Love Thyself: How Masturbation Is Becoming The New Hook-Up Culture
Let’s play a Choose Your Own Adventure game. Remember those?
It’s almost 8 on a Friday night.
Your friends invited you for “drinks." And you know "drinks" very rarely ends up just being drinks; you anticipate being out until 5 in the morning. That’s option A.
Option B: Netflix just added a whole new season of your favorite sh*tty reality TV show and you just got paid, so you have enough money to give yourself a Seamless feast.
You can also take Option C: Tinder your way through Friday night fun.
Chances are, you’re somewhere between B and C. Let’s face it, we’re all lazy. We worked all week and frankly the only thing worth getting out of bed for is opening the door to let the delivery guy in. Laziness always rules.
Laziness, however, is rarely rewarded in the bedroom. If you choose to go with Option C, you’re left with potentially having to be a good host to the poor schmuck you wrangled up off whatever app you use to swipe right on hotties. Forget Option C.
You're left with Option B. Seamless and Netflix feast it is.
Let’s add another twist: You haven’t gotten laid in three weeks, and you’re about to watch "Crazy, Stupid, Love.” and the scene with a shirtless Ryan Gosling is coming up.
Yes, you can still Tinder and get a Ry Gos lookalike to come and “Netflix and chill,” but you’re probably turning your vibrator on well before he and Emma Stone leave the bar.
We talk about masturbation — with our chick friends, with our free-spirited coworkers, with our yoga buddies — as if it’s a team sport. It’s always “oh, I gave myself the best orgasm last night” or “f*ck, I love my vibrator.”
Personally, I always found masturbation to be a solo act — something I only like to explore when I’m home alone or when the mood strikes.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not ashamed of it, nor will I shy away from a conversation about vibrators (heck, I write about them), but something about the act of flicking the bean feels private.
However, masturbation culture has become so ingrained in our lives, what was once a taboo subject suddenly became a commonplace topic.
Or, at least, it is on my brunch dates.
We spend more time online than we do physically meeting others.
We’re plugged in at virtually nearly every waking moment: our phones when we wake up, our laptops at work and our iPads when we get home.
We’ve even taken our relationships online. Sexting, Skyping, FaceTiming and Snapchatting are all ways for us to get naughty without actually being anywhere near the people we’re fooling around with.
It’s also given us proper reasons and ways to have fun by ourselves.
Our cross-country boyfriends are asking us to play with ourselves for them on Skype. Our Snapchat friends send us dicks in exchange for pussy.
Plus, being plugged in is breeding grounds for just being lazy.
It’s so much easier to stay at home and get your XXX on solo than actually put some real clothes on and meet people at a bar or sit through a drink or two with a Tinder beau.
It’s a new way of talking about female empowerment.
When we talk about women owning their sexuality, the conversation immediately turns to not being apologetic for either initiating or enjoying sex.
What we don’t talk about? Ditching the guy (or lady) completely and just taking your pleasure into your own hands (pun intended.)
For her music video for “Adore You,” Miley Cyrus rolls around between the sheets while making suggestive poses with her hands between her legs.
An American Apparel design featuring a menstruating, masturbating vagina went completely viral a couple of years ago.
There’s something to it. Men are regularly poked fun of for their masturbation habits — think of every teen comedy you have ever seen for further evidence — but for women, it’s always been a shady grey area.
We’re allowed to masturbate, sure, but when Miley Cyrus or an actress on “Reign” does it, it makes headlines and gets us talking about how it’s somewhere between gratuitous and badass.
It’s confusing to anyone with a misogynistic dick because technically, we can’t be slut-shamed for it. It is, however, threatening — which is also what makes it powerful AF.
We don’t want to try anymore.
Our lives are all about instant gratification.
We want that Seamless dinner to arrive right away, our movies to start streaming ASAP and our Tinders to match instantaneously.
If we expect nearly everything in our lives to happen faster than we can utter the word, why should we wait to get someone to get us off? It just makes no sense.
Doing it ourselves not only allows us to do things our way, just how we like it, but it also takes the guesswork out.
We don’t have to hope our partner knows exactly what he or she's doing in the sack, and in return, we can spend more time figuring out our bodies. It’s a win-win.
It’s cuffing season... So why not self-cuff?
It’s getting cold out (sweater weather is upon us, ladies!) so naturally, we’re all about finding cuddle buddies. Nothing wrong with a bit of warm love, but it’s too damn cold out to wake up, shower, get dressed and be a functioning human being.
Forget finding a quick Tinder fling to cuff until it’s warm again; just cuff yourself (literally?) and play solo.
Besides, you can’t get cold if you never leave the comfort of your bed.