Let's talk about... ssshhhh!
Aha! Another taboo subject for women. But why?
So you don't feel like giving, you feel like receiving. So what? You're entitled to feel that way. And it's a great opportunity to explore that side of yourself, too: when you're not busy worrying about what gives your partner pleasure, you're much more open to discovering what turns you on.
When (and if) you go back to jumping him the minute he opens the door, it'll be with a whole new energy and a load of new ideas.
Given masturbation's bad rap in the past, we're not surprised that 'solo sensuality' is still seen as a slightly squirmy topic. It's the last of the sexual taboos, largely because of the truckloads of medical misinformation and religious zeal that surrounds it.
At the turn of the century, some mothers, horrified by the thought of any 'peculiar' goings-on in their daughters' bedrooms, forced their offspring to wear steel wool gloves at night to prevent any furtive acts of self-love. Some of the even more uptight moms might have sent their bewildered teen off to the doctor for a good dose of sulphuric acid on the clitoris, rendering any further thoughts of masturbation obsolete.
Weirdly enough, even today, although we're willing to divulge details about dodgy finances, cosmetic surgery and how much we hate our in-laws, we're still prudishly reluctant to bang on about masturbation in public.
In the anonymous zone that is the Internet, women around the globe are only too happy to share stories about their orgasmic encounters with ice cream scoops, shower nozzles and butter knives, among other things. But in real life, admitting that we masturbate is a big no-no.
Yet, as Cape Town sexologist Marlene Wasserman says, while we may be highly unlikely to raise the topic of self-pleasuring over a glass of bubbly with our girlfriends, perhaps we should.
The art of sharing
"Sharing our experiences of masturbation with each other de-pathologises the issue," she says. "And bringing it into mainstream conversation would reassure us that our behaviour is completely normal."
Happily, the art of bringing ourselves to orgasm is not just about a quick, secretive, pleasurable high. Knowing how to make yourself glow is billed as a massive sexual confidence booster, a brilliant stress reliever and a terrific cure for insomnia. It's also safe, free and convenient.
Even better, getting in touch with your sensual self is known as one of the more creative ways of improving your sex life. "Being able to pleasure yourself can often aid your relationship if there is a lull in sexual activity or a discrepancy of desire," Marlene says.
"So often, an absence of, or increasing lack of interest in sex in a long-term partnership is because the woman complains that 'he just doesn't know what to do'."
If you are comfortable masturbating in front of your partner, he'll get a good look-see at the way you turn yourself on. At the very least, you can give him a few private, time-saving tips.
And if that still makes you squirmy, take comfort from the fact that, in the great, big, grand scheme of things, it's all part of the process. Really.
Do you masturbate? Do you enjoy it? How does your partner feel about it? Share your stories and tips in the comment box below.