A Woman Tells How Sex is Center of Self
I'd like to add my praise to that from others for your thought-provoking website. Your attempt to bring solo sex in particular and sexuality in general into the open should be commended. I especially like your emphasis upon dispelling the religious and cultural myths which shroud the topic of sexuality. I think we've suffered long enough for the ignorance and prejudice of our forefathers and foremothers.
By way of introduction, I'm a 42-year-old married woman who thoroughly celebrates, enjoys and appreciates her sexuality. Enthusiastic (and frequent!) sexual expression has been a large contributor to creating the person I am--a person, by the way who likes herself and enjoys herself. I think it's impossible to separate ourself from our sexual nature, it is a big part of who we are. And I am a firm believer that sex should be enjoyed often and with gusto--either with one's chosen partner(s) or in quiet moments by oneself. My career is a professional one (I'm a dentist), I'm well educated and, I believe, very well rounded. My body, although perhaps not a #10 by many people's arbitrary rating standards, is attractive enough and--this is most important--it serves me very well by providing abundant sexual pleasure.
I can recall being fascinated by my body far back in early childhood. I loved the sensations that were coaxed by different sights, smells, touch feelings, tastes, sounds. The feel of different fabrics upon my young skin, the aromas of perfumes or the outdoors, different textures and tastes of foods, all these things combined to make me a little girl who was enthralled by the world around her, wanting to experience it all and cuddle it up close.
When getting ready for bed I easily remember standing often before the full-length mirror in my room, slowly dropping off my clothes, then caressing myself all over with my hands and fingertips. It felt good to me, even as a preschooler. As I grew older I continued to stimulate every patch of my skin, running my fingers along the more noticeable curves, playing with my hair, and, in time, fondling my budding breasts.
My vulva held a special attraction for me because I learned early in my self-explorations that it was the seat of some very special sensations which pleased me very much. All the delicate folds of skin there intrigued me--I liked their feel and it was fun to hold a hand mirror so I could look closely at how I was made. As I grew older and hair began to appear between my legs, it served almost like a beacon--attracting my attention there even more.
Although I vividly remember fingering myself often as I was growing up, nothing can surpass that time the play resulted in my first orgasm. Every motion of my fingers became even more lovely than the one which preceded it and it demanded another touch, another movement until my whole being became focused upon the good feelings which were emanating from that spot between my legs. Then there was that intense far-away throbbing which became even "louder" and pronounced, carrying my young (probably 12) spirit up, up and into my first orgasm. Oh, it was exhaustingly beautiful, I thought, and right then and there I vowed to replicate that exciting sensation over and over again, all the rest of my life.
And I have!
However, the older I get, the more amazed I am that most people (especially other women) have such serious problems with this "neat feeling between their legs." Why can't they just accept it for what it is, enjoy it and work to make the next time even more fun and exciting?
Instead, they turn sex into a "hush-hush" thing, something they only talk about with nervous giggles or else they pretend it is something nasty, messy, bothersome or unnecessary. What's most frightening is that our cultural institutions, most notably the church, have attempted to keep information about sexuality at a bare minimum (pardon the pun!) at the same time they seek to reinforce old and outdated attitudes of shame, embarrassment, disgust and loathing about our sexual needs. Let me cite some examples....
- A longtime patient and friend of mine, a woman, became widowed while very young. A devout conservative Lutheran, she has confided in me that in the early years of her widowhood she struggled with sexual needs but that she was ultimately successful in "overcoming" them. She never even thinks of sex anymore, she says, and feels very virtuous about this "achievement." In no uncertain terms I've told my friend, in as loving a manner as possible, that I think the decision to cut herself off from this important part of being human was a stupid one. She, unfortunately, is still stuck in the antique christian thinking which says that sex is only for pleasing a marriage partner and rearing children; any other benefits of sex are either nonexistent or products of the devil. Bullshit! The need to enjoy sexual gratification is not something that you turn on and off; it is a basic part of your makeup like the need to breathe, eat, urinate. To pretend that it isn't all that important or that one can easily get along without sexual gratification is nonsense. If one does shove that part of one's life aside, damage will be done elsewhere. All of the numerous sexual molestation cases involving Catholic priests should be evidence enough that celibacy and denial of our basic sexuality doesn't work.
- Another female friend of mine says she won't have sex with her husband except in a dark room. I'll agree that once in awhile dark-room sex is fun; it tends to take me back to those teenage years of groping in a car parked in some secluded spot far from street lights. But all the time? Come on, now! I'm not afraid to admit that I like the looks of men's genitals and I especially like what showing mine to my husband does to him--even after all these years of making it in our marriage bed! The whole concept behind women's fashion is to provocatively expose and highlight body parts, thereby exciting onlookers. When you're alone, you go one step farther and shed the clothes entirely, in a lighted place, and let nature take its course. My husband and I often have fun with a simple sexual role play, reenacting the old "you show me your's and I'll show you mine" game some of us tried as youngsters. That type of exposure is fun and the rewards are GREAT! Frankly, I get excited seeing, feeling and tasting my husband's penis and he becomes delightfully passionate and amorous when I spread wide open and invite him to enjoy me with his eyes, fingers, mouth and penis. Those beautiful shared moments are difficult at best in a dark room; a soft light-- sometimes even a spotlight--turns an otherwise dull tactile experience into a tactile-visionary one. When we have several sensory organs operating at once, the ultimate sensation is made even more powerful.
My friend's reluctance to let her husband see her reminds me of an elderly couple that my parents know. Just days before the couple was to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary, the gentleman was over at my folks' place to borrow something. The subject of the pending anniversary celebration came up and in the course of the ensuing conversation, the man said that regrettably he'd never seen his wife nude. Imagine! Living with someone for half a century and not sharing to that simple degree! They are, by the way, devout Seventh Day Adventists and parents of several children. I think the attitudes and beliefs that foster such behavior are sick.
- On your site, in the women's techniques section, is a statement from another woman about my age: "For years I thought masturbation was something immoral and that 'good girls' didn't do it. I am now 42 and have recently discovered what I have been missing." Although I'm thrilled to know she is now masturbating and enjoying herself, it is so very sad that she missed out on far too many years of pleasure simply because of bad ideas. I wish there was some way we could get the word out to the millions of other women who are denying themselves unnecessarily. Any ideas?
In this day and age there is simply no reason for individuals not to enjoy sexually-produced sensations. If you have a partner, then DO IT often and have fun exploring new fantasies, new positions, new techniques. Be relaxed and enjoy yourself and your partner. If you don't have a partner (or even if you do), then lovingly DO IT by yourself. If it becomes dull, explore new ways of enhancing the sensations. Make a game out of arousing yourself. Scroll through new fantasies while you stimulate your body. Masturbating is liberating simply because you have only one person to please--yourself. There is no pressure to perform, no expectations to meet. And there should never be any guilt or shame (if there is, then start examining your attitudes toward yourself and your body--something is wrong somewhere!).
Keep up the good work with your masturbation website. And come on, ladies, this isn't only a man's world anymore. I would like to read more from other women; start sending in your reflections, experiences and techniques.