I’d like to share with you one of my biggest pet peeves. This is a huge misconception, and people that believe so often cause a lot of frustration, if not damage, to themselves and others. What am I talking about? The idea that masturbation is just a place holder for sex (specifically partnered sex).
I’ve often heard from others that they stop masturbating when they get into a relationship, or that they believe their partner should stop masturbating now that they aren’t single. I never agreed with this opinion, because I always felt that masturbation was for me, and it was something I do purely for myself during my time. Not to mention the practical aspect (I would see my partner maybe once a week, and I refused to wait that long between sexual releases).
Others didn’t see it that way. They considered masturbation to be something you do only because you can’t get release from another person. They believe that it is somehow embarrassing, less than, or immature. Some people believe that if their partner is still masturbating while they are in a relationship, somehow they are “not enough” for their partner.
None of those misconceptions serve you. Masturbation is not a replacement for partnered sex. It is a completely separate act. It’s a way to connect with your own body and your own self. It’s a way to relieve tension and wash away the day’s stress. It is one of the pillars of having the sex life you want. You shouldn’t expect someone else to fill your sexual needs if you don’t know how to fulfill them yourself. Masturbation is the pathway to that fulfillment. And if anything, that is the more “mature” way to have sex.
Masturbation Deserves a Category of Its Own
We shouldn’t be embarrassed about the fact that we masturbate. And no one should think that they need to stop, just because they are in a relationship. You can do both.
Masturbation is our ticket to owning our sexuality. As Betty Dodson once told me, “Masturbation is sexual freedom fully embraced.”
So for this Masturbation Month, stop labeling masturbation as replacement sex. Masturbation deserves a category of its own.