Men and women masturbate. This is a fact. But women often don’t talk about masturbating.
The reticence around this topic, (and yes, we know
Jezebel and the lady blogs DO cover it) can lead to awkwardness, fumbling and young girls growing up thinking they are weird.
In response to this general silence, designer Tina Gong has created Happy Playtime, an app (currently in the crowdfunding stage) to “remove the stigma from female masturbation.”
This app aims to eliminate the mystique of masturbation by placing it in a friendly context and using an animated vulva to show you the inner workings of the vagina.
Happy Playtime has six levels, and utilizes the touchscreen to take you through the different parts of the anatomy with their “friendly neighborhood Vulva, Happy.”
“I like to masturbate. I feel really weird saying that, but I don’t think I should. In fact, this is the whole reason why I’m starting this project,” Gong wrote on the Happy Playtime website about trying to deconstruct the stigma around female stimulation. “By talking openly and lightheartedly about female masturbation, we are taking the first step to becoming truly sexually liberated.”
The objective of this app is to make “Happy the vulva really, really, really happy” and the demo video basically suggests you get the vulva off.. and learn about your body in the process. You can also submit your own moves to let “Happy” reach orgasm, as “everybody is different.” However, if you’re worried everyone will know just how “you” like it, the data is published anonymously.
This isn’t a perfect solution. For one, the vulva, Happy, is animated and cutesy. But vulvas come in all shape and sizes and won’t always be cute. The chirpy friendly levels will help educate and entertain women, and men as well, about the anatomy. But if it’s really easy to move through levels by making Happy squeak that might set you up for unrealistic expectations in your daily sex life.
However, there is a board of educated consultants for the app, including Jessica Ladd of Sexual Health Innovations, who suggest the different stages of climax should be realistic.
However this pans out, it’s good that more people are taking female masturbation seriously.. and things can be serious even when they have a cute animated face.