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Masturbating Can Help You Cope With Anxiety — Seriously
Rita M., a 20-year-old social work student living in Seattle, Washington, used to masturbate three to five times a week. But as with everything else, during a global pandemic, self-pleasure has been hard to come by. She's not alone in finding it more difficult to engage in this form of self-care. And yet, the benefits of masturbation may actually come in more handy than ever. Tending to ourselves is one step in navigating a new normal.
“It has been more difficult to be ‘in the mood’ because, in my head, I ask myself, ‘Why is masturbation something I’m thinking about when there’s a pandemic happening in my backyard?’’ Rita tells InStyle. Witnessing enormous struggles and injustices by vulnerable populations dominates my mind. Masturbation gets brushed aside and distress consumes me.”
There's no doubt that coronavirus and it’s ripple-out effects — the obvious fear and worry, the restricted human interaction — have had negative impacts on people’s mental health. Back in March, 45% of Americans reported the virus had taken a toll on their emotional wellbeing, and according to a Kaiser Family Foundation poll, the number of people who are experiencing anxiety and depression has spiked as a result of the pandemic.