It’s a pandemic. You’re living at home with your family and your favorite massage wand vibrator is on its last legs. If you’re too chicken shit to ask a nearby friend who lives alone to take a package full of sex toys to you or to go to an actual sex shop, your options are limited.
But have no fear! Some very bold (or equally horny) CEO decided that certain pharmacies should carry sex toys, albeit the small, very breakable kind. Time to swallow that unearned pride and make a purchase that would make every single member of your family deeply ashamed. Here’s how to do it:
Scope out the drugstore first. Nothing is worse than psyching yourself up to go in to make the world’s most embarrassing purchase only to find out that, surprise, this pharmacy doesn’t have any in stock. Be sure that once you do find the right store that they also have self-checkout to avoid having to look anyone in the eye.
Once you have ensured this place has The Goods, figure out which one you want. You don’t want to be caught looking at them too long—you can check online what the options are. If you’re lucky, your pharmacy’s pick-up line goes through this aisle already, giving you the perfect excuse to cast glances at the options in between intensely staring at the ceiling.
The day has arrived. Prepare yourself for battle. The easiest way of doing this is with some liquid courage if you are of legal drinking age. How much liquid courage you can imbibe depends on your mode of transportation. If you’re driving there, you take a shot in the pharmacy parking lot. If you’re taking public transport, you can drink to the point just before you become a public nuisance. If you’re walking there, have at it. Just don’t throw up in the store; if you do, you can never return. If you cannot legally drink, or you avoid alcohol for other reasons, power-blast some Beyoncé. It’ll do in a pinch.
Once you are in the store, casually make your way over to the aisle. Peruse a little first, maybe pick up some chocolate. You will need comfort food once this is over. Do you need a new loofah? Why not. Grab every magazine that you think normal people would buy. That’s it, real casual. You are the most normal. No one suspects a thing.
Approach the aisle with caution. Make sure no one is around who might otherwise recognize what you’re doing. This may take several minutes of wandering around the store. If anyone approaches, turn back immediately. If you even see anyone you vaguely know, run and try again another time. Maybe in six weeks or so and after you dye your hair. Shave your eyebrows too, just to be safe.
Start to wonder why you didn’t just set up a P.O. box. Seriously, you could have just paid the stupid fee and avoided this whole traumatic experience. You’re definitely moving out soon. Definitely. Glower as you stand in the office supply aisle.
You’ve made it into the aisle. No one is around. Your time has come! Grab whatever toy you’ve already decided upon and, not suspiciously at all, hide it amongst your other purchases. Do not put it in a purse or pocket because then it’ll look like you’re shoplifting and you will literally die of humiliation having to explain to a cop why you hid a vibrator in your backpack. And I do mean literally; your soul will leave your body, which someone will definitely post on TikTok.
Almost home free. You can do this! Make your way to the self-checkout and scan your items. You don’t want to scan it first, but definitely not last either. If you live in a state where you can get carded for it, you really should have gotten that P.O. box. But if you do have to be carded, do not make a single comment. No one is going to believe you’re buying this for a bachelorette party. No one hates their friend that much. Pay for your stuff, shove it into your bag, and fight the panicky impulse to run out of there like a bat out of uncomfortable, dingy convenience store-Hell.
Now that you are back out in the world, the epiphany will hit you. You realize that the majority of humans feel a level of sexual desire and that the purchase of sex toys is a healthy method of dealing with those natural urges. Self-care is the only way you’re going to make it through this pandemic and if that means a little time alone with some silicone, then who is anyone to judge you? There’s no shame in indulging in one part of what makes us an active, mature human being. And honestly, all of this anxiety about expressing sexuality comes from centuries of oppression and advertising, designed to make us feel bad about ourselves, to sell us more impractical nonsense, and to keep us trapped in these circular and unhealthy mindsets. Shame is a useless and hateful emotion that we only feel because other people tell us we should! Good for you for saying fuck that, and getting your cheap, drugstore-purchased freak on! SELF-LOVE AND EMPOWERMENT, BABY!
Hide your purchase in the back of a drawer. Wait two to four weeks until the stinging shame of the whole affair has been forgotten or has at least dulled enough not to keep you from using it. Then remember you forgot to buy batteries.