Sexolve 250: 'I Have Never Known Pleasure'
In his weekly column, Harish Iyer offers advice on your sexual and relationship queries.
(Trigger Warning: Some questions could make you feel agitated. Reader discretion is advised.)
Sexolve is equal rights activist Harish Iyer’s Q&A space on FIT.
If you have any queries regarding sex, sexuality, or your relationship, and need some advice, answers, or just someone to hear you out – write to Harish Iyer, and he’ll try and ‘sexolve’ it for you. Drop-in a mail to email@example.com.
This week’s Q&As are below:
'I have never known pleasure'
I am a 24 year old woman. I was a girl who moved into womenhood without being kissed or loved. I have only recently come to know about something called masturbation. I haven't done that also as it just didn’t feel right for some reason. Before my 24th birthday, everything changed. My love wanted to feel me, to touch me and to be inside me. I kept holding back. I kept holding back, but at some point I gave in. He didn’t touch me like my friends boyfriends touch them. It didn’t feel like heaven. His kiss on my breasts felt like he would chew my nipples apart. It wasn’t pleasurable. And to imagine that this was the first time that I was in love with someone and the first time that I was in my stark nakedness with someone, made me even scary… I didn’t do anything to him. I just was there, on the ground, holding myself to all the dignity that I could muster to hold on to. When he asked me “can I go ahead”, I nodded an enthusiastic yes. But my mind was telling me that “no, I don’t feel anything. No pleasure at all”. He went on to my vagina. He kissed it once and then looked at me, I acted as if I am sighing in an orgasm (I don’t know what orgasms feel like, I just know it from the movies) He thrust his penis inside my vagina. My vagina was too tight so I experienced a lot of pain. I didn’t say a word. I instead acted as if I am enjoying everything. It was hard and dry and it fell like an overbearing void. My boyfriend is someone I am grateful to. He kept asking if I enjoyed and if he can go ahead. But the problem is I cannot fathom how people feel pleasure. I want to too. I am unable to. I feel violated by this act. I stopped talking to my boyfriend and he is wondering why I am so quiet all of a sudden. I can't tell him. I can't tell him that I am not so experienced. It is scary. I am not asexual. I feel sexual, but I don’t get images when I am not sleeping. Please help me out of this trauma. Please rescue me.
Dear Troubled Woman,
Thank you so much for pouring your heart out to me. It is your own work with your mind and body that will take you from pain to pleasure. No other mortal being has the power over your body. Not me. Not anybody. I can only share my thoughts and views and you could choose to listen to, or simply forget.
When was the last time you pleasured yourself? When was the last time you touched yourself and felt good about it? Have you thought about sex and consciously masturbated?
Maybe it’s time. Maybe it is time that you pleasure your own body. Maybe it’s time you realise the pleasure points in your own body. What is that titillates you? What would you like to do to yourself to feel aroused? Find out which part of your body responds to your touch? Feel yourself.
Understand that you have the power to feel what you want to feel. And allow your body to feel everything. When you are making love to a man, ensure that you lubricate yourself. His saliva could serve as a lubricant and there are some lubricants available in the market too.
Your boyfriend asked you for your permission before moving ahead. It is a lesson for everyone – one shouldn’t miss the step of seeking a clear “go ahead” before proceeding further in sex. This crucial step is sometimes overlooked by many. And while the intentions may not always be bad – intentions don’t matter in matters of consent. In this aspect, your boyfriend seems to be a decent person.
You have to be honest with your partner. Tell your partner that you are not feeling pleasure when you don’t feel pleasure. Don’t consent to something that you don’t agree with just to ‘go with the flow’.
Your pleasure is a important as your partner’s.
Don’t fake an orgasm. Create a possibility of one for yourself.
Work on your pleasure points. Understand pleasure the way you do. Love yourself more. Find out reasons for yourself not feeling pleasure. If there is a memory of something unfavourable in your part, dig it out and address it. If there is none but you just didn’t think about pleasure, now start thinking about pleasure.
Love yourself more. Pamper yourself more. Buy yourself everything that soothes your mind and allows you to experience the full potential of your body and its ability to give you pleasure.
P.S. love yourself
'I am worried my body doesn't look gym-ready'
I have been in a gym for the past 4 months. I haven’t managed to take to the exercises. All the men in my gym have big muscles. Many have 6 back abs. I feel shy to remove my shirt also because I have tyres in my stomach. I am not fat. I am a little disfigured. Can you help?
Dear Muscle Wala,
Thank you so much for writing in. I should confess something to you. I felt extremely shy myself to go to the gym. All these 6 pack and 8 packs and “biscuits” in men’s chests, made me rank myself way below in the ranks of body fitness. I wouldn’t lie, I still sometimes feel rather awkward and way too shy.
Over years and over time, I am getting rid of my shyness.
I am slowly coming to the understanding that my benchmark should be with respect to my own body and fitness. My goals should be about where I want to be from where I am. And I should choose my own pace to reach there.
Everybody is different. Every body is different. The more you compare yourself with others, you will find yourself in a place where you feel the pressure to be like them.
Your only comparison is with you. Find out where you were, where you are, and where you want to be.
Shun comparisons with others. Make your successes dependent on yourself.
(P.S. Maybe you will get a 6 pack. But let that be at your own pace. A pace that you choose for yourself.)
'Is it illegal to masturbate with a carrot?'
I have been reading your posts with great enthusiasm. Somewhere I muster the courage to ask you a really silly question. I have been masturbating with a carrot. One of my friends told me that it is illegal to masturbate with a carrot. Is this true. And if it is true what kind of masturbation is illegal with a carrot… you know what I mean?
Thank you for your kind words. I am so happy to read that you read our posts regularly.
Coming to your question.
Under the law , you have complete right to your privacy. Your body is your own. Under section 377, any kind of sex, as long as it is consensual and between adults it is not a criminal offence. There is no law against masturbation in this country.
As long as you have inserted the carrot, for your own self pleasure, inside your vagina or anus, I don’t think there is any law that will restrict that if that’s done privately.
If there is no consent taken and if someone else pushes it inside the body. It could be an offence and could be considered as sexual assault.
I should tell you that physical safety is something that you should take care of yourself. This is not with regards to masturbation, but with regards to inserting any foreign object inside your body. Just be safe.
Hope that answers your query? Do feel free to write back. Smiles
P.S. Play safe
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