Hot Topics: Why I Talk About Masturbation

By: Amanda Vining, IATG ContributorAugust 7, 2016


A few months ago, I wrote an article about masturbating while in a relationship with another person. When I linked to the published article on my personal Facebook page, I expected to read a few negative comments from some of my more vocal Facebook friends(mostly acquaintances I havent seen in several years.) But what I didn't expect to hear was negative feedback from people in my inner circle, like my mother and even my boyfriend! What they were upset about was that I had chosen to speak about such a personaland inappropriatesubject publicly. My mom was terrified that my article would embarrass her if seen by other family members and friends, and my boyfriend asked me to block his family from being able to view the post because he didnt want for his parents, sister, or cousins to know that I talk about such a crudetopic.

I was completely shocked and saddened by the negative reaction from those closest to me, so I called Liz over at I AM THAT GIRL headquarters and told her my dilemma. I confided in her that I stand by my work but felt discouraged after receiving my familys reaction.

What ensued was a great conversation about why we need to talk about female masturbation.

In Hollywood films, popular culture, and colloquial conversations, male masturbation seems like fair game. I cant even begin to count the number of television shows Ive watched that have made jokes or comments about the male characters masturbating. But the same courtesy and dialogue isnt extended to women and girls. Thats a problem.

I feel passionately about bringing attention to healthy female masturbation, but after my familys unexpected reaction, I was nervous to talk about it again. Its scary enough to talk about such an intimate topic, let alone be one of the only people willing to speak up about it publicly. I feel vulnerable and intimidated right now. I mean, receiving negative feedback is never enjoyable. But Ive always enjoyed a challenge, so Im not backing down. For starters, its safe sex that has great benefits, like stress reduction and helping your body increase blood flow. To me, thats reason enough to talk about it! Instead of approaching female masturbation as a taboo or inappropriate topic, Id like to help promote the positive role masturbation can serve in girlslives and be part of a movement to break down barriers that keep us from discussing it.

Im scared, because I dont want to hear more disapproving sentiments from those close to me, but I believe in this cause more than I fear negative remarks from my community. As Lady Bird Johnson once said, Become so wrapped up in something that you forget to be afraid.Thats exactly what I intend to do. I know that my family and friends love me, so I hope that they will support me. I hope that you will support me, too, and that together we can eliminate the stigma surrounding female masturbation and begin a conversation about healthy sex, ultimately getting to a place where female sexuality is celebrated instead of shushed. I believe that this conversation is worth it!


Let’s Chat!

Have you ever had questions about masturbation but were too embarrassed or scared to ask? Well it’s time to change the stigma! Start a dialogue about masturbation this week with someone you trust and feel comfortable with! We think you’ll find that you’re not the only one who’s had questions!


About Amanda:

Amanda_Vining.jpgAmanda lives in Austin, Texas, where she strives every day to be as BRAVE and BeautyFULL as she can be. She graduated from The University of Texas at Austin with a self-designed degree in Children’s Rights, and Duke University with a certificate in Nonprofit Management. In her spare time, Amanda can be found scouring Pinterest for her latest craft project, drinking coconut mochas in her favorite coffee shop, and advocating for sexual violence prevention on her blog, Talk About Rape (


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  • commented 2017-04-15 03:44:44 -0700
    I man proud of you for bringing this subject out of the dark. There was a time you couldn’t say “pregnant” on tv. Times change. I believe masturbation is safe sex, you learn your body and the stress relief is incredible. You actually secrete endorphins after an orgasm that create contentedness and even can bring pain relief. As a sufferer of a degenerative autoimmune arthritis called ankylosing spondylitis, pain relief is pretty much on my mind all the time. I don’t want to become addicted to Vicodin, or even worse for me, build a resistance and have it not help me. So, sometimes masturbation is the ticket. I support healthy masturbation as long as it is NOT coupled with viewing pornography. Pornography is highly addictive and many studies show girls and women begin to find it compulsive. It’s a slippery slope that can lead to difficulties in relating to humans during sex if you’re used to relating to images on paper or a screen. I’m not sure why it isn’t talked about more. It’s hidden in there with healthy mastubation, in the closet where people stuff things that they’re ashamed to talk about. Open the closet, bring some fresh perspectives and light to the subjects, do some cleanup and feel better about yourself. Speak up!
  • commented 2016-08-09 17:01:41 -0700
    I am so glad you brought this subject to the table. I always wonder why it’s wrong. I am 40 been married and divorced several times. Why does anyone live in secret? It feels good and its MY BODY. I know some say God says it’s wrong but wasn’t that like in the “OLD” days? Women should know and explore their body’s, I know mine well enough that I know way ahead of time when I will be moody and I don’t even have a period any more. Men do it and don’t care who hears them talk about it, well unless it’s dear mommy…. guess what son, mommy probably taught daddy where her happy place is!

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