Indians Talk About Sex Toys This Quarantine

 Indians Talk About Sex Toys This Quarantine
Akanksha Bhatt for Homegrown

Quarantine stands for the forbidden and while a lot of things like the economy, the stock market, people’s businesses and hopes and moods are going down, the only thing that seems to be spiking is the PornHub daily traffic rate. We definitely know what’s been on your mind. But we’re not just saying this because you have it on your mind. In reality, masturbation is an excellent mood-lifter and stress-buster. Now, while your orgasms will not make you immune to the novel coronavirus (only social distancing and maintaining proper hygiene standards can do that), a happier system is mostly always a healthier system. A word about sex in the time of COVID-19: While it has not been directly linked to any kind of sexual transmission, since the virus is present in respiratory secretions, it is not too difficult to assume the co-relation between the virus and any kind of sexual activity. So, isolation aside, it’s just a lot more sensible and useful to keep your hands to yourself and if possible, use a non-human companion.

Yes, we mean sex toys!

Right before closing for the quarantine, we asked Indians about their experience with or feelings about using sex toys. As we know, pleasure itself often finds itself hiding behind hushed tones and smirks in our country. However, unlike what a lot of people might believe (do you hear, Aunty?), sex toys have been a part of the Indian sanskaras for quite a long time, and yet, for a people who created the Kamasutra, we are surprisingly averse towards visuals, discourses, and products that normalize sex and pleasure. Even though sex education was nothing but a chapter on the human reproductive system for most Indians, with changing times, people are becoming more accepting and adventurous. This is why we decided to ask modern-day Indians to tell us about their sexual preferences and what their feelings towards sex toys are.

As per Franchise India that claims that the Indian adult lifestyle products is expected to exceed $52 billion by 2020, “the growing influence of western media, pop culture & web-series has increased the awareness of adult lifestyle products.”

This upward crawl was also proven by our survey. The survey which received 100 responses also tried to cover deeper issues like satisfaction with one’s sex life, how strong do Indians like to orgasm (okay, spolier alert, most said ‘blow my brains out!’), if they were aware of their erogenous zones and if those with a vagina reacted better to clitoral or vaginal stimulation.

Who took the survey and how?

  • It was taken by 100 people.
  • The age group of the people ranged from 18-44 years old. Most of the respondents were between ages 15-34.
  • 62% identified as female, 35% as male, and 3% non-binary.
  • 83% of the respondents had the experience of having penetrative sex.
  • For qualitative responses we did not push people to force-fit their answers to the available list of options but provided space for them to choose otherwise.
  • While most of our respondents were from Mumbai, the demographic was spread across India with people writing from Bhubhaneshwar, Jaipur, and Hyderbad amongst others. Almost all our respondents were from Tier-1 or Tier-2 cities.

Are Indians Happy With Their Sex Life?

We asked people to rate their satisfaction levels on a scale of 1-10. It was not too surprising to find that only 3% of the people were completely happy with their sex life. Instead, the majority (20%) suggested that they were satisfied above average and would rate it at 7. With 17%, level 6 followed close. 11% people rated 8 and 9. Unfortunately, 7% gave it a 1, which is being barely satisfied.

How and How Strong Do You Prefer Your Orgasms?

We are just going to leave it there. When we asked people how strong did they like their orgasms, a whopping 49% asked their brains to be blown out. Indians, as you might have guessed, like it hard. To give our questions on sex toys a better way ahead, we asked vagina-holders how did they orgasm the best. While about half of them did well with a combination of both vaginal and clitoral stimulation (52.8%), most of the other half said that they do it better with clitoral stimulation (40.3%).

So, on a scale of 1-10, how convenient is it for you to store a sex toy in your house?

If there’s anything that the newly renewed vigour towards adopting social distancing has made us realise, it is that there is a clear lack of privacy that people like to give each other. This lack of privacy reflects itself in how we end up learning ways to lead a private life despite our circumstances. The same was visible in how a surprising 37% said that they could actually store a sex toy in their house.

Quiet much?

Following the same, they would definitely not like the whirring of their sex toy spill all the beans! So, when we asked if they would like their toys to be quiet, maximum voted between levels 1-5. Only 2% said ‘louder, baby!’

But what about your insecurities?

Quite a lot of us remain conscious about different things and more often than not, it reflects the way we perceive ourselves. Sexual intimacy only brings us closer to our ownselves and in a way, also gives us the opportunity to know what we are the most scared of. When we tried asking what our respondents were the most insecure about, 44% of them said that it was their body. 23% said that they were not very confident when it came to talking about their sexual desires and fantasies. Another 16% said that they were under-confident about masturbation in itself. 7% didn’t talk about sex with their peers and 4% were conscious about their sexual orientation. The issue of male stamina was also raised as was the issue of not being able to orgasm with a partner.

Alone or with your partner?

For a lot of Indians, this was solely based on if they found themselves alone or with a partner. Quite a lot of them were magnanimous in saying how they would use it for “enriching my partner’s sexual experience.” Another respondent brought up the issue of sharing the load of orgasming in bed, as she said that clitoral stimulation using sex toys could it make easier for both her and her partner to orgasm. One othr respondent said, “I think a sex toy is a great tool to have not just for solo pleasure but also to stimulate your partner(s) during/before sex.”

So, now that you know how your compatriots feel about masturbation and sex toys, go ahead and have a happy quarantine!

Feature image illustration by Akanksha Bhatt for Homegrown

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