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Fat Bodies, Pleasure and The Power of Masturbation

Fat Bodies, Pleasure and The Power of Masturbation

Why is the world so weird about wanking? Over to Gina Tonic, co-creator of The Fat Zine and Deputy Editor of Polyester, to break down the unexpected bonus benefits of self-love. We're always in awe of her thoughtful hot takes on everything from how to have a dom/sub relationship to the radical history of the queer fat liberation movement. This month, as we reflect on the launch of our very first suction toy, Cindy, Gina is taking over Naked Truths to explore how masturbation has always helped her as a fat woman feel in tune with her body. Plus: ever felt awkward or ashamed to hit the toy drawer? Gina makes the case for the very real need to destigmatise sex toys not only for fat people, but for everyone...  


"I’ve been wanking for as long as I can remember: I’ve been a pillow humper for the entirety of my living memory. While I’ve always been well aware of the unending pleasures downstairs can bring me, I’ve not always felt comfortable letting people know I’m a keen masturbator. (Now though, that’s a completely different story, but we’ll get to that later.) I vividly remember confiding in an ex-boyfriend during the early years of high school that I liked to throw it back solo in the shower and having him spread the word during a particularly quiet religious studies class. I denied it vehemently - as everyone assumes in year eight, only boys wank, so it was humiliating to me that Dylan was making my peers aware that I, a girl, was engaging in those activities too. Although I’ve always erred on the side of being a little too lewd, even in my earlier teenage years, I hated acknowledging my predilection for playing with myself. Nobody else around me was, so why would I want to be seen as separate from them?

It took a couple of years, but after spending months becoming sexually liberated thanks to the Tumblr feminism that I found myself engaging with in my later school years, as well as a general maturing of me and my friends’ views thanks to shows like Geordie Shore and Sun, Sex and Suspicious Parents, I started discussing masturbation a little more openly with others and a lot more openly with my blog followers. I held a mirror between my legs and worked out what was going on down there and what did or didn’t contribute to one of my orgasms. My bestie spent bus journeys and walks to cafes talking about how many fingers we could fit in ourselves and the best angle for flicking the bean.

Then, I started shagging and found even more ways to get pleasure sexually, but a new problem was rearing its head: As my body matured and weight started to settle thick and fast around my frame, I felt a lot more uncomfortable acknowledging my body physically whether with a partner or even on my own. It was easier, back then, to pretend I didn’t have a body at all. I allowed exes and flings to touch my fanny, but only if I was fully dressed, and only if I didn’t get touched anywhere else by them. At the same time, I found myself returning to the pillow riding of my youth, in order to keep my hands as far away from my flesh as possible without sacrificing the sexual pleasure I’d always indulged in. 

It was in uni that I started to bring myself back around into finding pleasure in my full self again. I invested in my first sex toy. Then I almost immediately invested in several more as soon as my student loan hit my bank. Using wands, plugs, stimulators and bullets changed the game once again and the new kinds of cumming brought about by investing in a variety of vibrators opened a door into getting to enjoy my body once more. When masturbating, I pushed myself to the edge - long before I knew what edging was - by trying different positions, depths and dildo settings. I worked out that these toys weren’t exclusively for using on my clit, vag or ass either; I traced my wand on my thighs, nips and tits as foreplay, taking the time to truly enjoy myself and reckon with my body as a source of pleasure, regardless of my insecurities when I wasn’t between the sheets.

As I got more comfortable with my body’s sexuality on my own, I grew to do the same with my partners too. Slowly, the clothes and anxieties peeled away, as I let my own sexual pleasure, as well as the joys I can bring to others with my body, teach me a lesson in self worth. I also brought my arsenal of masturbatory tools to my sex partners too, showing them how to use them on me, themselves and engaging in simultaneous masturbation often, watching each other wank off in a celebration of ourselves, our sexuality and in particular, our bodies. 

I do believe this journey has made me realise that sexual pleasure - both on our own and with any kind of partner - can be revelatory in helping to understand our self worth on a physical level. Gaining something literal from our bodies, whether fat or thin, can bolster positive opinions of our physicality and help diminish the more negative ones. By enjoying ourselves in a corporal, tangible way, it’s harder to accept societal intimations that one body can be lesser than another and while this act doesn’t necessarily have to be sexual - any enjoyable physical task can call forth these feelings - I’m definitely glad mine was."


Want more?

  • Treat yourself to our top-rated toy, Cindy. It's a clit sucker with a difference...
  • Giving yourself a hand? Find out how masturbation can help manage stress.
  • Dream threesome: learn our top tips on introducing sex toys into partnered sex.

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