Essential Credentials: It’s not an all boys club

Leanne Osmond - Essential Credentials (Tom Bateman/AQ)

I am a self-proclaimed podcast junkie. I listen to all kinds of them, but one of my favourites is called “Stuff Mom Never Told You”. Recently, they did a two-part series on masturbation that has inspired me to broach this taboo little topic myself.

It’s no secret that guys like to get rather acquainted with themselves – it starts somewhere in the early teenage years and continues, well, up until death for a lot of men. The thing I don’t understand is why it’s normal for men to be open about their masturbation and for women it’s hush-hush.

Now, I don’t think anyone should run around exclaiming to the world they touch themselves – that would be really awkward and kind of unsettling. But I do think it’s time for it to be just as acceptable for girls to do it as it is for guys, enough of this taboo business.

A common misconception about masturbation, especially female masturbation, is that you do it because you’re lonely and have no other outlet to express yourself sexually. This is false. On the contrary, many women who let their hands wander south of the border often report having better, more satisfying sexual experiences with a partner.

This, in my mind, makes total sense. It’s not like self-exploration should ever be a dirty act. Getting better acquainted with yourself should be more of a learning experience than a dirty one. It’s often hard enough for a partner to figure out what gets you going, so if you don’t know either, imagine how much guess work will be involved–trial and error is fine, and could even be fun, but it can also get very frustrating very quickly.

Women who masturbate often report having a better self-image as well. The way I see it, if you don’t want to touch you, why should someone else want to touch you? Being in touch with your sexuality is a big part of being a truly happy and healthy individual. It may sound silly and it can definitely be embarrassing to talk about, but isn’t it worth a try considering so many ladies have a negative self-image?

Besides the fact that it feels good, masturbation also has many more conventional benefits. For starters, like sex, masturbation reduces stress. Dopamine and endorphins are released causing that happy, everything is fine feeling.

For the ladies, masturbation may also relieve menstrual cramps as a result of the hormones released during an orgasm. Furthermore, masturbation can help with your insomnia. Just like you feel the urge to sleep after having sex with your partner, masturbation will lower your blood pressure and induce relaxation making it much easier to fall asleep. Certainly sounds much more appealing than popping some melatonin or drinking a warm glass of milk, doesn’t it?

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