Girls Wank Too – Learning to Separate Pleasure From Performance

Nov 23, 2018 | All, Sex | 1 comment

You are ten and sat in your Primary School lunchroom. It smells like stale book-bags and ham that has been left out for too long. The same boy that stared at you while pressing his tongue against his cheek repetitively last week is about to walk past. You don’t avoid his gaze – you asked your parents what this meant and now you are armed with your new knowledge of what a ‘blowjob’ is, so you watch him, defiant, daring him to make the same gesture again. This time you’d tell him where to go. Except this week it is something different. He curls his hand into a weak fist and moves it back and forth muttering ‘wanker’ as he walks past. You sit there, perplexed, wondering what the hell ‘wanker’ meant and angry that yet again he had duped you.

A lad bumps into you as you leave your year seven geography class and announces that a boy you have known since you were four has ‘had a wank over you’. Again, this word leaves you dumbfounded. You tell your friends later with apparent pride, but later that night you scrub yourself harder than usual, as though the sticky residue of his ‘wank’ is on your skin.

It is a year later and, like most twelve-year-olds, you are enamoured with the word wank. You say it with gusto, enjoying the power of the word and the way it leaps from your tongue like a bullet. Wank. Wanker. Wanking. A boy scowls at you and tells you that girls don’t wank, and if they do that it’s not called that. Girls play with themselves. You imagine a girl building a Lego vagina, adorning it with Lego flowers. You roll your eyes and call him a wanker.

At thirteen you go on a residential trip, away from school, away from parents. You meet a girl called Lizzie and she tells you that you are like a strawberry milkshake. You play chicken and you don’t pull away, not because you’ve never been one to shy away from a dare, but because you want to kiss her. When you go home, you masturbate for the first time about someone other than Gerard Way.

It is nearly home time and your hands are covered in soap suds as you wash away the charcoal remains that plagued all of your year nine DT Food lessons (too much talking, not enough concentrating, your report had said). You are huddled at the sink with your best friend as she rubs the dishes dry. You both admit that there’s some other wet thing you both like rubbing. Hushed whispers bloom into gulps of laughter and it feels like spring even though the weather outside is frigid and gloomy.

When you are fifteen you let a boy finger you because he wants to. He doesn’t make you orgasm and the way he touches you makes you feel like a slice of toast that has hit the floor jam-side down. You perform for him though, making sounds you never do when you’re alone in your own bed. In comparison, your touches are hot and buttery and you blame yourself for not being able to simulate this feeling with him too.

Like all sixteen-year-olds, you believe yourself to be an expert in everything – including sex, despite your virgin status. It is your favourite topic of conversation. You tell anyone and everyone that they should wank, because if they don’t how can they expect someone else to please them? If someone’s not sure whether they have had an orgasm, you tell them with authority that they haven’t, because they would know about it if they had. You and your friends laugh as though you have the sexual experience of fifty year old women, but really you are still just children.

You are seventeen and on a college trip to Paris. You are drunk on raspberry infused red wine when she asks you to kiss her. You peck her on the cheek and she scolds you, telling you to kiss her properly, so you do and it is wonderful. She puts her boyfriend on Facetime and gets her friend to hold the camera. You wish that neither of them were there and that it was just the two of you, sat on her bathroom floor. Later you write a poem about it.

On your eighteenth birthday your mum gives you a box wrapped in silver paper. You unwrap it with your eyes closed, not wanting to spoil the surprise. When you open them, the box is unassuming and grey, but from inside it you pull a fuchsia coloured rabbit (and not the type with a central nervous system). You laugh from your belly and give it a waggle, the way it flip-flops with its own weight is deeply amusing. It sits in your knicker drawer for a couple days until curiosity gets the better of you. Instead of killing the cat, curiosity sets it alive with lusty flames.

You are nineteen when you look at your vagina for the first time. Rather than just glancing down while you’re washing, you really look at it, with a magnifying mirror. Instead of finding King Kong gazing back at you, teeth and all, as you’d expected, you find she’s rather friendly looking. In fact, she’s really quite pretty. Hello down there, you call, it’s nice to finally meet you.

You have just had an orgasm. You are lying on your back and your boyfriend has gone to remove his condom. He turns and faces you, pausing for a moment to admire your exhausted body. You spread your lips wide and make your vagina sing in falsetto,

“That was greaaaaaaat.”

You both shake with laughter.

You are twenty-one and in London. The world is your oyster but all you can think about is the fact that your oyster hasn’t seen any action for nearly two weeks. You are staying with the same friend you once laughed with in DT Food. When she is out one night and your boyfriend calls, you suggest playing dares. You know exactly what he will ask you. You bring the microphone close to your mouth so he can hear how it feels to spread velvety butter over your vulva. Your orgasm is tectonic. Volcanoes erupt and waves rise to the height of a tsunami. This time, there is no performance, only pleasure.

Kate Nesbit

Kate Nesbit

Guest Writer

Kate is a recent graduate, recovering from three years of university. She has been fighting for women's rights ever since she was 6 and she told a boy to go stick his head up a dead bear's bum when he said she was putting on too much lip balm. When she's not in a charity shop, she can be found scaring people at her day job by telling them she's writing about period sex. You can find more of her writing here.

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