Why does self-pleasure make women feel guilty?

Few topics are as taboo as female sexuality. With 50 per cent of young Brits having an inaccurate understanding of female anatomy, it’s no wonder that female pleasure is often misunderstood, if not ignored, by men and women alike. Because female masturbation is so frequently misconceived, it can be extremely challenging for women to know if their desires and actions are normal.

Sex therapist Mia Sabat, from the female sexual wellness app Emjoy, answers common questions around overcoming feelings of guilt that can prevent some women from seeking self-pleasure. Follow this read with her seven top tips for overcoming shame. 

 

As a woman, is it common to feel guilt or shame with masturbation?

flower in bloom

Feeling guilty when masturbating is more common than you might think, even though there is absolutely nothing to feel ashamed of. In fact, a March 2020 Glamour readers survey on the topic of masturbation found that 83 per cent of correspondents think there is still a stigma around female desire—a feeling that isn’t helping to diminish the guilt associated with female self-pleasure. This is an unfortunate reflection on how many things associated with being a woman are viewed as taboo: from our periods to our pleasure.

It’s important to understand that if you are experiencing feelings of guilt or shame with self-pleasure, you are not alone in these feelings but also, that you are not doing anything shameful when you are making love to yourself. Accepting this fact is the first step in erasing these negative feelings.

 

Why do we feel guilt with self-pleasure?

woman feeling sexual shame

Often, feelings of guilt are due to a lack of information, knowledge, and education. This is something that is propelled by society as a whole.

We all know that female sexuality and pleasure have been swept under the rug for hundreds of years. This has often been due to cultural, religious, and moral reasons, which frame masturbation as something that is dirty, dangerous, or should cause women shame.

As we collectively progress and women around the world begin to experiment more with their bodies, it’s important to leave these stigmas behind, and understand that self-pleasure is one of the most natural things we, as individuals, can experience.


How can we overcome feelings of guilt and self-pleasure?

rose blooming

We must understand that self-pleasure is simply another way to care for our minds and bodies, as it is ultimately a practice of self-care.

Would you feel bad about looking after your wellbeing through eating well, exercising, or enjoying a relaxing bubble bath? Most people wouldn’t second guess these actions because they typically offer our minds and bodies a much-needed, well-deserved break.

Masturbation is not only a common activity but a very healthy one too. It’s time to start believing that acts of self-care can, and should, be sexual, too.

 

Learn more: 7 steps to make yourself more comfortable with self-love

Read more: The ultimate guide to sharing nudes safely

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