In Defence of Masturbation by Pearl Osibu

In Defence of Masturbation by Pearl Osibu

“99% of guys masturbate; the other 1% are lying” – someone too famous to mention but his initials are J. U. A – 2002

I’m a coffee drinker. Please don’t say good morning’ to me until I’ve had my coffee. I measure illness by my (in)ability to drink coffee. I know I am very sick when I cannot stomach coffee because however sick I am, even when I cannot eat, I drink my coffee. My alarm goes in the morning and the first thing I think is coffee. I have many anecdotes I won’t bore you with, like how once my son (from another mother) drank the last of my coffee and that day, he saw another side of me he did not recognise, or about the time a hotel I was staying at loaded me down with all kinds of fancy teas and no coffee. I went from room to room knocking on the doors of other guests, asking, begging for their own coffee (don’t freak out, they were my colleagues) and when I finally got someone to answer the phone, I screeched, ‘that person who cleaned my room, tell him to never come near my room again’ and such hysteria…wait, I said I won’t bore you. But you get the idea. I am unapologetic about it.

Now, I grew up hearing coffee was bad for me. But when you really like something, you might want to do some research to bust some myths and hopefully find something that supports and vindicates you, e.g air conditioner is bad for babies (a lie), or chocolate is bad for you (another lie of the devil). And so I did my research and found out that while coffee is not exactly good for me, it’s not bad for me either. It all depends on how much of it I drink. I don’t drink it until my nerves start thrumming – in fact, I drink half a mug in the morning and I’m done. Once I get to the point where the zing wears off halfway through the day and I need another shot to get through the rest of theday, my alarm bells start to go off and I take a break. I might begin to reduce the quantity or I might go cold turkey. Because what I fear more than not having coffee is being useless and unable to function without coffee.

So, since I found out (abeg do your research yourself) that barring my suffering certain health issues, coffee’s not going to kill me any faster than, say, eba, there is no motivation to quit coffee-drinking. Which is exactly what I tell people who tell me to stop drinking coffee. I tell them obviously, moderation is key but until you can convince me it is bad for me…

I know you my intelligent readers have made the leap and drawn the analogy between my whole rant about coffee and masturbation. You are still reading, not because you don’t see it, but because you are intrigued. You’re welcome.

Why are people in general and Nigerians in particular shy about masturbation? Once I said to my flatmate “Oh by the way, I have masturbated on this couch before” and he goes “Eeew.” LOL. Okay, perhaps that was TMI (perhaps???)

Fine, like sex, you don’t want to masturbate in front of people, unless you are into being watched (reverse voyeurism?).  But if asked if you, you know, pleasure yourself, how many people would readily admit that they did? Most times, what I get is “I used to but I stopped about five years ago.” Okay, isn’t that a tone reserved for vices, say smoking? I wouldn’t even adopt that tone to describe drinking, unless of course we’re talking about alcoholism, in which case you may need to become a complete teetotaller so as not to fall off the wagon.

Why the denial and distancing of oneself from masturbation?  My amateur psychology tells me it is the innate, albeit unvoiced and perhaps unacknowledged belief that it is wrong.

Is it though?


What could be wrong about loving your own body, exploring it and pleasuring it? What archaic mental stronghold has got people in thrall that they believe that while it is okay to titillate their taste buds and other sensory organs (even gossip, I daresay is a form of titillation), there is something wrong with masturbation?

Clearly, if you are prone to substance abuse (there are even some medications that people in this category are not allowed), you might want to abstain in order not to become sexually useless – I have heard stories of people that prefer ‘taking matters into their own hands’ even when they are with a sexual partner, wahaladey. But if you are not and abstain simply out of guilt, you might want to think about it critically. What exactly is wrong with it?

See, masturbation can;

  • save you from murder. Have you not seen where a person is just just acting crazy and their nerves are jarred and you just know all they need is to release that knot? Why torture yourself?
  • save you from useless mediocre sex. True. If you are not fully persuaded that you want to be with someone but it is doing you I suggest instead of settling,  it is more sensible to take matters into your own hands.
  • Some ‘science’ suggests it helps with certain ailments like tension headaches. Some even go so far as to say you could live longer.

These things are normal. Don’t be too hard on yourself.


Whatever my issues with Pastor Chris Oyakhilome, I will forever be grateful to him for supporting masturbation. It couldn’t have been easy for him to say such a thing knowing the average thinking. But say it he did and oh the people he set free.

Set yourself free today and ‘take your affairs in hand’. *sic*

Errr, you’re welcome.


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Images courtesy the author

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  1. henry

    Pearl, oh, Pearlly, it takes guts to write on this piece.

    YEAH, many Nigerians wank, including its most hardened critics. Right or wrong? No comment cos I run nobody’s conscience or beliefs. Scientifically proven to be okay? Pros and cons exist.
    My stand? Prefer the real thing.


  2. JJ

    The best thing about this article is the cover photo… I might just use it for my night cap walking LOL.

    Bold article


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