I received this pro-masturbation propaganda in my school inbox courtesy of the “The Sexpert,” because clearly I need more incentive to masturbate. They should affix “remember to masturbate regularly” reminders in the school showers alongside those useless and ignored “monthly breast self-exam” fliers. I’m pretty sure I know which prompt would illicit a more widespread and timely response. And getting people to get comfortable with their bodies in a sexier way probably lends itself to body self-exams, anyway. Having your pleasant and relaxing shower interrupted by thoughts of breast lumps is so icky. Similar to the reason people don’t use condoms. In any event, although I laughed upon its receipt, I actually love the contents of this e-mail:
– Become familiar with your body – get to know what’s “normal” for you
– Discover what gives you pleasure and enjoy yourself – masturbation is healthy and safe
– Embrace your sexuality and respect the sexualities of others
– Communication and honesty with your partner is key to having a positive sexual experience
– If you’re sexually active, get tested for STIs (sexually transmitted infections) – it’s possible to have an STI and not know it
– If you’re sexually active, using condoms is the best way to help prevent STIs
The Health Promotion Office supports the belief that every single person is entitled to feel pleasure and enjoy one’s own body, regardless of gender or whether one is in a relationship or not. We employ a “body positive” model, which means that people are encouraged to be familiar and comfortable with their bodies. This is important not just for self-pleasure but also for health reasons, so that people have a strong awareness of their bodies, are better able to notice anything unusual, and can take measures to stay healthy. The “body positive” philosophy applies to all people – whether or not one is sexually active.
This philosophy also includes an emphasis on safety for those who choose to be sexually active. Unfortunately, there’s a lot of misinformation out there about sexual health and safer sex, which can lead to a number of unintended consequences such as sexually transmitted infections and unplanned pregnancies. By answering questions about sex and distributing safer sex supplies, we do not encourage people to be sexually active, but rather offer accurate information and promote safety so that people can be proactive about their health.