Can sex toys in the bedroom really be unwanted? I never knew this was a topic for concern until scrolling through Tik Tok and seeing just how many men were put off by sex toys. I was further dismayed when I did a Google search and found Reddit posts and various other forum posts with the exact same topic... “My boyfriend is jealous of my toy.” This seems like such a foreign concept to me as someone who dives into the realm of kink. Kink revolves around toys, lots of toys. So, I decided to look past my views and take a deeper look into why men might be jealous of their girlfriends’ toys.
Vibrators are not a new concept for personal pleasure. In fact, the vibrator was invented in 1869 by Doctor George Taylor. Its use was in the doctor’s office when women would come in for hysteria treatments. The device was employed to alleviate the strain on the doctor's hands from stimulating females’ vulvas to produce orgasm which was the cure for female hysteria. Although, in my opinion, the doctors of the time didn't really understand that this was an orgasm. It really is impressive that men can be against a device that was created to help them.
In the late 1800s to about 1920 various types of vibrators were produced for home consumption in what I call quack medicine. There were vibrators produced to help with blood circulation, hair regrowth, digestive, problems, gum disease in dentistry, and various other conditions. It wasn't until the late 1960s to the early 1970s that we saw a switch to the mainstream sales of vibrators as sexual aids. The sexual revolution of the time put vibrators in our bedrooms and sex toys in our lives.
Interesting to note that the symptoms of hysteria resemble the symptoms of a female that needs sexual satisfaction. As noted in an article in Psychology Today the symptoms of hysteria include anxiety, sleeplessness, irritability, nervousness, erotic fantasies, feelings of heaviness in the lower abdomen, and wetness between the legs. An important fact in looking at the history of sexual wellness and female issues is that up until sometime in the 1900s doctors believed a female could not have an orgasm.
In looking at the reasons why men may be jealous of a toy we can look to the foundations of what we were taught and modeled throughout our young life. In religion, we are taught shame and negative connotations when it comes to sex and pleasure. Often our parents would avoid such topics of conversation and answer our questions in a runabout manner because they were uncomfortable with the topics themselves. Conversations of sex and pleasure are a generational stigma we need to remove.
In understanding why some people may be against toys in the bedroom and the feeling of jealousy, we must acknowledge that jealousy is one of the most complex base emotions. Jealousy is the only emotion we experience that is based on other emotions. jealousy is not its own singular emotion and to understand why we feel it, we need to take an honest look at the root cause. When talking about sex toys, we must ask ourselves are we insecure about size, connection with our partner, masturbation, or even the feeling of being replaced. In accepting the jealousy, we can move to overcome it.
Yet in accepting jealousy and overcoming it we need to acknowledge the simple fact being jealous of an inanimate object they cannot replace you is not helpful. Your partner is with you for emotional reasons, romantic reasons, personal reasons, and they are completely in love and spending time with you. Often times jealousy will overshadow the very realistic statements listed above.
What are some helpful ways to bring toys into the bedroom in a productive less threatening manner? In creating this list, please note, that discussing sex toys is vastly different from working on the key concepts of jealousy.
1. Each partner is completely honest with themselves and with each other. You can't hope to gain any benefit in a relationship if you can't trust each other with your feelings, emotions, and wants.
2. On occasion it is very hard to bring up topics that may not be mainstream. There are a few ways you can do this and one of the most highly sought-after ways that I use in coaching is a BDSM checklist. It is important to find one that includes definitions of the sexual act.
3. Perhaps if the comfort level is there you could explore a sex store together and shop for a toy you are both interested in trying. The nice thing about turning this into a date night is you know there will be intimacy, you know there will be giggles and laughter, and it allows you to open up a conversation with each other. The great thing about going to a sex store together is if there are any questions staff are able to answer them, trust me they have heard a lot.
4. Curl up on the couch together, open your favorite browser and check out some Internet sex toy stores. If you order online it allows for the anticipation of the delivery of the toy, allows you to talk and fantasize about all the crazy ideas you might have regarding your purchase. Again, opening lines of communication two including a toy in the bedroom.
5. One of the best things you can do is look at toys that are non-traditional phallic shapes. It takes the pressure from thinking it's a replacement. There are many toys on the market today that do more than just vibrate. Perhaps a clitoral stimulator that gently sucks the external clitoris region, an option as it is not a penetrative toy.
6. I don't often suggest pornography as an outlet to start a conversation however, watching a small clip when words are uncomfortable may be an option to open the dialog between you and your partner.
7. One of the great enhancements you can do for connection with your partner and in your sex life is to read parts of erotic novels to each other. Reading is a great way to stimulate the imagination and bring closeness with each other.
8. If one of you already owns a toy and it's been a struggle to introduce it into the bedroom, you could send a short audio clip of your vocal pressure to your partner along with a sexy picture if appropriate. Follow up with them, we can do this when you get home, in a text.
9. If jealousy is being felt it is so important to discuss the reasons behind it without it turning into a fight. Addressing and acknowledging the concerns of your partner is as important and goes a fair distance in creating the dialogue that they are enough. Sometimes just being heard and reassured in a passionate and considerate way takes that fear and allows the one feeling jealousy to start to deal with all the issues regarding it. It may be a small stepping stone to opening a bigger dialogue.
10. Discuss and maybe include some role play in your bedroom activities that might be a way to bring some toys into your sexual encounter. After all, a dress-up costume is a sex toy.
At the end of the day overcoming complex issues such as jealousy and sexual aids is harder than a few minutes of conversation. It may involve deeper more meaningful conversations to take place within the relationship. It may also include building trust and intimacy back into a relationship that is struggling in this one area. Sometimes allowing ourselves to be vulnerable even to our partner is the hardest thing we can do, but in doing so it can be the most fulfilling.
Always value your partner's input and forgo shaming and belittling as communication in a positive way is one of the most complicated things your partner can do with you. Opening the lines of communication and acceptance can draw you into a deeper state in the relationship. The simple act of communicating can also deepen and strengthen trust in each other. feelings even if you don't understand them are valid but being valid does not always make them correct. I often tell people it's OK to feel what's your feeling, but it's not OK to expect other people to feel that feeling. Once you accept that you can't always change someone’s emotions talking about your own emotions becomes easier.
let's close this article on a very positive note with the thought of simply this... Why am I expending emotion to put power over me when it comes to an inanimate object? For simplicity allow yourself a moment to not feel but give yourself permission to be OK with exploration. sexual exploration and creating newness in the bedroom will continually bring benefit to your life.