Okay, people, Bush is out, Obama is in, and it's a whole new world now. It's time to let go of old conservative fears. You know what I'm talking about: fear of vibrators. Whether it's a mighty Hitachi Magic Wand or a wee Doc Johnson probe, having a vibrator in bed with you and your lover does not mean the terrorists have won.

I had assumed that uneasiness about sex toys ("If I were a good enough lover, she/he wouldn't need that! I will be replaced by a device!") was largely a '90s sort of thing, mostly confined to nervous straight guys. Vibrators are very readily available now, and we've seen that they have not supplanted actual cocks attached to actual men. Masturbation is a wonderful thing—believe me, I know—and sex-toy design has progressed a long way. But a toy still can't kiss you or talk to you. I have never known a woman who broke up with a lover just because she had a boxful of Babeland's best under the bed. Vibrators can enhance sexual relationships, but they don't replace them.

Apparently the stigma lingers, however, and it's more widespread than I thought. Just the other day, I was talking to a woman who told me her new lover was uncomfortable with her need to use a vibrator to orgasm during sex. The kicker? She and her lover are both kinky and queer. Her lover is female-bodied but male-identified.

What? Genderqueer perverts getting angsty about vibrators? That's like Paula Deen being angsty about butter. Certain things just go together, and queer kinky people and sex toys definitely go together. If people like this—the shock troops of sex—are troubled by vibrators, then clearly we need to address it for everyone.

Let go of your preconceived ideas about how your lover should have her orgasms. Sex is not supposed to happen one way and one way only. Some women need a very specific type of stimulation to get off. It might be because that's how they've always masturbated, or it might be because they have medical issues—being on anti-depressants, for example—that make it difficult for them to come. Maybe, over time, your lover can learn to orgasm without a vibrator. If she wants to, then you two can play with that, but it's not essential that she does. And putting pressure on her is about the worst possible way to bring that about anyway. You're just creating an atmosphere where she is tempted to lie to soothe your ego and have her real orgasms later, when you're not in the room. What needs to change is your issue about her orgasm.

Look at the rest of your life. Unless you're living in Amish country, you use all sorts of tools and gadgets to smooth and enhance your world. Why the hell would you balk at using them to have better sex? Don't be a sexual Luddite—embrace the technology! It's the change you need. recommended