Afraid of Pleasure
This semester I'm teaching a workshop on sex to my church. It's called The Truth About Holy Sex. (Subscribe to my blog to catch the workbook coming out this spring!) So far my participants have asked some whopper questions like, "What if I want to figure this out, but my husband's not into it?" and "If masturbation is allowed, what about lust?" I LOVE that they are asking these questions. They're so important to wrestle with in community.
For so long conservative people have been taught that self-pleasuring is flat out nasty and might even make you go blind, when frankly, that's just not true. Our behaviors are so much more than simple behaviors. They have needs and drives and feelings and goals associated with them. All that context REALLY matters when considering if something is good for you or your relationships.
But on top of being told it's sinful, we are also living in a world that encourages us to generally hate ourselves and be afraid of anything that might feel good. We work ourselves to death, beat ourselves up for failures, ignore our bodies when they cry out for help, and listen to the judgements of others a thousand times more than we consider our own authentic thoughts. Of course we are afraid of masturbation.
Unsplash photo cred: Wengang Zhai