Girl Boner: The Good Girl's Guide to Sexual Empowerment

Girl Boner: The Good Girl's Guide to Sexual Empowerment

by August McLaughlin

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781944995713
Publisher: Amberjack Publishing Company
Publication date: 08/07/2018
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 249,778
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

August McLaughlin is a nationally recognized health and sexuality writer, author and host and creator of Girl Boner® and Girl Boner Radio. Her work appears in DAME Magazine, the Huffington Post, LIVESTRONG.com and more. Known for melding personal passion, artistry and activism, August uses her skills as a public speaker and journalist to encourage other women to embrace their bodies and selves, making way for fuller, more authentic lives. augustmclaughlin.com

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CHAPTER 1

THE ORGASM THAT CHANGED MY LIFE

I never imagined that a routine, if somewhat melancholy, day would end in one of the most beautiful and powerful lovemaking experiences of my life — the kind that leaves one elated, intoxicated, and swimming in grateful tears. My husband was away, after all. Nor had I imagined that one sexual experience could change my life as I knew it, leaving me in an enigmatic ocean of what ifs.

But that is exactly what happened.

I'd recently transitioned from my longtime modeling and acting career to writing full-time, and my husband of one year was away, working long hours on a commercial — a scenario to which I'd grown accustomed. I'd spent much of the day working on a story, an hour or two walking my deaf American bulldog, and a short while tidying our home (okay ten minutes, let's be real) and cooking the simplest curry I could conjure. All evening I'd been trying to lure myself away from a hefty case of the blahs. I wasn't clinically depressed; I know, because I've been there. I just wasn't feeling particularly happy, as though my normally high-voltage light bulb had fizzled to dim. Making matters worse, the lonely gap longed not only to be filled, but coddled and cured by another. While I adored my husband and having someone to miss, that needy, pining feeling had to go. You should feel strong and fulfilled, I told myself, whole on your own.

Only I wasn't — not that night.

I didn't have a good reason to feel low, other than being someone prone to such lapses. I also lacked the strength and fortitude to pull myself from it. I should write more and stronger, I told myself. Getting lost in story was the best medicine I'd found. If writing didn't remove my sadness, it usually lessened or distracted me somewhat from it. But that night, my thoughts were fixated elsewhere.

Was I merely insecure? I wondered. I was definitely insecure, I concluded. But was that all?

As though on cue my cell phone buzzed, alerting me to a text message. I leaped for it, hoping it was my husband — a serendipitous I'm done and coming home early! message.

Nope.

Hey, babe. You around tonight?

Chad ... My heart swelled at the thought of him as I stared longingly at the phone. The sexy, successful actor and I had met on one of my first nights out in the Hollywood scene and had shared explosive chemistry. Had I still been single I would have responded, met up with him, and drowned my emptiness in cocktails and conversation until pheromones took over and we ended up naked and entangled in his Hollywood Hills home. But I was married — happily so — and honestly didn't feel the need or desire for anyone else. The distraction, escape, and release such an interlude would bring, however, I could've used by the truckload.

I entertained the notion for a few moments, more daydream/fantasy style than intention-filled, which only made me feel worse. So. Flipping. Alone. I'm pathetic, I reminded myself — Bridget Jones and her diary had nothing on me. It's too bad I barely ever drink.

Get over yourself! I thought, hitting 'delete' on Chad's message. You have so much to be grateful for. Count your damn blessings. You'll feel better tomorrow. Just ... breathe.

Hoping for distraction, I flipped the TV on, and scrolled through programs that failed to tantalize, then perused Netflix. The automated service suggested — I'm not kidding — Diary of a Nymphomaniac. (If there's a God, she has a serious sense of humor.) Heck, I figured. Why not?

Minutes into the Spanish film about a young woman with an intense sex drive, I wondered if there had ever been anyone as masochistic as me. The very raw and real sensual scenes only highlighted my desperation, adding thoughts of I wish I were sleeping to the mix, if only to escape the day.

Why didn't my husband struggle with such yearning when I was away? At least, he never seemed to — and being the [begin strikethrough]nosy[end strikethrough] inquisitive type, I'd certainly asked. He missed me, sure, but seemed less ... that word again: needy.

Perhaps my couple of years of sexually free, explorative singlehood between relationships hadn't been enough. His sexual history was far more diverse than mine, after all, having been an established musician and numerous years older than me. His confidence and experience were evident in his every move between the sheets, and I gratefully benefited. While some of that could have derived from natural forte and, I liked to think, our mutual chemistry, I imagined that he'd learned a heck of a lot along the way. So many experiences. So many ... women.

Ugh. No, no, no! AAAACK. Was I jealous!?! As if needy hadn't been enough!

I began picturing previous women he'd dated, then imagined many more — groupies throwing themselves at him after concerts, erotic film-worthy one-night stands, threesomes in hipster hotels I had no idea if he'd ever partaken in. He must have had countless seductive fans and encounters in his musician days. The guy is hot, after all, and always has been. Oddly, I didn't care who the women were — whether they were cool or gawky, erotic or timid, lovely or plain. I wasn't jealous of his partners, I realized, but of his comparably vast experience I would never have.

The more I pondered my husband's sexual escapades, the more I craved him and his body, to relish every escapade he'd ever had. I wanted him to show me, to describe every sensual detail, turn me on (even more), and carry me into erotic ecstasy. In my mind, I played make-believe clips of him with lovers like a rock star porn film, wishing I could edit myself into it.

Damn it! Why couldn't he be here?

My hand moved involuntarily between my legs, a place I had never explored solo. (Yes, you read that right. In my thirty years of life, I had never masturbated, and had no idea how uncommon that was.) Through the crotch of my thin cotton pants I felt the heated swell of my pussy, its seemingly unquenchable want. I rubbed it for a frustrated moment, wishing like hell doing so would make me come. But rubbing had never done much for me, not without a firm penis tucked inside. A firm penis. If only ...

Wait. The toy!

The epiphany replaced my angst with giddy curiosity. As a gag wedding gift, a girlfriend of mine had given us a dildo set. We hadn't used it, but, enticed by the thought, had stashed it away under the heading of "maybe someday." If I couldn't have a hard cock of flesh, a prosthetic seemed like the next best thing! What was the harm in trying?

Feeling like a nervous teenager, I raced to the closet and pulled the sex toy kit from the wooden chest where we'd stored it. Rifling through layers of quilts and sweaters, my hand fell on the firm package. Simply touching it added vigor to my want and a happy curve to my lips.

I pulled the kit out then removed its casing, staring at the dildo in awe. The hot pink, plastic penis glowed in the dark, given preemptive light exposure, but no way would I waste time waiting. Besides, where it was going was lit up plenty already.

I climbed onto the bed, clutching the toy like newfound treasure. As I peeled away my clothing, I glimpsed my reflection in the wall mirror. Blush crept up my neck and into my cheeks, as though I'd been lost in passionate kisses. Salivating, I watched my chest move up and down, marking labored breathing. My back arched involuntarily, pushing my rear outward in kitty-like play. Everything about me seemed to have gone from frumpy and sad to titillating and turned on. If I could've kissed myself, lips on lips, twin tongues exploring, I would have. I wasn't attracted to myself, but to how it felt and appeared to be so gloriously aroused. I couldn't recall the last time I'd felt so uninhibited and alive.

Wishing I had a man — any man, my man — there to push up against, envelop and ride, I said screw it. Then "screw it," I did. When I pressed the tip of the dildo to my clitoris, chills rushed over my skin. I was wet — really wet — and visibly swollen. In the mirror I could see my vaginal lips bulging outward, like fiery rosebuds blooming. I slid the toy inside me, moaning as delight spread through my body. I was making love to no one in midair. Sublime.

Overwhelmed by the need to grab onto someone or something, I piled two pillows on top of each other and straddled them. I rocked to and fro on Mr. Pillow, the dildo like a ready-to-launch rocket inside of me, my urge to climax so strong I could barely breathe. Within minutes it happened, the thing I had never deemed myself capable of. Pleasure seemed to shoot through every cell in my body, so hard that I released an uncontrollable wail. Then I crumpled to the bed, tears flooding my cheeks. I did it, I thought. I really did it.

I had made myself come. I'd masturbated!

Desperate to share the enlightening experience with someone, I phoned my husband. "Oh my god. That's ... Um, wow! That's amazing, baby," he said, laughing in a tickled way, awed appreciation evident in his "I'm at work" tone. (That conversation would go down as one of our favorites of all time.)

That night I struggled to sleep. Amid my euphoric, nearly intoxicated state, my thoughts swirled back through my youth and early adulthood — so many years sans masturbation. How would my life have been different had I learned the art of self-stimulation and pleasure years ago? Profoundly, I deduced; no question about it.

I recalled my high school boyfriend and first sex partner, Aiden. By that time, it had been ingrained in me that people were to be in love and, more importantly, married, before having sex, aka: what I understood to be intercourse. Ideally to make a baby I had no intention of having. I wasn't even terribly attracted to Aiden when we'd met, but he had taken an interest in me, for reasons I couldn't fathom, given my dwindling sense of self-worth, and I was intrigued. Once our relationship grew physical (the first time we had sex he said, "You know this means we have to get married, right?"), I developed a sincere fondness. Now, I wondered, for what? We'd broken up countless times, only to end up back together, caught up in a make-up sex marathon. Loved ones had told me numerous times that Aiden seemed controlling. Had he been?

From my first time on, sex had seemed like necessary medicine, a way to release the tension in my body and brain, to help me think and feel more clearly — even before I'd overcome long-standing body image and self-esteem problems (though granted, for years I refused to make love with the lights on). I recalled the many times I had struggled to focus in classes throughout adolescence, not because of sexual cravings, but what I'd called "brain fog." My then undiagnosed ADHD couldn't have been the only issue. Even if it had been, talk about groovy medicine ... Meanwhile, I obsessed over boys, whether or not they might find me attractive, assuming they most certainly did not, because I felt anything but. My declining self-esteem and poor body image seemed inseparable. One fueled the other like a snowball careening down a hill, growing in size and velocity. What if I had masturbated then? Would the sun have shone through the fog, even somewhat? Would I have had a taste of the relaxation and empowerment I was experiencing now? Feel less lonely? Less desperate? More complete?

I considered my relationship history, what my mother has jokingly compared to "a very interesting movie." Throughout my twenties, starting post-breakup with Aiden, I'd tried to remain single for a while, to feel happy and strong on my own because it seemed like the healthy thing to do. Yet each stint ended in a hormonally charged new beginning with Mr. Seemed-Right. I leaped from one serious relationship to another, most ending in a tumultuous breakup. Within each partnership, I seemed to lose valuable parts of myself. Only afterward, in my stints of singleness, did some level of empowerment find me. But inevitably, horniness won out and I would be back in a relationship. Because, obviously, if we were going to have sex, we had to at least think we were headed toward marriage. Like mirrors, I'd attracted guys as insecure as I was or who thrived on my deficiencies. Would I have forged so many relationships if I'd been inclined to address my sexual urges myself? Certainly masturbation wasn't a substitute for intimate relationships. Even as a rookie, that was clear. Regardless, I sensed multitudinous benefits.

Virtually the only time I hadn't craved sex and sought it somewhat frequently took place when I was modeling in NYC and Europe in my late teens, work compared to using sex appeal to sell, ironically. Then, my unaddressed ADHD, related depression, and body image issues had transformed into anorexia — a disease that robs the sufferer of her femininity, every curve and sexual want, and one that dang near took my life. Would all of that have happened had I been more connected with myself sexually? I didn't know, but I did sense a significant correlation.

More questions accumulated in my mind like flakes in a dizzy snow globe: Where had my sexuality begun? At birth? With menstruation? (I flashed back to my mom's "You're a woman now ..." speech, which I had stomped away from, refusing to listen.) With Aiden? Losing my virginity? It certainly hadn't started in sex ed class. From where had my beliefs about my sexual behaviors and capabilities derived?

I thought of my grandmother, who taught me early on that everything "down there" is "private," and shouldn't be touched by anyone — not even me. Of my grandfather, a pastor, who had sexually, physically, and emotionally abused my mother. Of the bizarre twist of fate that saved me from the same (which you'll read about later). Of the decades I'd spent loathing my body's shape and appearance. Of the major depression and poor body image my mother and I had both endured. Of the lingering insecurities I hadn't been able to shake or make a dent in, even with years of internal self-work and strengthening. Of my loving husband, who embraced me, quirks and all.

I looked down at my naked body that night, trembling, pink, and post-coital, and saw for perhaps the first time the precious castle I'd been living in, yet had long neglected. Making love with myself dusted off a layer of dislike, revealing authenticity, inner beauty, and potential. My sparse tears turned into soft weeping as it hit me: here I was at age thirty, finally learning to fully love my body and, by extension, myself.

That night opened my eyes to what I'd been missing for decades, which went far beyond masturbation. It began to dawn on me that embracing our sexuality and capacity for pleasure can be as crucial to living a full, healthy life as eating a balanced diet, breathing well, and getting sufficient nightly sleep. How can we live sensuous lives if we don't embrace our sexuality and all that it stands for, or if we buy into damaging sex-related myths (of which, I would learn, there are too many)? How many of the negative notions about female sexuality were invalid? Do we really desire or value sex less than men? I'd long questioned that, given my own ready appetite and the simple fact that the notion made no rational sense whatsoever. Guys are expected to masturbate; why aren't we, damn it? Were other women grappling with similar struggles and epiphanies? Surely I wasn't a unique case — or even close, I imagined. How would all of our lives differ if women were encouraged to celebrate and explore their sexuality?

To answer these questions, I would have to put my research cap on — not for the sake of articles or novels I was working on, for once, but to make sense of my own journey and women's place in the world. If there was one thing I'd learned by then, it was that digging deeper and gaining an understanding of oneself are keys to emotional fulfillment. And besides, I've never been one to ignore curiosity. Little did I know then that through my investigation I would discover what I now believe to be my life's purpose. You're holding a very special part of it in your hands.

Truth be told, my fascination with female sexuality started long before my life-altering orgasm, in a quaint Minnesota town filled with anxious pubescents like me and an unforgettable teacher who would spur one of my life's most important questions.

(Continues…)


Excerpted from "Girl Boner"
by .
Copyright © 2018 August McLaughlin.
Excerpted by permission of Amberjack Publishing.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

Foreword by Megan Fleming, PhD,
Introduction: What's a "Good Girl?",
Chapter One: The Orgasm That Changed My Life,
Chapter Two: What About Girl Boners?,
Chapter Three: Girl Boner Anatomy,
Chapter Four: Arousal and Desire,
Chapter Five: The Big, Bodacious 'O',
Chapter Six: How to Slay at Solo Play,
Chapter Seven: All About Oral Sex,
Chapter Eight: Loving Your Body, For Real,
Chapter Nine: Stress, Depression, and Anxiety, Oh My,
Chapter Ten: Birth Control Basics,
Chapter Eleven: Safer Sex and STIs,
Chapter Twelve: Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation,
Chapter Thirteen: Oh My Goddess!,
Chapter Fourteen: Porn Perks, Problems, and the Penises in Between,
Chapter Fifteen: Healing From Trauma or Abuse,
Chapter Sixteen: Healthy Relationships,
Chapter Seventeen: Sex Toys 101,
Chapter Eighteen: Whips, Chains, and BDSM,
Chapter Nineteen: Empowering Sex Positions,
Chapter Twenty: Arousing Your Life,
Acknowledgements,
About the Author,
Endnotes,

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