Female masturbation seems to intrigue a lot of people, either because they cant figure out how common it is, or how girls do it at all. Or, of course, for voyeuristic reasons, as has been the case with most of the email anticipating this page.
I dont really know what proportion of girls masturbate, or how often, but I do it. Sometimes a lot, sometimes not as much. Not very much lately, because I live with my beloved boy and have sex almost every day, but when one of us goes somewhere for any length of time, I masturbate some.
There are lots of reasons that I have masturbated. Most often just because I wanted to, but also occasionally to get to sleep, or to help cramps or a headache, and sometimes to help get aroused, in which case I wouldnt follow through to orgasm. I didnt ever masturbate to relax before a date or a party.
The first time I masturbated was in grade 8. The idea hadnt occurred to me until it was discussed in sex education class. The class convinced me that it wasnt wrong or unhealthy, but I knew that my dork status would be elevated to perverted dork if anyone ever had reason to suspect my habits.
Until about grade 10, I dont remember having any kind of discussion about masturbation with any of my friends, except in the context of dirty jokes. For the rest of high school, the most myself or my girl friends would say was impersonal and kind of political. Agreeing that masturbation by girls in general should be accepted, the way it was for boys. Stating that it was silly that a masturbating boy was deemed healthy while a masturbating girl should be taken to the doctor. I dont remember guys getting in on the discussion.
That was all more applicable in a small, redneck town such as we lived in. Some girl once made a comment in health class to the effect that she couldnt be expected to know what her vagina looked like because she would never, ever look at it. Only my friend and myself were taken aback.
Until I was about 20, I never discussed or referred to masturbation, so I didn't develop any other names for it. I knew various names but didnt use them. I dont remember telling a lot of masturbation jokes, and Im pretty sure I never accused anybody of it or made fun of them for it. Currently, I prefer to refer to my own masturbation as either "availing myself of myself," or as, umm... beating my meat (when I am being silly).
The only girl I have ever witnessed masturbating was at a sleepover in grade nine, when I woke up early. It was nothing graphic (she was still laying in bed), I could just tell what she was doing. All I thought was that she was kind of dumb for not realizing I was awake, as I presumed she didnt want me to see.
She was proceeding in about the same way I would, as far as I could tell, and the existence of radically different methods didnt occur to me until like last year.