I have always done things on my own timeline and in my own way. I’m an Aquarius. So it’s no surprise to me that my journey with weed and masturbation have been unique; I didn’t smoke weed or masturbate until I was 18 and a senior in high school. But now, over seven years later these two self-care practices—which is how I see them—have been some of the most transformative forces in my life. Alongside my spiritual practice, I’ve been able to use plant medicine and orgasms as a way to heal, transform, and truly step into my power as a sexual being.

I don’t think I can talk about masturbation or weed without first mentioning shame. I grew up in Johns Creek, Georgia, a suburb of Atlanta in the Bible Belt. Think: mega churches that preach purity rings and non-believers going to hell, abstinence-only education, the War on Drugs, and lots of shame and fearmongering.

Until my sexual awakening around 16, I didn’t even realize that masturbation was a thing that I could do. I would spend hours in my basement (where I also smoked weed for the first time), sexting band dudes that were too old to even be talking to me, getting so horny that I felt like I would explode. But I would never touch myself. I didn’t start masturbating until a couple years later.

When I finally smoked weed that same year, I felt much of the same shame that I had felt over my sexuality. I felt both excited and invigorated by doing something that was considered “wrong,” but I also felt like I was enjoying something I wasn’t meant to enjoy. Although I didn’t realize it at the time, I had internalized a lot of fear and embarrassment about the way I related to my own body.

“I didn’t realize it at the time, I had internalized a lot of fear and embarrassment about the way I related to my own body.”

Now at the tender age of 25, I smoke weed and masturbate almost daily. And while I still hold onto some shame around both of these topics (because that old programming is hard as hell to let go of), I also see these two parts of my life as integral to my health and my well-being. And by incorporating cannabis into my masturbation—working with both of these as tools for self-inquiry and self-care—I’ve been able to reach new highs of orgasms while also releasing shame around my pleasure.

Masturbation has been around for as long as humans have, and is depicted in cave paintings, and talked about in Egyptian myth. As far as cannabis goes, there’s been some evidence that this herb has been used for thousands of years; by sadhus in India, and by the Knights Templar in ritual in the 12th century. Today, we have the joy of easily combining both of these “vices” to help us connect to our bodies in a more holistic way.

If you’re looking to start on a journey of self-exploration utilizing plant medicine, my first piece of advice is to know that what you’re doing isn’t anything to feel embarrassed about. It’s okay to be ashamed, and you shouldn’t beat yourself up about feeling this way. Womxn are taught that pleasure is secondary when it comes to sex, but what cannabis and masturbation can do is help flip this narrative on its head. You deserve to feel delicious and sensual in your body; and in fact, knowing what brings you pleasure will only help you feel more connected when you have sex (or share some cannabis) with someone else.

One of the major things combining cannabis and masturbation have done for me is help me claim my sexuality. I have been able to figure out what feels good, so when I have sex with someone else I’m able to communicate what I want more confidently. I’m also incredibly aware of what pleasure feels like for me physically. Cannabis helps with this; allowing me to get out of my head (just air sign things) and back into my body. And since cannabis can also help with blood flow and increased sensation, it also leads to more intense physical feelings and more (or at least better) orgasms. A big plus.

How to get it done

Although I love a quickie as much as any other hustling millennial, I find that being intentional about my stoned solo-sex experience helps make it more satisfying. I like treating masturbation as a ritual; I set the scene with incense and candles, I prepare my supplies, I put some ambient music on and often, I’ll also set an intention. Then I grab my bong or a joint and my preferred strain of weed (I am currently loving Purple Dream) which I smoke in front of the mirror naked, or on my bed. You don’t have to be this specific, but taking time to create a relaxing environment can help you be present as you masturbate.

Choosing the right method of cannabis consumption for you is another big factor to consider. If you like to smoke weed, as I do, you may wish to sit in front of the mirror naked as you smoke, to help you get in touch with your body. If you don’t like smoking, you may wish to eat an edible, making sure to do this an hour or so before you begin to masturbate so you can feel its effects.

“Give yourself full permission to indulge in both weed and masturbation. Allow yourself the joy of being present with it, right here, right now.”

You can also work with CBD, one of THC’s non-psychoactive counterparts, if you’re feeling anxious or stressed and want to find your center before you begin to touch yourself. CBD is a specifically good tool to have in your sex witch arsenal, especially CBD lube or oil which can bring sensation to the vulva while also decreasing tension and dryness.

After choosing how you’ll be working with cannabis, you’ll want to grab the sex toys you’ll be using, if any. I love working with my Rose Quartz Chakrub to help me connect to my body in a more spiritual way. However, any sex toys (or the original sex toys, your hands) will do! If you’re working with a CBD lube, you’ll want to spend 20 to 30 minutes massaging this into your genitals to feel its full effects.

Once you’ve done this, or smoked or consumed your ganja, you may wish to take a second to breathe and connect to your body. Give yourself full permission to indulge in both weed and masturbation. Allow yourself the joy of being present with it, right here, right now.

Allow your body to ride the waves of the high and the waves of pleasure in whatever way feels best to you. I notice that when I smoke and masturbate, I have more access to my heart; I’m able to be more emotionally connected, more present in what pleasure I’m feeling, and less distracted by other thoughts. Try your best to remain present, and have self-compassion with yourself on this journey.

Each time you allow yourself to receive the wisdom of these practices, you help silence the internalized shame you might feel about them. And even if you can’t orgasm, or don’t feel completely comfortable with these practices yet, taking baby steps to prioritize your pleasure is worth it.

No matter where you are on your sex and/or cannabis journey, may your own body and the earth guide you into living more radically, with more satisfaction, and may you return to the empowerment of weed and masturbation whenever you need.

SHOP

By Gabriela Herstik

September 4, 2019

Gaby Herstik is a writer, columnist, and witch. She’s the author of Inner Witch and is a regular contributor to High Times, Nylon, and more.