Grace Campbell has revealed the breakthrough moment when she no longer felt shame about masturbating after years of thinking she was the only one.
The writer and feminist, who is also the daughter of broadcaster Alistair Campbell, has worked towards dispelling the shame and embarrassment that often comes with women self-pleasuring, notably with her campaign Women Wank Too.
In the latest episode of Metro.co.uk’s Smut Drop podcast, Grace recalled how she began masturbating at a young age but it wasn’t until she was well into her adulthood that she realised her friends were doing it too.
Speaking to hosts Jackie Adedeji and Miranda Kane, the filmmaker said: ‘Masturbation being the earliest feeling of shame I had because I started wanking when I was really young and then no one mentioned it to me until I was 22.
‘So there was a period from seven years old until I was 22 where I thought I’m the only one out of my female friends who does this.’
She added: ‘I spoke to loads of my friends and everyone was like, “Yeah, I do that too”. I was like that’s so weird that none of us have spoken to each other about it. It’s really odd because men were talking about wanking in secondary school and I remember how in our faces they were about wanking, but we didn’t even know we were all doing that.’
A Womanizer survey of 20,000 people in 17 different countries about the Wanking Gap, found that 53.3% of women believe male masturbation is normalised and acceptable within pop culture.
It also discovered that nearly a third, 32.5%, feel that female masturbation is tainted with shame and negativity.
Grace said: ‘Women have been shamed for being sexual. Something that I’m obsessed with is this idea that men have higher sex drives than women, I just don’t believe that, [it’s just] a generalisation.
‘That’s just the aftermath of society forever being like men like to f**k and women are much more coy and shy and don’t masturbate and that’s why there’s this idea that men like to f**k more than women do. In my personal experience that isn’t true.’
Smut Drop is available to download from all your usual places, from Wednesday April 13. For a sneak peek, you can listen to our trailer .