Allow me to apologize in advance for the pun I’m going to start this conversation off with. Until recently, when it came to the subject of Penetration, all I did was, “beat around the bush.” (I warned you, I’m sorry) For years, as a masculine-presenting lesbian, I believed that I was expected to be nothing short of a backpack toting, Strap-on wielding, penetration-boss! But, as someone who’d never been penetrated, I didn’t know how it worked, I didn’t know how it was supposed to feel and I was quite intimidated by it. Even though I knew I was good at sex, (I have the receipts!), and could satisfy my partner in many ways, I was still nervous that if she wanted to be penetrated by anything more than a finger or two, I wouldn’t be able satisfy her.
Sparingly over the years, I’ve used a Dildo here, a Strap-on there; but they were so cumbersome that I lacked confidence in them and therefore in my own ability. Eventually, because of my own insecurities, I convinced myself of the false narrative that, “real" lesbians didn’t like penetration anyway! I personally perpetuated the stigma that many women who sleep with women constantly find themselves disputing—the idea that enjoying penetration has ANYTHING to do with craving a penis. Because I felt encumbered by what society thought I should be doing in my own bedroom, Penetration was dead to me.
Fast forward to this point in my life…I’m older, wiser and have long since let go of the idea that there should be ANY limitations in the bedroom especially those that are borne of hetero-normative, patriarchal and ancient views on same-sex sexual practices. I let go of the idea that I was solely responsible for providing and controlling sexual pleasure in my relationships simply because I am a masculine woman who typically dates feminine women. I also let go of the perception that using a Strap-on with my partner meant that I somehow secretly wanted to be a man.
It is true that women do not need penetration in order to have an orgasm. There are also infinite ways to enjoy penetration without a penis (or a dildo or a strap). It is also true that some lesbians just don’t care for it. The point is that every woman, every person has a right to define their own pleasure outside of what anyone else thinks or feel
s. Just like there’s no one way to be a woman, a mother, a lesbian or a human there’s no one way to have lesbian sex. That sounds like a simple concept but, if you’re like me, it can take half a lifetime to learn it.
Through hours of explorative play, I’ve figured out that I rather enjoy penetrating my partner in a variety of ways. Instead of shying away from the idea and blatantly ignoring when my breathless partner asked it of me, I’M now the one pulling out the equipment and strapping up. However, I still wish the process was a lot more seamless and that the male-dominated sex-tech industry did a better job of making sex aids that catered to the complex sexual desires of women.
In 2019, porn sites Pornhub and xHamster both reported a spike in female viewership prompting them, and other sites like theirs, to add tabs like “Porn for Women” to their category list. This data leads me to believe that women are feeling more free to express their sexual desires and are more actively seeking out their own sexual pleasure. Yet, browsing through the majority of sex toys and devices on the market, it’s evident that a great majority of sex toys focus solely on clitoral stimulation; or, try their best to mimic a penis as much as possible. Instead, women’s sexual pleasure should be thought of from a variety of angles and I believe that can only be achieved when more women create sex aids for women. I’m thankful for the influx of female sex-tech geniuses who are combating the taboos that come along with female sexual stimulation.
All it took for me was one sexually dynamic, loving and patient woman to help me combat my insecurities and show me that penetration was nothing to be afraid of, ashamed of and it was in fact, NOT dead.