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Are sex toys harmless?

It’s 2016, so most people would say yes. But while they help to fulfill our sexual needs, with a sensitive partner, they can create a divide and a feeling that someone is being replaced.

I was talking to a girlfriend about my “Is This Petty?” column a couple of weeks ago, and she recommended that I talk about men who are threatened by women who are not shy about using sex toys to please themselves — with and without their partner. “Somebody is bothered by a vibrator or something?” I asked her, to which she responded, “Yeah, some guys are.”

I needed time to think on such an issue, so I stowed it away mentally. But then, while perusing the Internet yesterday, I came across the story of a woman who is in a somewhat long-distance relationship with a guy she’s been seeing for a while. He lives almost two hours away. When they have sex, she has a hard time reaching orgasm (she even has trouble when masturbating on her own), so she told him that she was thinking of buying a vibrator to help with that and to also fulfill her urges when “sex isn’t readily available.” As it turns out, he is “very much against it.” She said that he wouldn’t be open about the reasons he didn’t approve of her interest in obtaining a sex toy, but she’s upset at the fact that she’s being judged for wanting to be sexually satisfied. Her situation, along with my friend’s initial comments about guys she’s dealt with in the past being bothered by sex toys, let me know that today would be a good day to create a conversation about this.

So, with that being said, what do you think about this woman’s boyfriend being concerned about her desire to utilize a vibrator from time to time? Should she just pass on using one or should she go forth with her initial plans to ensure that she’s sexually fulfilled?

He definitely sounds intimidated by her desire to use toys. But the fact that she broached the subject with him first says that she clearly isn’t trying to offend or leave him hanging. She cares about his opinions and feelings or she would have just gone about her business and bought all the Rabbits and Hula Beads she could find without paying him any mind.

It’s important that it’s explained to him that her choice is not about replacing him or giving the impression that she can do a better job pleasing herself with a toy. It’s about having her needs met when he can’t be around and enhancing their sexual relationship for the better when he is. I mean, would he prefer if she just sat around pissed about the fact that she’s not reaching orgasm often while he continues to get his rocks off? I believe their use of it together, not only when she’s alone, will allow him to see that he’s not being swapped out, but rather, that measures are being taken to ensure that he’s not the only one going to bed happy and that their sexual relationship grows.

And really, as long as she’s not using it every chance she gets (which would sound like she’s trying to replace him), pulling a Charlotte York in the house, it’s not that deep, sir. No pun intended.

The fact that she’s talking to him and wants to involve him in this attempt to please herself says a lot, and I think breaking that down for him and letting him know that it’s just about finding pleasure in something different while still enjoying their sexual relationship could ease some of this awkwardness. Either way, she’s grown. If she wants to sit on a vibrator to appease herself when he’s away, he needs to learn how to accept it — or move closer so she doesn’t have to buy toys to figure out what works…

But as always, that’s just my opinion. What do you think? Is he being petty with his concerns over her desire to buy a vibrator? 


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