On the telephone with my boyfriend in the middle of the night, underneath a steaming hot, green comforter was when I discovered masturbation. I was fifteen years old.
I cannot recall how it happened or what was said to provoke the conversation, but while talking on the phone late one night, as my parents slept soundly in the next room, my boyfriend was suddenly urging me to touch myself.
Into the phone he whispered directions at the tip of his breath, teaching me how to get off with my fingers. “You can touch yourself how ever you’d like,” he encouraged. “Do whatever makes you feel good.”
“Are you doing it?” he asked quietly after a moment of silence.
I giggled softly into my pillow. “No! This is silly. Girls don’t need to masturbate. This is a guy thing.”
“No,” he murmured gently. “You’re wrong. Girls need it just as much as guys do.”
He then abruptly ended the conversation so that I could practice the rough-draft-like instructions he had given to me, which were as simple as Discover your body.
& so began the delicious thrill of exploration that comes along with discovering one’s pleasure points.
For the record, my boyfriend’s casual decision to teach me how to masturbate was not that of horny selfishness. He wasn’t forcing me to violate my body for the images it would produce in his mind after we hung up our cordless phones. He simply wanted me to experiment with my body; he wanted to teach me sensuality & sexuality in the most loving, non-threatening manner possible.
& I listened to him intently, my brown eyes wide with fascination, as he coaxed me to get myself off in the best way he knew how.
I trusted him intimately; I would have done anything he told me to. He had such a hold on me then & the fact that he took advantage of it to aid my own self discovery was beautifully unexpected, given how young & stupid we both were.
With every relationship, we are taught lessons. Some of love, some of trust, some of forgiveness. It just so happens that my last relationship taught me how to masturbate.
I had been dating my boyfriend for several months at the time, & only a few of those were spent sexually active. I didn’t quite understand the concept of sex until I met him; until the hormones were pulsating so quickly throughout my body that it made me feel seasick.
We thought we were much older than we were. We thought we were going to be married. We did adult things because of this; we felt so grown up.
When we finally decided that it was time to take the next step, we piled into his mom’s white Astrovan & drove out into a large plot of desert land where nothing but the moon illuminated our faces.
Everything that happened that night was in emulation of everything we had seen, heard, read, & imagined about sex. The positions, the exclamations, the pain, the tears… it all came from preconceived & assumed notions, never from a rational place of awareness or understanding.
Our age & naivete did us in that night, as we tried so desperately to mimic making love in order to seal our devotion for each other, to prove we were greater than everyone else. It was pathetic, it was cheap, it was all an act. Yet… it was blissful & hopeful & infatuated.
I did not come.
When it was over, I walked away from that large plot of desert land thinking that I had left my innocence there. But I was still innocent, still clueless, still unfinished.
Our sexual relationship took off from there at full speed; it never slowed down. We fucked at any chance we could; we could barely control our impulses to kiss, to touch, to fondle, to suck.
As two underaged teenagers living with their parents with even younger siblings, I’m quite surprised we were able to find the place & the time to explore sex. But we always did, & he always came. Always.
This didn’t bother me in the least; it only made sense. In my girlish mind, I thought that it was only the boys that derived pleasure from intercourse. I believed that the girl’s pleasure stemmed solely from how much noise she was making. The louder the moans, the more enjoyable the sack session was, thus promoting some kind of good feelings somewhere.
I didn’t even really know what an orgasm was, so my little brain wasn’t quite capable of wrapping itself around the complexity of sex, let alone the intricacy of female sex organs. I was equally oblivious to the mechanics of the male body, just like I was with my own boney, adolescent structure.
But upon finding out that girls could enjoy sex as much as boys could, & that, amazingly, their bodies could replicate the type of physical release that occurred when a boy climaxed… I was intrigued.
It took only three unsuccessful nights of gently manipulating my genitals to finally grasp the concept of doing it in such a way that I finally experienced the glorious liberation of an orgasm. & it took only one orgasm for me to completely master the technique of masturbation as though I had done it a hundred times before.
& I had.
This new sensation of stimulation, paired with the stirring release of the orgasm, wasn’t really new to me at all. I had indeed masturbated many, many times previously… before I knew there was word for it.
I remember being a little girl & touching myself at night while lying in bed, almost to lull myself to sleep. I don’t believe an orgasm or even arousal ever came from my touches, but I do remember that it felt wonderfully comforting , like a bear hug or being rocked to sleep. This became a ritual for years to come: stroking myself until my eyes grew heavy & eventually closed shut in sleepiness.
I had always thought that what I did back then was a mere symptom of childhood, like when a child sucks its thumb. It didn’t actually click until I gave myself my first orgasm that I finally understood that when I was a small, I was fondling my genitals for consolation as well as pleasure. The feelings of arousal comforted me, quieted me down. It reminded me that I was still conscious, still breathing.
To finally have a bit of resolution to what I had done for most of my life, & to finally understand what it all meant… it was positively thrilling. I wasn’t crazy or sick; I was simply a natural, sexual human being since birth. This was such a beautiful realization.
My parents never spoke of masturbation to me. It wasn’t until I was married that I actually heard the word escape from their mouths in separate isolated incidents. Because of how unspoken it was amongst them & amongst my girl friends, I figured that a woman who masturbated was unnormal, immoral, & that it was meant to be kept a secret, hidden away from other girls.
I also sensed that masturbation really was meant for horny boys who needed the release for health reasons, & only promiscuous girls latched onto this obscene habit.
Despite this frame of thought — which played incessantly in my head — it didn’t shame me into quitting seducing myself. It actually made it more enticing; I was doing something bad that felt incredibly good. Masturbation appealed to me more & more as the mouths in my home & in my circle of friends remained shut about it. It was my dirty little secret; my invisible badge of honor.
Every night, I pleasured myself, & every night I fell asleep with a devilish little smile on my face, my body drenched in sweat after yet another pleasurable session of solo sex in the privacy of my bedroom.
I was the girl that was called a Goody-Goody for most of her teenaged life.
If they only knew.
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This little story was told in early celebration of Lady Porn Day, which officially kicks off tomorrow (February 22nd).
This is a week-long crusade where women from all over the world will share their stories, queries, & fascinations with masturbation & pornography, which is still a deliciously dirty secret for many.
If you’d like to join in & tell your story, or perhaps just be a voyeur to this gusty movement, check out Rabbit Write for all things sex positive & tune into the hashtag #LadyPornDay on Twitter.
In the mean time, tell me about your personal masturbation stories in the comments section.
Let’s lift the veil off a subject that is just as relevant as it is beautiful.