Dear Em & Lo,
I am a 26-year-old lady and I love sex. I feel like I am addicted to it. If it were up to me, I’d do it five times a day just over and over and over. Also, my boyfriend lives far away; we only see each other once or twice in a week, so I masturbate like every night. Is that normal?
Yes. Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, oh god YES!
We’re not shrinks, but it doesn’t sound to us like you’re addicted. Just imagine a guy asking the same question! Conventional wisdom would have us believe that guys masturbate about as often as they floss (at least, the ones with excellent dental hygiene habits do). Masturbating every day is good for you! It puts a smile on your face, it reduces stress, it can help lessen the symptoms of PMS, it pretty much always ends up in an orgasm for you, and it’s 100 percent guaranteed not to give you an STD! (assuming you’re not using someone else’s sex toy or rubbing your hands all over your oral herpes and then putting them down your pants)…
And while not everyone wants sex five times a day, we don’t think there’s anything inherently weird about that, either. Plenty of people want sex that often. If you loved chocolate, we bet you’d want chocolate five times a day. You love sex, you want it five times a day. BFD! It’s free, it’s doesn’t have any calories, it won’t rot your teeth, and as long as you always practice safer sex, it can be good for you, too.
You know what the problem is? You’re constantly hearing about how women don’t like or enjoy sex as much as men, how they just ALWAYS have lower libidos than dudes. But guess what? Everyone’s different — male, female, gay, straight. We don’t do anyone any favors by making sweeping generalizations about sex and gender: you just end up feeling stuck in a box that doesn’t fit you. Here’s a shocker: there are some men out there who — gasp! — aren’t obsessed with sex, who are happy to have it once a month or even less, who even like to cuddle!
That all said, if you feel like your non-sex life is suffering at the hands of your sex drive (Psychology Today has a pretty good definition of actual sex addiction), then you should of course seek out professional help: Talk to a counselor or therapist, or even your doctor if you feel comfortable.
But if, as we strongly suspect, your interest in sex and masturbation isn’t having any negative effects on other areas of your life–i.e. you’re still calling your mom once a week, you’re making it to the office every day, you’re not risking your sexual or emotional health, etc.–then we don’t think you have anything to worry about. In fact, consider yourself one lucky bitch!
Addicted to the lovelorn,
Em & Lo