Approaching A New Masculinity: An essay

new masculinity

Let me ask a personal question straight out the gate. As a guy, how comfortable are you with your own sexuality? If you identify as straight, you belong to a non-marginalized sexual identity. What this means is that we tend not to question the sexual status quo as there is no need to. 

Why is it that members of the bi, trans, and queer communities are often regarded as more sexually open-minded than straight guys? Why is it that women can speak much more freely about their use of sex toys than guys? My friends from these communities regularly laugh at how sexually limited straight guys seem. And unfortunately, I have to agree. Us straight guys are less likely to be open, adventurous and try new things with our masculine sexuality. And even if we want to be, we don’t have the communicative tools to get what we desire in a healthy way. But why?

Our male sexual narrative is warped

From a young age, we are socially conditioned to be less communicative, to never show weakness, and to “man up” which has led to a kind of masculinity that finds it hard to talk about topics that perhaps make you feel vulnerable such as sex. The “straight guy” has been clearly defined and he certainly doesn’t talk about any sexual vulnerabilities. From sex-ed to porn, to older guy friends, our dominant narrative is when having sex we have to perform on command. That we usually play the dominant role. There is very little in the straight sexual narrative that talks about female pleasure, and even less about male pleasure other than ejaculation.

But while women openly talk about their exploits with sex toys or online articles talk about the many different types of female orgasm, us straight guys carry on blinkered and silent.

Approaching a new masculinity

But I believe these blinkers are being lifted. Over the last few years, social justice movements have created a tectonic shift in mainstream discussion around masculinity and now seems the perfect time to question what it means to be a man.

So let’s do a little thought experiment:

If you knew for a fact that no one would judge you about your sexual desires in any way, would you keep your sex life exactly as it is now? Would you try something new? What would you try?

Human nature is powered by curiosity. I think it’s time for guys to regain their sexual curiosity. But while some brave guys are ready to jump in at the deep end, for most, I think we need to create a culture that encompasses what it means to be a man in today’s world. For me, it all boils down to three things: respect, openness and above all freedom. Regardless of what community or sexuality you identify with, you need to approach every situation with respect, be open to other points of view, and learn to be free in your sexuality. Here are two things. I think can augment masculine sexuality:

View sex as a collaboration

We have been conditioned into a “you” and “her” mentality when it comes to sex. You have to get hard, give at least 15 minutes of pleasure, then come. Sex is cartoonishly painted as a performance in popular culture. But it’s a collaboration. Talk with your partner openly about all the things you feel self-conscious about. Also, listen, a lot: listen to desires from a female perspective. How do they differ from yours? How are they the same? Not only will this openness boost your sex life, but this open approach is much more attractive than simply using male guesswork to figure out your partner’s sexual preferences. Being masculine doesn’t mean you can’t be mindful.

Guys need to try sex toys

While in the gay, bi and queer communities sex toys, are not a big deal for the average straight guy, this topic is taboo. Why is that?

One of the most persistent arguments that I hear is that using a sex toy particularly anally is somehow “gay” behavior. This is weird on two levels: firstly, it implies it’s bad to be gay and secondly, that male pleasure is not created equally. That there are zones of the male body that are somehow forbidden. There is also very little dialogue out there for guys wanting to explore. For example, that prostate orgasm is considered to be some sort of mythical beast. But any guy who has ever used a toy before will tell you that it’s real, and it feels awesome. In fact, a prostate orgasm can be quite a few shades of grey stronger than a typical one due to the pressure created. Toys like the WeVibe Vector have been specifically engineered to maximize male pleasure and they can unlock quite literally a new world of pleasure.

we-vibe vector o-diaries

We-Vibe Vector

Vector is customized to fit your body, with an adjustable head and flexible base that target both the prostate and perineum in comfort.

we-vibe verge

We-Vibe Verge

Intensify pleasure with deep powerful vibrations that provide stimulation to your perineum.

And even if you’re not ready to try an anal toy right away, there are many others out there such as the WeVibe Verge – this is a vibrating penis ring that stimulates the perineum, and can stimulate the clitoris at the same time if you are with a partner. The heightened stimulus from toys can make you feel a little vulnerable, particularly at first. But this is something to be embraced and you’ll find it can bring you closer to understanding the vulnerable elements of female sexuality and bring you closer to your partner. 

Reclaim your sexual freedom

It can be hard at first, but once you begin to let things go, you will find it easier to question the limits of your own sexual identity. And the only way to truly feel alive it to occasionally deviate from social norms. So embrace all sides of your sexuality!

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Tom has written about pretty much everything from robots taking over the world to prisons in Bolivia. Now, he is turning his attention to the wonderful world of sex in all its guises. Through his writing, he aims to create an open-minded dialogue on topics such as sex positivity, sexual identity, and the ever-changing notion of masculinity.