I love to masturbate.
I love it dearly like I love fried calamari with a squeeze of lemon, like I do picking mauve seashells, or like I love my uninhibited, matchless pussycat Tino.
I’m not quite sure how or when a woman’s autonomous pleasure–seeking ceases to be considered as charming and lovable and turns instead into something wicked. I know that there’s a tipping point after puberty when a girl ceases to be enough in the eyes of society and needs another unit by her side, preferably of manhood.
You’ve had enough cake, petite chérie. Now go and find yourself a nice boyfriend to please.
Often, I’ll find myself walking down the street thinking happy thoughts, when dark gloomy PMQ-type questions will rise over me. In these sad moments, I don my Jeremy Corbyn hat and raise my two hands up over my head and enunciate:
I have seen the best women of my generation destroyed by horniness, starving hysterical naked
How many women in the UK right now feel that their vaginas are a ticking time bomb?
How many women in Avignon still refer to menstruation as their ‘time of the month’?
or yet even worse,
How many men and women in Bristol have never heard of clitoral stimulation?
(Pinch my thighs and you will find cellulite; peer into my eyes and you will find poise)
I moved to Morocco – the No. 1 exporter of hashish in the world – in the spring of 2008 with my mum and dad.
The shock was really quite severe then because I’d spent about 3 years living in tropical humid Malaysia gelling my frizzy hair back into a tight braid.
Puberty had smacked me right in the face, and Malaysia’s wet and fertile vegetation, with its constant shoots of new life, fruit and animals, echoed the constantly humid zing-zing-zing in my panties, which in turn made me feel very shy and uncomfortable.
Often I would smoke hashish with my friends during our lunch break in a secret secluded spot on a deserted road beside our school. The guards knew what we were up to: they would let us out of the building and wave at us with malice. Once or twice, they threatened to inform the principal, but of course they never did because ultimately what we did was really quite harmless and sweet.
Springs and summers were always fantastic.
Often we would hit the local corner shop, where a clerk would sell us a pack of ten Gauloise cigarettes for 11 dirhams (2.10 British pounds), again not without a few preliminary threats to inform the school, our parents, the King, etc; and my friend, Mina, a handsome girl with a wonderful sense of humour and remarkably sassy eyebrows, would sprinkle hashish on top of a cigarette with enviable dexterity.
We would play music, tell a few jokes, and feel like a thousand dirhams (191.34 British pounds).
Smoking hashish in Casablanca helped me and my friends grow into self-acceptance and learn to enjoy our bodies as imperfect and lovable. Part of it, I think, is that it’s very easy to feel that your body parts aren’t in harmony – that maybe your skintone’s uneven, that you’ve weird freckles on your arm – and getting high kills all of those worries for you. Poof.
You may find the correlation I am trying to establish between masturbation and cannabis consumption fairly obvious – we’ve all heard the stories – or weak, if you’re a bit boring.
It’s a well known fact that smoking hashish can significantly enhance any sexual experience through increased body sensitivity, as can love, an open mind or kindness, but what hashish also tends to do is initiate some kind of debate or conversation around particular themes through its mere consumption alone.
Throw a bunch of people in a room together: let them sit in a circle, and pass them a joint or two. You’ll soon see some kind of dialogue beginning to emerge – admittedly the quality of which can sometimes be very varying.
Sexuality was a big preoccupation of ours in high school. I remember Mina once advising me – joint in hand, left eyebrow raised – to try using the water jet of my showerhead as stimulation.
‘Which part should the pressure hit?’
‘Oh right, but which lips do you mean?
The small ones?’
For some women, masturbation can be a journey requiring regular practice, building wrist and finger endurance and maturity, but, of course, because the subject is so taboo, there’s very little dialogue or advice surrounding the issue.
So, I propose that, in addition to legalizing cannabis, the British government offer free womens’ masturbation therapy courses and counselling sessions via the NHS for those of us that need a head start or helping hand.