I was preparing to teach a sensual massage training recently and took down Caffyn Jesse’s excellent manual “Erotic Massage for Healing and Pleasure” off my bookshelf.
I was struck by a section I hadn’t noticed before, in which she highlights the perils of the ‘donut massage”. Unfortunately unrelated to my fantasies of a foot massage with a side of honey crullers, Caffyn explains that a “donut massage” is any standard RMT-style massage, in which the bodyworker touches every part of your body EXCEPT your genitals.
Caffyn pulls no punches, pointing out that donut massages harm our erotic selves, “inasmuch as they communicate the message that our genitals and surrounding tissue are untouchable…”.
I’d never considered the harmful sex-shaming undertones of something as seemingly-innocent as an RMT massage, but now that she pointed it out it seemed obvious. The genital-touch taboo of a ‘vanilla’ massage tells us: ‘Every other part of your body deserves touch and pleasure, except your genitals.’
Following the same logic of a body/sex divide, our culture also separates genitals and the rest of the body in how we express ourselves sexually. In porn, self-pleasuring and partnered sex, we often fixate on genitals and neglect the erotic potential of the rest of the body.
This culturally-created chasm between genitals/sex and the rest of the body is why sensual massage offers such deep pleasure and healing potential.
In sensual bodywork, no part of ourselves is overlooked or overemphasized. Each part of the body is honoured, integrated and welcomed into wholeness.
Integrating cock or pussy touch with seamless strokes on and towards other areas of the body, for example, allows for the discovery of new erogenous zones in the toes, neck, inner thigh, belly, back of the knee and fingertips.
As new pathways of pleasure are formed throughout our body, we connect with different areas of erotic function, meaning and sensitivity, supporting and strengthening our sensual being as a whole.
For example, we can foster connection between the heart and genitals by holding both in stillness or having hands glide up from the genitals to heart, drawing erotic energy up to ignite our courage and our openness to loving.
Stillness or firm touch on our feet during a sensual massage can provide grounding for clients who might otherwise energetically ‘lift off’ or feel light headed as they explore new heights of arousal.
After all of the body is fully touched and attended to, my clients sometimes speak beautifully of feeling seen in their true essence, more intimately and fully than ever before. It is a sacred and profound experience. With each part of their body witnessed through the lens of pleasure, their spirit soars.
With that option on the menu, are you still settling for donut massages?