This post has been self-published on Youth Ki Awaaz by Nishtha Relan. Just like them, anyone can publish on Youth Ki Awaaz.

‘I Am A Woman, And I Masturbate. Stop Demonising Me For It’

More from Nishtha Relan

IMPACT: Nishtha’s story was the first of its kind to boldly break the silence around the taboo of women’s masturbation. It was followed by several other women sharing their experiences on Youth Ki Awaaz and other media platforms.

By Nishtha Relan:

I have faint memories of my mother telling me, when I was a kid, to not touch my privates unnecessarily. Like a lot of my friends I have discussed this with, I don’t remember when exactly I realised that touching the clitoral area could be a very pleasant act. I only remember knowing that it wasn’t something I could talk about, to anybody.

masturbation

I used to subscribe to the male-dictated stereotypical ideas of the ‘uptight behaviour‘ in school, which was considered ‘proper’ for young women, even by my father, so much so that I was arrogant about not wanting to talk to the other gender. I didn’t have male friends or boyfriends who could ask me anything intimate, let alone suggest indulging in something remotely sexual. Just the thought of talking about one’s body was embarrassing and shameful in the teenage years; the female friends I had picked for myself were quiet about their bodies too, except for talking about menstrual cramps. So it was not until the end of 10th standard when I first watched a variety of porn, that I finally understood how the act of sex works, along with that of pleasuring oneself. And to wait patiently to experience an orgasm for the first time, and that too with one’s own hands! I think it was the one miracle I could believe in. I realise how misinformed my first ideas of masturbation were, having learnt about it from a source like porn, which tends to be far from reality and mostly dedicated to serve male fantasies. I wish I had some close, non-judgemental friend or a teacher to discuss it with. Also, I must clarify that in no way am I blaming porn for my sexual exploration.

Of course it was my little secret back then, which sent me on several guilt trips every time I would stop to judge myself. I was afraid of going to the gynaecologist for a regular check up because I thought she might get to know, by looking at my vagina, that I was masturbating and would inform my mother. It never occurred to me that other people could have a healthy attitude towards the act since I had never heard it being mentioned in the 19 years of my life. I never had the courage to bring it up in front of anybody, not even my best friends. A year into an all-girls college and I was fortunate enough to find some wonderful friends who were absolutely fine with discussing anything under the sun, from masturbation techniques to its effects, from a friend’s coming out of the closet regarding her bisexuality and being comfortable with it to talking and seeking comfort about the most disturbing incidents. Only after that was I able to be happily in sync with my vagina and its needs.

I realise how big a taboo this topic is. It is considered a much bigger revelation, and a much more demonised act for women than it is for men. Myths, like the one of men going blind if they masturbate, or that of losing their virility in the form of ejaculated semen, reflect the conditioning of a society that defines masculinity as all-capable, emotionally stoic, physically strong, and sexually charged virility. Women are always expected to either never recognise or to easily overcome their desire (unless they are married to a man who may then dictate their sexual needs). Pleasure for women so often comes with the baggage of shame, which further dictates the categorical dichotomy of women as the ‘mother’ or the ‘whore’. A woman who enjoys her sexuality and is able to talk about it would be too scandalous for some people, inviting labels of ‘she’s a slut’, which reinforces the stereotype of female desire being ‘abnormal’. To think that so many women deny themselves the relief of sexual satisfaction due to the guilt of desiring it is terrible! Furthermore, considering masturbation as merely a second alternative to sex, is a gross undermining of the powers of human sexual capability. It would then mean the denial of the ability of a healthy sexual release for the human body. Sexual intercourse and masturbation are two very different activities, and either one does not entirely compensate for the other. To add to this, many women may not even realise the presence of the clitoris; after all, the word is not heard of often even in ‘sex-education’ conversations, since sexual fulfilment is often only connected to the idea of penetration.

Trust me, I am not making it a men vs. women agenda here. Of course, the society is skeptical and mostly dismissive when it comes to sexual enjoyment removed from the process of procreation, for people of all genders, but never in equal measure. I might have been more comfortable with exploring my body without having to deal with the guilt if I had somebody to talk to earlier on, or somewhere to learn that what I was doing/experiencing was not ‘wrong’.

IMPACT: Nishtha’s article broke the taboo around female masturbation, and started a conversation that did not exist. Mainstream media outlets started sharing similar stories, and was widely quoted in the media.

You must be to comment.
  1. Abhay jain

    Sorry to say but i feel its a Senseless article.
    Because i am not getting its worthness.

    1. Nishtha

      Definitely.

    2. Sanjana

      It’s not senseless at all. She’s trying to convey an important message to us that it’s okay to indulge in certain things which has been deemed generally by the Indian society as ‘demonic’. Indian kids learn about sex only through videos or articles that they have to watch or read without their parents knowing because none of the elders want to step up and explain anything. So it’s about time we start opening up more and embracing the topic of sex and sexuality.

    3. Nishtha

      Thank you so much! 🙂
      Clearly, my sarcasm went unnoticed.

    4. Arka

      Exactly. You need to bold about what you want to do. Damn the society and culture. If you want to do it, then who are the others to stop that? Really a good article. And I got that sarcasm 😉

    5. Qwerty

      “Worthness” wow…. *slow clap*

  2. Ramen Das

    You are just making an issue out of it… do as you like in your private time… m sure even boys will be scolded if they are caught shagging by parents… just find a way to avoid getting caught…

    1. Nishtha

      Absolutely.

    2. Supradeep Mukherjee

      Don’t the parents shag ??? What if their kids catch them ? Will they be scolded ???

    3. Vishakha

      Why the hell you taking these thing to such an serious Level ?
      Seriously ?
      There are many other things which need more attention to sexual desires.
      Come on , who cares ?
      Just lock yourself and do whatever the hell you want ..
      What exactly are you angry from ?

  3. Atul Sharma

    Ms. Nishtha Relan, article is really good and very much factual. Please do not take me as sexist and I am not here to argue but just to share what I think about this. Ms. Nishtha, you just think, have you ever heard a girl, in any home, asking for, like, “mumma! where-is-my-panty?” like boys do usually in every family. Hope you got my point. There are few things we (m/f) know very well but need not to talk about that things. Both gender have their own group to talk about those matters like you have written, otherwise we naturally come to know all these things. Like you came to know, me to not differ from that as long year ago I came to know this process. Finally, I would just say that they do and they know, actually, everyone do and everyone know.
    Sorry, for anything wrong I said if, because I was not intended to do so.

    Atul Sharma

    1. PRIYA

      “Ms. Nishtha, you just think, have you ever heard a girl, in any home, asking for, like, “mumma! where-is-my-panty?” like boys do usually in every family. Hope you got my point. ”

      Um, what? I don’t get this.

    2. Nishtha

      It means the absolute normalization of behavior towards children based on their genders. Sad that it has been so internalized.

    3. PRIYA

      “It means the absolute normalization of behavior towards children based on their genders. Sad that it has been so internalized.”

      Right, but I still don’t get it. Girls don’t ask their mums where their panties are?

    4. gaurav chaudhary

      I am not sure whether even atul sharma “got” the point he was trying to make…if there existed some hypothetical point that he was trying to make at all…

    5. Palash Karia

      What Mr. Atul Sharma is trying to say is that guys are pretty much okay with asking their mums for their undergarments while on the other hand girls are not.

      And he finds this normal, and perfectly okay. This is the problem, and the problem is deep-rooted in our society.

      To explain Ms. Nishtha’s comment:
      “It means the absolute normalization of behavior towards children based on their genders. Sad that it has been so internalized.”

      This means that if a child is male, he is allowed to talk about his “underwear” at home in the open while girls are not.

      This kind of absolute normalization is dangerous because it disregards personal freedoms, but it has been fed to us over the years at such a deep level (“internalized”) that people don’t understand that every PERSON is different, and they end up generalizing and normalizing attitudes towards a particular group (in this case gender groups).

      Also, Ms. Nishtha, I absolutely love your article and I understand the feeling you get because I too have friends who have gone through similar problems. But in the comments, if you lose the sarcasm and the complex language/terms and try to explain things in layman’s terms(like I just tried to), it’d serve a better purpose. I know it can be difficult to manage to reply to some of the stupider comments but I think it will help in a positive way if you do!

      PS: This is not a attack on you, just a genuine suggestion/feedback. Please take it like that 🙂

    6. Shreya

      Well , I do. I ask my mum where are my underpants , just like my bro. When you put it as ” panty ” , sure it sounds horrible ( I don’t know why, but to me it does ). I only wish that these conversations are done with both genders present together to understand sexuality and appreciate both sexes.

    7. Nik

      Yea, I don’t like “Panty”. I prefer underwear… or well.. if it absolutely has to be… “Underpants”.. 😛

      I didn’t mean to comment on the article, but I’ll just extend my lame comment a little further to give it some probable value.

      If a person is sexually offended, in any manner or to any degree, they need to be give the deserved attention and justice. The Offender, needs to and should be given the consequences. I ‘feel’, that gender-inequality in society is a normal thing, nothings perfect. (Sometimes the female side bears the brunt of it, and sometimes the male side). I my personal opinion, sex and sexuality etc are things that are of intimate and private nature. I’d discuss it with my partner, my doctor, maybe with my best friend, but not with acquaintances, let alone on public media. (In the public media, I talk about science, business, art, culture, tradition, travel, math… cooking… robbery crimes, punishing sex-offenders… you get it?) It’s strange, to bring it up at a forum other than media dedicated to such topics and themes.

      The public at large needs to be educated and made aware of the consequences, sure! BUT, we don’t need to be very explicit about such things. It would be quite intelligent, elegant and easier to reach people if things were discussed in an “academic” but common-man’s language.

      Inculcating good levels of self-awareness of morality, culture, pride, respect… these things could rather form the public’s minds, and perhaps spur them to question things in their vicinity, if whatever it is, is in keeping with the idea of good and aesthetic living.

      Maybe?

      Well, my heart goes out to those who are confused, afraid and scared, hurt, and broken. I hope whatever ‘we’ people do, it at least enables you to lift your self up again.

    8. Gagana

      Can we pause here and think why are we only asking our mum for our underwear’s whereabouts?

    9. sweta

      Can’t help but to reply to your comment….
      everyday i shout at my maid after coming out from shower. .. ‘didi where have you kept my washed bra??’, ‘didi, why didn’t you pick up my panty from balcony after drying??’….
      and my dad my brother everybody is present in the house. Everybody in our house knows where each other’s undergarments(gender specific. ..both male n female) are kept. Living under one roof for so many years, you really can’t hide everything. So why panic every time of getting ‘something’ revealed??? We are conscious but still, we are free….carefully free….

  4. irate_pirate

    11 million abortions a year in India.The complete lack of reproductive knowledge among Indian women is a medical and social disaster. Kudos for the candid disclosure. Hopefully it’s a spark that will light a fire 🙂

    1. Nishtha

      Thank you. 🙂

  5. Neel

    Too much Pessimism Costs living, you then just exist without knowing you exist.

    The writer has never been to come out of The judgemental trap.

    there are many hopes for sex education for girls in India. Just for example check ‘Menstrupedia’

    1. Nishtha

      Absolutely.

    2. MARVA

      Can you just point out where the author is being pessimistic and judgemental? And to what extent is Menstrupedia accessible to Indian girls? If they are going to explore internet to get educated about sex they will most probably end up in porn sites which gives a distorted version of reality. These things should be discussed, ideated.. These are no things as disgusting as that they should be read individually and stealthily.

    3. Nishtha

      Again, thank you. 🙂

  6. sourabh

    You would see most of the articles on masturbation or celibacy are written by men , women do not talk about this much , not in India (probably due to society ) ,not even in western world , the biggest social forums on celibacy and masturbation like NoFap having mostly male participants , so we can say women are equally responsible for making the subject taboo , besides all take a bow to write this kind of article, you have tried to break that image and that’s enough to get appreciated

  7. Rahul

    This is against Indian culture.

    1. Akshita Prasad

      What is? Behaving the way we are made? Are anatomy is the same, whether American , Australian, or Indian. So how can it be against our ‘Indian Culture’. We all have sexual urges, so if masturbation is against our culture , even sex should be!
      So let’s just spread our arms, and stand below the sky hoping a baby would fall into our arms. Because sex is also against Indian culture.

    2. fahim

      brilliantly said (Y)

    3. Manish

      Brilliant reply Akshita…hats off to you..:)….Grow up Rahul and come out from your stone age gender biased mentality..!!!

    4. Nishtha

      😀 Well said.
      But I was hoping here that Rahul was just being sarcastic.

    5. shruti

      (Y)

    6. dude

      So what is Indian culture? You are Jacks hypocritical sense of masculinity. This “Indian”-ness that you advocate is born out of fear and ignorance not only of yourself but of what your own culture is. What is right for man is right for a woman.

      You are a nobody, just like me. Who are you to be the judge of what “Indian” culture is? Who is anyone, really, to tell anyone what they should be doing with their bodies.

    7. Manish

      I just want to add here ..we have population of more then one billion ..but still we feel sex as taboo..and discussion on that by a women as a crime..this is hight of hypocrisy..!!!

    8. Ali

      If since birth we’d been open about sex or say if whole country be open minded about sex then there will not any stupid problems likes this.
      SERIOUSLY think about this.
      You can be one, other people who can’t share the same will be open with you and this circle will go on increasing and the problem could be solved.

    9. Bidisha

      Why exactly would you say that? It is not against the Indian culture at all. Are you saying that you as a man, have never masturbated?

    10. Omesh Vij

      Rahul, LOL. Ever heard of the ancient Hindu text, Kamasutra?

    11. sourabh

      Its Ancient , but its not at all Hindu please , some xyz person wrote a peace of shit 1000 years ago and we call it a Hindu text

    12. Divyansh

      Actually it is not… The true Indian culture celebrated sex and sexuality… What you’re talking about is the “hypocrite culture”

    13. Nishtha

      😀
      Bilkul.

    14. SG

      I am very curious Rahul..
      Where did you read it? or sorry let me rephrase how do you know its against Indian culture?
      And please done reply that its not written anywhere and that’s the reason its against Indian culture.

    15. Supradeep

      Would request the guy who is worried about Indian culture to go and see the sculptures on the walls of Hindu temples in khajuraho and konark, although those are mostly about heterosexual, homosexual, bisexual and group sex including “penetration against the laws of nature” demonised by the Indian penal code and not so much about male and female masturbation – a different act from having sex with a partner or partners – as Nishtha correctly mentions. And yes, it is sad that we became the second most populated country in the world while having such low focus on female sexuality and female sexual satisfaction. Great article by Nishtha. Absolutely shatters many taboos.

    16. Whatever dude!

      Dude! so basically, you never did it. Is that why you’re taking it out here?

    17. anony

      What indian culture are you talking about.. Where the famous kama sutra was made
      Hypocrites

    18. Prerna

      Holy fuck! Ahem! from which culture did Kamasutra come? Raas lila? Khajurao? Ajanta Ellora?

    19. Alpha

      Dude u r born because of a process which is scorned upon by the Indian society… So basically ur existence is against Indian culture

    20. Manohar Noel Soans

      @Rahul – Clearly you don’t masturbate (*cough* Bulls#!t *cough*) LOL

      I’ll be honest, I’m a 21yo guy and I masturbate almost everyday. Maybe I just wanna get laid, sue me, I’m HUMAN just like all the other Girls and Guys out there. You seem to imply that Indians unlike everyone else on the planet, are some sort of alien species that just spawn in to existence as if we were in some sort of video game! 😛
      Girls or guys, it doesn’t matter, we all have a sex drive without which our race would have died off long ago. If we have the craving for sexual satisfaction we should feel free to attend to it by pleasing ourselves or with the help of a partner 😉
      If you lack the sexual drive then you my friend must have something wrong with you (go get yourself checked).
      BTW, humans are not the only species that masturbate, have you ever had your leg humped by a dog? 😛 (trust me it isn’t a very nice feeling). I have a 5yo cat that has been neutered, he humps my brother’s bed sheets every now and then inspite of not having his testicles! (don’t even ask me how that works!! x’D) But yeah you get my point right? ….riight?? 😛

      If you really haven’t ever masturbated before, go google up some ‘Do It Yourself’ tutorials xD

      @Nishtha – Great post! Very well said 🙂

      Cheers! ~

    21. sweta

      Have some nuts dude…especially almonds and cashews. That might help grow your intelligence. And then visit ‘youth ki awaz’. It’s not for hypocrites. Those who talk about ‘indian culture’ in broad daylight and then stares at ‘cleavages’ and ‘butts’, searches ‘red tube’ and other porn sites with their ‘organ’ in their hand, talks about sex position with their friends, under the moon.

    22. G

      Ok guys, im pretty sure he’s just being sarcastic here

  8. P Tambey

    What a wonderful article !
    It is really sad to see so many women in India are not in touch with their sexuality. Something that is so natural and human has been labelled taboo. I think I’m lucky to know a few girl friends who are very open about their sexuality and that I’m audacious enough to ask things pertaining to it. So from what I came to know it turns out that very few girls actually masturbate.
    The reasons why they didn’t ranged from being scared to try it, to being told its wrong, to being disgusted at the thought of it, to finding their genitalia disgusting. I mean how much of wrong mental conditioning have people got that they consider a part of their own body and being to be disgusting.
    And from the few comments it looks as if people still want to keep the subject taboo.

    The #TalkSexuality campaign is really great. Hope it opens up people to talk about what is innately human.

    1. Nishtha

      Thank you. 🙂

  9. Sneha Roychoudhury

    I really like the candid approach this article takes to talk about something very relevant. Embracing one’s sexuality and being able to explore one’s s sexual needs is in fact more important than we think it is. I do not think “do what you want but behind the closed door” can be our attitude. Why are we so squirm-ish when it comes to talking about our physical desires? I sincerely believe that it is only through dialogue and open-minded discussion that our sexual health can be be improved. So let us stop being prudes that suffocate what is one of the most natural instincts in us.

  10. Sneha Roychoudhury

    I’d also like to laud the writer for bringing up another very pressing issue of de-sexualising women and absolutely discounting her need for pleasure. This is in fact a very subtle but extremely prevalent way of depriving a woman of her physical needs. While the discourse on this matter is extensive, the shortest possible manifestation is seen in mundane routines of life. It is important to identify and it is important to voice. While sex-ed is very rare in most Indian homes and schools, it is not a myth. I have had parents who have informed me, helped me read up and understand my sexuality, my sexual orientation and my sexual desires. And I know for a fact that that has made me a healthier human being.

    1. Nishtha

      Thank you. 🙂

  11. aarti bhola

    Truly a great article.it does convey the point quite clearly.keep up the good work!

    1. Nishtha

      Thank you. 🙂

  12. M. Z. Noor

    Very nice step towards sexEd.
    It’s not a fight between MvsF but it’s actually share what you know and learn what you want to know.

  13. susmit

    Though this was a post entirely written for girls but as per suggestion from one of my close friend I read this. The myth not only does stand for the girls it is same for guys till certain age. Might be guys are more free to talk about sex and other so called “taboo”s. In a country like ours where govt. Feels awkward to convey the sex educations to students and which is leading to a unnecessary misconception for ages. I do remember one of my friend who now is here with me at Argentina, had a conception like masturbating may lead to problem with fertility but he smokes a lot and that could not lead to infertility ever. Whatever, I liked the topic you pulled up very much.

  14. Gem

    Let’s review the comments posted thus far.

    “Sorry to say but i feel its a Senseless article.”
    Yes, but your reply to this senseless article is of pressing need, right?

    “m sure even boys will be scolded if they are caught shagging by parents…”
    You are missing the point. Why should anyone be reprimanded for exploring their sexuality. The question remains, why are we so squirmish about something so natural? Especially when it comes to women?

    “Ms. Nishtha, you just think, have you ever heard a girl, in any home, asking for, like, “mumma! where-is-my-panty?” like boys do usually in every family?”
    Again missing the point. You can’t justify something on the sole basis of describing the problem itself. Women are held to prudish standards, sure. But why? And that is the question.

    “This is against Indian culture.”
    Can’t tell if the comment is meant in sarcasm or for real. But yes, apparently masturbation is against ‘Indian culture’, the same way sex, short skirts, dating and love are all concepts against this great monolithic ‘Indian culture.’ And yet we are a country of 1.2 billion people with a high birth rate, a country with a burgeoning problem of aids, rape and sexual harassment. And btw, we are one of the world’s largest consumers of porn, even with such dismal availability of internet connections. All hail Indian culture.

    1. Nishtha

      Honestly, thank you for this. I was tired even before people started commenting.
      🙂

  15. Raghavendra Rao

    Truth is that sexual education is a very important topic across all genders, but it has been considered a taboo over the decades of life that we have lived, not only in India but across the globe. Only the levels of acceptance vary in various countries.

    We need the youth to be forthcoming and gain knowledge in a more professional manner, and not be pressed into superstitions and stuff like that men going blind thing(Didn’t hear that to be honest).

    Knowledge does not create negativity. All hail to knowledge.

    Well done Nishtha.

    1. Nishtha

      Thanks! 🙂

  16. Amrat

    First of all kudos for such an article that at least intended to break a myth and spread some awareness.,. No doubt its a shame that even in this century people have such mentality.
    And to those men who say masturbating for women is against our culture.,then my friend you better check out yourself first! I mean like,dude take a break! We talk of equality for all then, why does the female section of our society still has to go through this sort of crap and shitty things!
    I would like to say that when it comes to sex talk,,.speak it loud.
    If we men can do it and face no questions.,then why do women have to get fingers raised at their character!!!l
    #growup!

    1. Nishtha

      Thank you. 🙂

  17. Adnan Shaikh

    Great job by sparking the campaign for sex-ed and TARSHI for being that someone that anyone could speak up with their sexual problems.

    As per to this article, men masturbate, so what if a women does it too? It’s a private, personal concern which people shouldn’t unnecessarily bother with, seriously.

    It’s just being sexist, women being pressurized with every single thing, tbh.

    1. Nishtha

      Thank you. 🙂

  18. PRIYA

    Is that your partner in the photo with you Nishtha? He’s cute!

    I guess I’m surprised that it took porn in 10th standard to clue you in that masturbation is a thing. I discovered it naturally without any external stimuli (heh) when I was probably 9 years old. All it takes is noticing how clothing rubs up against you. Its something so natural, primitive, intuitive, evolutionary in kids. That it hadn’t occurred to you before does strike me as odd. Maybe your hormones just didn’t kick in before 10th standard?

    At any rate I never saw the need to “talk” about it. What’s to talk about? Its something you DO.

    1. Nishtha

      Oh, i did feel things, way before 10th standard. That’s why i mentioned my mother telling me not to touch my vaginal area. But you see, i was an idiot who had strict, self-imposed ideas of good and bad. Hence, the delay.
      Thanks for the compliment. 🙂
      Oh, about not talking about masturbating and simply doing it, it’s the same as hushing up about sex, isn’t it? The point is, if we can talk about eating, sleeping, clothing, shitting, puking, walking, flirting, then we are automatically attributing abnormality to masturbation by not talking about it. Little things. but that’s just my side of things. 🙂

    2. PRIYA

      “Oh, about not talking about masturbating and simply doing it, it’s the same as hushing up about sex, isn’t it? The point is, if we can talk about eating, sleeping, clothing, shitting, puking, walking, flirting, then we are automatically attributing abnormality to masturbation by not talking about it.”

      Well I don’t talk about shitting either. As far as masturbation, I never saw any need to discuss it. For what purpose? If I feel like doing it, I do it and when its over I move on and do something else. What’s there to talk about? And sex, I only talk about that with people I have sex with. Its nobody else’s business what I do in my intimate, sexual life but me and my partners’.

    3. Sina

      True Priya. But again its something a girl can control if she is distracted with other things in life, especially if its tabboo. But its a shame if you haven’t explored the pleasure of clitoris stimulation. Its different than just having sex. There’s a reason why biologically we have a clitoros and a vagina, they are two different things and both can achieve orgasms on its own. Clitoral stimulation should be explored.

  19. Tyson Paul

    As per my christian church masturbaration aka fapping is a sin against holy spirit.
    As per doctors and psychologists fapping is a normal and healthy activity.
    As per maslow’s hierarchy of needs sexual pleasure is a basic human need. Considering every point a concluded masturbation as a ‘Necessary Evil’.

  20. Shuvayu Bandyopadhyay

    Yes yes yes! Thank you! Thank you for having the guts to share this! Women should really stop treating masturbation as a taboo. It is a very healthy activity. I salute you, lady.

  21. chaudharimanasi

    I can completely relate to you and trust me I’m speaking for many more girls out there who are embarrassed to talk about masturbation. We needed an article like this to create a jolt.

    https://pinkshandy.wordpress.com/

  22. sushmita

    This article gets one to think how the whole idea of morality impacts our living life; how perceptions and beliefs are born out of ideas such as this and how judgment, fear, shame, insecurity sustains these beliefs. All of this just takes away from living life in the moment and enjoying its beauty; more importantly it leads to crimes; in this case the secrecy on sex and sexuality and ‘private parts’ (why is it so hard to say vagina, breasts and penis like we say hand, liver and teeth) lead to sexual crimes. secrecy and privacy are two different things. Kudos to writing so openly without fearing judgment Nishtha! You are breaking many stereotypes here..

    1. Ducard

      Because vagina, breasts, and penis are sexual organs, and sex is a private thing, unless you have sex in public and talk about sex on the dinner table.

    2. TheSeeker

      Haha yeah. My biology teacher from school had never uttered the word ‘penis’ or ‘vagina’ or even ‘breasts’ even once and yet succeeded in completing the reproductive system chapter. The awkwardness of those classes is something my friends still laugh about XD.

    3. Nishtha Relan

      Thank you!

  23. Saloni

    really great article.
    I’m a girl & I masturbate. So do many of my friends.
    *relieved* feels nice to admit it in public. Thanks for giving me the courage of doing that Nistha.
    though i was depressed to see some of the comments.
    Guys, whoever gets uncomfortable after reading this article- The fault lies not in what the author has written but in the way YOU think.

  24. Kunal Kishore Singh

    True that you didn’t want to present the entire article as a men vs women agenda but I am sorry to say, at every stage you were trying to blame men some way. Don’t take me wrong for trying to advocate men. I am just saying that given the truth behind this article, you could have presented it in a way that it’s a taboo even in the women’s society and men may not have anything to do with. There are men who also feel guilty after masturbating during their early teenage because they feel it to be wrong then. It’s the thing about sex that our society has been hypocritical with, be it man or woman.
    A woman can masturbate and she doesn’t have to tell it to anyone because it’s her body and she has the right to do anything that pleases her.
    So, the point is, It’s not the men to be blamed but the Indian society.

    1. Nishtha Relan

      Arre. The point is not to blame men here. The point is to pick out the faults in the way our society works in tandem with gender hierarchy. and really, i am nt blaming men. Just patriarchy.

  25. Manuj

    a country which understood and accepted sexuality as the part of spirituality is in dumps today, when we say let’s go back to our roots, we are hesitant to accept it also means accepting our moral and historical values did have the acceptance about sexuality, desires and it’s application on day to day life…we who worship private parts via the prism of religion run away from discussions moment sex is uttered, hypocrisy have taken over the beautiful spirituality lineage we had unfortunately..lets accept sexuality as one of the basic element of human existence, females have been the worst offenders and also the worst effected because of this.

    1. Sina

      Wow Rahul, that was amazingly well said!

    2. Sina

      Sorry I meant ** MANUJ ***
      GREAT RESPONSE. NOT RAHUL… Rahul is being a typical douche.

  26. rahul

    Bakwas Article.

  27. Sanket

    Its your body and no one holds the right to dictate you what you do with it…..masturbation is the purest form of pleasure one can have…keep spreading the word

  28. varun

    A really appreciable article. This venture of youth Ki awaz and #talksexuality is really commendable.
    It reminds of what we actually are and what are our needs. The sad thing though is the negativity or pessimism in our male dominated society is that we “men” talk about our mardanagi only by dominating the female society.
    Its high time guys we must realize that everyone has a life and right to live it the way he/she wishes to.
    A boy smoking openly or drinking is considered normal and even stylish…but if a woman does it….
    She’s labelled…this is wrong and must change…a change in attitude of both men and women that “I do what I love and I love what I do”
    Kudos to you nishtha. Keep enlighting us

  29. Ducard

    You can’t be demonized for something you do privately, unless you masturbate in public.

  30. Chand

    I started to masturbate when I was 5, without being specifically taught. While several books say that early sexual development does start as early as that. I am yet to hear another woman talk about starting as early as that, nor can I think of anyone I could ask that wouldn’t consider it improper. I can’t be sure what made me never tell my parents, siblings or friends about till I was in my mid teens. But I instinctively knew it wasn’t to be talked about. Therefore can’t be sure if not talking about it is from the same etiquette as not talking about other personal, private bodily business or if there indeed is any “demonizing”. I never felt demonized even after I did start speaking about it. People do get either shocked or amused by how early I started though!

    1. Sina

      Hey Chand, your the first person I’m finally opening up to. So have I! Started as early as 5..

  31. raju

    Yeh sahi nahi hai… Girls can die after this act. This should be made aware. This us against our culture. NOT ALLOWED.

    1. Dude.

      ‘Culture’ you say.
      Since you seem really cultured, let’s make you vow to never stick it to a woman.
      How does that sound ?
      Our culture, religious scriptures, everything advocate equality, justice and respect for women and yet, they have had to fight for these basic rights.
      Because of people like you, this article had to be written.
      Consider yourself lucky that you are allowed the right to freedom of speech. Otherwise social viruses like you would be exterminated.

    2. Prerna

      Holy fuck! Ahem! from which culture did Kamasutra come? Raas lila? Khajurao? Ajanta Ellora?

    3. Sina

      I’m 26 and still living.

    4. Nishtha Relan

      Yaar. Tumhara ladkiyon ko masturbate karne par ma jaane ko bolna bhi sahi nahi hai.

    5. Nandini Arora

      you are still alive after fapping so much. i am sure women will also survive. and if you think you too are dying, trust me it is only because you are not using enough cream. take care. relax. google how to do it proprely

  32. taruna upadhyay

    This is very often to see such things are going on youth i think girls should share there things to her mother as a friend. even i want there should be one Ngo for that to listen about these kind of people who is suffering from these kind off sexual problem.

  33. Boom

    Kudos to be able to talk about this so publicly… while I have not had the opportunity to read the comments below I am sure you will get a ton of crap( hold your horses people) , along, with support.

    All i want to say is I agree, pleasuring yourself should be open to all, while, it maybe a minor taboo for men its not even on the list of possible discussion even among all girl friends ( i am not being a feminist, just a realist – its like white privilege you dont realize what ‘those’ people are talking about because you havent experienced it even while being exposed to the idea)

    Kudos!!!!

  34. vilakshan kuntal

    i agree with Ms.nishtha,everyone has his sexual desire and i ask the men,who say it is against indian culture that how many of them didn’t handjob until their marriage and how many of them doesn’t know about porn and sex,every person has his own desire

  35. suresh

    Wonderful article. I connected with it at several levels based on my own experience. Congratulations dear author!

  36. Hitting it home

    Kudos!
    ‘Indian culture’ as I may take liberty to point out, is not against the idea of sex or masturbation. The problem is, the Indian mindset.
    And that is not the only problem. Another problem is politics. Elements like VHP who do not give a damn about moving with time are a problem.
    But things will change. And the change will come when the teenagers of today, become parents. We’ll be much open about such (apparently) sensitive topics with our kids and that will pave way for change !

  37. Prerna

    Stop fussing. She made a point. Did not challenge any point. so lets not make this a debate. She said we are all too uptight about these issues. are we not? If you think otherwise, then darling say congratulations to your family. otherwise. read.
    observe. its intact true. Sad but true. Sad even more coz the title is justified. maximum comments below this post are actually demonizing it.

  38. Deepit

    I read the headline and thought ‘well of course, but who among the youth would ostracise masturbation?’

    Then I read the comments.

    I don’t mean to patronise, but thank you for being brave enough to write this. Sex ed is very, Very important, and it’s incredibly sad it’s not more common.

  39. Ameay

    I can’t see the point. I give it that our society in general is very sexually oppressive which probably leads to a lot of deviant behaviour. However the oppression is not gender specific…

  40. Oneal Sabu

    Another one of those pointless articles that portrays men in bad light. There is no fine writing, there is no new message here,the same old wine in new bottle – talk about the V and the P and private pleasure and Lo !! she’s a bold woman, she’s standing up for the cause, she is this she is that and blah blah …that is so Wannabe attention seeker writing !! and the trend …your a woman writer – talk about sexuality and all that is private and it sells – even I read this and shared this – so what am I doing (exactly what you wanted, there’s 6.7 k more who have shared this baseless piece of the wannabe attention seeking conglomerate )?? She confesses twice that this is in no way meant to attack men – No offence taken ma’am but then why do you repeat the same thing when you have to sell your article ?? Is it really only woman who have been through all this ?? Could you share some light on your counterparts from the opposite sex !! lo …there you go …too easy now …just call me an MCP !! ….Try a new formula , perhaps take to reading some finely written articles that is resourceful or just go and enjoy a shag, who’s stopping you !!

    1. Sina

      Attack men? Do you know by research about 60% women don’t know what an orgasm is? And that’s because they haven’t explored their own bodies. So for you to feel offended I only see egoism. Look beyond just being offended by something she didn’t intentionally make offense to.

    2. Oneal Sabu

      What gives you the idea that I felt offended ?? I never said attack men, she has twice generalized in the same article that gives you the picture of men having restricted her from doing what she wants, for eg: porn caters to mostly male fantasies, and also about the male dictated stereotype …then again she says this article never intends to be a men v women agenda !! I was more into the writing and not the content, there are more factual articles over the internet that is educative and informative (for eg: http://www.youthkiawaaz.com/2015/02/sexpert-columns-options-left-deepest-intimate-doubts/)….. so reading this was monotony again !! So there aint no ego and related fallacies to attribute here. So FYI, I wasnt criticising the content of the author by any means- i just felt she’s following the crowd, being monotonous and thats it. I am in for equality and yes I believe each person, regardless of gender has the liberty to pleasure himself or herself. My apologies for interrupting the kitty party ma’am.

    3. Nandini Arora

      i would have loved to call you an MCP if i understood one word of your incoherent rant. calm down brother. try again. try to be articulate

  41. Hari Punam

    Nice article…..everybody knows the facts, that it happens with all…..but not having guts to discuss it openly…….mindset type “what others will think of us”……..u just said it loudly…..

  42. gaurav chaudhary

    I read a few comments the “boys” left here…and all i saw just proved ur point nishtha,how unacceptable these things are in even today’s world..the only thing that needs to change is the mentality of the common folk ….i did understand the point u were trying to make,and all i wud like to say now is “respect”!

  43. Vineet

    Masturbation for any one, let it be Man, Women, Dog, Cat, Chimpanzee etc is completely fine and healthy. Trust me helps in releasing lot of stress! 🙂

    HAPPY MASTURBATING FOR EVERYONE. ENJOY 🙂

  44. Anand Ujjwal

    To men, masturbation or porn is really harmful, both sexually and mentally. Don’t ever encoirage a man to do that. You talked about varility. Yes, it’s right. Men do lose their varility if they masterbate or watch porn. I, assuming that u clearly don’t know much Biology, am skipping the scientific explaination. So, I advise all me to have natural and healty sex. If you don’t have a girlfriend, meditate and focus on your job. Although, I fonno much about female sexuality, I advise women to do the same. When you masterbate, you r basically bluffing your mind into thinking that ur having sex, but u can’t imagine where else that can lead your mind and, consequently, your harmones too.

    1. gaurav

      I bet u need to change multiple pair of undergarments every week at night,coz u don’t do “it”!..shushhhhh its harmful… And i bet u ain’t getting any from anywhere…plus u better not talk biology brother..it doesn’t seem to be to ur stronger suite…adding to that i would also like to mention that u are an ardent follower of iskon..no offence meant…

    2. Nandini Arora

      hear hear a man of science has spoken. and ooooops…only gibberish came out of his mouth

  45. Rahul Singh

    Its a nice article indeed!! One should not be ashamed of discussing such things…rather every gender should have guts to talk about it…if there is a need!!

  46. Sandy

    You have put it the way it is. A very well-written article about an issue most prefer to not even have whispered in the corridors.
    I am a survivor and that’s another story but I know the thrashing I would get when caught.
    …and for all the men/women who think this is a senseless article…oh well, I pity you and your limited mind.

  47. Rahul

    There is suddenly a storm of articles,videos,blogs and what not about sexuality and everything related.While I am happy that it is being discussed and it should be encouraged too.Internet as a medium is absolutely the place for it but it should not be taken to the other medium such as TV or the radio.People in the Bigger cities or say the educated one can take it in a positive way but People from the smaller town or villages have absolutely no clue about it.I find so many people from Villages of gurgaon and manesar they find it obscene. They are like dilli ki ladkiyan to rand hove hai. They can’t even watch MTV in front of there parents and they are exposed to even more explicit content on TV and radio which leave them vulnerable. I know this comment is in no way connected to the post but i would like people to address it.

  48. Sairaj

    Relax, woman.
    Slap your clam whenever you fancy; fuck the conservative society.

  49. Arka

    Good article. Our society definitely needs to change a lot. Nice article 🙂

  50. Khalid Raza

    Nishtha – The commentary is more intriguing than the headline and the content. A lot of us are still not ‘wise’ although ‘educated’. Pity. Sex education is as important as learning English or Science. This deep-rooted evil of inequality is the cause of many societal-diseases like rapes, dowry, aborticides etc.
    I hope one day we become ‘normal’ as all this seems crazy to me.

  51. Arunabh sinha

    Well it’s a natural thing that everyone do ..and i agree with that

  52. Arunabh sinha

    Well it’s natural that everyone do and i agree to this point

  53. Addu

    actually Indian thinks that if a girl is doing anything its wrong but everything is correct when it come to there boy.

  54. Rashi Srivastava

    For the first time, I’ve read an article being written upon women who like masturbating and arent guilty. This was a refreshing article to read and I could relate to most of the situations and incidents. Nicely written too! Keep it up! 🙂

  55. Ankit

    A good initiative to at least begin talking about sex and hell lot of confusions kids and people have in their heads. I take sessions in rural India for young girls on “menstrual hygiene” and even teach them to make their own sanitary napkins. The kind of response we get initially is usually to frighten away from the subject and hardly a few girls open up, and this is when we only talk about the health aspect of menstruation.

    Kudos!

  56. Rajat Khandelwal

    too many problems in this country and people discussing about masturbation.

    1. Nandini Arora

      if you were so busy worrying ONLY about inflation and dadri attack, how did you even reach this page? admit it women having a healthy sex life is giving u nightmares

    2. Prabhat pandit

      Swear by your mother that u never masturbated…..don’t try to be over smart….but u can act smartly…..how many problems did u solved for the your country…..so many problems in the country….idiot….

  57. Looney_Lone

    Alright so I appreciate you coming out of the closet and writing this in order to let people know that masturbation is natural but quite frankly you need to get your shit together…like this article doesn’t even state why women should masturbate doesn’t list the benefits of it which would have been really nice and it just looks like you’re trying to blame men for the conservative attitude in Indian soceity. There are many weirded out and impractical views about wanking all over the world and most of it is in India. So, I’m sure that Indian soceity will blame boys and girls equally for masturabating. There is no exception in this case. Masturbation is seen as taboo here for both genders and you bashing all men for it is completely wrong

    1. Nandini Arora

      where exactly did she bash men? she does mention idiot elders

  58. Mysterious

    Honestly this article just bashes men..rather than educating ppl about masturbation you should have mentioned the benefits of it and why it is natural rather than blaming all of it on men. Not getting into other issues here but Indian soceity will give shit to both genders when it comes to masturbation so you need to get your shit right. Masturbation is general is a taboo in India and ppl don’t think of it any differently if a guy does it or a girl .. Focusing on why it’s done and providing educational facts would have been MUCH better than criticising men -_-

  59. Govind Mulleth

    I was shocked , when an Ex-Gf said she dint know what the word masturbation meant , I asked her to google it . She acted as if i was the devils incarnation. I told her to read about it and understand her body first instead of judging me. she was 22-23 around this time. She was completing her post graduation around this time. It is sad that we have so many students who are “Educated” yet so ignorant The sad part is even at the time we were parting ways she would not accept the fact that her illusions about her body, her role in society and her role as a wife was a bunch of bullshit and that she had an identity of her own. We constantly read, write and discuss the problems faced by women and the ways we can empower them. But unless and until the way knowledge is imparted to the coming generations is revamped nothing is going to change. IF we do not bring about this change. this country is headed towards a serious social disaster.

  60. Тнє ‘Ѕӏім-ѕнаԁу’

    I just dont know why boys pointing fingers on it like they never did this kindda stuff ? Girls have same sexual desires like boys but is wrong if they satisfied themself. There Is no problm in this i think

  61. Surendra Singh Rajpurohit

    Very true. & Rajat sir : it is a big problem for writer may not for u. But anyway u read it if not interested then why u read it???? Just chill why so serious ????????

  62. Mahreen Hasan

    This was awesome, Nishtha. Props to you. I’d like to get in touch regarding a project you may be interested in.

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