According to two recent studies, millions of Americans use one or more sex toys. We’re talking vibrators, dildos and butt plugs, as well as blindfolds, handcuffs and nipple clamps. We’ll leave whips and leather underwear for another discussion.

Like all technology, sex toys are an extension of the body. They are hands, tongues and genitalia that are bigger and stronger, and never tire. They are tools that help us give pleasure to ourselves and to each other.

Sex toys can be equally great for partner sex and masturbation. Any sex that can be improved by something that probes, stimulates, squeezes or alters sensation can be enhanced by a sex toy.

Unfortunately, some would-be users are self-conscious about feeling they need assistance. Others are concerned that their partner will feel inadequate. But this is like feeling self-critical that you need a comfortable chair to enjoy a movie. Our shyness about using sex toys really expresses the shame we feel about admitting we’re sexual in a sex-negative culture.

It’s no illusion. Until recently, for example, most national magazines refused vibrator advertising &3151; including Ms. magazine. And only last year, the state of Alabama criminalized the production or sale of “sexual devices marketed primarily for the stimulation of human genitals.”

Why the controversy about a 5-inch battery-powered piece of buzzing plastic? Sex toys are about sexual pleasure, not about reproduction or romantic love (although many romantic, loving people and couples use them).

A vibrator or nipple clamp in your hand is the smoking gun of pleasure — you simply can’t deny that getting off is exactly what you have in mind.

So sex toys are a vehicle for sexual empowerment; for learning about our eroticism, for pleasuring ourselves, for encouraging our partners to feel things more deeply. They are, literally, the way we take our sexuality into our own hands. No wonder so many authorities frown on sex toys and make us hide them under the covers. Using a sex toy is, after all, a political act.

And it feels damn good, too.


  • Talk to your partner about your interest in sex toys. Make the conversation fun, not scary.
  • Remember, we use toys because we enjoy them, not because we “need to.”
  • To find a source for your sex toys, search the Web (there are dozens of choices).

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107913 reaching for the light 3 Fun Toys To Help You Stimulate Your SpotWomen don’t always need (or want) a man around to stimulate them sexually. If you’re one of those women, you should know that there are many great toys out there to give you the pleasure that you’re looking for and that are easy to use. There are several that are designed to target the G spot, which is supposed to give you an intense level of pleasure that you can’t get from clitoral stimulation. While not all women respond to the G spot in quite the same way, most women enjoy the feeling that they get from being touched in that area. It can be elusive and hard to find, though, which is why some toys are made just for that purpose – so you can find and enjoy your G spot more easily.

A standard vibrating toy made just for the G spot region is one of the most common and best toys out there but there are others, including one shaped like a dolphin and another one shaped like a mole. While that might sound crazy, the unique shape helps to ensure that these toys hit just the right spot at just the right angle and degree of pressure. That’s a great way to enjoy yourself, and some people like to use their toys with a partner, as well. No matter which toy you choose – and there are many others that you can find to stimulate that spot – get one that you’ll be comfortable using and that’s right for you, so you can experience the pleasure that you deserve.

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