I recently sat down with my good friend Karley to discuss the value in using sex toys for couples and individuals. Please check out our conversation in Karley Sciortino’s column Breathless for Vogue.com
Breathless: Sex Toys Are the New Couples Therapy
“I didn’t own a vibrator until I was twenty-five. Until then, I always had the same thought: Why waste money on a masturbation machine when my hand and showerhead are both free and perfectly capable? That was until one day when, against my will, vibrators started showing up at my apartment. And it wasn’t just vibrators—there were all sorts of complicated and seemingly dangerous devices, sent by sex-toy companies that wanted me to write about their various gadgets. There was the sci-fi vibrator that I nicknamed “ET,” which involved attaching vibrating pads to your fingertips and strapping a battery pack around your wrist. There was the horsetail butt plug (for “pony play,” obviously). There was the particularly terrifying package from a company that specialized in toys modeled after the genitalia of fantasy creatures; for example, a giant sea dragon–penis dildo and a penetrable, scaly dragoness vagina. And then there was the time a large box of various lubricants showed up, which is actually quite an awkward thing to store in a tiny New York apartment. “The broom? Oh, that’s in the living room closet, right behind my lifetime supply of lube.”
In our post–Fifty Shades world, where sex-toy parties have replaced tupperware parties and even my devout Catholic mother knows what a “safe word” is, the idea of incorporating props or gadgets into your sex life is becoming less and less taboo. Even Walmart sells sex toys now. And if anything, all the unsolicited sexual paraphernalia I’ve received has opened my eyes to the vastness of the sex-toy menu. It has also taught me that (good) vibrators can be a godsend, especially when you’re too lazy to even move your finger and just want to lay a machine on your crotch and then pass out. But for as mainstream as sex toys have become, the reality of introducing them into sex with a partner can sometimes be a difficult or awkward affair.
From my experience—and this seems to be the general consensus—men are less comfortable using sex toys than women, during both sex and masturbation. In the past, when I’ve suggested incorporating my vibrator into sex with guys, a few have been into it, but most seemed weirded out or threatened. One guy even looked at me condescendingly and asked, “You actually need that?” in a way that suggested I wasn’t in touch enough with my body to have an orgasm without the assistance of a robot.
Recently, I brought this issue up with June Tomaso-Wood, a psychotherapist and sex therapist. June told me, “It’s true, some men do find it intimidating or emasculating when their partner wants to incorporate a device into their sexual play. Men–especially young men—want to be viewed as virile, self-confident, and capable of satisfying a woman in bed. They feel their penis should be the be-all and end-all of your sexual life. So when you suggest using your vibrator, your boyfriend might be thinking, ‘Why, am I not enough?’ But this is likely because of a lack of sex education and knowledge about how these sexual tools could be beneficial for both sexes.”
Read the full article here: http://www.vogue.com/2664223/sex-toys-karley-sciortino-breathless-slutever/