During a time where we see the majority of the earth stay home and isolate, many of us are wondering on the fate of our sex lives. The ‘new normal’ which is soon to follow will likely involve a more remote and distant kind of loving. The culture of online dating allowing users an instant hook up through apps like Tinder or Grindr, with the possibility of sex with strangers just a swipe away. To many, this may seem a thing of the past, with the New York Health department recently advising “you are your safest sex partner”. For those isolating without a partner, sexual intercourse has had a sharp decrease; yet other forms of sexual expression remain open.
According to MasturbationMonth.com May is now the annual month long celebration of self pleasure. Initially launched by sex-positive company Good Vibrations in honour of sex-positive U.S Surgeon Joycelyn Elders. A movement championing for the education around masturbation creating awareness, opening conversation and acceptance of the often maligned act. Female masturbation has typically been perceived as a taboo subject, with many still too afraid to dive into the sacred waters of female ejaculation. Yet the tides are changing, as many sex educators and sex positive figures favouring the term ‘solo sex’ which is now validating the act as a genuine form of sex.
This year it seems International Masturbation May could not have come at a more appropriate time. In addition to improving mood and reducing anxiety, masturbation keeps brain functions sharp and focused whilst decreasing the risk of cardiovascular disease and even the reduced risk of the common cold or flu, by encouraging the production of cells that aid the fight against infectious disease. Dr Rodríguez-Díaz advises that these weeks alone can be used to channel energy, explore yourself and to maybe think about what it is that we are looking for sexually, by yourself.
Masturbation opens up a playing field of sexual discovery into what is pleasurable and enjoyable. In rethinking intimacy and sex, why is this something always sought for outside of ourselves? Perhaps now is the time to look inward, with isolation bringing many of us back to our own bodies without the distraction of the phenomenal flux that is modern life. The body becomes an activity. A source for inspiration. With the annual event reaching a climax on May 28, what better time to enjoy some self-stimulation and to embrace the intimate touch of one's own right (or left) hand.
Happy masturbation month!