Broad Perspectives: Masturbation


On this week’s Broad Perspectives we’re talking about everyone’s favorite pastime–masturbation. If you haven’t done it, try it!

“For a long time, I thought I was innately incapable of masturbating. As a curious teenager, I’d tried it, but it just didn’t feel good. I figured I’d wait until I had a boyfriend, because for some reason I thought a dude would intuitively know my body and my pleasure better than I could. But eventually I realized that, if I couldn’t bring myself pleasure, no one could. Teaching myself to masturbate was tricky – at times I felt guilty or ashamed, as if my sexuality was only okay if it was shared with another person. I also spent hours googling “what is an orgasm supposed to feel like?” But I was only able to actually experience orgasm once I stopped thinking about what my pleasure was “supposed” to feel like and concentrated on what it did feel like.

It was an awkward process, but it’s allowed me to understand my body in a whole new way. I think it was hard to me to get out of my head and just enjoy what I did feel like. That’s a skill, not a natural capability. But learning that skill has allowed me to know so much more about myself, to find sexual fulfillment on my own and in relationships. It’s kind of amazing how happy our bodies can make us!” -LTF

“In sixth grade I gave myself my first orgasm. I was young and curious, and I had no idea what was happening to me. It felt good, so I kept doing it. For years, I thought I was the only person in the world that experienced the sensation. By ninth grade, I believed that I had contracted a deadly disease – maybe cancer – from doing something unnatural to my body. I would limit my masturbation sessions for fear of having to tell my parents that I might be ill. In ninth grade, this guy in my grade made a joke about an “orgasm” in class. I went home that day and learned all about masturbation and orgasms thanks to Google and Cosmo! Even though I budded a bit early, information about masturbation should be made more accessible to preadolescents, especially girls. While men often talk to each other when they first discover masturbation, it can be really terrifying to experience an orgasm as a girl without knowing what is happening to your body. On the bright side, starting early has its perks. Now, I can masturbate and be done in less than two minutes if I want, without even taking off any clothes!” – Anonymous

Songs to Masturbate To:

  1. Coffee (F***ing) by Miguel ft. Wale
  2. Partition by Beyonce
  3. Kiss it Better by Rihanna
  4. Stay the Same by Bonobo
  5. Valley by Miguel
  6. Bad Girls by MIA
  7. Sleepover by Hayley Kiyoko
  8. Primetime by Janelle Monae
  9. Two Weeks by FKA Twigs

10.Pusher Love Girl by Justin Timberlake

– Broads Board

“I don’t remember when I “learned how to masturbate” but it was a long time ago. I noticed a turning point, though, probably around late middle school or early high school, when I started connoting masturbation with absence or inferiority. It was somehow put into my head that if someone masturbates, it’s because they can’t get laid. I never told anyone that I masturbated until maybe two or three years ago. Even though I consciously knew that masturbation was natural and healthy, throughout high school I still felt like it was something “gross” or “lame.”  I never heard people I looked up to or my favorite celebrities or the Cool Kids talk about masturbation. The only times I did hear about masturbation, it would be immediately followed with “ew!!” or other adverse exclamations.
Only recently did I ask myself why I was so weirded out and embarrassed by the idea of sexually satisfying my own body. I am nice to my body and mind in other ways and feel no shame – I eat the food that I like, I let myself sleep in on weekends, I drink lots of water, I watch Law and Order (responsibly!) when I need a break, I journal when I’m stuck in my feelings. Why can’t I give myself an orgasm without being embarrassed? It feels good, just like all the other things I do for fun. I’ve been unlearning this discomfort, but it’s been a strangely difficult process to detach the act of masturbating from that sense of embarrassment and secrecy. While masturbation can be a decent understudy for sex, it can also be a meditative and self-assuring activity. It’s a way I ground myself in my own body. It’s a way I reacquaint myself with my flesh-prison after spending probably too much time mistreating it by sleeping poorly or forgetting to moisturize. It’s a way that I gently remind myself that my sexuality exists and is worth paying attention to. Day to day, it’s easy to remember that I am an emotional being with feelings and thoughts that need to be addressed, and that I am a physical being who needs food, water, and exercise to function well. But it’s just as easy to forget about myself as a sexual being.” -MSL

– Tumblr
*featured graphic by Ayotunde Ifaturoti

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