Strap it Up

It left me perplexed. Why did I have an issue wearing a strap-on?


I have always prided myself on being sexually open, I’ll try anything once and see if it is for me or my partner. That was until my girlfriend recently asked me to “strap” her. If I am being completely honest, I subconsciously thought since I was a femme who dated femmes, that it would never be expected of me to wear a strap-on for my partner. I have no idea when I developed this binary train of thought. It left me perplexed… Why did I have an issue wearing a strap-on? That’s when I decided I needed to work through my own issues and find the root of my discomfort so that I could give my partner the pleasure she wanted.

I tried to unpack my own bias and unlearn years of restrictions I put on myself. I started to explore how scissoring and strap-on sex between queer people had been so heavily fetishized in mainstream porn, and its association with the male gaze and physical anatomy made it a complete turn-off for me. I needed to disassociate the strap from that notion and make it about my and my partner’s pleasure. So, we went to a sex shop…

We walked in and the shop attendant was friendly, reminded us to sanitize and keep our masks on at all times (this is 2020). She showed us how the shop was divided and told us to call them if we had any questions. As we perused the aisles and moved past the vibrators and toys I was more familiar with, we got to the strap-on, harnesses, and dildos section. It was difficult to pick – I found myself wondering…do we want a realistic one, a rainbow one, or one with a harness? The options were endless and so were my questions. We decided on a “strapless strap-on”…for fellow novices, they are strap-ons that don’t require any straps to keep the dildo in place. Instead, you place the end internally – an experience I was excited to try.

The night had arrived to break my “strap-on virginity” and I had several questions running through my mind. For example; when do I put it on…do we start making it out then I leave to put it on or do I keep it under the bed until it’s time? We started kissing and I was nervous trying to figure out when to introduce it. I also wasn’t completely sure how to put it on despite trying to practice beforehand. I didn’t want to fumble in front of my partner but I quickly learned that was going to be unavoidable.

We kept an open dialogue during our strapping experience and even though my thrust timing was a bit off, the dildo slipped out more times than I’d like to say, and I wasn’t sure how deep to penetrate – it was a good experience. I discovered a whole layer of pleasure for myself and my partner and a whole new world of positions. Another amazing bonus was that my hands were free to hold my partner closer while pleasuring them with my other hand.

My first time using a strap-on was illuminating. It showed me that strap-on sex isn’t for a particular group of people. I didn’t lose anything by trying it and it was liberating to break my own preconceived notions of roles during sex. Ultimately, it’s about connecting and having fun. It was a way for me to redefine and reclaim sex in a way that I had never experienced.

Thandeka is a freelance writer that believes in the beauty of words. Explore her professional work on website.

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