Many sexually active adults have never experienced being touched intimately with massage or in a mindful ‘massage style’. There are many reasons why genital massage should be a ‘thing’ that is recognised and taught in way more places. Here are just a few;
We can DIY
We can self-massage our genitals just as we can self-massage our shoulders or feet or whatever parts of us we can reach. Why should our genitals only get attention when we pee or when we have solo or partnered sex with the aim of getting off? They deserve to be included, even when we can’t be with a partner, or don’t want to be.
Variety is the spice of life
Different massage strokes offer a myriad of sensations that simply touching our genitals in a way that gives us direct sexual pleasure and makes us orgasm doesn’t. These sensations (and there are ways of encouraging them) can be felt throughout the pelvis and the rest of the body. Many people get sexually bored and feel that they get into a rut of experiencing pleasure in the same way for decades. Genital massage full of gentle squeezes, strokes, frictions, kneading, circling, cupping, adds some delicious dimensions.
Genital massage can be utterly goal-free
A body massage is pleasurable, often intensely so, without necessarily being sexual or leading to the desire to have sex. The same can be said for genital massage…the skin, muscles and tissues all benefit from touch, from a good stretch and from soothing massage just as the rest of our bodies do. We are giving our genitals some good vibes and positive messages touching them like this.
Or it can be great before other kinds of sex
Many sexual problems, especially for people with vulvas, arise because sexual activity is rushed, the genital owner has not relaxed enough and there is insufficient ‘foreplay’, or meaningful contact with the genitals before penetration or direct stimulation. Creating time for genital massage wakes up the whole area and can increase lubrication and engorgement in people with all kinds of genitals.
Sexual Confidence builder
Firstly, a genital owner who practices self-massage on their own genitals gains confidence in knowing what creates pleasure in their body. A partner who offers genital massage to their partner and who is receptive, will learn a lot about how their partner likes to be touched. You will also need to communicate before and during the massage, which is also a vital skill to practice.
Massaging for a ‘Pleasure Map’
Many of us are disconnected from our genitals for a range of cultural and social reasons and because of our socialisation and experiences. When you go for a regular body massage, your genitals are diligently ignored. Your mind creates a map of your whole body, its sensations and pleasure, with a big gap in the middle where your genitals are! If we mindfully include the genitals, your mind will map this part of your body’s landscape too. Do it over and over and your mental pleasure map will become richer and more detailed. You’re enhancing your pleasure pathways and making new ones, which can only be a good thing! You deserve to feel yourself as a whole human being.
You can bring your heart in
It is a wonderful gift to offer a partner, friend or lover and if you are into setting intentions you can intend to touch with love and nurturing. You can imagine love flowing from your heart and into your hands. Even if this makes no sense to you, perhaps you will notice the intimacy and closeness that touching in this way can cultivate. It’s a great (free!) birthday present, write it on a cheque (if you still use them!).
It can be gender-free
Traditionally Tantra practice includes Yoni (vulva) and Lingam (penis) massage, so if you love this language, go for it! If not, call what is between your legs whatever you like (that’s a whole other blog), and remember that our genitals all started the same in utero, so contain the same nerve endings and tissues whatever shape they ended up in. So many of the strokes they enjoy are pretty similar. Much fun can be had finding out (negotiate with your massage partner about language, limits, boundaries first).
I will be holding a ‘Gender-free Genital Massage’ workshop at Quintasensual (Queer sexuality and spirituality) Festival this year. https://www.quintasensual.org/
If you are interested but nervous, or feel there are some things getting in the way of you exploring and enjoying genital massage, a Somatic Sex Educator and Sexological Bodyworker is an option to consider. I can with individuals or couples, anybody with a body, but am particularly sensitive to the needs of women, queer and trans clients.
You can email Beck Thom at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks for reading,