Unsplash/Toa Heftiba - Picture has been edited by Les 3 sex*

Story • To Please Myself

14 February 2020

Stories are written by people who don’t necessarily work or study in fields related to sexology. They convey emotions, perceptions, and subjective perspectives. Opinions voiced in the stories are those of their authors, and in no way represent the position of Les 3 sex*.


Ce témoignage est aussi disponible en français [➦].

Translated by Zoe Yarymowich


My experience of being single?
It was short. But revolutionary.

I always had fairly long, back-to-back relationships (ranging from one to three years) - ever since I was 14 years old. Then, at 19, I found myself heartbroken and alone. That year was a year of reconstruction. It’s hard to explain to you how much I didn’t trust my best friend the day she told me, “You’ll see, at first it’s hard to be alone, but then you’ll love it!” A year later, I was the one repeating this advice to people.

I learned to love being with myself and take time to:

• Write

• Observe myself

• Put pen to paper to express my emotions

• Identify patterns in these random emotions

• Really get to know myself

• Reflect on my previous relationships;

• Forgive my previous partners and myself.

I thought it was a really good experience! I even learned to go to restaurants by myself, unbothered and unembarrassed like I felt once before!

I also got to know myself by dating. It had been a while since I had dated. It’s amazing how much you learn, even with one-night stands. Dating is, first of all, a boost to one’s self-esteem and growth. It taught me how to put things into perspective, cope when things didn’t work out, and to recognize that sometimes a relationship just isn’t the right match. I learned that in the end, one-night stands weren’t what pleased me the most. I prefer one-night stands that last a little - like casual dating - because it allows us (the partner in question and myself) to develop comfort in our sexuality, to get to know each other, making it altogether more pleasant.

One day, a guy who was initially a one-night stand came to visit me for a week. It was going to be a “couple’s” week and then life would resume to the single life. I very clearly remember coming home in the evening, before he arrived, and feeling so happy in my life. I repeated to myself: “Ana, remember your state of mind right now, remember it when he leaves, remember how your life is too good so that you won’t find yourself sad and broken when he leaves.” And I did manage to remember that when he left. In fact, I was even happy to be on my own again.

There’s something cool about singing in the kitchen while making myself cute meals. There’s something cool about taking care of myself and deciding that if I want to take it slow today, I will go slow. There’s no one else to take into account! I learned to be at peace with my mood swings. I started doing a lot more things, too, just because I had the time!

Last year, I was in a relationship for a year. We lived in the same city, so we saw each other often, which led me to realize just how much time being in a relationship demands. Instead of reading, cooking, or creating alone seven nights a week, I was often with my partner. Well, it was cool because both of us had previously already been single (he, voluntarily for a year), so we valued our freedom. We didn’t see each other every evening so that we could have time for our own personal pleasures. We thought of it like this: we both learned, during our moments alone, how important it is to listen to and respect each other as individuals. As a result, we wanted to continue this dynamic of respecting each other’s space to prevent either of us feeling like being in this relationship was a constraint. It’s a curious sort of “inversion” that happened for me: being in a couple became constraining, rather than singlehood.

Most importantly, my year being single was also the year that I discovered masturbation! I had never masturbated before my breakup with the person who left me heartbroken. The first time I did it was when I was still in a relationship with him. After the breakup, I could never masturbate while thinking about anyone else but him, and then it became my challenge: to stop fantasizing about him. Little by little, I invented and explored my imagination for real! I discovered pleasure, how my body reacted, what I liked, and different ways to reach orgasm. Thanks to that, my sexuality became a thousand times better because I knew how to guide my partners. I discovered a lot of fantasies and as it turns out, particularly for certain things that I didn’t expect would excite me. As a result, I learned to let my imagination go without judging it. Masturbating also helped me to understand my attractions and to know if I really desired someone or not. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn’t, but I always learned something!

Being single was, therefore, an opportunity to get to know myself, to relax, spend time with and please myself.


Other stories are available in the file “Single. Towards a Positive Redefinition”. Do not hesitate to consult the case file in its entirety to learn more about this reality.

Consult the Case File "Celibacy from a New Perspective"
single, celibacy, self-partnership, self-discovery, reconstruction, self-awareness, one-night stands, masturbation, independence, couple, relationship, constraint


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