It's common knowledge that guy friends talk about masturbation — how much, how often, and maybe even which porn stars peak their interest — but what about women? A recent article in The Telegraph argues that female friends don't talk about masturbation enough with each other, and I couldn't agree more. Far be it for anyone to say what you should discuss with your BFFs, but given that women still have to contend with a variety of oppressive social mores, it certainly can't hurt.
The difference between chatting about your partnered sex life, (which you probably already do) and your solo sex life, (which you may or may not already do) is that the latter kind of conversations will actually pass the Bechdel Test. On top of that, you may even help de-stigmatize the act for some of your more reserved friends — or that random stranger who happens to creepily eavesdrop on your salty bar talk.
So if you're wondering how to begin, just remember that even a joke can help to um, stimulate a vigorous conversation about self-pleasure. Here are six ways to talk to your friends about masturbation, because sharing really is caring:
1. Talk About Your First Time
Talking about your early masturbation exploits is a safe, nostalgia-infused way to find out about your friends' sexual histories. I, for one, tried it the first time in fifth grade while reading a biography of Mick Jagger. True story.
2. Share An Embarrassing Story
Everyone has a There's Something About Mary-style masturbation tale of woe, and they can be ideal icebreakers for jerk-off talk. My favorite true life tale involves a soda bottle I used to help me do the deed in a pinch, and a friend who unwittingly grabbed it to fill up with water before I could gently let her know where it had been. Whoops.
3. Talk About Turn-Ons
Who was your last #mcm or #wcw? Who was your first teen crush? If you had to pick a favorite porn star, who would it be? What inanimate object do you find the sexiest? (OK, maybe that last one's a little weird, but you never know.) These questions are just a few you can use to spark a conversation about self-pleasure with friends.
4. Share Your Self-Pleasure Methods Of Choice
I knew a girl who refused to use sex toys because she wanted to be fully self-sufficient, and I knew another girl who only used glass dildos, because they could double as decor. Of course, I wouldn't know any of that kind of stuff if they hadn't been totally open about it. Sharing the ways you masturbate can make you feel less like a "freak," and you never know, you might pick up a trick or two while you're at it.
5. Share Your Orgasm Bucket List
Most of us are curious about a particular sex tech wonder that's new to the market — even the patently absurd ones. Opening up about what toys you'd love to try, even in jest, is a great way to share your desires with your friends and get some real masturbation talk going.
If you'd like to take a trip down memory lane, watch the sex myths you believed as a child below (and subscribe to Bustle's YouTube page for more videos):
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Images: Drew Herron/Flickr; Giphy (5)