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  • Writer's pictureJaye Gaff

Mum, what's a sex toy?

I must admit, as open as I like to think I am, this question stumped me a bit. Can you admit to your 10 year old that you use sex toys? Should a child ever know that about their parent?

I moved from wanting to lie my fucking ass off to trying to be open and honest. And, so, I told her. A sex toy is, mostly, what people use for self-pleasure. People use them to please themselves sexually. People use them during sex with other people. And, I explained, sex toys are a really great way to discover what you like so you can pleasure yourself but, also, become an expert at your own body so you can show any sexual partners what you like.

Conversation done. Nice and tidy. A pretty red bow. Except, now my child wants to know if I use sex toys. Fuck my life.

Have you used sex toys mum? Yes, I have. I think they're very important and when you're older we can talk about it some more. We can buy you some if you decide you want them when you're older.

I didn't think the sex toy conversation would be so hard because sex toys aren't shameful but... it's just weird. Do you pretend sex toys don't exist ever? Or do you lie and pretend until they hit eighteen and then go surprise, here's a vibrator?

I got my first vibrator when I was eighteen. I didn't know they really existed and, man, do I wish I'd been given the chance to explore my body with something designed to help me. But are parents supposed to help their kids in this regard? Am I supposed to put blinders on and pretend they don't exist? Or are we supposed to be proud that our kids want to explore their sexuality safely?

Should vibrators become more mainstream? Instead of gifting someone alcohol on their eighteenth should we gift someone a vibrator, a cock ring or a studded paddle? Clearly, I'm still stumped.

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