Touch yourself.

I say those words a lot.

If your brain goes to masturbation first, you and I can be frans. But it’s not just about that, not even close. Our skin is the largest sensory organ in our body, and it’s also the most neglected. Oh, you might slap on some lotion every once in a while, maybe some coconut oil for the crunchy set.

But I bet you can’t remember the last time you touched yourself for the sheer sensory joy of it. A cursory neck rub maybe, an angry scrub with the loofah, perhaps… but when was the last time you rubbed your hands over your skin and enjoyed it? Tuesday after never, I’m sure.
Touch is a beautiful thing. And in our society, there’s not near enough of it. 

We Americans have the largest personal space bubble in the known world. We keep each other at arm’s length, even in close, personal relationships. Most of us have to really focus to maintain a sustained physical relationship, because even casual touch is mostly frowned upon. 

I am an awkward hugger. I automatically want to hug people I have a connection with, and it has made for some interesting situations over the years. I had a doula client who I hugged the second she walked through the door for our interview (she found me on FB). And then I became slightly apprehensive about it. Like… was that too much? Should I have felt her out before I just automatically hugged? And THEN, because I was so worried about this, I accidentally rebuffed a hug from HER… and then it was really awkward, because now neither one of us had any idea if we should hug or not hug. I did eventually make a joke out of it (because that’s my way), and it was fine after that.

But the point is, we are awfully strange about touch. And I’ll be perfectly honest, I think at least PART of that awkwardness is that we touch ourselves in only the most cursory of ways. 

Even our masturbation is perfunctory. (Don’t tell me that you don’t secretly have a goal to rub one out as fast as possible, so you can roll over and go to sleep.)

And where does that leave us??? Not knowing how we liked to be touched, that’s how. 

Wanna know the secret to the best sex ever? Knowing what turns you on and being able to adequately communicate it to your partner. That’s it. 

But in order to know what turns you on, you gotta fucking touch yourself. You have to explore your body—and not just your genitalia. That’s part of it, yes, but not the whole part. 

And look, this sounds daunting. “When the fuck am I gonna have time to do this shit?” I hear you. But you don’t have to do it all at once. 

After your next shower, take fifteen or twenty minutes and just rub some lotion in. (I strongly, strongly recommend coconut oil for this. And it’s great for your skin.) Start with your feet, and work your way on up. Feel your skin underneath your hands. Feel the definition of your muscles, your bony protrusions, your soft and squishy parts (we all got ‘em). 

Don’t be fucking critical. Don’t do this in front of a mirror. Sit on your bed or in a comfy chair and actually enjoy this. It’s the only body you got, remember? Enjoy the process, and then put your most favorite clothes or jammies on over your freshly polished skin. 

Even putting those clothes on is a sensory experience if you allow it to be. The fabric glides or sticks by turn, running over your arms, your legs, your torso. Enjoy the clean cotton of fresh undies. Natural fibers are always best, but wear what you love. Whatever. Just enjoy the feeling of skin and cloth, and TOUCH.

Look, if your eyes go bad, you get glasses. Hearing? Miracle Ear to the rescue, baby. But touch? We don’t do anything about that. We don’t cultivate it, we don’t develop it, and we don’t indulge in it, near enough.

So do yourself a favor, and go fucking touch yourself.

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    Hi There!

    I'm Briar. I make talking about sex fun. Almost as fun as actually having sex. Almost.


    Self Kindness