As a means of enhancing their experience, some women masturbate while participating in sex with a partner. On the other hand, men may consider masturbation superfluous if they are already able to fulfill their sexual needs. According to a new study, women prefer to consider it as an aspect of their sexual lives that is “complementary,” while men tend to view it as a type of “compensation” with regard to partnered sexual activity. To put it another way, women see it as an addition to their sexual lives.
The research sheds light on the varied roles that masturbation plays in the sexual lives of men and women and offers some insights into those roles.
“Despite all the advantages of solo sex, it has been largely overlooked as a relevant sexual behaviour,” Nantje Fischer, one of the co-authors of the study, said while explaining the motivation behind the research. “We still know surprisingly little about how as solo sex is associated with sexual satisfaction, well-being, and pain release.” “Because of its enormous potential and its numerous advantages, the issue of masturbation is one of the reasons that I got so interested in it.” It is a liberating and uncomplicated method for satisfying your sexual needs and wants. Another significant benefit of masturbation is that it provides a risk-free alternative to sexual activity, eliminating the possibility of acquiring a sexually transmitted infection or becoming pregnant against one’s will. Fischer added.
Nonetheless, very little research has been conducted to investigate the specific ways in which it differs between individuals. Previous studies on the practice, particularly among teenagers and preadolescents, found that individuals who self-identified as male were far more likely to engage in the behaviour of masturbation than those individuals who self-identified as female. It’s possible that one of the reasons for this is the social shame that comes along with masturbation, most of which is also gendered. In India, the taboo surrounding masturbation typically continues long past the age of adolescence. Women and men also masturbate in different ways because they don’t know as much about sex and don’t have as much access to sex toys.
For the purpose of the present study, the scientists, who are headquartered in Norway, gathered the responses to a questionnaire from a representative sample of 4,160 Norwegians between the ages of 18 and 89. In the poll, people were asked about their sexual activity and how often they masturbated. They were also asked about how often they watched porn and what they thought about their body and genital image.
Participants were grouped into one of four categories according to the responses they provided. The first cluster consisted of respondents who indicated a high level of sexual satisfaction, as well as a frequent occurrence of masturbation. Participants who reported high levels of sexual satisfaction while having low levels of masturbation frequency formed the second group. In the third experiment, the researchers combined the results of subjects who reported low levels of sexual satisfaction with high levels of masturbation frequency. The fourth and final cluster was distinguished by replies that indicated a poor level of sexual satisfaction as well as a high frequency of masturbation.
The biggest proportion of the research sample, or 33.1% of the total responses, was found inside the first cluster. The sample population was divided into five clusters. The second group had 31.5 percent of the total population, the third group had 18.7 percent, and the fourth group had 16.7 percent.
When the researchers analyzed the data in each of the four clusters, they discovered that while women who reported a greater sexual variety and higher intercourse frequency were also likely to report a high masturbation frequency and sexual satisfaction, men who reported frequent partnered sex were likely to fall into the cluster that was characterized by a low masturbation frequency. As a result, the researchers concluded that women who reported more sexual variety and higher intercourse frequency were also more likely to report high masturbation frequency and sexual satisfaction.
The results of the study show that men are more likely to think of self-pleasure when they don’t have a partner as a way to make up for not having a partner, while women are more likely to masturbate as a way to make up for not having a partner.
The researchers also discovered that although both women and men in the high masturbation clusters reported high porn consumption, a greater frequency of porn viewing was associated with sexual dissatisfaction among men. This was the case even though both genders reported engaging in high levels of masturbation. This is consistent with findings from past studies on the effects of porn consumption and the way it has distinct effects on the sexual lives of young men and women, with the female sexual lives being affected more favourably than the male sexual lives.
Studies conducted in countries like Sweden, which have a more open-minded approach to sexuality and sex education, have shown that the patterns of masturbation that men and women engage in are very similar. These studies point to the fact that gender roles and sexuality are intertwined: in societies where there is greater openness about sexuality, there is less of a social stigma attached to masturbation, and as a result, more women in those societies feel they can masturbate without fear of being judged or stigmatized for doing so.
However, patriarchal expectations will always be a factor, and this is true in every society. The current research highlights a number of important themes, such as how problems with body image affect not only women but also men. The researchers made the observation that sexual distress, negative body image concerns, and issues with genital self-image affected male participants’ levels of sexual satisfaction significantly more than they did female participants’ levels.
The researchers, in their study, made the following observation in response to this finding: “The fact that men’s genitalia play an important role in defining masculinity in terms of appearance (e.g., penis size) and performance (e.g., erection) might explain the influences of men’s genital self-image on their sexual satisfaction. An earlier global study conducted in 2018 on masturbation came to the conclusion that stereotypical notions of manliness and masculinity frequently permeated sexual relationships. These notions not only affect men’s relationships with their bodies and their masturbation habits, but they also prevented them from having sexual lives that were fulfilling.
The current study provides important new insights into the gendered norms that underlie how men and women understand the function of masturbation—an easily available means of gaining sexual pleasure—and how it can contribute to sexual fulfillment in different ways. It also contributes to our knowledge of the ways in which people’s sexual lives differ according to their gender — as well as the elements that are involved in those differences.