For the majority part of my life, I didn’t know if sex toys even existed. But can you blame me? I grew up watching Bollywood movies. And there are only 2 things that I've learnt from Bollywood. Number 1. As soon as things are about to get steamy, two flowers take over the screen and hide the cuddling actors. And the rest is left to imagination *slow clap*. And number 2. A heroine never gets cold in a chiffon saree even in 0-degree weather. (But that’s a story for another day)
So, in a world filled with sexual innuendos- where a glass of milk meant it’s time for ‘suhaagrat’ and where what happens behind a tree, stays behind a tree, how was I supposed to know that there was a thing called self-pleasure? It was only until later on that I stumbled upon movies like 50 Shades of Grey and Sex and the City, that gave me the slightest idea of sex toys.
“Do people in real life really use sex toys?” “Are they shown in movies just to add to our hypothetical sexual fantasies?” “And how exactly are we supposed to use them?” So many questions and no one to answer them. I knew better than just going to my mom and asking her about sex toys, not unless I wanted to receive a flying chappal in return. And school? Not at all, my teachers would faint at the sight of a boy and girl holding hands, let alone talk about sex toys. So, when all else fail, we turn to the internet. Googling my way through various shady sites and pop-up ads, I finally found some credible information to learn about adult toys.
After exploring and becoming aware of the stigmatized world of sex toys, it was clear to me how there is nothing to be apprehensive or anxious about using sex toys. At least using such toys is better than using household items which can even end up causing infections. (Yes, people actually use household items. I was as shocked as you are!) There is nothing abnormal about using a product to enhance sexual pleasure. Be it for solo sex or for spicing things up in a relationship, it’s all normal.
It’s funny how such a basic concept of sex and sex toys is hidden behind whispers and hush-hush sounds in our society. We all hide behind our "sanskaars" and "maryaadas", and classify self-pleasure as nothing but a forbidden act. If you’re a parent or elder, all I can say to you is- start healthy conversations about sex and raise awareness about such things. So that one day, when a curious teenager like me stumbles upon such information, they do not turn to fishy websites or obnoxious movies to guide them, instead, they turn to you.