Being a sex toy user, sadly, still carries a stigma in most countries and societies. No matter how carefully you use them, no matter how much safe fun you have with them, a lot of people finding out you not only have one sex toy, but actually several that you lovingly put to use during solo or partnered fun, will still treat you as a pervert and possibly dangerous to society. Or at least, that was my personal experience a couple of years back, when I went to pick up my latest shipment of sex toys from customs.
I had picked up such a package before. The previous time the customs officer had only been mildly embarrassed when I told him what was inside my package and had discreetly opened it outside of the line of view of the other people waiting to reclaim their stuff, letting me leave my package with only a minimum of fuss. I had been pleased at how progressive my society was, and I had expected the same thing would happen now.
However, instead of the regular guy there was this rather unpleasant customs officer who told me he’d have to open the package to verify what was in there. I said sure, knock yourself out, it’s what you are here to do, after all...but he proceeded to do it in front of everyone, carefully removing each and every one of the items and holding it aloft for everybody to see.
I had ordered four or five different sex toys because there had been a sale, and he started asking questions that I couldn’t help but notice he hadn’t asked of the kind old lady before me that had received a shipment of at least a dozen woolen sweaters.
Why had I ordered so many? Was I going to sell them? Why was I buying sex toys in the first place...all this in front of the twenty or so people behind me who were waiting for their packages, including a pair of very stern-looking elderly nuns, there to pick up a shipment of bibles for their biblical school (I know this because the customs guy took so long that they, and several others, got their packages from the other customs officer in the meantime). I explained, through clenched teeth, that yes, they were all for me. No, I didn’t intend to sell any of them. And why I needed that many was none of his business, thank you very much.
Eventually, he relinquished his hold on my package, and he allowed me to escape among nasty snickering, lecherous leers, disapproving tittering and the condemning glare of both elderly nuns. One of the men in line even made an attempt to grab my ass as I passed him. I actually didn’t have such a bad time of it when I came out as bisexual at work earlier this year. Certainly nobody tried to grab my ass then.
This experience was so bad, in fact, that it made me reluctant to order any more sex toys for a while and made me much more careful who I let know about my non-vanilla proclivities. This even included sexual partners for a while. I had been so traumatized by everybody’s reaction to my getting a few sex toys that I was willing to put up with a lot of shitty sex in order to avoid any future humiliation.
Happily, I realized this was not my fault and that if everyone wanted to be an immature ass about it, it was their problem and not mine, and now I’m back to my normal, kinky ways.
I’d love to live in a time where I can be as open about my sexuality as I like, but sadly, that time is not here yet. There is still much we have to do if we want to be accepted for who we are without risking hostility and ridicule, and there is no time like the present. So go out there, get a toy for yourself, bring them up in conversation to your friends the next time they are discussing juicy things, and open the dialogue with your partners about how you can incorporate them into your sex life if you’re so inclined.
Maybe one day we’ll be able to go to pick up a big shipment of sex toys to the customs office and get no shit for it, but actually the respect that we deserve for our bravery and adventurousness.