Mutual masturbation has two variations, says Michelle Herzog, LMFT, CST: The first is when two or more people masturbate in each other's presence. Conversely, two or more people can simultaneously stimulate each other's genitals.
Whether you use toys, hands, or both to enjoy either kind of partnered masturbation, Herzog tells mbg this sexual experience is "great for anyone who's open to genital stimulation." Plus, she says it can be a fun activity to add to your sexual repertoire.
Because you can enjoy mutual masturbation without touching or being touched, Courtney Geter, LMFT-S, CST, says long-distance partners can engage in masturbation together via phone or video call. And when partners are in the same location, they can mutually masturbate as a way to explore a new type of sexual play together (or to get sexy while social distancing).
It's simple: Orgasms cause your brain to release a surge of endorphins, which make you feel good. There are so many benefits of masturbation, so when you mutually masturbate, Geter says it can "allow for sexual expression or pleasure and can improve moods just like other sexual behaviors or interactions."
According to Herzog, mutual or group masturbation is "an incredibly safe sexual practice that provides a ton of opportunity for pleasure and exploration." Because partners usually don't make physical contact with each other during mutual masturbation, there is no risk of transmitting or receiving any sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Even with partner-assisted masturbation, the risk of transmission is significantly reduced.
Plus, Geter points out that for people who experience pain with penetration, masturbation can be helpful. Why? Because it provides an alternative (but still pleasurable!) way to enjoy sexual play, bonding with a partner, and other sexual behaviors without experiencing discomfort.
When partners watch each other masturbate, it's a great way to see what the other likes physically. "You get to show your partner what feels amazing for your body" and vice versa, explains Herzog. And beyond being an instructional experience that lets you and your partner show better ways to give each other more pleasure, Sweet says mutual masturbation "can be very intimate and bonding to show your partner(s) how you climax when you're alone."
Penetrative or other kinds of sex don't always lead to an orgasm for one or all partners, but Sweet says mutual masturbation has better odds: "For [those] who can't orgasm with a partner performing sex acts with them, mutual masturbation gives the opportunity for increasing pleasure and even guaranteeing orgasm!"
Sex drives can be hard to match up, so there will likely come a time when your partner wants to get hot and heavy but you want to keep it cool and light in your PJs. In those instances, Geter says mutual masturbation is a sexy but comfortable activity to engage in when one partner is aroused and needs sexual release while the other isn't in the mood. Consider it a pleasurable compromise.
Herzog says mutual masturbation can look different for everyone depending on their abilities, comfort level, and openness to masturbatory touch. That means many positions are possible through this activity, so try out a few to see what works best for you and your partner.
Herzog says sexual communication is the foundation for a pleasure-centered and fulfilling sex life, "So, simply asking your partner if they're interested in mutually masturbating is a great way to start."
"There's no one right way to bring up conversations about exploring sex or masturbation," says Sweet, so her advice is to make it playful and light. "And above all else, don't 'yuck' your partner's 'yum!'"
"Like any other sex act, lighting, sound, smell, taste, and touch are all components of the experience," explains Sweet. To set the scene for mutual masturbation, she recommends playing music, burning a candle or setting dim lighting during or before, or both.
Another idea is to maintain eye contact to increase intimacy and heat things up even more. Sweet says, "Folks may want to look at one another during the masturbation session or gaze at the same mirror so they can see themselves and their partner(s)."
Like you do when you're by yourself, using your hands is a great go-to for mutual masturbation. But Sweet says you can also spice it up and incorporate pillows, sex toys, blankets, lube, and more into your practice. Use "anything that helps you stimulate your body for arousal and potential orgasms," she advises.
"A common way to practice mutual masturbation is for partners to be lying or sitting very close to each other while stimulating their genitals," which Herzog says you can do in a spooning position, simply lying down together closely or sitting up and facing each other for added intimacy.
Remember, there are many positions you can try to please yourself and your partner. The classic "69" can work great during mutual masturbation: Here, Geter says one partner lies on their back and the other lies on top facing the opposite direction. "This allows each partner to access each other's genital areas and stimulate at the same time." You can also take turns and pleasure each other one at a time.
Virtual sex isn't only for long-distance couples, so all partners are welcome to try mutual masturbation via phone, video, or text. But whatever the reason you try this experience in the digital space, Sweet says to "be mindful about privacy considerations and who may have access to any digital content you co-create." Before you try this, she recommends a strong and private internet connection to prevent freeze frames or call disruptions.
While the risks of mutual masturbation are relatively low, it's not 100% safe. Less serious risks to masturbating, in general, include accidental tears or cuts in the vagina or anus, so Herzog advises you to ensure your nails are cleaned and trimmed beforehand. "The friction of rubbing could cause discomfort or sores if body areas aren't lubricated," Geter adds, so don't be afraid to incorporate some lube if needed.
Another major risk to keep in mind is limited privacy. "Just like with any other sex act, if you take your mutual masturbation into the digital realm," says Sweet, "you risk it being leaked to the world, both deliberately and by accident!"
Here's the consensus: Masturbation, whether solo or mutual, is great for anyone. Mutual masturbation is an incredibly intimate activity that lets you connect with your partner in a new way. "I truly believe mutual masturbation can benefit anyone who is open and consenting to the experience," shares Herzog.
Mutual masturbation can be any form of masturbating with a partner. Sometimes jacking off side by side or on cam is considered mutual masturbation as well as when you masturbate each other at the same time.
A man can last however long or short he prefers during mutual masturbation. It is always fun to edge and go for awhile or until your partner decides they want to ejaculate. Go slow, take your time, enjoy every moment untl you reach that point of intense orgasm.
The appeal of mutual masturbation is many-pronged, allowing partners to release shame and guilt around masturbation, learn more about their partner and their preferences, and be vulnerable in front of their partner with no risk of a sexually transmitted infection (STI) or pregnancy, said Rachel Wright, M.A., L.M.F.T., who is based in New York City. "What's fun, though, is watching how your partner touches themselves so that you can try and do that when you're touching them."
Mutual masturbation can represent practice for future penetration or research into your partner's preferences (perhaps ones they haven't even thought of telling you), or it can be the whole event. The act of masturbating together can also be a celebration of changing bodies for couples who are older and perhaps encountering new difficulties. Instead of finding frustration or shame in failing to orgasm in the "conventional" way, focus on the fun of getting there. In a sense, mutual masturbation is a terrific vehicle for the scenic route.
"Mutual masturbation can be a hot way to connect more deeply with one's partner," she said. "It's fun to look each other deeply in the eyes while both people are jacking or jilling off. Mutual masturbation can also be a great way for long-distance partners to have sex over FaceTime or Skype."
Every couple needs time together and alone, but it's worth reconsidering what activities we assume as inherently solo. Instead of stigmatizing self-love, mutual masturbation allows couples to share intimate time while acknowledging future independent sessions. Mutual masturbation may turn out to be something arousing you'll use later for solo sessions. Telling your partner about those lonesome adventures could get motors running when you're together again.
Just like other sexual acts, mutual masturbation is only fun if everyone is having fun. Regardless of whether you met your sexual partner last week or you've been together for years, consent is always a must. Make sure you ask your partner without pressure and never try to manipulate your partner into doing more than they want to do. A "no" for any reason is valid.
Toys can spice up mutual masturbation just as much as they can solo masturbation. They can also make it less work for you both, so you can better divide your attention between yourself and your partner.
Mutual masturbation is a form of sex where participants manually stimulate each other. One character giving a handjob to or fingering another character doesn't count; the word "mutual" means that both parties are participating. Despite the name, it should not be tagged as masturbation.
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