should celebrate masturbation in the changing climate; and when sex and relationships resumes as ‘normal’ (whatever that may be)!