Your sexiness is good fodder for the erotic imagination.
Read: Own It! How to Take Back, Accept and Even Love Your Body
Is ESF normal?
While wanting to feel desired may be a component of ESF, anthropologist Wednesday Martin points out in her book Untrue that sometimes you just think you’re damn hot and find your body to be sexually exciting. And that’s completely fine.
Sarah Martin, MA, a certified sex coach, says that “beyond being normal, I'd actually call this a necessity for pleasurable, mutually satisfying partner sex. Focusing on pleasurable sensations is the pathway most likely to lead to experiencing orgasm.”
Saltz explains that erotically focusing on yourself is totally normal during masturbation, sex, and fantasy. “It is healthy to feel you are sexy and look sexy and desirable.” The only time she says you should be wary is if you only focus on yourself during sex and don’t even engage with your partner. “This may interrupt a healthy sexual relationship which requires some back and forth, but this is not typical,” she says.
Read: What It Means If You Fantasize During Sex
It’s not just about “looking.”
Martin says that this idea that women erotically self-focus more than men lacks a feminist lens. It’s more about wanting a partner who cares about your orgasm than the desire to be desired.
If you’re having sex with yourself, you know all of your needs will be met. Who knows your body better than you? “Having sex with yourself, your partner would know what felt good, would pay attention to the activities that feel good, and you would also know what feels good for them. Sex with yourself, in this context for many women, might be a fantasy of the best shot at physical sexual pleasure,” she explains.
While “visual sight” is one of the main components of ESF, it isn’t limited to simply staring at yourself and thinking, “Damn. I’d have sex with me”. “Erotic self-focus is focusing on the pleasurable sensations you feel within your body when being sexual with yourself or others. This can include focusing on any of your five senses - taste, touch, smell, sound, and sight. A lot that's been written about erotic self-focus zeroes in on sight - getting turned on by looking at yourself - and leaves out the other four,” Martin says.
At the end of the day, Erotic Self-Focus is totally normal and most of us have engaged in it at some point or other. If you’re interested in giving it a try, might I suggest you get a mirror for the bedroom like I did?