In the last few years, drinking alone, traveling alone, and eating alone have become increasingly acceptable and understood in Japan. It refers to actions and experiences that value your own pace and thoughts. From the idea of being mentally independent and not depending on others, you can assert you position in society without negative feelings such as “loneliness” or “being a loner,” and take the chance to develop a new self. Having time to yourself is more difficult than you can imagine in the digital age. In other words, the opportunity to fully immerse yourself in something and find new values just because you’re alone doesn’t come so easily. Ironically, the pandemic has given many people the opportunity to do so.
In sex education, solo sex, i.e., masturbation is said to make you love yourself and increase your sense of self-affirmation. The idea is that you will become comfortable accepting others and naturally become kinder to everyone. Being alone is an important time for a person to face oneself and touching your body for pleasure is synonymous with reconfirming yourself. Sex Educator and popular blogger CarlyS talks charitably about solo sex.
——How did you become a sex-educator?
Carly: I used to work for Harley Davidson. There, I discovered there is a lot of discrimination towards sex and race. Even with this going on, I found out that a sex toy shop would open, so I applied for a supervisor’s job. I received guidance from wonderful people at sex education workshops. The workshop participants were given advice on how to enrich their lives and get pleasure through sex.
——You’re currently working on promoting body-positivity and as a sex educator, right?
Carly: There aren’t many sex educators that look like me, but although it was hard at first, I managed to become successful. The mainstream is an appearance game, popularizing people who are thin and beautifully tanned, like the models in “Victoria’s Secret.” People like me who have white skin and a lot of tattoos are not as popular. So, many people wonder how I can be confident in myself.
——How did you gain confidence in yourself?
Carly: My mother raised me for many years to feel beautiful no matter how I looked. Everyone has something beautiful about them. I was lucky to be able to grow up believing in myself and being strong. I was blessed with my family, my best friends, and the people I’ve worked with. My colleagues are truly kind and mentors I respect. This was all a good influence on me and helped me become an educator.
——Carly’s blog “TAKE YOUR OWN ADVICE”, You write solo sex helping body positivity. When did you start thinking that way?
Carly: I guess it was when I was in college. I left my parents’ home in New York and went to a competitive university in Pennsylvania, but there were so many people who discriminated against me. I was laughed at and became suspicious of everything. I attended music school and worked in the student section. I also worked as a stripper. I also ended up going to court with the police as a witness to a murder case. The course work was difficult, and I later returned to New York later to get my degree, but I didn’t have any time for myself because I was spending all my time with others. I was able to love myself through solo sex and found that I better communicate with others. When you discover how to pleasure your body through exploration, you will be able to give pleasure to others.
All these experiences have made me stronger. Even if I were ashamed and had low self-confidence, I strongly wanted to inspire others, so I would have acted positively to overcome the difficulties.
——Are there any rules for solo sex?
Carly: Don’t hurt people or use animals or children. Other than that, there’s no wrong way to do it. Just touch and feel your body. Typical methods don’t necessarily apply to your pleasure, so you should try many things.
When I was working at the sex toy shop, I found that what applies to me doesn’t necessarily apply to others. I think it’s important to feel pleasure on your own. First, it is important to know your desires and explore what turns you on. Using a vibrator or other sex toy to discover your G-spot and find out what feels good when touching yourself is normal. I want everyone to be happy through sex.
——Do your followers enjoy solo sex?
Carly: They enjoy solo sex with different forms, toys and accessories. I have a lot of questions about toys, but I ask questions such as which parts of my body are looking for stimulation, how much stimulation I want, and what kind of feeling I like. Feel your own senses and respond to them as necessary.
——Has the pandemic affected your thinking?
Carly: Not really, but I think about how to help keep people connected with each other and how to relieve stress. I give advice when people have stress-related suppressed libido, and I also help people connect with their partners when separated by distance.
I pray that many people will be able to live in balance. I want you to feel pleasure and relieve stress. I work with New Yorkers in particular, so I think it’s important to breathe deeply and calm down no matter what happens. Many New Yorkers are always stressed and when they attend my seminars, they can relax and give themselves permission to breathe deeply and many feel liberated by it.
Recently, she has been writing articles, answering user questions, and running her website, Spectrum Boutique an online sex toy shop. We also produce pornography and hold webinars. We’ve held summits in the past to appeal to free sexual expression, and we’re planning to hold solo sex seminars and digital conferences in the near future.
——Has there been any change in your followers?
Carly: I think they’ve changed in a good way. I’m more interested in toys and spending time with myself. Toy sales are also increasing, so more and more people are enjoying solo sex. I’m putting a lot of effort into SNS. I specialize in toys, so I’m focusing on giving my followers and users tips and advice on how to use them. The advise is give doesn’t change much based on gender. Our bodies are similar, and I will introduce you to a toy that is easy to use if you are a beginner. I want you to find what gives you the most pleasure.
——Is there a good way to increase self-estem?
Carly: There are a lot of tips on my website, but the most important thing is to take care of yourself. Take care of the parts of your body that you don’t like when in the bath and pour your love into it. For example, my feet are really dry so I apply my favorite lotion. Starting by caring about things you don’t usually pay attention to is important. It is also important to praise yourself every day, and honestly accept when people praise you instead of denying it. You don’t know who is having a hard time, so praise people for any little thing, such as their smile or their outfit. Expanding your energy by bringing little sparks of joy to someone’s day could make all the difference for them.
If it’s going to been a long day just getting up and having breakfast is special. It’s great just to be able to do something. Don’t think too hard when giving praise, something simple about my appearance, such as “You have beautiful brown eyes!” is perfect.
——You always work with compassion, don’t you?
Carly: Do you know Mr. (Fred) Rogers? He was the host of the popular American children’s show “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” and was a long-running show from the 1960’s and I loved watching it. He accepted any child and treated them kindly. I saw people attacking each other and always wished they could empathize and understand each other more. Puberty is difficult. From my own experience of bullying, I want people who are being bullied now, to know that it’ll be over someday, so everything will be fine.
Calm down and be positive to change the world. I’m also trying to change my mind to be more positive. For example, when I see people wearing pajamas on the subway, some people may make fun of them, but I think it’s fine if they’re having fun. I don’t care at all if someone speaks ill of me. They just don’t understand my taste. I understand that it’s impossible for everyone to have the same hobbies.
We plan to create a production company in the future. With body positivity, I want to create work that makes viewers feel comfortable, confident, and sexy. I want to find a place where they can be satisfied because I want somewhere that I’m satisfied. I want to shoot in a studio, a bar, or at home, but in New York City everything is expensive. In any case, I want to get away from New York, so I might start out in the suburbs.