Masturbation Teenage Lust

Teen Girls: More Masturbation

Teen girls should be allowed to discover sexuality
for themselves through a cultural attitude which
encourages and normalizes young female masturbation.

Girls Need
‘Time Alone’

When I was about 13 the girls in my class all firmly insisted that they didn’t masturbate, that it was “gross” and something that only boys did.

The exception was one girl who openly admitted that she did, and was subsequently looked at with thinly-veiled disgust.

It was somehow assumed that girls didn’t masturbate, or were just entirely incapable of doing so. For girls to admit it was to reveal something ghastly about them.

There was no explanation for “self-love” or the mythical clitoris. They were snubbed entirely, as if they had no effect on women whatsoever.

Even in high school, girls didn’t talk about it. A friend of mine admitted that she wasn’t even sure “where that thing even is”? She’d never looked for it extensively because that would’ve been “odd”.

Although there’s certainly nothing wrong with the exploration of the self, this speaks of a concept that’s been around for years.

For women to explore their sexuality and to rely on themselves for pleasure (as opposed to men) is something that shouldn’t be encouraged.

Most women feel their masturbation habits are something that needs to be kept secret, because it has always been firmly categorized as a “masculine” habit.

Boys are allowed to be in tune with their “baser” instincts, while girls are not. If they do, they’re under the pain of humiliation for doing so.

There is a need for girls to hide their masturbatory habits from men (unless they’re doing it for the male counterparts’ sexual pleasure), or even from other women as a defense mechanism.

Now, for the most part, the women in my life talk about their “alone time” openly, although I don’t think it’s regarded to be of the same “acceptable” level as male masturbation.

This is connected to the belief that female anatomy is somehow disgusting. Vaginas and all of their corresponding parts are somehow dirty and should only make an appearance during penetrative sex.

This can be seen through the hush-hush aspect of menstrual-pad commercials, joky remarks of how “disgusting” vaginas are and the secretive names given to periods themselves (Tom, Aunt Dot, having the painters in, etc).

Exactly why is female sexuality so feared? What about it is scandalous? True, there aren’t as many negative masturbation myths connected with women (no threat of hairy palms or infertility), but to blank it out completely is to betray a rather sinister view of sexuality.

Teen Girls Encouraged to Masturbate

Teenage Girls
Encouraged to Masturbate

Teen girls should be allowed to discover sexuality for themselves, encouraged by a cultural attitude which normalises young female masturbation.

Yet “encouraging” young girls to masturbate isn’t without risk. Not the risk imagined by anxious moralizers. We live in a perfectionist culture where girls tend to hear “you can be anything” as “you have to do everything.”

For young perfectionists, opportunity has a nasty way of getting reframed as obligation. That’s as true of self-pleasure as anything else.

Think of the notorious scene in Black Swan where Natalie Portman masturbates on instructions from her ballet director.

The fact that she’s alone (or thinks she is) as she touches herself in bed doesn’t change the fact that she’s getting herself off at least in part to please an authority figure.

It’s as clever an encapsulation of the perfectionist pleasure paradox as one could ask for.

The risk of masturbation becoming still another duty in the lives of anxious teen girls seems admittedly slight. (Though the pressure from boys to perform self-sex on Skype is not an unheard-of-phenomenon in girls’ lives.)

Orgasms are a hell of a lot more likely to reduce stress than to add to it. The real problem is a culture that sees women’s sexuality as something men have a legitimate claim to.

I’ve heard the same story from many young females. They’re often asked by male friends if they masturbate. If they say “no,” they’re accused of lying. If they say “yes,” they’re almost invariably peppered with requests for explicit details of how they get themselves off.

Some of these guys may be looking for reassurance that girls really are sexual creatures, but many seem to be trying to feed their own masturbatory fantasies.

The assumption that boys who ask about a young woman’s pleasure are pruriently preoccupied with it may not always be accurate. But it’s at least partly grounded in the real experiences of many girls. Pleasure itself isn’t dangerous, but talking about it in the wrong company can be.